Special Coverage


The Future of Crash Testing

In conjunction with SAE Government, insurance-company, and manufacturer testing is driving the design of safer passenger vehicles. Although physical, real-world crash testing will likely forever remain part of the validation process, the ideal mix of real-world and virtual crash testing is changing. Advances in autonomous vehicle controllers have made it possible to replicate nontraditional crash test scenarios on a test pad, including vehicle-to-vehicle, vehicle-to-barrier, and full-scale vehicle rollovers. Also, increased computing power is enabling more virtual crash testing than ever before—but challenges remain. Data management also takes on increased importance as more virtual tools are used.

Posted in: On-Demand Webinars


Optimizing Performance with Technology Embedded Apparel

Intercomp USA’s latest e-book delves into the smart garment market and how sensors are crucial for making garments smart. More importantly, Intercomp reveals an exciting new technology called tailored fiber placement (TFP), available through its partnership with LayStitch. TFP promises to help with smart garment production and will enable aerospace, automotive and other equipment manufacturers to produce parts that are lighter, stronger and less expensive. Click here to download your FREE copy today or visit intercomp.com to learn more.

Posted in: White Papers


Low Wear and Low Friction: A Comprehensive Approach to Tribological Challenges

In conjunction with SAE In this 60-minute Webinar, a panel of experts will discuss a three-pronged approach to understanding tribology and why it’s critical to successful materials selection. They will also explain how to eliminate noise, friction, and wear when parts move or slide against each other.

Posted in: On-Demand Webinars


Will virtual air-traffic control replace traditional towers?

This week’s Question: On Oct. 1, Colorado’s Fort Collins-Loveland airport was approved as the first testing ground for the Federal Aviation Administration’s own virtual air-traffic control tower system. Through a system of computers, cameras, and recording devices, human controllers would be able to sit in front of a wall of liquid-crystal displays and guide flights from many miles away. The concept, some experts say, will add efficiency and safety at sprawling urban airports where increasing air traffic places ever-greater demands on human controllers. The remote systems also allow airports without towers to avoid the time and expense of building them, yet still attract airlines that want federally approved air control. “I do think one day it could replace traditional visual control towers almost completely,” said Paul Jones, operations manager at the U.K.’s National Air Traffic Service (NATS), which provides air navigation at Heathrow and a dozen other British airports. What do you think? Will virtual air-traffic control replace traditional towers?

Posted in: Question of the Week


Researchers Weld the Un-Weldable

Despite recent advances in materials design, alternative metals still pose a challenge to manufacturers in practice. Many are considered un-weldable by traditional means, in part because high heat and re-solidification weaken the metals. Engineers at The Ohio State University have developed a new welding technique that consumes 80 percent less energy than a common welding technique, yet creates a stronger bond.

Posted in: News


Using Paraffin Phase Change Material to Make Optical Communication-Type Payloads Thermally Self-Sufficient for Operation in Orion Crew Module

Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland The Orion Crew Module has a pressurized cabin of approximately 20 m3 in volume. There are a number of cold plates within the Crew Module for thermal management. An optical communication type of payload consists of electronics boxes and modems that dissipate a significant amount of heat during science operation. Generally, such payloads operate for a short term (e.g., up to one hour). If these heat-dissipating components are flown inside the Crew Module, they require heat rejection to the cold plates in the Crew Module. The waste heat is transported from the cold plate to thermal radiators located outside the Orion spacecraft. This makes such a payload thermally dependent on the Crew Module cold plates.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP


Aerogel-Filled Foam Core Insulation for Cryogenic Propellant Storage

Advanced cryogenic insulation has applications in energy, medicine, food storage and packaging, and electronics. Marshall Space Flight Center, Alabama Current cryogenic insulation materials suffer from various drawbacks including high cost and weight, lack of structural or load-bearing capability, fabrication complexity, and property anisotropy. A need clearly exists for lightweight thermal insulation that is isotropic and structurally capable with high thermal performance, while also offering reduced fabrication and installation complexity, and lower cost.

Posted in: Briefs