Application Briefs

Flexible LED Assembly for Automotive Signal Lighting

Philips Lumileds, San Jose, CA

A build-out-of-the-box approach to turn, tail, and stop lighting applications on vehicles significantly reduces engineering and development costs. With recent improvements to Snap LED, an automotive LED assembly, the need for retesting and screening is removed, which can save users on operational costs, reduce equipment and manpower needs, speed production, and improve finished goods yields. The LED assemblies can be shaped to any contour, allowing users to create more innovative and streamlined designs. SnapLED's solder-less clinch fastening technology is a formable metal substrate designed for ease of design and installation.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Lighting

Fine Laser Cutting Technology

Fine laser cutting is an ideal technology for specialized cutting requirements found in the manufacturing of medical tube tools and components. From surgical instruments used in cutting and biopsy, to needles containing unusual tips and side wall openings, to puzzle chain linkages for flexible endoscopes, laser cutting provides higher precision, quality, and speed than traditionally used cutting techniques. In addition, new laser cutting technologies are now coming to market, including a 5-axis motion package that gives the designer freedom to cut more challenging geometries in one pass.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Applications, ptb catchall, Photonics, Lasers, Medical equipment and supplies, Product development, Cutting

NASA Uses Emergency Notification System to Communicate With Personnel

The Communicator!® NXT™ emergency notification system Cassidian Communications (an EADS North America company) Temecula, CA 951-719-2100

Posted in: Application Briefs, Communications, Communication protocols, Hazards and emergency management, Hazards and emergency operations, Rescue and emergency vehicles and equipment

Multi-Layer Films and Tapes Provide Thermal Protection for NASA Spacecraft

Multi-Layer Insulation (MLI) materials Dunmore Corporation Bristol, PA 215-781-8895

The final flight of the Space Shuttle Atlantis carried Multi-Layer Insulation (MLI) materials from Dunmore Corp. The MLI materials replace heavier materials such as metals and composites used to shield sensitive space-based systems from cold, debris, and radiation. The cargo bays on Atlantis, as well as the Endeavor and Discovery shuttles, are lined with insulation blankets covered by Dunmore’s thermal protection systems (TPS). The insulation blankets protect the inside of the shuttle from extreme temperature fluctuations when the cargo bay doors are open.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Materials, Insulation, Spacecraft

DC Motor Automates Patient Transfer Device

One of the growing problems facing nurses is a reduced staff, and with it the need to care for overweight patients with very little help. This effort has led to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) including back injuries. In fact, 12 percent of nurses leave the profession each year due to back injuries. Those working in nursing homes have an even higher rate of injuries. Until recently, moving a patient was performed manually or with minimal automation.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Motion Control, Medical equipment and supplies, Automation, Electric motors, Injuries

Launch Escape System Advances Commercial Human Spaceflight

Launch escape system Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) Hawthorne, CA 310-363-6000

Due to the recent retirement of the space shuttle, NASA now depends on the Russian Soyuz spacecraft to ferry astronauts to and from the International Space Station (ISS).

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Evacuation and escape, Spacecraft

Capacitive Pressure Sensor Enables Better Combustor Design

Pressure sensor Sporian® Microsystems Lafayette, CO 303-516-9116

Sporian Microsystems has been awarded a NASA contract to develop a capacitive pressure sensor. The sensor must survive extremely harsh conditions, including temperatures in excess of 1000 °C (1832 °F), pressures in excess of 500 PSI (34 bars), as well as exposure to corrosive and oxidizing gasses.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Sensors, Sensors and actuators, Combustion and combustion processes

Improving Microinverter Performance in Photovoltaic Systems

We have known for decades that the sun radiates enough energy to meet the world’s needs for power, both now and in the future. As in any energy conversion from original source to a “usable” form, however, the various stages of adaptation introduce efficiency losses. In the case of the photovoltaic system, this has limited what could be exponential growth. In fact, the best performance available from solar cells of any kind (excluding the concentrated approach) never rose above 15% efficiency. In cascade to the solar cell itself, a classical centralized inverter would add barely more than 90% efficiency to the chain. This “poor” performance and the obvious lack of large successes has also helped to keep the installation costs very high.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Applications, ptb catchall, Photonics, Sun and solar, Solar energy, Semiconductors

Using Aspheric Optics in Complex Lens Designs

Optical design engineers often discuss the use of aspheres to reduce element count, but they seldom put the discussion into real-time practice, often fearing that the more complex fabrication process of the asphere itself overwhelms the advantages that they might gain.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Optics, Optics, Fabrication

Smoothing the Wave for High-Power Lasers

For years, laser manufacturers have promised the ability to produce very high-power, cost-effective lasers that are stable outside of a laboratory environment. Recent requirements in aerospace and defense applications, such as LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), IR countermeasures, and laser targeting, are now calling on these manufacturers to deliver.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Applications, ptb catchall, Photonics, Lasers, Fabrication

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