2015 Create the Future Design Contest: Sustainable Technologies Category Winner

ECHY: Solar Lighting with Fiber Optics Stephanie Le Beuze ECHY Ile-de-France, France“As we are a French start-up that is relatively unknown outside of Europe, winning an award of this kind will definitely help us make an entry into the international market. The recognition of this award will enable us to approach the US market with more confidence, so that we can collaborate with architects, designers, and engineers to bring ECHY and our daylight technology across the ocean!”For many, artificial light has completely replaced natural light. Lighting can account for up to 50% of building electricity consumption, and up to 56% of energy bills in offices. Artificial light is not only costly for us and for the environment, but prevents us from using a natural and abundant resource: sunlight.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Green Design & Manufacturing, Design processes, Fiber optics, Sustainable development, Electric power, Waste heat utilization, Product development


Thermally Conductive Adhesives Bring Specialized Solutions to Complex Design Challenges

With advances in epoxies, silicones, and other materials, manufacturers can find adhesives able to meet nearly any combination of requirements for thermal, environmental, and structural stability. Thermally conductive adhesives are uniquely qualified to meet the increasingly diverse requirements of advanced electronics systems. From their traditional use as fastening materials, adhesives find wide application in bonding and encapsulation in nearly every application segment, including military/aerospace, medical, automotive, and industrial, among others. In their traditional application in computer and communications systems, thermally conductive adhesives have long played a vital role at the chip level for die attach, at the PCB level for heat sink bonding, and at both the chip and board levels for all types of thermal management methods.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Thermal management, Adhesives and sealants, Semiconductors


LED Lighting Enables Better Sleep and Wake Cycles

LED technology helps astronauts sleep and keeps gardens growing. Because NASA is planning for future visits to distant locations like Mars, the agency is researching how to grow plants in space. Live plants on space missions provide a nutritious food source and contribute to cleaning air in a spacecraft. When looking at how to best grow plants on space missions, NASA looked at high-intensity halogen lights, special UV bulbs, and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). By incorporating different LEDs on a single circuit board, the light can be changed and controlled to include or omit specific wavelengths of light, and at different times.

Posted in: Articles, Spinoff, Aerospace, LEDs, Lighting, Light emitting diodes (LEDs), Biological sciences, Human factors, Medical, health, and wellness, Spacecraft


Imaging Sensor Eliminates Extraneous Light

A new imaging sensor created by a team at Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Toronto allows depth cameras to operate effectively in bright sunlight. The researchers, including Srinivasa Narasimhan, CMU associate professor of robotics, developed a mathematical model to help cameras capture 3D information and eliminate unneeded light or “noise” that often wash out the signals necessary to detect a scene’s contours.

Posted in: Articles, Sensors, Imaging and visualization, Sensors and actuators


Authentication by Heart: Radar's New Role in Biometrics

The field of wireless vital sign monitoring has a relatively long history, almost as long as radar itself. Doppler radar has been the primary sensor technology for detecting blood flow or fetal heart rate. Over the past decade, there has been an increasing interest and need for creating wireless long-range vital sign monitoring systems. In addition, there has been a strong preference for using non-contact technologies for detection applications, especially for search-and-rescue operations that require the ability to see through debris, walls, and snow. There are also several emerging applications using short-range radar systems for automotive safety systems, remote health monitoring, and heart-based biometric authentication.

Posted in: Articles, Sensors, Radar, Cardiovascular system, Medical equipment and supplies, Physical examination


Finding the Right Custom Magnetic Sensor For Your Application

Successful magnetic circuits are built upon proper planning and design principles. Experienced design engineers take a holistic approach to the design process by considering the full magnetic circuit. Open communication between the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) team and the customer helps the engineer anticipate the project’s unique parameters and tailor the design accordingly.

Posted in: Articles, Sensors, Design processes, Sensors and actuators, Supplier assessment, Magnetic materials


Using Radiation-Hardened Optoelectronic Devices

Optoelectronic components must be protected from the radiation they are exposed to in military, space and nuclear environments to prevent malfunction and damage. Radiation hardening electronics makes them resistant to this damage by letting them retain characteristics, and keeps imaging and electrical performance consistent with pre-radiation values. This is especially critical for components used in applications like a satellite or a nuclear reactor that cannot be accessed and must work properly for many years.

Posted in: Articles, Features, Photonics, Electronic equipment, Optics, Hardening, Satellites


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