Features

2015 Create the Future Design Contest: Machinery/Automation/Robotics Category Winner

Compact, Long-Reach Robotic Arm William R. Doggett, John T. Dorsey, George G. Ganoe, Thomas C. Jones, and Cole K. Corbin, Langley Research Center (Hampton, VA); Bruce D. King, Lockheed Martin (Bethesda, MD); and Charles D. Mercer, Stinger Ghaffarian Technologies (New York, NY) Langley’s Tendon-Actuated Lightweight In-Space MANipulator (TALISMAN) technology is a robotic arm with lightweight joints that provide a wide range of motion. The design provides users with a long reach and numerous degrees of freedom. The arm, ideal for use in aquatic environments or for manipulation of light terrestrial loads, consists of articulating booms connected by antagonistic cable tension elements. The arm elements are structurally efficient and lightweight, and support compact packaging.

Posted in: Articles, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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2015 Create the Future Design Contest: Consumer Products Category Winner

Modular Jet Ski: No Trailer, Affordable, High-Performance Anders Stubkjaer BomBoard LLC Whitewater, WI Millions of water enthusiasts have no practical and affordable way to enjoy a high-performance watercraft close to home. Jet skis typically cost over $10,000 and weigh over 800 pounds. Without a lake home or slip, jet skis, jet boards, and boats require trailers that are difficult to store and haul. The BomBoard is the world’s only high-performance jet board/jet ski transportable in the back of a car. The price of $3,995 makes it affordable to millions of action sports enthusiasts.

Posted in: Articles, Consumer Product Manufacturing

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2015 Create the Future Design Contest: Medical Category Winner

Smart X-ray Source Mark Eaton Stellarray Austin, TX Since the discovery of x-rays 110 years ago, affordable x-ray sources have all been point source x-ray tubes in which x-rays are generated at a single spot on an anode by a single electron beam accelerated at high voltage across a vacuum gap. Generation of x-rays from a single spot, even in rotating anode tubes, limits the flux they can deliver, because most of the e-beam energy will be absorbed in that spot.

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2015 Create the Future Design Contest: Sustainable Technologies Category Winner

ECHY: Solar Lighting with Fiber Optics Stephanie Le Beuze ECHY Ile-de-France, France 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

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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.

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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, LEDs

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Imaging Sensor Eliminates Extraneous Light

Anew 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

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