Manufacturing & Prototyping

Measuring the In-Process Figure, Final Prescription, and System Alignment of Large Optics and Segmented Mirrors Using Lidar Metrology

This technique has application in commercial optics and lithography. The fabrication of large optics is traditionally a slow process, and fabrication capability is often limited by measurement capability. While techniques exist to measure mirror figure with nanometer precision, measurements of largemirror prescription are typically limited to submillimeter accuracy. Using a lidar instrument enables one to measure the optical surface rough figure and prescription in virtually all phases of fabrication without moving the mirror from its polishing setup. This technology improves the uncertainty of mirror prescription measurement to the micronregime. Furthermore, during instrument assembly, a lidar instrument measures the fabricated optical surface directly and compares with scans of diffuse, mechanical surfaces or other coordinate system references on metering structures. This speeds the alignment process and removes the necessity of ancillary alignment fiducials because the optical surface can be sampled directly.

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Silicon Carbide Mounts for Fabry-Perot Interferometers

Etalon mounts for tunable Fabry-Perot interferometers can now be fabricated from reaction-bonded silicon carbide structural components. These mounts are rigid, lightweight, and thermally stable. The fabrication of these mounts involves the exploitation of post-casting capabilities that (1) enable creation of monolithic structures having reduced (in comparison with prior such structures) degrees of material inhomogeneity and (2) reduce the need for fastening hardware and accommodations. Such silicon carbide mounts could be used to make lightweight Fabry-Perot interferometers or could be modified for use as general lightweight optical mounts.

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Metallization for Yb14MnSb11-Based Thermoelectric Materials

Process enables device fabrication using advanced, high-temperature thermoelectric material.Thermoelectric materials provide a means for converting heat into electrical power using a fully solid-state device. Power-generating devices (which include individual couples as well as multi-couple modules) require the use of n-type and p-type thermoelectric materials, typically comprising highly doped narrow band-gap semiconductors which are connected to a heat collector and electrodes.

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Solvent/Non-Solvent Sintering To Make Microsphere Scaffolds

A solvent/non-solvent sintering tech- nique has been devised for joining poly- meric microspheres to make porous matri- ces for use as drug-delivery devices or scaf- folds that could be seeded with cells for growing tissues. Unlike traditional sinter- ing at elevated temperature and pressure, this technique is practiced at room tem- perature and pressure and, therefore, does not cause thermal degradation of any drug, protein, or other biochemical with which the microspheres might be loaded to impart properties desired in a specific application. Also, properties of scaffolds made by this technique are more repro- ducible than are properties of comparable scaffolds made by traditional sintering.

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Technology Eliminates the Need for Pre-Wetting Cartridge Filters

This ePTFE membrane remains hydrophilic even after exposure to steam autoclave cycles and corrosive chemicals.There has been a long-term need in the filtration industry — particularly for a variety of life science applications — to eliminate the need for pre-wetting cartridge filters with alcohol before sending them to customers. It is not only an expensive, time-consuming process, but it also increases the risk of bacterial contamination.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Packaging, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Medical, Briefs, MDB

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Development of Position-Sensitive Magnetic Calorimeters for X-Ray Astronomy

These calorimeters can be used in x-ray metrology, materials microanalysis, and medical applications.Metallic magnetic calorimeters (MMC) are one of the most promising devices to provide very high energy resolution needed for future astronomical x-ray spectroscopy. MMC detectors can be built to large detector arrays having thousands of pixels. Position-sensitive magnetic (PoSM) microcalorimeters consist of multiple absorbers thermally coupled to one magnetic microcalorimeter. Each absorber element has a different thermal coupling to the MMC, resulting in a distribution of different pulse shapes and enabling position discrimination between the absorber elements. PoSMs therefore achieve the large focal plane area with fewer number of readout channels without compromising spatial sampling.

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Cryogenic-Compatible Winchester Connector Mount and Retaining System for Composite Tubes

A connector retainer and mounting system has been designed to replace screw-mounting of Winchester connectors. Countersunk screws are normally used to secure connectors to structures, and to keep them from coming apart. These screws are normally put into threaded or through-holes in metallic structures. This unique retainer is designed such that integral posts keep the connector halves retained, and a groove permits a cable tie to be fastenedaround the retainer and composite tube, thus securing the connector to the structure.

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