Manufacturing & Prototyping

Modifying Matrix Materials to Increase Wetting and Adhesion

Improvements are achieved at lower cost and without degradation of fibers.In an alternative approach to increasing the degrees of wetting and adhesion between the fiber and matrix components of organic-fiber/polymer matrix composite materials, the matrix resins are modified. Heretofore, it has been common practice to modify the fibers rather than the matrices: The fibers are modified by chemical and/or physical surface treatments prior to combining the fibers with matrix resins — an approach that entails considerable expense and usually results in degradation (typically, weakening) of fibers.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs

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Ridge Waveguide Structures in Magnesium-Doped Lithium Niobate

This work proposes to establish the feasibility of fabricating isolated ridge waveguides in 5% MgO:LN. Ridge waveguides in MgO:LN will significantly improve power handling and conversion efficiency, increase photonic component integration, and be well suited to space-based applications. The key innovation in this effort is to combine recently available large, high-photorefractive-damage-threshold, z-cut 5% MgO:LN with novel ridge fabrication techniques to achieve high-optical power, low-cost, high-volume manufacturing of frequency conversion structures. The proposed ridge waveguide structure should maintain the characteristics of the periodically poled bulk substrate, allowing for the efficient frequency conversion typical of waveguides and the high optical damage threshold and long lifetimes typical of the 5% doped bulk substrate. The low cost and large area of 5% MgO:LN wafers, and the improved performance of the proposed ridge waveguide structure, will enhance existing measurement capabilities as well as reduce the resources required to achieve high-performance specifications.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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Material Gradients in Oxygen System Components Improve Safety

Oxygen system components fabricated by Laser Engineered Net Shaping™ (LENS™) could result in improved safety and performance. LENS™ is a near-net shape manufacturing process fusing powdered materials injected into a laser beam. Parts can be fabricated with a variety of elemental metals, alloys, and nonmetallic materials without the use of a mold. The LENS™ process allows the injected materials to be varied throughout a single workpiece. Hence, surfaces exposed to oxygen could be constructed of an oxygen-compatible material while the remainder of the part could be one chosen for strength or reduced weight. Unlike conventional coating applications, a compositional gradient would exist between the two materials, so no abrupt material boundary exists. Without an interface between dissimilar materials, there is less tendency for chipping or cracking associated with thermal-expansion mismatches.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs

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Optimization of Indium Bump Morphology for Improved Flip Chip Devices

Flip chips have applications in cell phones and other small electronic devices.Flip-chip hybridization, also known as bump bonding, is a packaging technique for microelectronic devices that directly connects an active element or detector to a substrate readout face-to-face, eliminating the need for wire bonding. In order to make conductive links between the two parts, a solder material is used between the bond pads on each side. Solder bumps, composed of indium metal, are typically deposited by thermal evaporation onto the active regions of the device and substrate. While indium bump technology has been a part of the electronic interconnect process field for many years and has been extensively employed in the infrared imager industry, obtaining a reliable, high-yield process for high-density patterns of bumps can be quite difficult.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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Pre-Finishing of SiC for Optical Applications

A method is based on two unique processing steps that are both based on deterministic machining processes using a single-point diamond turning (SPDT) machine. In the first step, a high-MRR (material removal rate) process is used to machine the part within several microns of the final geometry. In the second step, a low-MRR process is used to machine the part to near optical quality using a novel ductile regime machining (DRM) process.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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A Method of Strengthening Composite/Metal Joints

This method is a less-expensive, easier alternative to a prior method.The term “tape setback method” denotes a method of designing and fabricating bonded joints between (1) box beams or other structural members made of laminated composite (matrix/ fiber) materials and (2) metal end fittings used to fasten these structural members to other structural members. The basic idea of the tape setback method is to mask the bonded interface between the metallic end fitting and composite member such that the bond does not extend out to the free edges of the composite member.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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Die Extrusion Technology for Medical Tubing Applications

Patent-pending process would allow 1000-plus layers from a single extruder.Although the concept of nanotechnology (controlling matter on an atomic scale) dates back to 1959, it is only now becoming more commercially realized. It has the potential to challenge the way all products are extruded in almost every type of medical tubular or related industrial product applications.

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Briefs, Briefs, Custom & Contract Manufacturing

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