Manufacturing & Prototyping

Joining and Assembly of Bulk Metallic Glass Composites Through Capacitive Discharge

Commercial uses include spacecraft debris shielding, energy-absorbing panels on military vehicles, and sporting goods. Bulk metallic glasses (BMGs), a class of amorphous metals defined as having a thickness greater than 1 mm, are being broadly investigated by NASA for use in spacecraft hardware. Their unique properties, attained from their non-crystalline structure, motivate several game-changing aerospace applications. BMGs have low melting temperatures so they can be cheaply and repeatedly cast into complex net shapes, such as mirrors or electronic casings. They are extremely strong and wear-resistant, which motivates their use in gears and bearings. Amorphous metal coatings are hard, corrosion-resistant, and have high reflectivity. BMG composites, reinforced with soft second phases, can be fabricated into energy-absorbing cellular panels for orbital debris shielding.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs

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Leak-Free Connection for Blood Pressure Monitoring Applications

Using proprietary molding techniques, the inner fitting features three sharp barbs designed specifically to securely hold the stiffer hoses common to blood pressure monitors. For precise blood pressure monitoring in hospitals and surgeries, the accurate handling of medical devices is paramount. Human error or device failure can result in inaccurate readings, which compromise the safety of patients, and it is critical, therefore, that device components, such as connectors, not only ensure a leak-free connection but are also simple and easy to use.

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

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Employing a Grinding Technology to Assess the Microbial Density for Encapsulated Organisms

Applications include medical device manufacturing and the commercial paint industry. Projects that utilize large volumes of nonmetallic materials of planetary protection concern pose a challenge to their bioburden budget, as the most conservative value of 30 spores/cm3 is typically used. The standard laboratory procedures do not provide any direction into the methodologies to understand the embedded bioburden within such nonmetallic components such as adhesives, insulation, or paint. A project can elect to conduct a destructive hardware study to experimentally derive a sourcespecific encapsulated microbial density, and the experimental value can be utilized for a project.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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Demonstration of Minimally Machined Honeycomb Silicon Carbide Mirrors

This manufacturing process eliminates machining and steps for mirrors and optomechanical structures. Honeycomb silicon carbide composite mirrors are made from a carbon fiber preform that is molded into a honeycomb shape using a rigid mold. The carbon fiber honeycomb is densified by using polymer infiltration pyrolysis, or through a reaction with liquid silicon. A chemical vapor deposit, or chemical vapor composite (CVC), process is used to deposit a polishable silicon or silicon carbide cladding on the honeycomb structure. Alternatively, the cladding may be replaced by a freestanding, replicated CVC SiC facesheet that is bonded to the honeycomb. The resulting carbon fiber-reinforced silicon carbide honeycomb structure is a ceramic matrix composite material with high stiffness and mechanical strength, high thermal conductivity, and low CTE (coefficient of thermal expansion). This innovation enables rapid, inexpensive manufacturing.

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs

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Heat Shield Employing Cured Thermal Protection Material Blocks Bonded in a Large-Cell Honeycomb Matrix

A document describes a new way to integrate thermal protection materials on external surfaces of vehicles that experience the severe heating environments of atmospheric entry from space. Cured blocks of thermal protection materials are bonded into a compatible, large-cell honeycomb matrix that can be applied on the external surfaces of the vehicles. The honeycomb matrix cell size, and corresponding thermal protection material block size, is envisioned to be between 1 and 4 in. (≈2.5 and 10 cm) on a side, with a depth required to protect the vehicle. The cell wall thickness is thin, between 0.01 and 0.10 in. (≈0.025 and 0.25 cm).

Posted in: Manufacturing & Prototyping, Briefs, TSP

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Cloud-Based Product Lifecycle Management for the Medical Industry

A collaborative software solution offers medical OEMs a range of benefits, including more efficient product development, improved profitability, and higher product quality. The medical industry stands to benefit immensely from cloud-based product lifecycle management (PLM). The mountains of information that medical companies must manage when bringing a new product to market are truly massive. Every aspect of the product — and every change made to the product — must be carefully documented to ensure compliance with regulatory bodies such as the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) or the ISO (International Standards Organization).

Posted in: Bio-Medical, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Software, FDA Compliance/Regulatory Affairs, Medical, Briefs, MDB

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High-Accuracy Closed Loop Force Feedback

Benefits of serial servo digital presses for force gauge specifications. Hand-driven press assemblies, which require a specific amount of force applied for a given amount of time, present challenges when attempting to accurately measure or replicate results in production or quality control processes. In contrast, servo-driven digital presses are able to provide accurate, consistent, and repeatable results while outputting trackable data. By controlling position and current, the servo-driven digital press allows for stable, accurate, and repeatable control.

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

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