Tech Exchange

Lateral-Flow Device Produces Quantitative Diagnostics

A patent suite enables quantitative diagnostics from inexpensive and disposable lateral-flow test strip technology. Multiple, simultaneous analyses can be conducted on the same strip. The method reduces the hook effect, a dangerous false negative, without requiring long wait times; larger, tagged molecules, which are used as a differentiator, reach the limited reagents in the reporting area first. Using a reporter and magnetic particles can reduce hook effect even further and increase accuracy.

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Piezo-Electric Actuator Provides Motion Control Alternative

An alternative piezo-electric ceramic actuator simultaneously provides greater force and deflection, while producing no appreciable magnetic field or heat. The RLP domed piezo, a PZT disk laminated between two metal layers under heat and pressure, increases deflection 1,000-fold from an unmodified 0.2 micron to 200 microns. Viva, a scalable actuator, utilizes a pre-loaded stack of PZT ceramic piezos that flex against a fixed base. The device has one or two output arms that mechanically amplify movement. Without the magnetic signature, Viva’s linear motion can be converted to rotary motion to replace brushless DC motors.

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Pipe Alignment and Clamping Tool Offers High-Quality Alloy Welding

For welding purposes, a clamping device aligns two adjacent sections of pipe internally. The apparatus has a variety of clamping members movable between retracted and extended positions. Each of the members holds a clamping shoe that connects to the device frame. The technology is particularly useful when welding large diameter alloy pipe such as 12-16" stainless steel.

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Mobile Therapy Systems Deliver Ultrasound to Reduce Pain

New mobile devices deliver ultrasound for the relief of major conditions, including arthritis, tendonitis, and back pain. In addition to pain relief, the system can be used to heal wounds, promote transdermal drug delivery, and improve skin health. The ZetrOZ system, about the size of an iPod, is battery-powered and can be used in a doctor’s office, at work, or at home.

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Butterfly-Inspired Fibers Create Diverse Fabric Colors

Much like the Morpho butterfly’s microscopic wing structure, MORPHOTEX® fibers have various thicknesses and structures, which then determine specific colors. Thin films of 70-nm thickness, consisting either of polyester or nylon, are laminated in 61 alternating layers. By precisely controlling the layer thickness according to visible wavelength, four types of basic colors, including red, green, blue, and violet, can be developed. No dyes or pigments are used.

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Identification of Signal Arrival Direction in a Noise Environment

A processing methodology enables quick and accurate identification of signal arrival direction. The improved mathematical concept allows unified detection, even with the cumbersome environment noise that afflicts conventional methods. It will be applied to devices that assume the signal arrival direction with a sensor array. The proposed method works best when there are fewer noise sources than the receivers constituting the array, and when the noise source exists in the same direction of the signal source.

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Facing for Acoustic Batts that Contain Melt-Film Fibrillation

Melt-Film Fibrillation (MFF) technology produces a facing for acoustic batts for vehicle sound insulation that offers equivalent or superior sound-deadening performance at reduced weight and cost. Equivalent weights of MFF fibers produce substantially enhanced sound insulation over conventional batts incorporating melt-blown, polypropylene fibers. The submicron fibers of MFF increase sound impedance, with significant performance improvements realized in the frequencies between 3000 Hz and 5000 Hz.

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