Tech Exchange

Microwave System Accelerates Concrete Curing

A Microwave Irradiated Pyrogen (MIP) system speeds up the concrete curing process. The use of a microwave allows the technology to operate in cold weather. Because the MIP accelerates the heating point, colder countries like Russia and Canada can use the curing system to build roads, tunnels, and other structures. The technology can also be used with precast concrete, mass concrete, and other construction needs.

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Industrial-Scale Gas Separation

A company has a process stream made up of a variety of gases and molecules. They seek effective industrial-scale technologies that separate methane from other hydrocarbons in the stream, as well as from lighter and heavier molecules. The large-scale gas streams must be separated into their constituent molecules at purity rates above 90%. Proposed solutions should address boundary conditions, required or expected pressures, operating temperatures, and compatibility with various molecules and gas stream contaminants. The technologies must also be feasible for process streams that run in the 100,000 tons per annum or greater.

Posted in: Tech Needs, NASA Tech Needs

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Low-Water Cleaning

The manufacturing of consumer products, foods, and pharmaceuticals requires the implementation of stringent cleaning requirements of all batch, semi-continuous, and continuous processes equipment. High standards of hygienic quality must be maintained, and the cleaning process must ensure that there is no cross-contamination of products. A client needs to reduce the amount of water required to clean stainless steel-based manufacturing plant equipment, such as vessels, mixers, and pipework. New chemical and/or process technologies must clean products of wide-ranging viscosities. Potential solution areas include self-cleaning surfaces, surface- modification technologies, and air-based cleaning.

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Multiple-Component Fibers Strengthen Non-Woven Fabric

A technology provides a full-surface, bonded, nonwoven fabric with a tensile strength suitable for packaging, bubble packs, and other applications requiring tear resistance. Fullwidth bonding, compared to the more common patterned point bonding, produces the high-strength fabric. The thin, low-cost material can be easily manufactured in smooth calendaring plants. Low voids reinforce the fabric.

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Microwave Energy Removes Fuel- Processing Impurities

A traditional sulfur-adsorption bed uses microwave energy to remove, or desorb, captured impurities. Conventional adsorption beds use heat and sometimes vacuum to cleanse the bed of sorbents; the process is energy-intensive and can reduce sorbent life. By using microwaves, the new technology desorbs the captured impurities from the bed with little or no change in temperature.

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Viscosity Thickeners for Adhesive Polymer

A client uses sodium and potassium stearates to build body and viscosity in a polymer dispersion intended as an adhesive. The stearates adversely affect shear strength after the dispersion cures. Non-stearate thickeners, or different stearates, are needed. By varying the nature of the fillers and thickeners, and possibly by varying their loading, post-cure compression shear strength of 2000-2500 pounds must be achieved. Lesser strengths may also be of interest. The viscosity thickeners must bond wood and similar porous substrates, as well as nonporous surfaces. The adhesive must be applied smoothly, as though poured.

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New Sensations for Saline Nasal Sprays

New sensations for saline sprays and washes must moisturize dry nasal passages and relieve a stuffy nose. Additives such as eucalyptus or sesame oil, for example, produce coolness or warmth. The desired effects must calm, soften, and relieve symptoms. An antibacterial effect and a physical rinse are of interest. Potential ingredients may include menthol, eucalyptus, lavender, heather, aloe vera, Echinacea, elderberry, and apple cider vinegar. A proposed solution, which must be drug-free, efficacious, and safe, may also feature a differentiated delivery device.

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