December 2019

Articles: Robotics, Automation & Control
“Cobots” allow companies of almost any size to automate processes that were previously out of reach.
Articles: Data Acquisition
Sensing technology will help to transform manufacturing floors into the connected factories of the future.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
A technology uses a combination of WiFi signals and accelerometer technology to track devices in near-real-time.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
A synthetic skin enables robots to sense their own bodies and surroundings
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Researchers have developed a self-contained wheel unit that combines a wheel and an electric motor.
Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
The technology can be used in commercial motors, robotic systems, and hybrid and electric vehicles.
Application Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
The ESA has commissioned its industry partners to design a new docking system called the International Berthing and Docking Mechanism (IBDM).
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
The algorithm speeds up the planning process that robots use to adjust their grip on objects.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
The skin could help rehabilitation and enhance virtual reality by instantaneously adapting to a wearer's movements.
Products: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Actuators, Encoders, Gripping Tools, and More
Application Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Salty air the Dutch city of Harlingen causes exposed metal parts to corrode.
Special Reports: Sensors/Data Acquisition
ADAS/Connected Car - December 2019

Today's Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and connected cars are paving the way for tomorrow's automated vehicles. To help you keep pace with the latest technology developments, we present this...

Briefs: Aerospace
This system uses fiber optic strain sensing to detect and locate micrometeoroid/orbital debris.
Products: Materials
Adhesives, flame-retardant compounds, vision measurement, and more...
Articles: Software
With the rise in electrification and design complexity, aerospace original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) need to look for new methodologies to mitigate compliance risk.
Briefs: Materials
Made with “Jenga chemistry,” the material could help in understanding how high-temperature superconductors work.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition

Radar technologies were originally designed to identify and track airborne military targets. Today, they're more often used to detect motor vehicles, weather formations,...

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
The reader uses a frequency multiplexer to boost its ability to accurately locate a greater number of RFID tags.
Briefs: Energy

Researchers have developed a more efficient, more reliable potassium-oxygen battery with a cathode that stores the energy produced by a chemical reaction in a metal-oxygen or metal-air battery....

5 Ws: Manufacturing & Prototyping
The biometric tool uses modified wireless earbuds to authenticate smartphone users
Briefs: Data Acquisition

Current laser interferometry pressure pulse detection techniques use the shock-induced change in index of refraction to track detonation and/or shock fronts in a single fiber optic by reflecting laser...

Technology Leaders: Energy
As lithium-ion battery production doubles, more viable energy storage solutions are needed.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers

Innovators at NASA Johnson Space Center have developed a calorimeter that is able to measure the total heat generated when specific types of Lithium-ion (Li-ion) cells are...

Briefs: Aerospace
This lightweight material brings strength and durability to complex shapes.
Facility Focus: Aerospace
Glenn's research facilities have contributed to decades of technology advances.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
This packaging provides protection for SiC sensors and electronics in harsh, hightemperature environments.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
This approach removes the limitation on peak power densities that exists for fiber lasers.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
This hands-on, educational tool highlights the properties of SMA wire.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
This retractable de-orbit device facilitates targeted re-entry, attitude and orbital control, and collision avoidance.
NASA Spinoff: Energy
Life support research for astronauts enabled a solution to one aspect of climate change.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
This technology provides simultaneous ohmic contacts and the process to make them.
Briefs: Test & Measurement
The simulator could help in the development of new back braces.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
This optical switch controls the direction of light passing through optical fibers faster and more efficiently.
Articles: Photonics/Optics
Products include an aerosol scattering sensor; metal foam; and a new coated drug capsule.
Briefs: Energy
A combination of additives shows promise for boosting battery performance in very cold or hot weather.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
This method also reverse-engineers computer chips to detect the chip’s purpose.
Briefs: Energy
This multifunctional hybrid laminate composite can be used for residential and commercial construction.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
This invention is a highly stable, heat-treatable, and tunable material.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
The nanogenerator also acts as a weather station.
Q&A: Electronics & Computers
Changing directions of twist and coiling changes whether a material cools or heats.
Briefs: Data Acquisition
RFID-based devices work in indoor and outdoor lighting conditions and could transmit data for years before they need to be replaced.
Briefs: Imaging
The method could impact optical imaging, vision correction, and disease diagnosis.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
These polymers can combine thermal and optically fixable shape memory.
Briefs: Defense
This low-profile ankle exoskeleton integrates into a shoe and fits under clothing.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
This technology could lead to the creation of fully functional quantum computers.
Briefs: Materials
Squid skin inspires a new material with heat-regulating properties.
Articles: Electronics & Computers
Top prizes in the 2019 contest were awarded on November 8 in New York City.
Briefs: Power
When combined with saltwater, rust can be a source of electricity.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A simple modification can improve the capability of turbulent heat exchangers by 500%.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
This technology has applications in sonar, range measuring, directional-force sensors, flow meters, and vibration/noise sensing and control.
Briefs: Data Acquisition
This innovation dynamically provides fast signal processing and precision measurement.
Briefs: Test & Measurement
The device could impact composites manufacturing and health monitoring.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Stronger and flexible, polyimide aerogels provide insulation and structural support.
Products: Data Acquisition
The GNV-720 and GNV-725 humidity temperature meters from Global Specialties feature three environmental sensors.
INSIDER: Materials

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have developed a new method for producing atomically thin semiconducting crystals that could one day enable more...

Question of the Week: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Will Self-Assembling 'M-Blocks' Catch On?

A team at MIT created self-assembling robotic cubes that can climb and roll over each other into set formations.

INSIDER: Test & Measurement

Inspired by spiders, researchers at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), have developed a compact and efficient depth sensor that could be used onboard...

INSIDER: Electronics & Computers

Rutgers engineers have embedded high performance electrical circuits inside 3D-printed plastics, which could lead to smaller and versatile drones and better-performing small...

INSIDER: Sensors/Data Acquisition

At any moment in Delhi, India, a resident might start their car, releasing exhaust that floats into the atmosphere. In northwest India, a...

Blog: Electronics & Computers
New ceramics expand on ways to more efficiently use heat radiation.
White Papers: Photonics/Optics
Liquid Lenses in Machine Vision Whitepaper

By integrating a liquid lens, the imaging system can change the plane of focus in milliseconds in order to provide sharp images, regardless of the object's distance from the camera. This is an ideal...

White Papers: Robotics, Automation & Control
Detailed Technical Comparison of Automotive Serial Buses

Point-to-point automotive networks deployed in the 1980s were replaced by bus-based networks in the 1990s, with CAN bus emerging as the industry standard. Since then, the complexity of...

White Papers: Aerospace
Safety First - the Position Determination and Checking Algorithms of the RESOLUTE™ True-Absolute Optical Encoder

This white paper gives an overview of the operation of the RESOLUTE absolute encoder and describes in detail the safety...

News: Medical

A wireless, wearable monitor built with stretchable electronics could allow comfortable, long-term health monitoring of adults, babies, and small children without concern for...

News: Medical

Medical implants of the future may feature reconfigurable electronic platforms that can morph in shape and size dynamically as bodies change or transform to relocate...

News: Wearables

A unique new flexible and stretchable device, worn against the skin and capable of producing electrical energy by transforming the compounds present in sweat, has been developed and...

Blog: Aerospace
Parylene coatings are being used in the medical industry and even space. Our expert explains why.
INSIDER: Green Design & Manufacturing

A new concept for an aluminum battery has twice the energy density as previous versions, is made of abundant materials, and could lead to reduced production costs and environmental impact. The...

Question of the Week: Electronics & Computers
Will ‘Unbreakable Batteries’ Find a Place in Electronics and Vehicles?

Increasingly, lithium-ion batteries are supporting portable electronics, electric vehicles, and grid storage.

INSIDER: Internet of Things

A highly sensitive rectifying element in the form of a nanowire backward diode can convert low-power 100 nanowatt microwaves into usable electricity. The newly developed...

INSIDER: Green Design & Manufacturing

The challenge of building an energy future that preserves and improves the planet is a massive undertaking. Scientists and politicians have recognized...

INSIDER: Robotics, Automation & Control

Researchers developed a microrobot that measures a few micrometers across and resembles a paper bird made with origami. It flaps its wings or bends its neck and retracts its head via...

Blog: Electronics & Computers

Tech Briefs in 2019 celebrated historic NASA anniversaries, new ways to power electronics, and innovative hacks of our “smartest” technologies.

Blog: Imaging
If a satellite breaks in orbit, there's not much that can be done. A professor envisions a new idea for refueling and repair.
Question of the Week: Materials
Can Gels Stop Wildfires?

A preventive treatment developed by Stanford researchers could greatly reduce the incidence and severity of wildfires. The cellulose-based, gel-like fluid protects against fires and stays on target vegetation through rain, wind, and other environmental exposure. Watch the demo on Tech Briefs TV.

White Papers: Materials
Polymeric Systems Bring Clarity to Optical Applications

Whereas some optical assembly applications require optical clarity across a certain wavelength, others require an opaque coating. Optical grade epoxies, silicones and UV curable...

White Papers: Materials
Specialized Materials Meet Critical Packaging Needs in MEMS Devices

The unique requirements of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) call for specialized materials. The versatility of epoxies and adhesives are often capable of providing the...

White Papers: Materials
Epoxies and Glass Transition Temperature

Gain a better understanding about glass transition temperature (Tg) and why it is one of many factors to consider for bonding, sealing, coating and encapsulation applications. In this paper, we...

White Papers: Materials
Conductive Coatings Protect Circuitry from EM/RF and ESD

With the trend toward smaller and smaller electronic devices, unintentional EMI/RFI interference has become more of an issue. Shielding of these interferences is critical and coatings...

White Papers: Materials
Ultra Low Thermal Resistance Adhesives for Electronic Applications

As advances in epoxy and silicone materials constantly evolve, manufacturers of advanced electronic systems will find that adhesives offer the ability to meet nearly any...

White Papers: Materials
Advantages of Using Silicone Adhesives for Medical Device Assemblies

The assembly applications for medical device manufacturers typically come with their own distinctive set of rigorous requirements. This white paper takes a closer look at...