Question of the Week
Will We See a Greater Use of Robots in Homes and Offices?

Robots like the PR2, from the Menlo Park, CA-based Willow Garage, perform a variety of tasks: bringing objects to people, opening doors, and even folding laundry. And while companies including iRobot create technologies to take care of minor jobs such as cleaning floors and pools, others...

Blog
Shock Challenge

If you’re a racing fan who has always thought that, given the opportunity, you could match your technical skills wheel-to-wheel with some of the best engineers in the sport, you’ve got one last chance to make your dream come true.

Mega-distributor Mouser Electronics has been conducting a unique competition this year...

Fifteen years of work by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's National Ignition Facility (NIF) team paid off recently with a historic record-breaking laser shot. The NIF...

In a leap forward for laser technology, a team at University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) has developed the first violet nonpolar vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) based...

FSI Technologies Inc. (Lombard, IL) has introduced a line of industrial machine vision lenses, the CLH Series lenses. These lenses provide versatility to work well with most common machine vision applications, and are...

Laird Technologies, Inc. (St. Louis, MO) has released its eTEC(TM) Series Thermoelectric Module (TEM) product line. The eTEC Series of TEMs enable high-powered optoelectronics to maintain peak performance by...

Coherent, Inc. (Santa Clara, CA) has expanded their family of industrial ultrafast lasers with the Talisker 500, which delivers over 10 Watts of ultraviolet output at 355nm, 15 Watts of green output at 532nm or 25 Watts of...

Semrock, Inc. (Rochester, NY) recently released the first two products in its soon-to-be expanded line of PulseLine(TM) femtosecond laser optics. These 45° turning mirrors are IBS-coated for maximum durability and...

News
Software Performs In-Depth Analysis of Simulation Data

A research team at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) has developed a software tool that enables users to perform in-depth analysis of modeling and simulation data, then visualize the results on screen. The new data analysis and visualization tool offers improved ease of use compared...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
Advancement in Highly Conductive, Transparent Thin Film

Thin, conductive films are useful in displays and solar cells. A new solution-based chemistry developed at Brown University for making indium tin oxide films could allow engineers to employ a much simpler and cheaper manufacturing process.

News
Researchers Design Micro-Swimmers

A team of researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology has used complex computational models to design swimming micro-robots that carry cargo and navigate in response to stimuli such as light.

The simple micro-swimmers could rely on volume changes in unique materials known as hydrogels to move tiny flaps...

Question of the Week
Will We Send Humans to Mars?

On Sunday, NASA's Curiosity rover successfully landed on Mars. The orbiter ushers in a new era of exploration that, some say, could turn up evidence that Mars once had the necessary ingredients for life — or might even still harbor life today. The land rover also creates new possibilities for human exploration of...

News
Kinetic Inductance Shows Promise for Metamaterial Miniaturization

Researchers at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), collaborating with the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, have now demonstrated a drastically new way of achieving negative refraction in a metamaterial.

The primary advantages of the new...

News
Researchers Create Wrinkled Surfaces

A team of researchers at MIT has discovered a way to create wrinkled surfaces with precise sizes and patterns. This basic method, they say, could be harnessed for a wide variety of useful structures: microfluidic systems for biological research, sensing, and diagnostics; new photonic devices that can control...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
The Future of Iron-Air Batteries

A University of Southern California research team has developed a cheap, rechargeable battery that could be used to store energy at solar power plants for a rainy day. The air-breathing battery uses the...

News
Army Developing Female-Specific Body Armor

Today, both male and female soldiers wear body armor that has been designed for men. But next summer the Army plans to field a new type of body armor designed for women that will be shorter in the torso with more customized adjustments specific to the female form. Until that happens, the 14 percent of...

News
Army Stryker Units Get Armed With Precision Mortars

The first-ever Accelerated Precision Mortar Initiative round fired from a Stryker vehicle in Afghanistan accomplished what few conventional 120mm high-explosive mortars can achieve - a direct hit on a target with the first round fired. But when firing the Army's new precision-guided cartridges,...

News
Air Force Uses 3-D Scanner to Model Aircraft

When the 46th Test Wing's Air Force SEEK EAGLE Office purchased a 3-D laser scanner system six months ago, they had no idea how much of an impact the system would make.

Question of the Week
Is Mars exploration a worthy investment?

Humans have launched 40 spacecraft to Mars, and the latest machine to make the effort is NASA's Mars Science Laboratory. If the Mars Science Laboratory lands safely next week, instruments will begin to analyze the soil, air, and rocks for life, past or present. While some say that the costs are not worth...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Mars Science Laboratory Drill

This drill (see Figure 1) is the primary sample acquisition element of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) that collects powdered samples from various types of rock (from clays to massive basalts) at depths up to...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Shape Memory Composite Hybrid Hinge

There are two conventional types of hinges for in-space deployment applications. The first type is mechanically deploying hinges. A typical mechanically deploying hinge is usually composed of several tens...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Ultra-Compact Motor Controller

This invention is an electronically commutated brushless motor controller that incorporates Hall-array sensing in a small, 42-gram package that provides 4096 absolute counts per motor revolution position sensing. The unit is the size of a miniature hockey puck, and is a 44-pin male connector that provides many I/O...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Binding Causes of Printed Wiring Assemblies With Card-Loks

A document discusses a study that presents the first documented extraction loads, both nominal and worstcase, and presents the first comprehensive evaluation of extraction techniques, methodologies, and tool requirements relating to extracting printed wiring assemblies (PWAs) with...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A Reversible Thermally Driven Pump for Use in a Sub-Kelvin Magnetic Refrigerator

A document describes a continuous magnetic refrigerator that is suited for cooling astrophysics detectors. This refrigerator has the potential to provide efficient, continuous cooling to temperatures below 50 mK for detectors, and has the benefits over existing...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Coring Sample Acquisition Tool

A sample acquisition tool (SAT) has been developed that can be used autonomously to sample drill and capture rock cores. The tool is designed to accommodate core transfer using a sample tube to the IMSAH (integrated Mars sample acquisition and handling) SHEC (sample handling, encapsulation, and containerization)...

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...

GaAs-based, sub-harmonically pumped Schottky diode mixers offer a number of advantages for array implementation in a heterodyne receiver system. Since the radio...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Hardware for Accelerating N-Modular Redundant Systems for High-Reliability Computing

A hardware unit has been designed that reduces the cost, in terms of performance and power consumption, for implementing N-modular redundancy (NMR) in a multiprocessor device. The innovation monitors transactions to memory, and calculates a form of sumcheck...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Discontinuous Mode Power Supply

A document discusses the changes made to a standard push-pull inverter circuit to avoid saturation effects in the main inverter power supply. Typically, in a standard push-pull arrangement, the unsymmetrical primary excitation causes variations in the volt second integral of each half of the excitation cycle that...

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