Q&A : Electronics & Computers
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Sherry Towfighian and her team made a big improvement on how microphones are manufactured.
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Q&A : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Q&A: Wearable Motion Sensors Could Save Unborn Babies
Professor Negar Tavassolian is using vibration sensors to monitor heartbeats.
Q&A : Energy
Q&A: A Circulatory System for Robots

Robert F. Shepherd is Associate Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. He is leading a team exploring the use of hydraulic fluids in soft robots to also serve as a source of energy.

Q&A : Aerospace
Q&A: “Neural Lander” Uses AI to Land Drones Smoothly

Soon-Jo Chung is Bren Professor of Aerospace in the Division of Engineering and Applied Science (EAS) at Caltech and research scientist at Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He and his team developed a method for using a deep neural network to help autonomous drones “learn” how to land more...

Q&A : Software
Q&A: Power Anomalies Detect Malware in Embedded Systems

Aydin Aysu, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor in the Electrical & Computer Engineering Department at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, where he helped develop a technique for detecting micro-architecture malware that uses a system’s architecture to thwart traditional security...

Q&A : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Q&A: 3D-Printed Hydrogel Blocks Can Aid Robotics and Diagnostics

Ian Y. Wong, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of Engineering, Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology and Biotechnology at Brown University in Providence, RI. He and colleagues have developed a new type of hydrogel blocks that can be assembled like LEGO®s.

Q&A : Test & Measurement
Q&A: NASA's Dr. Mahmooda Sultana Makes Multifunctional Sensors

Dr. Sultana won funding to advance a nanomaterial-based detector platform that can sense environmental parameters from minute concentrations of target gases and vapors, to atmospheric pressure and temperature, and then transmit that data via a wireless antenna — all from the same 3...

Q&A : Nanotechnology
Q&A: Texas A&M's Jaime Grunlan Creates a Non-Toxic Flame-Retardant Coating

Texas A&M professor Jaime Grunlan and his team are developing a new flame-retardant coating using renewable, nontoxic materials readily found in nature that could provide effective fire protection for several widely used materials.

Q&A : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Q&A: Harvard's Siyi Xu Designs All-New Strain and Force Sensors

Working with teams from Harvard, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Boston Children's Hospital, Siyi Xu developed a soft, non-toxic, wearable sensor that attaches to the hand and measures grasp force and the motion of the hand and fingers. The sensor is designed to identify...

Q&A : Energy
Q&A: Columbia University’s Jyotirmoy Mandal Creates a Cooling Polymer

Mandal, along with Professors Yuan Yang and Nanfang Yu, built upon earlier work demonstrating that many simple plastics and polymers are excellent heat radiators that could be used for passive radiative daytime cooling (PRDC). Their challenge was to get these normally...

Q&A : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Q&A: University of Utah’s Robby Bowles 3D-Prints Cells to Produce Human Tissue

Professor Bowles has developed a method to 3D-print cells to produce human tissue. This replacement tissue can greatly improve the recovery of a person with a badly damaged ligament, tendon, or ruptured disc. Currently, replacement tissue is harvested from another...

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: Rice University's Rouzbeh Shahsavari Creates a Stronger, Lighter Cement

Professor Shahsavari and graduate student Sung Hoon have demonstrated a process for producing a cement that is stronger, lighter, and more durable than the traditional Portland cement.

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: University of Virginia’s Patrick Hopkins Studies How to Regulate a Material’s Thermal Conductivity

Professor Hopkins and University of Virginia colleagues — in collaboration with materials scientists at Penn State, the University of Maryland, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology — have studied a material that can...

Q&A : Electronics & Computers
Q&A: UCSD's Sheng Xu Builds a Stretchable Health-Monitoring Patch

A team led by UCSD has built a stretchable electronic patch that can be worn on the skin like a bandage and used to wirelessly monitor a variety of physical and electrical signals, from respiration and body motion, to temperature and eye movement, to heart and brain activity. The...

Q&A : Energy
Q&A: NYU's Dr. André D. Taylor Shows Pathway for Perovskite Cells

An international team of university researchers, led by Dr. Taylor, reports solving a major fabrication challenge for perovskite cells — the intriguing potential challengers to silicon-based solar cells. These crystalline structures show great promise because they can absorb...

Q&A : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Q&A: Carnegie Mellon's Dr. Sara Abdollahi Optimizes Soft-Material 3D Printing

Researchers in Carnegie Mellon University's College of Engineering have developed a novel approach to optimizing soft-material 3D printing. The Expert-Guided Optimization (EGO) method combines expert judgment with an optimization algorithm that efficiently searches...

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: MIT's Dr. Yanfei Xu Transforms Heat Insulators into Heat Conductors

Plastics are excellent thermal insulators — a quality that can be an advantage in some applications. But this property is less desirable in products such as plastic casings for laptops and mobile phones, which can overheat. Dr. Xu is a member of a team that has developed...

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: OSU's Uranbileg Daalkhaijav Researches How to Rapidly Manufacture Soft Robots

Researchers at Oregon State University’s College of Engineering have taken an important step toward the rapid manufacture of stretchable electronic devices, including soft robots.

Q&A : Test & Measurement
Q&A: Brookhaven's Dr. Yimei Zhu Observes How Lithium Moves Inside Batteries

Researchers at Brookhaven National Laboratory have observed how lithium moves inside individual nanoparticles that make up batteries. The finding could help companies develop batteries that charge faster and last longer.

Q&A : Transportation
Q&A: Dr. Abhaya Datye Creates a More Powerful Emission-Control Catalyst

Researchers at Washington State University, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and the University of New Mexico have created a catalyst capable of reducing pollutants at the lower temperatures expected in advanced engines. Their work presents a new way to create a more...

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: N.C. State's Dr. Jingyan Dong Develops New Way to Directly Print Metal Circuits

Researchers from NC State have developed a new technique for directly printing metal circuits, creating flexible, stretchable electronics. The technique can use multiple metals and substrates, and is compatible with existing manufacturing systems that employ...

Q&A : Energy
Q&A: Georgia Tech's Dr. Shannon Yee Demonstrates Simple Biosensors, Powered by Body Heat

Using flexible conducting polymers and novel circuitry patterns printed on paper, researchers in Dr. Yee’s laboratory have demonstrated proof-of-concept wearable thermoelectric generators that can harvest energy from body heat to power simple biosensors...

Q&A : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Q&A: Dr. Zeeshan Ahmed, Senior Sensor Scientist, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Gaithersburg, MD

Dr. Ahmed and scientists from NIST and American University are researching the use of metal organic frameworks (MOFs) as the basis for an inexpensive, easy-to-build gas sensing technology. The problem they faced is that newly...

Q&A : Test & Measurement
Q&A: Georgia Tech's Dr. Raheem Beyah Develops a Way to Authenticate 3D-Printed Products

Dr. Beyah and a team of researchers from Georgia Tech and Rutgers University have developed a three-layer system to verify that components produced using additive manufacturing have not been compromised.

Q&A : Photonics/Optics
Q&A: LLNL's Dr. Manyalibo “Ibo” Matthews Uses Lasers to 3D-Print Large Metal Objects

Dr. Matthews and his team have developed a new laser-based method for 3D printing of large metal objects called Diode-Based Additive Manufacturing (DiAM). It uses high-powered lasers to flash-print an entire layer of metal powder. The process will enable...

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: LBNL's Dr. Haimei Zheng Makes Metal-Organic Spongy Photocatalysts

Dr. Zheng and her team of scientists from Berkeley Lab and Nanyang Technical University in Singapore made metal-organic spongy photocatalysts that convert carbon dioxide (CO2) to carbon monoxide (CO) in the presence of sunlight. They were able to make liquid fuels...

Q&A : Physical Sciences
Q&A: NASA's Dr. James Thorpe Develops Instrumentation for Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA)

Gravitational waves from colliding black holes were first observed by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) instruments in 2015. Building on these efforts on the ground, an international group of scientists is working to...

Q&A : Photonics/Optics
Q&A: aBeam Technologies' Dr. Keiko Munechika Offers New Ideas in Nano-Optics

Dr. Munechika — along with Alexander Kosh­elev and Giuseppe Calafiore at aBeam Technologies, and Stefano Cabrini at the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory — is developing a process that would enable widespread adoption of nano-optic...

Who's Who : Imaging
Lindley Johnson, Planetary Defense Officer, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D. C.

NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office (PDCO), managed at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., is responsible for early detection of potentially hazardous objects, like asteroids and comets, and issuing warnings about their potential impacts. This requires...

Who's Who : Materials
Adam Sidor, NASA Research Fellow, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA

Thermal Protection Systems (TPS) — heatshields — form the outer surface of spacecraft and provide protection as the vehicle plunges through planetary atmospheres. Conformal ablative materials are currently being developed to improve TPS performance. Adam Sidor is...


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