Tech Briefs

Materials & Manufacturing

Access our comprehensive library of technical briefs on materials and manufacturing, from engineering experts at NASA and government, university, and commercial laboratories.

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Printable Chemical Nanosensor
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Latest Tech Briefs

Briefs: Materials
Wafer-Scale Membrane Release Process
This process fabricates thin dielectric membranes with high mechanical yields.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Additive Manufacturing Automated Process Planning Software
The software automatically maps designs from CAD software to additive manufacturing to help cut unnecessary steps.
The technology welds adjacent 3D-printed layers more effectively, thereby increasing the reliability of the final part.
Ultra-thin and flexible metalenses could replace traditional camera lenses.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
3D-Printed Composites for High-Temperature Uses
The polyimide composites have uses in aerospace, automotive, construction, electronics, mechanical systems, and industrial machinery.
Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
4D Printing of Morphing Structures
A new method manufactures complex shapeshifters for soft robots and biomedical implants.
A new method of linking materials with unique mechanical properties could enable robots made of robots.
A technique enables manufacturing of minuscule robots by interlocking multiple materials in a complex way.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Locking Side Pull Hoist Ring
The integrated tool eliminates the need for manual operators or additional custom fixtures.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
New Capabilities for Grasp-Assisting Gloves
Applications include aiding patients with impaired hand muscle strength and in manufacturing for operating tools for extended periods of time.
These nanomaterial strain sensors are ten times more sensitive when measuring minute movements compared to existing technology.
A stretchable system can harvest energy from human breathing and motion.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Method Tracks What Happens Inside Batteries
The method could be key to designing more efficient batteries for specific uses such as electric cars and airplanes.
This technology charges lithium batteries faster and reduces the risk of device explosions.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Flexible, Thin-Film Battery

Computers or smartphones with folding screens, smart clothing, and wearable sensors all require an energy source, which is usually a lithium-ion battery. These are typically heavy and rigid, making them...

This tool provides faster and more detailed composite damage simulation results.
The material could help protect both civilian and military personnel in earthquakes.

Rectennas convert electromagnetic fields at optical frequencies directly to electrical current. Optical rectennas operate by coupling light’s electromagnetic field to an...

Applications include terahertz medical imaging and communications.
This rapid and cost-effective technique yields a uniform etched surface with 99.5 percent emissivity.
Briefs: Wearables
Material for Wearable Biosensors
Electrospinning is used to make porous silicone that allows sweat to evaporate.
This system treats light-responsive disorders or deficits such as eating disorders, sleep problems, hormone-sensitive cancers, and cardiovascular disorders.
The stretchable sensor has applications in environmental monitoring and healthcare.
A smart fiber being tested on the International Space Station could be used to develop space dust telescopes and allow astronauts to feel through their pressurized suits.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Sensing Magnetic Fields
Applications include detection of explosives, navigation, and aerospace altitude sensing.
The material could enable cheaper and more environmentally friendly displays and large-area lighting.
This system can track the motion of the entire body with a small sensory network.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Biocontainment Unit for Virus-Sized Particles
The unit could help healthcare workers caring for COVID-19 patients.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Liquid Sorbent Carbon Dioxide Removal System
Applications include aerospace, automotive, commercial spaceflight, scuba diving equipment, and for first responders.

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