Materials & Coatings

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

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Briefs: Imaging
Engineers have developed a modeling and manufacturing technique that generates unique verification tools which simulate cracks in metals within X-ray setup part-testing geometries.
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Briefs: Materials
Researchers have created a way to make a 3D-printable nanocomposite polymeric ink that uses carbon nanotubes — known for their high tensile strength and lightness. This revolutionary ink could replace epoxies.
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Briefs: Materials
Researchers are scaling up the production of vertically aligned single-walled carbon nanotubes that could revolutionize diverse commercial products ranging from rechargeable batteries, automotive parts and sporting goods to boat hulls and water filters.
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Briefs: Green Design & Manufacturing
Scientists used a 3D printer to create a high-performance metal alloy with an unusual composition that makes it stronger and lighter than state-of-the-art materials currently used in gas turbine machinery.
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Briefs: Power
A research team has gained new insight by capturing real-time movies of copper nanoparticles as they convert CO2 and water into renewable fuels and chemicals: ethylene, ethanol, and propanol, among others.
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Briefs: Green Design & Manufacturing
Researchers have moved a step closer to finding a use for the hundreds of millions of tons of plastic waste produced every year that often winds up clogging streams and rivers and polluting our oceans.
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Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
A new sensor — so cheap and simple to produce that it can be hand-drawn with a pencil onto paper treated with sodium chloride — could clear the way for wearable, self-powered health monitors.
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Briefs: Materials
Building 3D-Printed Materials with Liquids
A research team has been tinkering with the use of 3D printing with liquids to create spongy materials for use in myriad industries.
Briefs: Medical
New research shows the glittering, serpentine structures that power wearable electronics can be created with the same technology used to print concert t-shirts.
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Briefs: Design
A Terminator-style shape-shifting robot able to LIQUEFY and reform has been developed by engineers inspired by sea cucumbers.
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Briefs: Materials
New research suggests that laser-based devices are poised to become a lot smaller.
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Briefs: Photonics/Optics
3D nanometer-scale metamaterial structures hold promise for advanced optical isolators.
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Briefs: Materials
The commercially relevant approach opens a potential pathway to improve charging speeds for electric vehicles.
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Briefs: Energy
An international research collaboration led by UCLA has developed a way to use perovskite in solar cells while protecting it from the conditions that cause it to deteriorate.
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Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
The material could pave the way for better, safer solid-state batteries.
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Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
The device uses soft robotics, ultra-thin electronics, and microfluidics.
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Briefs: Materials
The polymeric solid electrolyte realized a wide potential window, a high Li-ion conductivity, and a high Li-ion transference number.
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Briefs: Design
Following nature's example, Lufthansa Technik and BASF have jointly developed the functional surface film AeroSHARK for commercial aircraft.
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Briefs: Wearables
This system can track the motion of the entire body with a small sensory network.
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Briefs: Energy
Sodium-Ion Battery Anode for Energy Storage
The high cost and limited supply of lithium necessitate the development of alternative energy storage systems.
Briefs: Energy
A new battery design could help ease integration of renewable energy into the nation's electrical grid at lower cost, using Earth-abundant metals.
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Briefs: Materials
The smart bandage can dispense antibiotic, monitor wound-healing biomarkers, and report important data directly to doctors.
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Briefs: Data Acquisition
Traditional oxygen sensors have significant drawbacks and suffer from high power consumption.
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Briefs: Materials
The thermoelectric textile produces a small amount of electricity when heated on one side.
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Briefs: Materials
Inflatable and deployable beams and masts are often made of polymer composites and may be stored for one to two years in space before deployment.
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Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Industrial composite manufacturing is primarily accomplished through three methods: co-cure, co-bond, and secondary bond processes.
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Briefs: Materials
The discovery of a new category of shape-memory materials could open a new range of applications, especially for high-temperature settings.
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Briefs: Electronics & Computers
2D materials can be packed together more densely than conventional materials, so they could be used to make devices that run faster and perform better.
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Briefs: Materials
Researchers at NASA Langley are developing polymer coatings that reduce impact ice adhesion strength.
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