Tech Briefs

Mechanical/​Mechatronics

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Access our comprehensive library of mechanical and mechatronics technical briefs, from engineering experts at NASA and government, university, and commercial laboratories.

Latest Tech Briefs

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
This simple, elegant invention can control flow separation resulting from the high flap deflections required by simple-hinged flap systems making such flaps a viable option for aircraft designers.
Briefs: Power
An experimental plant-based jet fuel could increase engine performance and efficiency, while dispensing with aromatics, the pollution-causing compounds found in conventional fuels.
Briefs: Materials
Applications include a smart fabric for exoskeletons, an adaptive cast that adjusts its stiffness as an injury heals, or a deployable bridge that could be unrolled and stiffened.
Briefs: Manned Systems
Acoustic optimization for anti-phase asymmetric rotor.
Briefs: Motion Control
Gust load alleviation is an increasing concern for the design of fixed-wing aircraft with ultra-high aspect wings.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Advanced analyses shed light on the mechanism of a deadly problem plaguing combustion chambers in rocket engines.
Briefs: Aerospace
A lightweight alternative to rudders for aircraft with spanwise adaptive wings.
Briefs: Propulsion
Besides miniature spacecraft propulsion systems, the valve could also have applications in the industrial processing industry where low flow devices are commonly used.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A self-aligning, self-healing system for pneumatics and cryogenics with applications in aerospace.
Briefs: Aerospace
Testing has shown that NASA's poppet reduces leakage rates of traditional aerospace cryogenic valves by three orders of magnitude.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Single joint allows six attachments with independent movement.
Briefs: Motion Control

Legged robots are very promising for use in real-world applications, but their operation in narrow spaces is still challenging. One solution for enhancing their environmental...

Briefs: Medical

A patented self-contained device for isolating deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), ribonucleic acid (RNA), proteins, and cells without using pipettes or centrifuges has been developed at NASA’s...

Briefs: Transportation

Micro-supercapacitors could revolutionize the way we use batteries by increasing their lifespan and enabling extremely fast charging. Now, researchers at Chalmers University of Technology have...

Briefs: Transportation

In steep mountain regions, the potential for generating electricity from a small stream of water is high, however, the hydropower potential of these regions remains untapped as it...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Substances such as plastics, metals, and wax are used in 3D printers to make products and parts for larger items. Products created through the 3D printing of plastics include every-thing from...

Briefs: Aerospace

Researchers combined additive manufacturing with conventional compression molding to produce high-performance thermoplastic composites reinforced with short carbon fibers. The approach...

Briefs: Automotive

All solid materials, including glass, have a property called elastic stiffness — also known as elastic modulus. It's a measure of how much force per unit area is needed to...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics

A new composition of germanosili-cate glass created by adding zinc oxide has properties good for lens applications. The new family of zinc germanosilicate glass has a high refractive index comparable...

Briefs: Transportation

Electrification of the transportation sector is critical to future energy and environmental resilience and will require high-power fuel cells (either standalone or in conjunction with batteries) to...

Briefs: Energy

Electric vehicle batteries typically require a tradeoff between safety and energy density. If the battery has high energy and power density — required for uphill driving or merging on...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A reversible polymer changes color when it senses a material is about to fail.
Briefs: Medical
The device combines with body power to treat tendon disease and damage, and sports injuries.
Briefs: Power
This scalable power processing unit (PPU) is for use with low-power Hall effect thrusters.
Briefs: Energy
A new catalyst and microchannel reactors improve efficiency and cost of the process.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Mechanical properties, such as strength and ductility, can be improved for car, plane, and building components.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
This system would extend the life of CubeSat satellites.
Briefs: Energy
The system could allow for flight speeds of Mach 6 to 17 and would have applications in air and space travel.
Briefs: Medical
The handheld printer deposits sheets of skin to cover large burn wounds and its bio-ink accelerates healing.

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