Mechanical & Fluid Systems

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

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Cut-to-Length Electrical Cable Cuts Costs
Electrical cables are used in services such as power delivery, automation signaling, and communications.
This system can amplify a faint signal from a neighboring system even when that signal’s amplitude is as small as ten trillionths of a meter.
An inexpensive gyroscope could help drones and autonomous cars stay on track without a GPS signal.
The rainproof, stainproof technology turns clothing into self-powered remotes while turning away bacteria.
Briefs: Propulsion
Supersonic Spike Diffuser
This diffuser provides double the pumping efficiency in one-quarter the space.
This passive device relies on a layer of material that blocks incoming sunlight but lets heat radiate away.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Microfluidics Device Detects Cancer Cells in Blood
This device could enable rapid, inexpensive liquid biopsies to help detect cancer and develop targeted treatment plans.
Applications include distributed computer systems, computer security, and commercial satellite systems.
The technique could be used to improve navigation for robots, drones, or pedestrians.
This diagnostic device allows doctors to detect cancer quickly from a droplet of blood or plasma.
A liquid crystal elastomer can be programmed to exhibit controllable, dynamic behavior without the need for complex electronic components.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Shape Memory Alloy Mechanisms for CubeSats
This lightweight and efficient mechanism enables retention, release, and deployment of solar arrays and antennas.
The domino effect is used to design deployable systems that expand quickly with a small push and are stable and locked into place after deployment.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Foldable Mechanical Devices
These “developable mechanisms” are built into the surfaces of structures.
Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Injectable Gel Helps Heart Muscle Regenerate
This gel releases short gene sequences into the heart muscle to heal it following a heart attack.
Researchers described a new strategy of designing metamolecules.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Device Tests Drugs on Tumor Tissue
An inexpensive 3D-printed microfluidics device could be used to personalize cancer treatment.
This method uses fiber optic probes for measurement of semiconductors, optical coatings, magnetic read/write heads, and precision machines.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Square Structural Joint with Robotic Assembly Tool
Square trusses replace round for enhanced strength and robotics compatibility.
This technology cancels out the vibrations of a satellite by vibrating the solar panels in the opposite direction.
Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Mechanical Controller for Robot-Assisted Surgery

Robot-assisted surgery has advanced dramatically over the past decade in almost every surgical sub-specialty. Robot-assisted surgery is usually performed using surgical robot systems that...

The domino effect is used to design deployable systems that expand quickly with a small push and are stable and locked into place after deployment.
Applications include powering portable electronic devices and sensors, and harvesting waste mechanical energy for aircraft, automobile, and other transportation equipment.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Method for Electrospinning Customizable Nanofibers
The electrospun nanofibers are used for wound healing and 3D matrices for biological tissues.
This work could accelerate the development of flexible electronics.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
High-Reliability Radio Frequency MEMS Switch
Applications include homeland security, vehicle anti-collision systems, telecommunications systems, and industrial instrumentation.
Researchers have developed new nanoscale technology to image and measure more of the stresses and strains on materials under high pressures.
Drones, smartphones, and sensors could provide a lifeline to the world’s growing elderly population at risk of falls.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Low-Inductance DC Power Bus
The bus is designed for high-frequency, high-temperature operation in electric drive systems and next-generation power electronics.

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