Electrical/​Electronics

Thermal Management

Explore the latest developments in tools and tactics used in thermal management. Discover innovative advances from NASA and major research labs that address the challenges facing aerospace, energy storage, 3D printing, and other high-performance applications.

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Medium-Frequency Transformer Transitions from AC to DC
Medium-Frequency Transformer Transitions from AC to DC

Traditionally, electronics are cooled using a heat sink that transfers the heat generated by the electronic system into the air or a liquid coolant. For the heat sink to work, it has to...

Medium-Frequency Transformer Transitions from AC to DC
Briefs : Materials
Directly Cooled Electric Motor Made from Polymer Materials
Directly Cooled Electric Motor Made from Polymer Materials

Making electric cars lighter also involves reducing the weight of the motor. One way to do that is by constructing it from fiber-reinforced polymer materials. A new cooling concept...

Directly Cooled Electric Motor Made from Polymer Materials
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Thin, Durable Heating Patches
Thin, Durable Heating Patches

Thin, durable heating patches were created using intense pulses of light to fuse tiny silver wires with polyester. Their heating performance is nearly 70 percent higher than similar patches. The inexpensive...

Thin, Durable Heating Patches
Briefs : Energy
Achieving Carbon Footprint Reduction with Flywheel Technology
Achieving Carbon Footprint Reduction with Flywheel Technology

Recent technical advances have enabled flywheel energy storage systems (FESS) to become more compact and able to support higher-power applications. Due to their proven...

Achieving Carbon Footprint Reduction with Flywheel Technology
Application Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Metal 3D Printing for Complex Heat Exchangers
Metal 3D Printing for Complex Heat Exchangers
Renishaw
West Dundee, IL
www.renishaw.com

HiETA develops metal additive manufacturing (AM) methods for the production of complex, lightweight structures for heat management...

Metal 3D Printing for Complex Heat Exchangers
Briefs : Energy
See-Through Film Rejects 70 Percent of Incoming Solar Heat
See-Through Film Rejects 70 Percent of Incoming Solar Heat

A heat-rejecting film was developed that could be applied to a building’s windows to reflect up to 70 percent of the Sun’s incoming heat. The film remains highly transparent...

See-Through Film Rejects 70 Percent of Incoming Solar Heat
White Papers : Propulsion
Understanding Aeration

Aeration may seem friendly in a cup of coffee or soda, but it's deadly for powertrain components. All forms of aeration (air bubbles, foam and dissolved air) are harmful, especially in the context of hydraulic and lubricating systems. Aeration is not a new phenomenon, but is a growing threat. Engine downsizing, higher...

On-Demand Webinars : Electronics & Computers
Pumped Two Phase Cooling- The Solution for High Heat Dissipation and More

The demand for more functionality in smaller footprints is growing across the product spectrum. To address the more challenging thermal management requirements resulting from this trend, packaging engineers are beginning to turn to Pumped Two Phase (P2P) cooling solutions....

Briefs : Medical
Graphene's Magic Is in the Defects
Graphene's Magic Is in the Defects

A team of researchers at the New York University Tandon School of Engineering and NYU Center for Neural Science has solved a longstanding puzzle of how to build ultra-sensitive, ultra-small, electrochemical...

Graphene's Magic Is in the Defects
Products : Test & Measurement
New Products: March 2019 Sensor Technology
New Products: March 2019 Sensor Technology

Torque Measurement System

To address the demand for a more accurate, reliable, customizable, and easy-to-use force measurement device, Interface Force Measurement Systems (Scottsdale, AZ)...

New Products: March 2019 Sensor Technology
Briefs : Aerospace
Multi-Purpose, Flexible Wing Structure for Small Unmanned Aerial Systems

Small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), also known as micro air vehicles, are promising tools for a variety of military and commercial applications. Some small UAS have flexible wings and are lightweight, making them back-packable and easy to deploy. Most UAS that are...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Flexible, Spinning Heat Shield for Spacecraft
Flexible, Spinning Heat Shield for Spacecraft

Heat shields are essentially used as the brakes to stop spacecraft from burning up and crashing on entry and reentry into a planet's atmosphere. Current spacecraft heat shield methods include...

Flexible, Spinning Heat Shield for Spacecraft
Articles : Materials
The Heat Is On: A Guide to Specifying Insulation Materials
The Heat Is On: A Guide to Specifying Insulation Materials

One of the first things an electrical engineer will learn is that the number-one enemy of designing and manufacturing any electrical/electronic product is heat. It's the one...

The Heat Is On: A Guide to Specifying Insulation Materials
Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Sublimable Propellant Source for Iodine-Fed Ion Propulsion System

NASA Marshall has developed a system for generating iodine vapor from solid iodine for use as a propellant in a Hall or ion thruster propulsion system. Xenon has generally been the preferred propellant for these spacecraft ion propulsion systems but more recently, iodine-based...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Fuel Cell/Fuel Cell Hybrid System

Fuel cells can deliver clean, reliable, and uninterrupted power nearly 100 percent of the time. Fuel cells offer the advantage of efficiency by converting chemical energy directly to electricity. They have no moving parts, thereby eliminating failures associated with pumps, blowers, heat exchangers, and other...

Briefs : Power
Electronics Withstand Extreme Heat
Electronics Withstand Extreme Heat

Most electronics only function within a certain temperature range but blending two organic materials together creates electronics that withstand extreme heat. The new plastic material could reliably conduct...

Electronics Withstand Extreme Heat
White Papers : Robotics, Automation & Control
Peltier 'Affects' Autonomous Vehicle Design

Coined the “PELTIER EFFECT” after its discoverer, Jean Charles Athanase Peltier, thermoelectric cooling has been utilized in marketable products for decades. Such products have a history of being used in “new” applications. In the 1970s, thermoelectric elements were cooling components in NASA...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Single-Crystal SiGe/Sapphire Epitaxy

NASA's Langley Research Center has developed a new low-temperature method of SiGe/sapphire growth that produces the same single-crystal films with much less thermal loading effort to the substrate. This eliminates the time-consuming and costly high heating, long thermal soak times, and interfacial Si layer....

Q&A : Materials
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...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Thermal-Compensating Optics Housing
Thermal-Compensating Optics Housing

Existing optics mounts sandwich the optic axially between two metal components, which can lead to optical surface damage and misalignment when exposed to fluctuating temperatures. Thermal-compensating...

Thermal-Compensating Optics Housing
White Papers : Materials
Fundamentals of Heat Transfer in Thermal Interface Gap Filler Materials

This paper focuses on the primary function of a thermal gap filler – its ability to transfer heat from one surface to another. The selection process for a gap filler can sometimes be confusing because most thermal considerations are left to the end of the design cycle when...

Briefs : Materials
Microscopy Technique Works at Extreme Heat
Microscopy Technique Works at Extreme Heat

A stainless steel alloy — alloy 709 — has potential for elevated-temperature applications such as nuclear reactor structures. It is exceptionally strong and resistant to damage when exposed to...

Microscopy Technique Works at Extreme Heat
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Optically Transparent Polyimide Aerogels
Optically Transparent Polyimide Aerogels

Innovators at NASA's Glenn Research Center have expanded their growing portfolio of aerogels to include a new optically transparent polyimide aerogel. Aerogels — low-density, highly porous,...

Optically Transparent Polyimide Aerogels
Briefs : Aerospace
Device Measures Laser Power in Real Time
Device Measures Laser Power in Real Time

Lasers play roles in many manufacturing processes, from welding car parts to crafting engine components with 3D printers. To control these tasks, manufacturers must ensure that their lasers fire at...

Device Measures Laser Power in Real Time
Briefs : Materials
Composite Material Cools Itself Down Under Extreme Temperatures

A material, inspired by nature, can regulate its own temperature and could be used to treat burns and help space capsules withstand atmospheric forces. The research used a network of multiple microchannels with active flowing fluids (fluidics) as a method and proof-of-concept to...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Internal Short Circuit Testing Device to Improve Battery Designs

Batteries, such as lithium-ion, sold for consumer use in portable electronic devices and other applications such as electrical cars, occasionally fail in the field over time. These cells have typically passed a wide variety of safety tests such as those required by governmental...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Li-ion Cell Calorimeter

Lithium-ion batteries are an integral part of energy storage systems used in NASA's Exploration program, as well as many modern terrestrial industries. NASA Johnson wanted a better way to measure total and fractional heat response of specific types of Li-ion cells when driven into a thermal runaway condition.

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Sandwiching Materials in Nanoelectronics
Sandwiching Materials in Nanoelectronics

Many of today's silicon-based electronic components contain 2D materials such as graphene. Incorporating 2D materials like graphene — which is composed of a single-atom-thick layer of carbon atoms...

Sandwiching Materials in Nanoelectronics
Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Chip with Micro-Hotplate for Self-Healing and Sustainable Electronics
Chip with Micro-Hotplate for Self-Healing and Sustainable Electronics

Heat treatment, also known as annealing, is a common step in the semiconductor fabrication process. A buildup of radiation-induced localized charge within the...

Chip with Micro-Hotplate for Self-Healing and Sustainable Electronics
Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Facility Focus: Ames Laboratory
Facility Focus: Ames Laboratory

Ames Laboratory is a government-owned, contractor-operated national laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), operated by and located on the campus of Iowa State University in Ames, IA. For more than...

Facility Focus: Ames Laboratory