Materials & Coatings

Composites

Explore the latest developments, technical briefs, and a wide range of white papers on the composites used in military, aviation, medical devices, and automotive applications.

Latest Briefs & News

Who's Who : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Q&A: Professor Rouzbeh Shahsavari, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University, Houston, TX

Professor Shahsavari and graduate student Sung Hoon have demonstrated a process for producing a cement that is stronger, lighter, and more durable than the traditional Portland cement.

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Robotics/Automation/Manufacturing Category Winner

DON’T MELT. MELD.™

The MELD™ technology enables additive manufacturing (AM) of metals. This patented process is unique because there is...

Articles : Aerospace
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Aerospace & Defense Category Winner

DETECTING PLASTIC LANDMINES

Hidden PFM-1 anti-personnel landmines are unexploded ordnance (UXO) devices that pose a difficult challenge to conventional...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Technique Creates Adaptive Materials

A technique that enables on-demand control of composite behavior could enable a variety of new capabilities for future rotorcraft design, performance, and maintenance. The focus of the research was on...

INSIDER : Materials
Silicon-Based Tandem Photovoltaic Modules Show Potential

New solar energy research from Arizona State University demonstrates that silicon-based tandem photovoltaic modules, which convert sunlight to electricity with higher efficiency than...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Nano/Micro Mechanical Environmental Test Cell

A device and method have been developed to conduct compression and tensile tests on soft materials such as flocculated sediments, biopolymers, biological materials, and food stuffs. The device...

Briefs : Aerospace
High-Kinetic-Energy Penetrator Shielding and High-Wear-Resistance Materials Fabricated with Boron Nitride Nanotubes and BNNT Polymer Composites

In recent years, anti-penetration materials have been more widely used for armor, bulletproof vests, and micrometeoroid and orbital debris protection layers for space-suits, space vehicles, and...

Briefs : Aerospace
Variable-Camber Compliant Wing

In the early years of manned flight, wing warping was used for lateral control of an aircraft. This technique consisted of a system of pulleys and cables used to twist the trailing edges of the wings in...

Briefs : Materials
Artificial “Blubber” Protects Divers in Frigid Water

When Navy SEALs carry out dives in Arctic waters, or when rescue teams are diving under ice-covered rivers or ponds, the survival time even in the best wetsuits is very limited — as...

Briefs : Transportation
Water-Repellent Nanotextures Possess Anti-Fogging Capability

Some insect bodies have evolved the ability to repel water and oil, adhere to different surfaces, and eliminate light reflections. Scientists have been studying the physical mechanisms underlying these properties found in nature and mimicking them to design materials for use in...

Application Briefs : Materials
Reducing Weight and Design Time for Dream Chaser Spacecraft
Collier Research Corporation
Newport News, VA
www.hypersizer.com

With the go-ahead from NASA for a first mission to the International Space Station (ISS), the...

Articles : Medical
Air Force Research Laboratory

The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, was formed in October 1997 through the consolidation of four former Air Force laboratories and the Air Force...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Blocking/Deblocking Resin Systems

Similar to resin systems currently used in composites for aerospace structural applications such as toughened epoxies, this innovation is a modification to traditional resin chemistry to prevent polymerization and crosslinking of the resin when heated and pressed in an autoclave or other common resin curing...

Briefs : Materials
Ultra-High-Temperature Polymer Additive Manufacturing

Polymer matrix composites are extremely attractive to researchers working on next-generation applications due to their lightweight properties and ability to withstand extreme conditions...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Composite Panel with Integrated Thermal Control

Technological advancements in materials, sensors, and computing have driven demand for higher-performance satellites. Satellites need to be much more capable in a much smaller size with a...

Briefs : Materials
Reducing Moisture in Natural Fibers

Biological transformation focuses on the sustainable use of biological resources such as plants or microorganisms. In the future, it is expected to reduce reliance on fossil fuels such as oil, coal, or gas, and help tackle major challenges such as climate change and global population growth. It offers options...

Blog : Green Design & Manufacturing
A ‘Green’ Concrete Calls for Less Cement, More Ash
Researchers from Rice University are finding ways to use greater amounts of fly ash in an effort to build a “greener” kind of concrete.
Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Precision CNT Cutting Mechanism

NASA Langley Research Center has developed a simple mechanism for the clean cutting of high-strength and high-toughness carbon nanotube/poly-mer fiber composites on demand without high blade wear or...

Briefs : Energy
Composite Film Enables Windows that Switch from Transparent to Color

Commercial buildings in the United States account for nearly 40% of the total energy consumption. Among them, electricity is the largest energy source for buildings....

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Compact Termination for Structural Soft Goods

Space environments are particularly harsh for the high-strength fibers NASA relies on for soft structures. Kevlar, Nomex, Nylon, and other synthetic fibers are broken down by exposure to the combination of vacuum, atomic oxygen, and ultraviolet radiation. Glass fiber offers unique advantages for...

Briefs : Imaging
Large-Area Structural Damage Nondestructive Evaluation

When testing composite structures, it is important to understand the response of the structure to the load. Of significance is the formation of damage and growth of that damage leading...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Freeform Fabrication Using Electrically Conductive Filaments

The use of multifunctional composites such as mechanically reinforced, electrically and thermally conductive parts is of interest in a range of application areas. Especially interesting and important is where tailorability of function is achieved by strategic placement of materials...

Briefs : Materials
New Methods in Preparing and Purifying Nanomaterials

Innovators at NASA’s Glenn Research Center have made several breakthroughs in treating hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) nanomaterials, improving their properties to supplant carbon nanotubes in many applications. These inventors have greatly enhanced the processes of intercalation and...

Application Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Using Digital Microscopes as Inspection Tools

Digital microscopes are being automated and computerized to make them easier to use, display more data with more detail and precision, and expand their areas of application. With traditional...

Briefs : Materials
Green Approach for Toughening Thermosetting Reactive Resins

Thermosetting reactive resin systems such as epoxy, bismaleimide, and polyimide classes of material are brittle. The origin of brittleness is attributed to the high crosslinking density that exists in the fully cured forms of these materials. Traditionally, the toughness of these resins...