Materials & Coatings

Metals

Learn what’s trending in the engineering metals used in 3D printing, military, medical devices, automotive, and manufacturing. Find the latest applications that design engineers are using to meet their design challenges.

Latest Briefs & News

Briefs : Materials
Chromium Removal from PVC Filters
The process does not cause any structural changes to the PVC filter membrane.
Briefs : Nanotechnology
Hardening Lightweight Metal Foams with Nanocoating
Hardening Lightweight Metal Foams with Nanocoating
Load-bearing structures in cars and airplanes could be manufactured from the metal foam.
Hardening Lightweight Metal Foams with Nanocoating
Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Five Techniques for Lightweighting: Doing More With Less
Five Techniques for Lightweighting: Doing More With Less
Manufacturers in almost every industry are looking to design lighter parts. Here are five lightweighting strategies.
Five Techniques for Lightweighting: Doing More With Less
Blog : Robotics, Automation & Control
Countdown: The Top Stories of 2019
Countdown: The Top Stories of 2019

Tech Briefs in 2019 celebrated historic NASA anniversaries, new ways to power electronics, and innovative hacks of our “smartest” technologies.

Countdown: The Top Stories of 2019
Application Briefs : Motion Control
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Salty air the Dutch city of Harlingen causes exposed metal parts to corrode.
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Briefs : Materials
Superconductivity in a Nickel Oxide Material
Superconductivity in a Nickel Oxide Material
Made with “Jenga chemistry,” the material could help in understanding how high-temperature superconductors work.
Superconductivity in a Nickel Oxide Material
Briefs : Aerospace
Metallization for SiC Semiconductors
Metallization for SiC Semiconductors
This technology provides simultaneous ohmic contacts and the process to make them.
Metallization for SiC Semiconductors
Articles : Materials
Products of Tomorrow: December 2019
Products of Tomorrow: December 2019
Products include an aerosol scattering sensor; metal foam; and a new coated drug capsule.
Products of Tomorrow: December 2019
Briefs : Energy
Ultra-Thin Layers of Rust Generate Electricity from Flowing Water
Ultra-Thin Layers of Rust Generate Electricity from Flowing Water
When combined with saltwater, rust can be a source of electricity.
Ultra-Thin Layers of Rust Generate Electricity from Flowing Water
Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Answering Your Questions: What's Better for Extrusion? Aluminum 6000 or 7000 Series?
Answering Your Questions: What's Better for Extrusion? Aluminum 6000 or 7000 Series?
What's the best aluminum for extrusion? A Tech Briefs reader asks our expert.
Answering Your Questions: What's Better for Extrusion? Aluminum 6000 or 7000 Series?
Blog : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Creating the Future: New Take on Welding Gun Bonds Plastic and Metal — In Seconds
Creating the Future: New Take on Welding Gun Bonds Plastic and Metal — In Seconds
A team in Germany has a quicker, cleaner approach to welding metal to plastic: The HPCI® Joining Gun.
Creating the Future: New Take on Welding Gun Bonds Plastic and Metal — In Seconds
Briefs : Semiconductors & ICs
Undercooled Metal Technology for Flexible Electronics
Undercooled Metal Technology for Flexible Electronics

Undercooled metal technology was developed that features liquid metal (in this case, Field's metal, an alloy of bismuth, indium, and tin) trapped below its melting point in polished,...

Undercooled Metal Technology for Flexible Electronics
Facility Focus : Information Technology
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
In recent decades, NSF-funded researchers have discovered quite a bit, including many of the fundamental particles of matter.
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
Briefs : Materials
High-Speed 3D Printer for High-Performance Plastics
High-Speed 3D Printer for High-Performance Plastics

3D printers that build small parts layer by layer from melted plastic can take up to an hour to produce a pocket-sized piece. This process is far too slow for the mass-production of...

High-Speed 3D Printer for High-Performance Plastics
Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Manufacturing Process for Aluminum Alloys
Manufacturing Process for Aluminum Alloys

An advanced manufacturing process was developed to produce nano-structured rods and tubes directly from high-performance aluminum alloy powder in a single step. Using a Solid Phase Processing...

Manufacturing Process for Aluminum Alloys
Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Products of Tomorrow: October 2019
Products of Tomorrow: October 2019
Permeable concrete, quick disconnects, and more
Products of Tomorrow: October 2019
Question of the Week : Materials
Are You Lightweighting with Plastics and Composites?

A Tech Briefs webinar this month focused on the idea of lightweighting – or replacing traditionally metal parts, like engine components, with plastics and composites.

INSIDER : Nanotechnology
Nanowire Arrays Could Improve Solar Cells
Nanowire Arrays Could Improve Solar Cells

Transparent electrodes are a critical component of solar cells and electronic displays. To collect electricity in a solar cell or inject electricity for a display, you need a conductive contact, like...

Nanowire Arrays Could Improve Solar Cells
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Simultaneous Imaging and Friction Measurement with an In-Situ Tribometer
Simultaneous Imaging and Friction Measurement with an In-Situ Tribometer

Different instruments are needed to study the interaction of contact surfaces at different length scales. Tribometers measure the coefficient of friction but they...

Simultaneous Imaging and Friction Measurement with an In-Situ Tribometer
Articles : Materials
10 Things to Consider When Specifying Small Metal and Plastic Enclosures
10 Things to Consider When Specifying Small Metal and Plastic Enclosures

Your new industrial electronic product has been designed and the board components specified. It has been prototyped, either on a development board to check...

10 Things to Consider When Specifying Small Metal and Plastic Enclosures
Articles : Transportation
Products of Tomorrow: September 2019
Products of Tomorrow: September 2019

Semi-Liquid Metal Anode for Next-Generation Batteries

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have developed a semi-liquid lithium metal-based anode. Lithium batteries made using this new...

Products of Tomorrow: September 2019
Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Ultra-Clean Fabrication Platform for 2D Transistors
Ultra-Clean Fabrication Platform for 2D Transistors

Recently discovered two-dimensional (2D) materials with superlative properties have the potential to advance semiconductors but creating 2D devices with both good electrical contacts and...

Ultra-Clean Fabrication Platform for 2D Transistors
Briefs : Materials
Surface Treatment Could Improve Refrigeration Efficiency
Surface Treatment Could Improve Refrigeration Efficiency

Unlike water, liquid refrigerants and other fluids that have a low surface tension spread quickly into a sheet when they come into contact with a surface. For many industrial...

Surface Treatment Could Improve Refrigeration Efficiency
Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
Fiber-Based Artificial Muscles
Fiber-Based Artificial Muscles

While different approaches have been used to create artificial muscles — including hydraulic systems, servomotors, shape-memory metals, and polymers that respond to stimuli — they all have limitations such...

Fiber-Based Artificial Muscles
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Device Simplifies Measurement of Fluoride Contamination in Water
Device Simplifies Measurement of Fluoride Contamination in Water

Adding fluoride to water has been common practice in a number of countries including the U.S. In low concentrations (below 1.5 mg/L), fluoride can help prevent tooth decay and...

Device Simplifies Measurement of Fluoride Contamination in Water