Materials & Coatings

Plastics

Learn the latest technologies and tactics for engineering plastics. Design engineers can browse applications and technical briefs for plastics used in 3D printing, military and defense, medical devices, automotive, and all areas of manufacturing.

Q&A : Materials
Q&A: Jyotirmoy Mandal, Department of Applied Physics and Mathematics, Columbia University, New York, NY

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...

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Products of Tomorrow: December 2018

This column presents technologies that have applications in commercial areas, possibly creating the products of tomorrow. To learn more about each technology, see the contact information provided for that...

Briefs : Transportation
Compound-Lens Camera for Industry and Smartphones

A process has been developed that enables the production of a 2-mm flat camera. The lens is partitioned into 135 tiny facets, similar to the eyes of an insect. The facetVISION camera is...

Articles : Software
Simulation for Everyone

With the computational power and software available today, numerical simulation is a real option to quickly get answers to complicated technical, scientific, and engineering questions. Not only has the hardware...

Blog : Green Design & Manufacturing
Researchers Convert Plastic Bottles into Aerogels that Insulate and Absorb
Researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) are trying to solve the problem of plastic waste by converting it into something useful: Aerogels.
5 Ws : Electronics & Computers
5 Ws of the SAFIRE Lithium-Ion Battery

Who

The Safe Impact Resistant Electrolyte (SAFIRE) fire-resistant battery can be used in consumer electronics such as cellphones, in drones and cars, and in soldiers’ packs.

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Bacteria-Fighting Polymers Created with Light

Hundreds of polymers that could kill drug-resistant superbugs in novel ways can be produced and tested using light. The new method may help identify antimicrobials for a range of applications from personal care to coatings.

Briefs : Lighting
Imaging Innovation for Spinal Care

Motion capture (Mocap) is a technique used in the film industry to digitally track a human actor's movements and precisely transfer those motions to an animated figure. But it has other applications as...

Articles : Materials
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Grand Prize Winner

INVISIBLE GLASS

Brookhaven National Laboratory’s Center for Functional Nanomaterials (CFN) has developed a method for creating surface nanotextures that effectively...

Articles : Materials
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Consumer Products Category Winner

ALUMINUM-POWERED ELECTRICITY GENERATION

Aluminum has an incredibly high energy density — double that of gasoline and an order of magnitude greater than...

Articles : Materials
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Sustainable Technologies Category Winner

AEROGELS FROM ENVIRONMENTAL WASTES FOR NOVEL ENGINEERING APPLICATIONS

Associate Prof. Hai Minh Duong and Prof. Nhan Phan-Thien, National University of...
Blog : Energy
An Alternative to Air Conditioning: A Paint-On Polymer That Cools Down Your Building
A new solution, applied like paint, cools down rooftops, buildings, water tanks, vehicles, and even spacecraft.
Products : Materials
New Products: October 2018 Motion Design

Multi-Voltage Motors

Simotics SD Pro low-voltage motors from Siemens (Munich, Germany) are suited for mains-fed operation or with a converter for voltages up to 690 volts. There is generally...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
3D-Printing Light Receptors on a Hemispherical Surface

Researchers have 3D-printed an array of light receptors on a hemispherical surface. This discovery could lead to a “bionic eye” that could someday help blind people see or sighted...

Products : Manufacturing & Prototyping
New on the Market: October 2018

Temperature Transmitters

The Sitrans TH320/420 and TR320/420 WirelessHART (Highway Addressable Remote Transducer Protocol) temperature transmitters from Siemens, Erlangen, Germany, are available for a...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Bio-Renewable Process Creates “Green” Plastic

Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels, and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
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 : Nanotechnology
The Ultimate ‘Smell Test’: Device Sends Rotten Food Warning to Smartphones

When it comes to the “smell test,” the nose isn't always the best judge of food quality. Now in a study appearing in ACS’ journal Nano Letters, scientists...

Blog : Green Design & Manufacturing
A New Way to Replace Plastic Packaging: Crab Shells and Tree Fibers
Georgia Tech researchers have created a sustainable plastic packaging material, using two ingredients you might not expect in a snack machine: crab shells and tree fibers.
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Fast, Low-Voltage Actuator for Soft and Wearable Robotics

The unique capabilities of soft robots are to bend, deform, stretch, twist, or squeeze in all the ways that conventional rigid robots cannot. Today, it is easy to envision a world 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 : Electronics & Computers
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...

Articles : Semiconductors & ICs
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...

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Products of Tomorrow: July 2018

This column presents technologies that have applications in commercial areas, possibly creating the products of tomorrow. To learn more about each technology, see the contact information provided for that...

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...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Recyclable Polymer Exhibits Practical Properties of Plastics

A polymer was discovered that possesses many of the same characteristics as plastics, such as light weight, heat resistance, strength, and durability. But the new polymer, unlike...

Articles : Motion Control
Plastic Bearings Reduce Weight and Improve Durability

When engineer Mark Doyle started to put together plans for an exoskeleton to support surgeons in 2012, he wanted to develop a lightweight product that they could wear comfortably for...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
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 : Materials
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...

Blog : Materials
‘Invisibility’ Material Offers Thermal Camouflage
A stretchy material, modeled after squid skin, achieves thermal invisibility by reflecting heat.

Technology Leaders

Webcasts