Materials & Manufacturing

Browse innovative developments in materials and manufacturing that significantly impact military, medical devices, automotive, and industrial manufacturing. Advances in plastics, metals, and composites are transforming 3D printing and rapid prototyping.

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Real-Time Airborne Particle Analyzer

Particle analysis is useful for determining chemical compositions in a wide range of disciplines, from ascertaining the source of a petroleum sample to duplicating a fragrance. The technique is appealing...

Polymer membrane separators play a crucial function in many energy and water technologies including energy storage, hydrogen generation through water electrolysis, and...

Plastics are excellent thermal insulators — a quality that can be an advantage in some applications. But this property is less desirable in products such as plastic...

Microsensors are used in many different applications such as the detection of poisonous gases. They are also integrated into miniaturized transmitter/receiver systems such as RFID chips. Since...

A material was developed for nuclear radiation detection that could provide a significantly less expensive alternative to the detectors now in commercial use. Specifically, the high-performance material is...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Constant-Pressure, High-Throughput Membrane Permeation Testing System

Membrane technologies have shown tremendous potential for a variety of separations, and new applications are constantly appearing. These new applications require exploration of materials, operational conditions, and membrane synthesis procedures, and demand accurate and timely...

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...

Despite years of effort to stabilize proteins outside of their native environments, scientists have made limited progress in combining proteins with synthetic components like fibers without...

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: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Principles of Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopes

Today’s high-resolution laser scanning confocal microscopes (LSCM), also referred to simply as laser scanning microscopes, are powerful high-magnification surface metrology instruments with...

A mere 20 years ago, machine vision system designers did all they could to avoid color imaging applications due to higher costs and greater system and software complexity. But as...

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.
Just because it's computer simulation doesn't mean it's virtual prototyping. Our expert explains.
Researcher Jaana Vapaavuori answered an additional question regarding the future of flexible solar cells.
PhD student Jes Linnet hopes that a silver-based, transparent conductive electrode film offers a longer-lasting alternative for flexible screens and electronics.
Professor Jaana Vapaavuori spoke with Tech Briefs about the manufacturing methods that could someday decrease the cost and increase the lifetime of flexible solar cells.
How does a spider's glue maintain its stickiness, even in high humidity? Researchers in Akron investigated the question.
Question of the Week: Software
What’s the Hold-Up with Digital Product Development?

Digital technologies are bringing big data, automation, and mobile capabilities to processes like IT, HR, sales, and marketing, but what is the hold-up with product development? Has your product development process been modernized and “digitized?”

Researchers from Singapore University of Technology and Design have demonstrated 3D printing with one of the Earth’s most abundant organic compounds: cellulose.

A reader asks: Will it be the OEMs or the Tier-1 and Tier-2 suppliers who will be purchasing 3D metal printing machines?

After a disaster like the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf coast, what if a giant sponge could clean up the area and the wildlife around it?

There is plenty of moisture in the air — Professor Swee Ching Tan wants to harvest the humidity and put it to good use.

Miniature IP68 Rated Data Recorder

The new SLICE IP68 data acquisition system from DTS (Seal Beach, CA) is designed to capture physical signals in challenging...

Special Reports: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Additive Manufacturing - June 2018

AM/3D Printing is fundamentally changing how products are prototyped and produced in aerospace, medical, automotive, and many other fields. To help you keep pace with the latest advances, we present this...

Articles: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
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...

Articles: Test & Measurement
Sensing the Future of Pneumatics

Some species of sharks must constantly swim to keep water flowing over their gills to stay alive. That same concept also tends to apply to technology — once a technology stops evolving and moving forward,...

Facility Focus: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Army Research Laboratory

In October 1992, the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) was activated, consolidating the seven corporate labs of the Laboratory Command (LABCOM) with other Army research elements to form a centralized laboratory...

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...

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