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.

Who's Who : Electronics & Computers
5 Ws of the Heart Energy Harvester

Who

Millions of people who rely on pacemakers, defibrillators, and other livesaving implantable devices powered by batteries that need to be replaced every five to 10 years.

Briefs : Nanotechnology
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...

Articles : Electronics & Computers
Organic Compound Turns Toxic Waste into Harmless Byproducts

Spinoff is NASA’s annual publication featuring successfully commercialized NASA technology. This commercialization has contributed to the development of products and services in...

Briefs : Materials
Self-Healing, Fluid-Inspired Material

Even tiny cracks can cause bridges to collapse, pipelines to rupture, and fuselages to detach from airplanes due to hard-to-detect corrosion in tiny cracks, scratches, and dents. A new coating strategy for metal self-heals within seconds when scratched, scraped, or cracked. The novel material could prevent...

White Papers : Electronics & Computers
Thermoplastic Material Selection for Injection Molding

There are more than 85,000 commercial options for plastic materials listed in materials databases. Needless to say, narrowing down that extensive list of materials can sometimes seem like a formidable task. Protolabs comprehensive white paper provides a highly technical observation of...

On-Demand Webinars : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Testing and Inspecting 3D-Printed Parts

This one-hour Technical Webinar from the editors of SAE International and Tech Briefs Media focuses on additive manufacturing technology and the 3D printing of production parts for industries as diverse as automotive, aerospace, and medical.

Blog : Robotics, Automation & Control
Answering Your Questions: Can Collaborative Robots Help Manufacturers Looking to Scale Their Business?
Cobots can help manufacturers automate tasks both known or unknown, says engineer Israel Nunez.
Question of the Week : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Have You Used Sleep Tech Products?

This month’s Here’s an Idea podcast featured a variety of Sleep Tech products, including the Hupnos snore-preventing sleep mask, the temperature-controlled Ooler mattress, and the brain-activity-monitoring Dreem headband. Listen to our episode to learn more about each of the inventions.

White Papers : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Meet the Future: Edge Programmable Industrial Controllers

For today's controls engineers, new demands to use and share data present three main challenges: security, complexity, and expense. These IIoT or data-intensive automation applications typically require many steps and a lot of middleware: hardware, drivers, parsers, and custom software....

INSIDER : Materials
Materials Delay Frost 300 Times Longer Than Anti-Icing Coatings

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago discovered several unique properties of materials known as phase-switching liquids (PSLs) that hold promise as...

On-Demand Webinars : Manufacturing & Prototyping
CNC Machining: How to Reduce Costs and Accelerate Production

As one of the most common manufacturing processes for rapid prototyping and low-volume production, knowing how to design for CNC machining is an invaluable skill set for any product designer or engineer.

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Answering Your Questions: When to Use Collaborative Robots in Manufacturing
A reader asks: What types of considerations need to be made before you go in on collaborative robots?
White Papers : Electronics & Computers
PCB Assembly for Smarties

Our For Smarties series concludes with the fun part—PCB assembly. It is time to stuff the bare board with components and put it to work.

Blog : Sensors/Data Acquisition
3D-Printable Sensor ‘Turns Blue’ to Detect Trace Amounts of Water
The sensor supports new ideas in food-quality control, environmental monitoring, and more.
White Papers : Manufacturing & Prototyping
How Unique Cable and Connector Solutions are Taking 3D Printing to New Levels

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, is decades old but the industry today is quite challenging. 3D printing enables rapid prototyping, quick-turn designs, and the ability to quickly scale in industrial, consumer, and high-risk markets. The industry enables what was...

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Inside the Invention of a Snore-Stopping Sleep Mask – From Idea to Prototype to Product
It took two and a half years, 60 prototypes, and even some of his children’s craft foam, but Curtis Ray turned his idea into invention.
Question of the Week : Materials
Will Carbon Fibers Find a New Place in Vehicles?

In a Tech Briefs article last week, Virginia Tech professor Greg Liu spoke about his team’s newly developed porous carbon fibers, and how the material may someday change how vehicles are built and powered.

Blog : Electronics & Computers
Calling All Innovators: 'Create the Future' Contest is Open for Entries
Your design idea could win you $20,000.
Application Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Driverless Forklifts

Although driverless forklifts have been around for about 30 years, it's only in the last 10 or so that they've been free to maneuver anywhere around their environment. In the early days, the machines followed a current...

Products : Electronics & Computers
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)...

Articles : Photonics/Optics
Additive Manufacturing Using Infrared and X-Ray Imaging

Additive manufacturing is poised to liven the pace and scale of manufacturing. Deploying a range of techniques that use 3-D models to print objects layer by layer, it can generate a...

Articles : Imaging
The Role Deep Learning Plays in Imaging Software

Deep learning technology is inspired by the way the human brain works, using trained artificial neural networks to perform recognition and decision-making tasks. A convolutional neural network...

Briefs : Semiconductors & ICs
Microfabrication Technique Modifies Semiconductor Material Atom-by-Atom

To keep up with Moore's Law — an observation made in the 1960s that the number of transistors on an integrated circuit doubles about every two years — researchers...

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 : Electronics & Computers
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...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
High-Power Thermoelectric Generator

Objects in our daily lives, such as speakers, refrigerators, and even cars, are becoming “smarter” day by day as they connect to the Internet and exchange data, creating the Internet of Things (IoT)....

Articles : Aerospace
Lightweighting in Aerospace Component and System Design

Lightweighting design is an extensively explored and utilized concept in many industries, especially in aerospace applications, and is associated with the green aviation concept. The...

Products : Electronics & Computers
New on the Market: March 2019

Controller and Datalogger

Watlow, St. Louis, MO, introduced a batch processing feature for the F4T temperature and process controller and D4T datalogger. The new feature helps collect manufacturing part...

Articles : Electronics & Computers
SAE WCX: Bringing You the Future of Mobility

WCX™ World Congress Experience 2019 — presented by SAE International — is for forward-thinking engineers, executives, OEMs, suppliers, decision-makers, disruptors, and the entire spectrum of...

Briefs : Aerospace
Variable-Depth, Multilayer Liner for Aircraft Noise Reduction

NASA Langley Research Center has developed a new approach for designing aircraft liner cores for noise reduction. The cores are comprised of multiple honeycomb-shaped chambers,...

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