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.

Application Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Plastic Bearings Redefine the Wheelchair

For wheelchair users, the feeling of uneven ground can seem all too familiar. Determined to make ride discomfort a thing of the past, Israel-based SoftWheel has completely reinvented the wheel for a...

White Papers : Design
Designing with Fastening in Mind

Problems derived by non-optimized assembly methods can jeopardize what would otherwise be a successful new product development. Collaboration with a fastener company can be valuable at any stage in the manufacturing cycle. However, consultation with the right fastener specialist early in the design cycle provides...

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
A Leech-Like Robot Climbs Up the Walls

Doctoral Programs student Ayato Kanada came up with his leech-like robot in a place you’d least expect it: His bathroom.

Blog : Software
Markforged Helps Factories Fix Themselves

At RAPID + TCT in Detroit today, Markforged introduced Blacksmith artificial intelligence-powered software that makes manufacturing machines “aware” so they can automatically adjust programming...

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
HP’s Digital Disruption

On the opening day of the RAPID + TCT Show in Detroit, HP introduced the new Jet Fusion 5200 Series 3D printing solution – an industrial 3D printing system – and the Digital Manufacturing Network, a new global...

Question of the Week : Aerospace
Can a Spray-On Coating ‘Ice-Proof’ Airplanes?

University of Michigan researchers have developed a coating that they believe could lead to the achievement of a long-time goal: Ice-proofing airplanes.

On-Demand Webinars : Materials
Multiphysics Analysis of Composite Materials

Composite materials are widely used in constructing aircraft, wind turbine blades, automobile components, boat hulls, bicycles, and safety equipment, among many other applications. The stiffness-to-weight ratio of composite materials makes them an excellent choice for these applications, but these...

News : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Want a Magnetized Medical Robot? Just 3D Print It
A microrobot can take up to 8 hours to make. With the help of a 3D printer, University of Toronto engineers got the process down to 20 minutes
Question of the Week : Manufacturing & Prototyping
For Prototyping, Do You Prefer 3D Printing or CNC Machining?

During a live presentation this month, a Tech Briefs reader had a question for Proto Labs machining pro Gus Breiland:

“When can 3D printing be a viable alternative to CNC machining?”

White Papers : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Productivity Enablement for the Aerospace Shop Floor

For suppliers, floorspace is at a premium. You need to deliver a combination of speed and quality on the shop floor to stay competitive in the crowded field competing for OEM business. Despite the need for both speed and quality, many manufacturers have not yet implemented metrology on their...

Blog : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A New Idea for Putting Out Fires in Space: The Vacuum Cleaner?
If a short circuit starts a fire up on the International Space Station, Dr. Yuji Nakamura has an idea to extinguish it: The vacuum.
INSIDER : Photonics/Optics
Chirality Yields Colossal Photocurrent

An international team led by a group of Boston College researchers reported that a recently discovered Weyl semimetal delivers the largest intrinsic conversion of light to electricity of any material....

Photonics & Imaging Technology : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Researchers 3D Print Metamaterials with Novel Optical Properties

A team of engineers at Tufts University has developed a series of 3D printed metamaterials with unique microwave or optical properties that go beyond what is possible using...

Briefs : Materials
Rhombohedron Epitaxial Growth with Molten Target Sputtering (MTS) at 500 °C Substrate Temperature

This invention applies to the field of sputtering, depositing SiGe thin films on sapphire substrates. It is a method of modifying the film...

Application Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Additive Manufacturing Helps Soldiers Get Parts Faster
Rize
Woburn, MA
www.rize3d.com

Headquartered at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey, The United States Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC)...

Briefs : Lighting
Bendable Electronic Paper Displays a Range of Colors

The combination of conductive polymers on nanostructures was demonstrated as suited to creating electronic displays as thin as paper. The “paper” is similar to the Kindle tablet. It...

Briefs : Aerospace
In-Situ Characterization and Inspection of Additive Manufacturing Deposits Using Transient Infrared Thermography

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, is a rapidly growing field in which solid objects can be produced layer-by-layer. This...

Articles : Materials
A Guide to Collaborative Robot Safety

The ability of collaborative robots to share tasks with humans and flexibly adapt to new requirements can provide high returns on investment in a wide variety of industrial applications. Manufacturers...

Briefs : Imaging
3D Printer Uses Rays of Light to Shape Objects

Most 3D printers, including light-based techniques, build up 3D objects layer by layer. This leads to a “stair-step” effect along the edges. They also have difficulties creating flexible...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Material Could Make Plastic Manufacturing More Energy-Efficient

Anew material was developed that can extract the key ingredient in the most common form of plastic from a mixture of other chemicals while consuming far less energy than usual....

Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Facility Focus: NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

Founded on July 1, 1960, Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL is one of NASA’s largest field centers. Marshall engineers designed, built, tested, and helped launch the Saturn V...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Electron Beam Heating and Atomic Restructuring of Sapphire Surfaces

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a new way to reduce the high-temperature heating requirement of sapphire substrates in wafer production. The growth of...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Fast and Accurate Simulation of Manufactured Parts with Defects

Unwanted porosity is typical to many manufacturing processes — from traditional casting to additive manufacturing (3D printing) — and is difficult to avoid entirely....

Briefs : Software
Technique Reverse-Engineers Complex 3D CAD Models

Nearly all commercial products start as a CAD file — a 2D or 3D model with the product’s design specifications. One method that’s widely used to represent today’s 3D models is...

Articles : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Changing the Automation Conversation

With advancements in manufacturing processes and materials, components in many industries are more precise with a new level of complex shapes. There is significant demand to create parts and assemblies...

Briefs : Nanotechnology
Method Shrinks Objects to the Nanoscale

Existing techniques for creating nano-structures are limited in what they can accomplish. Etching patterns onto a surface with light can produce 2D nano-structures but doesn’t work for 3D structures....

Briefs : Semiconductors & ICs
Medium-Frequency Transformer Transitions from AC to DC

Traditionally, electronics are cooled using a heat sink that transfers the heat generated by the electronic system into the air or a liquid coolant. For the heat sink to work, it has to...

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Industrial Blue Lasers

What Does It Takes to Change the Game?

Industrial lasers are integrated into manufacturing and fabrication facilities around the world. Every moment, there is an industrial laser somewhere that is cutting,...

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
An Introduction to Time of Flight Imaging

Three-dimensional (3D) imaging applications are used in many different industries ranging from industrial pick and place, palletization/depalletization, warehouse, robotics, and metrology to...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Researchers Create Smartphone System to Test for Lead in Water

Researchers at the University of Houston have created an inexpensive system that can detect lead in tap water at levels commonly accepted as dangerous, using a lens made with an...

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