Materials & Manufacturing

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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.

Products: Motion Control

HBM (Marlborough, MA) introduced the FIT7A digital load cell that enables machines to make up to 180 weighings per minute. The load cell features accuracy class C4 per OIML R60, and a maximum scale interval factor Y of up...

Products: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Universal Robots (Odense, Denmark) introduced the UR3 tabletop robot that weighs 24.3 pounds and has a payload of 6.6 pounds, 360-degree rotation on all wrist joints, and infinite rotation on the end joint. The flexible,...

Products: Motion Control

Novotechnik, U.S. (Southborough, MA) introduced the Vert-X 2400 compact angle sensors that convert rotational angle into a voltage output. The sensors are available in single and fully redundant versions; diameter of the...

Products: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The VMX30UHSi, VMX42HSRTi, VMX84SWi, VMX60SWi, and VMX60Ui from Hurco (Indianapolis, IN) are 5-axis machines for traditional 3-axis parts with features on all five sides. The VMX42HSRTi has a swivel-head design with a...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

The EGP 25 electric small part gripper from SCHUNK (Morrisville, NC) weighs 110 g and has a stroke of 3 mm per finger. The gripping force can be adjusted on two stages, and maximum gripping force is 40 N. The gripper can handle...

Products: Motion Control

Bell-Everman (Goleta, CA) offers the SLS Light sealed linear stage that keeps contamination such as manufacturing debris, particulate, or liquid contaminants outside of the stage housing. The stage measures 80 × 120 mm, and has...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

PISCO USA (Elmhurst, IL) offers a flow controller that features a built-in shock absorber function. It uses a 2-stage speed control to regulate exhaust speed and absorb shock in pneumatic cylinders. The units have three...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

PCB Piezotronics (Depew, NY) introduced the Model 350B01 mechanically isolated, electrically filtered, nearfield or farfield pyroshock sensor capable of measuring up to 100,000 g. The sensor measures High-G shock and harsh...

Products: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Parker’s Electromechanical Automation Division (Rohnert Park, CA) offers the Intelligent Parker Amplifier (IPA), a 1.5-axis servo drive/controller based on the ACR control platform. Available in two power levels —...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

Hoffmann + Krippner (Woodstock, GA) introduced the DL30 series linear motion potentiometer (transducer) series that features low-profile dimensions of 30 × 30 mm and variable lengths. Various types of resistors (e.g. wire,...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

Accuride (Santa Fe Springs, CA) introduced the Model AL4190 Tilt Track System that provides access to drawers or trays installed at shoulder level and above. The system uses wheels and rollers to extend the drawer, and an...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control

Nook Industries (Cleveland, OH) offers Series 500™ programmable actuators designed for continuous duty and long service life. They incorporate a direct or toothed-belt drive for high mechanical efficiency. Ball screw-driven...

Products: Motion Control

Unitronics (Quincy, MA) has introduced Samba, a palm-sized PLC with HMI and onboard I/Os for machine control that features a color 7" HMI panel. The 16-bit touchscreen enables data entry and display of variable data,...

Products: Motion Control

Silicon Designs (Kirkland, WA) offers industrial-grade MEMS variable capacitive accelerometer chips and modules for zero- to medium-frequency instrumentation applications. Onboard voltage regulation and an internal...

INSIDER: Test & Measurement
Visual Microphone Identifies Structural Defects

A new technique from Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers estimates material properties of physical objects, such as stiffness and weight, from video.

INSIDER: Materials
Researchers Create Shape-Shifting Plastic

Researchers from Washington State University and the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge Laboratory have created a tunable shape-memory polymer. The shape-shifting plastic can “remember” its original shape and return to it after being deformed with heat or other forces.

INSIDER: Sensors/Data Acquisition
New Nanomaterials Mimic Bird Feathers

Inspired by the way iridescent bird feathers play with light, UC San Diego scientists have created thin-film materials in a wide range of pure colors: red, orange, yellow, and green. The hues are determined by physical structure rather than pigments.

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping

It seems that every day, designers and engineers are finding exciting new applications for 3D printing, from creating custom prostheses to making tools used for repairs on the International Space Station. 3D...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Increased Alignment in Carbon Nanotube Growth

The combination of electronic and mechanical properties of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) has led to wide-ranging investigation of their potential in future electronics and computing, sensors, electrodes, and composites. A method and system for fabricating an array of two or more CNT structures on a coated...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Process to Fabricate Specific Sized Monodisperse Polystyrene Microparticles

A new method was developed to prepare monodisperse nano to microparticles of polystyrene ranging from 0.5 to 2.5 microns in relatively large-quantity batches (2 L, 10% by weight in water). Current commercial sources are very expensive and can typically only be acquired...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Atmospheric Pressure Plasma-Based Fabrication of Printable Electronics and Functional Coatings

The need for low-cost and environmentally friendly processes for fabricating printable electronics and biosensor chips is growing. Nanomaterials have proved to be very useful in both printable electronics due to their electronic properties, and in...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Passive Destructive Interference Acoustic Liner for a Turbofan Engine Using Additive Manufacturing

This technology exploits the capabilities of additive manufacturing to attenuate the fan noise within the inlet or aft duct of a turbofan engine. The approach may be expanded to include auxiliary power units, environmental control systems, or other...

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The technologies NASA develops don’t just blast off into space. They also improve our lives here on Earth. Life-saving search-and-rescue tools, implantable medical devices, advances in commercial aircraft...

Products: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Sensirion, Westlake Village, CA, introduced a gas sensor that, according to the company, is the first in the world to be based on multi-pixel technology. This allows the sensor to perceive its surroundings...

NASA Spinoff: Manufacturing & Prototyping

To understand the Sun’s impacts on Earth, NASA initiated the Living with a Star program in 2001, and began developing a key research satellite: the Solar Dynamics...

Application Briefs: Aerospace
FDM® (Fused Deposition Modeling™) technology and ULTEM 9085 thermoplastic
Stratasys Direct Manufacturing (RedEye, Solid Concepts, and Harvest...
INSIDER: Energy
New Wearable Device Turns Thumbnail into Trackpad

MIT Media Laboratory researchers are developing a wearable device that turns the user’s thumbnail into a miniature wireless track pad.

INSIDER: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Special Delivery: NASA Marshall Receives 3D-Printed Tools from Space

Engineers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, unboxed some special cargo from the International Space Station on April 6: the first items manufactured in space with a 3D printer.

INSIDER: Aerospace
New Materials Enable Flapping Robotic Wings

Dielectric elastomers, popular materials in robotic hands, soft robots, tunable lenses, and pneumatic valves, may now be used to create flapping robotic wings.

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