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: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Integrally Wound Skirt for Composite-Overwrapped Tank

The skirt that supports a composite-overwrapped tank would be made an integral part of the composite overwrap, according to a proposal. In current practice, the structure that supports a composite-overwrap tank usually includes a layer of rubber between the tank and its skirt. The rubber...

A crimping technique has been developed for fastening polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) tubes of 0.032-in. (0.81-mm) outside diameter and 0.0105-in. (0.267-mm) inside diameter onto...

Briefs: Materials
Hybrid Composite Overwraps for Low-Pressure Tanks

Hybrid versions of the high-performance overwraps used on some low-pressure tanks have been proposed. The hybrid overwraps would weigh less than do the corresponding nonhybrid overwraps, as explained below.

Briefs: Materials
Repair of Composite-Overwrapped Pressure Vessels

Pressure vessels overwrapped with graphite-fiber-based composite materials that become damaged would be salvaged by a proposed repair technique. The need for the technique arises as follows: High-performance graphite-fiber-based composites are very susceptible to damage from impact or cutting....

Briefs: Materials
Properties of Cubic Boron Nitride Films

A report describes an experimental study of the surface-chemical, microstructural, and tribological properties of cubic boron nitride (c-BN) films, which are potentially useful as hard, wear-resistant coatings on bearings and on steel-cutting tools. For the experiments, BN films about 500 nm thick were...

Briefs: Materials
Polymeric Composite Damage Protective Overwraps for Composite Pressure Vessels

Damage-tolerant polymeric composite overwraps have been proposed for lightweight pressure vessels that are made of composites of graphite fibers in polymeric matrices. Graphite-fiber/polymer composites are vulnerable to impact damage; overwraps on the pressure...

Continuing efforts to develop lightweight, flexible thermal-insulation blankets that withstand high temperatures have led to design and fabrication concepts that effect the following...

An integrated suite of computer programs is undergoing development to address issues pertaining to the formation of burrs — undesired projections of metal that are generated on...

An improved method of fabricating membrane electrode structures for methanol fuel cells is similar to the method described in the preceding article, except that in this method, the...

Electric arcs and electrochemical etching can be used to impart microscopic textures to surfaces of metals. In electric-arc texturing, one strikes an arc between a water-cooled...

Doping with silver bromide has been found to be an effective technique for enhancing the optical homogeneity and other qualities of single crystals of lead bromide. These crystals are grown...

A method of fabricating membrane electrode structures for methanol fuel cells involves, among other things, the use of improved sprayers to deposit inks containing catalytic metals...

Two mounting schemes were devised for attaching heater wires to special-purpose glass tubing used in a capillary-heat-transfer experiment. Not only were the wires required to...

Polyimides have been used widely in fiber-reinforced composite materials for aerospace components and in thin films for packaging of electronic circuitry. Typically, the synthesis of a...

A process that involves reaction bonding makes it possible to form strong joints, with tailorable thicknesses and compositions, between high-temperature-resistant structural parts...

Briefs: Materials
Diffusing Hf and Si Into Aluminide Bond Coats for TBCs

A process for making superior diffusion platinum-aluminide bond coats for plasma-sprayed or physical-vapor-deposited thermal-barrier coats (TBCs) on superalloy substrates has been devised. The novel aspect of the process lies in the use of several relatively inexpensive pack diffusion steps...

An improved method of synthesis of crystalline tin monoxide (SnO) powder for use in anodes of lithium-ion electrochemical power cells has been developed. The carbon used in anodes...

Zn4Sb3 has been identified as a high-performance thermoelectric material. In p-type, Zn4Sb3 samples have exhibited the greatest dimensionless...

Briefs: Materials
Cold Hibernated Elastic Memory (CHEM) Expandable Structures

Experiments have confirmed the feasibility of a new class of lightweight, reliable, simple, and low-cost expandable structures. The concept called "cold hibernated elastic memory" (CHEM) utilizes the shape memory polymers (SMPs) in open cellular structures. Basically, these structures...

Materials based on β-Zn4Sb3have been found to exhibit unusually high values of the dimensionless thermoelectric figure of merit at temperatures between 200...

Briefs: Materials
Nonchromic Acid Brightener for Brass and Copper

A process for precleaning brass and copper parts before processing them further in a clean room includes a brightening chemical treatment in solution of 85 volume percent phosphoric acid, 3 volume percent nitric acid, and 12 volume percent acetic acid. This solution acts rapidly and can be...

A prototype Stirling-engine regenerator containing a matrix made of carbon-fiber-based composite materials has been developed. The concept underlying this development effort is one of...

An alloy of 88Cu/8Cr/4Nb (numbers indicate atomic percentages) has been proposed for use in fabricating rocket-engine combustion chambers by vacuum plasma spraying (VPS). Relative...

Briefs: Materials
Etching Solution for Removal of Silver Plating From Polymers

An etching solution has been developed for use in removal of silver plating from polymer-based (including composite-material) structural components, the surfaces of which are intended to serve as mirrors and waveguide structures. Such structures are often plated with aluminum, copper,...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Microgravity Fiber-Pulling Apparatus

A method to process optical fiber composed of glass systems has been developed in support of the space shuttle and Space Station programs. This process, known as the Microgravity Fiber-Pulling Apparatus,...

The anode separators in rechargeable lithium-ion electrochemical cells that contain carbon lithium-intercalating anodes with copper current collectors would be modified, according to...

More accurate analyses of adhesive EA946 can now be accomplished using new mathematical models. Tests involving this adhesive (used in the space shuttle's reusable solid-rocket-motor nozzle and other...

A microwave-heating technique has been developed for making a braze joint (1) between a tungsten carbide support and a surface layer of polycrystalline diamond or, alternatively,...

Chemiresistors containing poly(aromatic amine) films have been invented to satisfy a need for simple, inexpensive sensors for real-time measurement of parts-per-million and possibly...

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