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.

AEROGELS FROM ENVIRONMENTAL WASTES FOR NOVEL ENGINEERING APPLICATIONS Associate Prof. Hai Minh Duong and Prof. Nhan Phan-Thien, National University of Singapore...
Application Briefs: Imaging
Imaging Innovation for Spinal Care

Motion capture (Mocap) is a technique used in the film industry to digitally track a human actor's movements and precisely transfer those motions to an animated figure. But it has other applications as...

Special Reports: Imaging
Robotics & Machine Vision - November 2018

Advances in robotics and machine vision are transforming the factory floor. To help you keep pace with the latest developments in industrial automation, we present this compendium of recent articles...

Question of the Week: Materials
Will Paint-On coatings Become a Popular Way to Cool Down Buildings?

Our lead INSIDER story today featured a paint-on polymer that cools down buildings, through a process known as passive daytime radiative cooling.

Read the article, and let us know what you think.

This week’s Question: Will Paint-On coatings Become a Popular Way...

A new solution, applied like paint, cools down rooftops, buildings, water tanks, vehicles, and even spacecraft.
Question of the Week: Sensors/Data Acquisition
What NASA Spin-Off Stands Out to You?

NASA technologies have led to many of the commercial products and innovative solutions we use every day, from memory foam and freeze-dried foods to exercise equipment and water purifiers. The October issue of Tech Briefs showcased a number of these NASA spinoffs.

Read the Tech Briefs feature article,...

The grand-prize-winning nanotechnology coating imparts anti-reflection and water-repellency capabilities to surfaces made of silicon, glass ,and some plastics, including Teflon.
Question of the Week: Test & Measurement
Are You Currently Using Mechanical Test Equipment to Measure Strain?

One way to measure strain and deformation in a material is through digital image correlation and non-contact sensors. Next week, in a live webinar presentation, speakers from Trilion Quality Systems and MTS Systems Corp. will review how customers have used their imaging and...

The need for Ethernet-based communication within the factory has grown over the past 10 years. Detailed information about the tasks and performance of machines at every stage is...

Researchers have 3D-printed an array of light receptors on a hemispherical surface. This discovery could lead to a “bionic eye” that could someday help blind people see or sighted...

Products: Test & Measurement
New on the Market: October 2018
Temperature Transmitters

The Sitrans TH320/420 and TR320/420 WirelessHART (Highway Addressable Remote Transducer Protocol) temperature transmitters from Siemens, Erlangen, Germany, are available for...

Briefs: Green Design & Manufacturing
Bio-Renewable Process Creates “Green” Plastic

Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels, and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

In 1951, the first nuclear reactor in Idaho was built, starting a legacy at what is now Idaho National Laboratory (INL). INL is the site where 52 pioneering nuclear reactors were designed and...

Articles: Test & Measurement
NASA at 60: From Space to Earth

The benefits of NASA's space exploration efforts are not limited to the cosmos. NASA technologies provide innovative solutions for people around the world. NASA missions have generated thousands of spinoffs...

Computer processors have continued to shrink down to nanometer sizes where there can be billions of transistors on a single chip. This phenomenon is described under Moore's Law, which...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabricating Battery Electrodes Using 3D Printing

Additive manufacturing (3D printing) can be used to manufacture porous electrodes for lithium-ion batteries, but because of the nature of the manufacturing process, the design of these...

Researchers have demonstrated the ability to create amorphous metal (metallic glass) alloys on large scales using 3D printing technology. Metallic glasses lack the crystalline...

5 Ws: Manufacturing & Prototyping
5 Ws of Electronic Stickers
Who

Billions of objects ranging from smartphones and buildings, to machine parts and medical devices, to furniture and office supplies — any object that has a need to communicate with or sense other...

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Hybrid Silicone-Fabric Sensor for Wearable Robots

Wearable technologies are exploding in popularity in both the consumer and research spaces, but most of the electronic sensors that detect and transmit data from wearables are made of hard,...

NASA Spinoff: Manufacturing & Prototyping
3D Printer Aims to Accelerate Materials Development

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

Multi-Voltage Motors

Simotics SD Pro low-voltage motors from Siemens (Munich, Germany) are suited for mains-fed operation or with a converter for voltages up to 690 volts. There is generally...

Researchers have developed a method to simultaneously control diverse optical properties of dielectric waveguides by using a two-layer coating, each layer with a...

This column presents technologies that have applications in commercial areas, possibly creating the products of tomorrow. To learn more about each technology, see the contact information provided for that...

A technique that enables on-demand control of composite behavior could enable a variety of new capabilities for future rotorcraft design, performance, and maintenance. The focus of the research was on...

NASA's Langley Research Center, in collaboration with Michigan State University (MSU), has developed a microphone array that...

It is often desirable to sense the angular position of a rotating part. Numerous kinds of rotation sensors have been developed over the years; one type is a capacitive sensor, where a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Engineering Soft Materials that Mimic Neural Tissue

A process for engineering next-generation soft materials with embedded chemical networks that mimic the behavior of neural tissue lays the foundation for soft active matter with highly...

When hit with light, semiconductors (materials that have an electrical resistance in between that of metals and insulators) generate an electric current....

Articles: Robotics, Automation & Control
NASA at 60: Celebrating Success

Over the past 60 years, NASA scientists and engineers have developed many advanced technologies and processes. But NASA has also partnered with industry, using commercially available products to complete its missions. Here, some of those companies join NASA in celebrating these collaborative successes.

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