Mechanical/​Mechatronics

Stay updated on advancements in mechanical components and mechatronics systems. New technologies in MEMs, fluid systems, and propulsion are driving breakthroughs in transportation, electrification, autonomous driving, and manufacturing.

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Nickel Titanium Alloy Ball Bearings

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping
NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center
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Webcasts

Upcoming Webinars: Materials

Lightweighting with Composites and Plastics

Upcoming Webinars: Materials

Material Solutions for e-Mobility

Upcoming Webinars: Software

The Future of Modeling is Here

Upcoming Webinars: Photonics/Optics

Freeform Optics Design for Illumination Applications

Upcoming Webinars: Imaging

Infrared Imaging Technology

Upcoming Webinars: Energy

Cooling Strategies for High-Power Electronics Cabinets

Latest Briefs & News

Blog : Aerospace
Answering Your Questions: What Kind of Spacecraft Will Bring Astronauts to the Moon in 2024?
Answering Your Questions: What Kind of Spacecraft Will Bring Astronauts to the Moon in 2024?
Lockheed Martin's Rob Chambers is working on a spacecraft that will bring astronauts back to the lunar surface.
Answering Your Questions: What Kind of Spacecraft Will Bring Astronauts to the Moon in 2024?
Blog : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
A new-and-improved system from Stanford University captures light from a greater variety of surfaces, allowing a wider, farther imagery than ever before.
Camera Sees Objects Around Corners (Even Better Than Before)
Application Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
Shutoff Device Controls and Meters Flows in Harsh Environments
Shutoff Device Controls and Meters Flows in Harsh Environments

Millions of gallons of crude oil were released into the Gulf of Mexico during the seabed oil drilling catastrophe of 2010. Numerous strategies to stop or stem the oil flow...

Shutoff Device Controls and Meters Flows in Harsh Environments
Motion Design : Internet of Things
Build IIoT Networks with Smart Control and HMI Software
Build IIoT Networks with Smart Control and HMI Software

Programmable automation controllers (PACs) play the primary role in IIoT systems. Also referred to as machine controllers, PACs provide a centralized architecture; they act as the...

Build IIoT Networks with Smart Control and HMI Software
Motion Design : Motion Control
New Piston Design Features Soft, Flexible Materials
New Piston Design Features Soft, Flexible Materials

Conventional pistons are made of a rigid chamber and a piston inside that can slide along the chamber’s inner wall while at the same time maintaining a tight seal. As a result, the piston...

New Piston Design Features Soft, Flexible Materials
Motion Design : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Cable Construction for Machine Vision Connectivity
Cable Construction for Machine Vision Connectivity

Along with the onslaught of Internet of Things (IoT) and wirelessly enabled devices, cloud connectivity has become a major benefit for a range of applications from commercial to military. As...

Cable Construction for Machine Vision Connectivity
Motion Design : Motion Control
Hybrid Robot Flies, Creeps, and Leaps Off Buildings
Hybrid Robot Flies, Creeps, and Leaps Off Buildings

There is great potential in using both drones and ground-based robots for situations like disaster response, but generally these platforms either fly or creep along the ground. The flying...

Hybrid Robot Flies, Creeps, and Leaps Off Buildings
Motion Design : Robotics, Automation & Control
New Products: August 2019 Motion Design
New Products: August 2019 Motion Design

Miniature Linear Translation Stages

PI, L.P. (Auburn, MA) offers the L-505 miniature linear translation stages for precision motion, alignment, and positioning applications where space is...

New Products: August 2019 Motion Design
Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Stepper Motor Drives: Factors to Help Determine Proper Selection
Stepper Motor Drives: Factors to Help Determine Proper Selection

Stepper motors and stepper-based linear actuators are often selected for open-loop motion control devices and equipment. These can be found in a wide range of products and...

Stepper Motor Drives: Factors to Help Determine Proper Selection
Articles : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Products of Tomorrow: August 2019
Products of Tomorrow: August 2019

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...

Products of Tomorrow: August 2019
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Cryogenic Hydraulically Actuated Isolation Valve

Researchers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center have developed a cryogenic isolation valve that utilizes the upstream line pressure of cryogenic fluids for actuation. Previously, the use of cryogenic fluids for actuation systems had been too difficult to control and resulted in unsafe operating...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Nitinol-Actuated, Normally Open Valve Assembly (NOVA)

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center has developed the NOVA zero-leak, permanent isolation valve that helps prevent leaks in space propulsion systems with operating pressures less than or equal to 500 psia. The actuator is made from nitinol, a heat-activated, non-explosive, shape memory alloy and...

Articles : Electronics & Computers
Module or Discrete Power?
Module or Discrete Power?

Engineers today are feeling the pressure to get more done in less time, be experts in multiple disciplines, and use their resources more efficiently to maximize profits. This environment is shifting the way...

Module or Discrete Power?
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Lunar Surface Manipulation System
Lunar Surface Manipulation System

NASA's Langley Research Center offers a novel lifting and precision positioning device with hybrid functional characteristics of both crane-type lifting devices and robotic manipulators. The design of the...

Lunar Surface Manipulation System
Products : Electronics & Computers
New on the Market: August 2019
New on the Market: August 2019

Circular Connectors

Binder USA, Camarillo, CA, introduced the 720 Series of miniature circular connectors with a snap-in IP67 twin distributor. The distributor — a single male connector into two...

New on the Market: August 2019
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Light-Activated Micro-Pump
Light-Activated Micro-Pump

Even the smallest mechanical pumps have limitations, from the micro-fabrication techniques required to make them to the fact that there are limits on their size. A laser-driven photoacoustic microfluidic pump was...

Light-Activated Micro-Pump
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Microscale Electro-Hydrodynamic (EHD) Modular Cartridge Pump

The EHD pump uses electric fields to move a dielectric fluid coolant in a thermal loop to dissipate heat generated by electrical components with a low-power system. The pump has only a few key components and no moving parts, increasing the simplicity and robustness of the system. In...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Deployable Emergency Shutoff Device Blocks High-Velocity Fluid Flows

NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center has developed a device and method for blocking the flow of fluid from an open pipe. The device plugs, controls, and meters the flow of gases and liquids. Anchored with friction fittings, spikes, or explosively activated fasteners, the device...

Who's Who : Aerospace
Q&A: “Neural Lander” Uses AI to Land Drones Smoothly

Soon-Jo Chung is Bren Professor of Aerospace in the Division of Engineering and Applied Science (EAS) at Caltech and research scientist at Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He and his team developed a method for using a deep neural network to help autonomous drones “learn” how to land more...

Blog : Aerospace
What is the ‘Lunar Gateway?’ NASA Details Its Return to the Moon
What is the ‘Lunar Gateway?’ NASA Details Its Return to the Moon
Sign up now to hear how NASA plans to get back to the Moon by 2024.
What is the ‘Lunar Gateway?’ NASA Details Its Return to the Moon
Blog : Electronics & Computers
Answering Your Questions: How Will Emulation Be Used in Automotive Design?
Answering Your Questions: How Will Emulation Be Used in Automotive Design?
A reader asks: What role will emulation play in the verification of modern automotive solutions?
Answering Your Questions: How Will Emulation Be Used in Automotive Design?
Podcasts : Aerospace
Here's an Idea: Apollo 11
Here's an Idea: Apollo 11
In this special edition of Here's an Idea, we explore the many tools and materials that began as one small step toward the Moon.
Here's an Idea: Apollo 11