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.

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...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Microcontroller Altimeter (uCA)

Traditional altitude switch designs for harsh environments are mechanical in nature and operate by means of an inflatable bladder or bellows that mechanically depresses a pushbutton switch. The altitude trip point is set by mechanically adjusting the distance of the switch to the bellows. The mechanical action of...

By 2028, virtually all major sensing and feedback systems benefiting from continuous monitoring will connect to devices currently known as the Internet of Things (IoT). As that...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
3D Printing of All-Liquid 3D Structures

A method was developed for printing 3D structures composed entirely of liquids. Using a modified 3D printer, threads of water were injected into silicone oil, sculpting tubes made of one liquid within...

Photovoltaic systems are continually evolving to improve their efficiency and financial viability. One trend is to move to larger strings of cells giving higher dc voltages to be...

Products: Software
New on the Market: August 2018
DC Current Transducers

NK Technologies, San Jose, CA, introduced DT-FD Series DC current transducers that provide a large sensing window and the ability to safely monitor circuits with voltages up to...

Products: Robotics, Automation & Control
IMTS Product Preview 2018
Cable Carrier

igus, East Providence, RI, offers the E4.1L general-purpose energy chain (e-chain) cable carrier with high dynamics that includes a honeycomb strain relief block. It also includes separators...

Briefs: Motion Control
Ultra-Thin Capacitive Sensor Has the Least Possible Resistance to Motion

A thin and flexible sensor was developed for sensing sounds, since it can move with the airflow made by even the softest noises. With the least possible resistance to motion, the sensor addresses issues with accelerometers, microphones, and many other similar sensors. The...

Adhesives used for common pain-relieving bandages often do not stick properly when attached to places that encounter large, inhomogenous bending motion, like elbows and knees. To...

Resistance welding with direct current (DC) using inverter technology reduces costs by improving quality, reducing maintenance, and increasing productivity. Switching from...

Researchers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center have devised a method for the creation of crystal-free non-oxide optical fiber preforms. Non-oxide fiber optics are extensively used in...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Method 3D-Prints Marine-Grade Stainless Steel

Marine-grade stainless steel is valued for its performance under corrosive environments, and for its high ductility — the ability to bend without breaking under stress. But conventional...

Briefs: Transportation
Water-Repellent Nanotextures Possess Anti-Fogging Capability

Some insect bodies have evolved the ability to repel water and oil, adhere to different surfaces, and eliminate light reflections. Scientists have been studying the physical mechanisms underlying these properties found in nature and mimicking them to design materials for use in...

Briefs: Propulsion
Electrode Design Boosts Supercapacitor Performance

Supercapacitors are rechargeable energy storage devices that deliver more power for their size than similar-sized batteries. They also recharge quickly, and they last for hundreds to thousands of recharging cycles. Today, they are used in hybrid cars’ regenerative braking systems and for other...

By introducing some new ingredients to the flow battery, Stanford University scientists are advancing a new way to store wind and solar electricity.

Researchers at Purdue University and the University of Virginia have designed peelable electronic films that can be cut and pasted onto any object, offering new sensing capabilities to...

Question of the Week: Materials
Which Superpower Do You Want Most?

Our latest episode of “Here’s an Idea” showcased a variety of technologies designed to give the human user a kind of “superpower”: a Spider-Man-like adhesive; an Iron Man suit; a Jet Pack; and (thermal) invisibility.

Podcasts: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Here's an Idea: Engineering Real-Life 'Superpowers'

Engineers today are using their creativity to build a variety of superhero-like technologies that enhance our human capabilities, including exosuits, invisibility cloaks, and wall-scaling...

See five of the new products released this week at Sensors Expo 2018.

A limitation of today's ultrasound devices is that they are difficult to use on objects that don't have perfectly flat surfaces. Conventional ultrasound probes have...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Blocking/Deblocking Resin Systems

Similar to resin systems currently used in composites for aerospace structural applications such as toughened epoxies, this innovation is a modification to traditional resin chemistry to prevent polymerization and crosslinking of the resin when heated and pressed in an autoclave or other common resin curing...

Computers and software play a major role in force measurement and quality control. Whether in the engineering lab, quality control inspection area,...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Active Response Gravity Offload System

NASA has used two systems to train astronauts for weightlessness. The first is the Reduced Gravity Simulator that suspended the astronaut at an angle of 80.5 so that only 1/6th of his or her weight was supported by the ground, while the rest was supported by a pulley system. The other system, designed...

Plastics are excellent thermal insulators — a quality that can be an advantage in some applications. But this property is less desirable in products such as plastic...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Ultra-High-Temperature Polymer Additive Manufacturing

Polymer matrix composites are extremely attractive to researchers working on next-generation applications due to their lightweight properties and ability to withstand extreme conditions...

Life Alert's “I've fallen and I can't get up®!” became one of the most famous infomercial catchphrases in the late 1980s. The company's device,...

Products: Test & Measurement
New on the Market: July 2018
Coupled Inductors

Coilcraft, Cary, IL, offers LPD8035V Series miniature, high-voltage, 1:1 coupled inductors that provide 1500 Vrms and one-minute isolation (hipot) between windings. The inductors are...

Today’s high-resolution laser scanning confocal microscopes (LSCM), also referred to simply as laser scanning microscopes, are powerful high-magnification surface metrology instruments with...

Polymer membrane separators play a crucial function in many energy and water technologies including energy storage, hydrogen generation through water electrolysis, and...

Webcasts

On-Demand Webinars: Electronics & Computers

Vehicle Electrification

Upcoming Webinars: Sensors/Data Acquisition

The Evolution of SOSA

Upcoming Webinars: Automotive

Next-Gen Vehicle Architectures and the Role of HPCs

Tech Talks: Medical

Testing Home Healthcare Medical Devices

Upcoming Webinars: Software

Accelerating Pre-Silicon Software Development with Next-Gen...

Upcoming Webinars: Software

Balancing Vehicle Comfort and Performance with Simulation-Driven...

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