Novel Instrument Enhances Ability to Measure Nuclear Materials

Researchers with the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) designed and built an instrument called NAUTILUS to provide new measurement capabilities to measure nuclear, cosmo/geo-chemical, and electronic materials.

Posted in: INSIDER, Data Acquisition, Defense, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

New Standards Developed to Improve Metal Detector Testing

Metal detectors now appear routinely in the entrances of many schools, airports and even houses of worship. They serve as portals to correctional facilities, prisons and courthouses, and guards often wave hand-held models around the bags of incoming ticketholders at sports arenas. The increased usage is making it more important than ever to know that these machines will always work as expected and can be counted on to help detect weapons and other threats. To help meet these demands, scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have researched and developed four metal detection testing standards. Three have been published by the ASTM International standards organization and a fourth is still in development.

Posted in: INSIDER, Defense, Metals, Inspection Equipment, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

Researchers Shine a Light on Wearable Technology

Researchers at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC) Chemical Biological Center are looking at LEDs to help warfighters battle chemical warfare agents (CWA). Co-primary investigators, Hui Wang, Ph.D. and John Landers, Ph.D. are investigating ways to embed tiny light sources in warfighter uniforms.

Posted in: INSIDER, Defense, LEDs, Materials, Detectors, Sensors, Wearables

Memory Metals Shape the Evolution of Aviation

Shape-memory alloy (SMA) is a functional metal with unique properties that allow it to be trained to move on its own. Researchers at NASA Glenn partnered with Boeing to test how shape-memory alloys can be used in deployable vortex generators (VGs), the tiny fins you might have noticed on airplane wings that help control airflow during flight.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense, Materials, Metals

Thin Heat Shield Protects Superfast Aircraft

The world of aerospace increasingly relies on carbon fiber reinforced polymer composites to build the structures of satellites, rockets, and jet aircraft. But the life of those materials is limited by how they handle heat.

Posted in: INSIDER, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense, Imaging, Materials, Propulsion

New Products: December 2019 Aerospace & Defense Technology

Tool Suites for FACE Conformance

With the latest release of the LDRA tool suite, LDRA (Wirral, UK) delivers FACE Conformance Tool Suites, enabling cost-effective development and verification of high-assurance, FACE-conformant software. These new software tool suites automate the process of evaluating software for conformance with each version of the released FACE standard (e.g., version 2.1.1 and 3.0), while at the same time enabling developers to improve the quality of their software through traceability, static and dynamic code analysis, and unit and system-level testing.

Posted in: Products, Aerospace, Board-Level Electronics, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Power Management, Power Supplies, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Materials, Metals, Machinery, Mechanical Components, Robotics

Software-Defined Analog Filters: A Paradigm Shift in Radio Filter Performance and Capability

Among the most abundant components in all wireless system designs, analog RF filters are used to block interference from various internal and external sources. Limited spectrum divided among an ever-increasing number of users is further driving the need for these ubiquitous but in some ways anachronistic devices. Currently, interference is quite common among cellular base stations, satellite systems, radar installations, and other types of access and backhaul communications systems. Traditional filters are unable to cope with the requirements; in many cases, most often due to insufficient guard bandf. For example, in some international locales, LTE base stations and satellite receivers share the L-band frequencies. At around 3.5 GHz, 5G operators, CBRS radios, and military radars are trying to co-exist. To address this in-band interference, a new, tunable filtering technology is entering the marketplace, uniquely blending the best of both analog and digital technologies.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Communications, Wireless, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, RF & Microwave Electronics

Streamlining Post-Processing in Additive Manufacturing

Undoubtedly there are many benefits associated with the use of additive manufacturing (AM) as a production technology. On a pan-industrial basis, manufacturers exploit the fact that through the use of AM they can not only build complex parts, in one piece, which were previously impossible, but they can also build stronger, lighter-weight parts, reduce material consumption, and benefit from assembly component consolidation across a range of applications. These advantages have all been well documented during the last 10-20 years as AM has emerged as a truly disruptive technology for prototyping and production, and are invariably seen as being enabled by the additive hardware that builds the parts. In reality, however, this is a partial picture, particularly for serial production applications of AM. AM hardware systems are actually just one part – albeit a vital part – of an extensive ecosystem of technologies that enable AM, both pre- and post-build.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Thermal Management, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Plastics, Measuring Instruments, Test & Measurement, Testing Procedures

Reducing the High Cost Of Titanium

Titanium is neither a precious metal nor rare, yet among industrial metals it has the reputation for being very expensive. It's the fourth most abundant metallic element and the ninth most abundant of all the elements in the earth's crust. Its commercially useful oxide ore occurs in the minerals rutile and ilmenite and numerous iron ores, and exploitable ore deposits are liberally scattered around the world in Australia, Canada, India, Malaysia, Norway, Russia, South Africa and the U.S. But due to its properties and high cost it has often been referred to as unobtanium.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Metals, Machinery, Mechanical Components

Engineered Solutions for Enclosure Sealing and Insulation

In the aerospace and defense industries, enclosure sealing and insulation needs to meet challenging and complex requirements. For example, the EMI gaskets that are used in military touchscreens must shield sensitive electronics from electromagnetic interference (EMI) while providing electrical conductivity and ensuring environmental sealing. These enclosure gaskets must also cushion the unit from mechanical shock and avoid interfering with the display's touch function.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Thermal Management, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Joining & Assembly, Mechanical Components, Data Acquisition, Sensors