3-D Manufacturing of Titanium Components Takes Off

MRO providers are discovering ways to innovate their procedures while remaining viable and profitable through the current downturn in government spending. Read more at http://articles.sae.org/13268.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Mechanical Components

Trimming Wiring Harnesses Becomes Design Focus

Wires and cables help design teams add electronic features and functions, but networks and wiring harnesses add a fair amount of weight while their connections can be the cause of failures. That’s prompting developers to examine ways to reduce the size and weight of wires and cables. Read more at http://articles.sae.org/13419.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Electronics

Carbon-Fiber Concept Trailer From Great Dane Cuts Weight by 4000 lb

The Walmart Advanced Vehicle Experience is a prototype tractor-trailer developed to demonstrate the possibilities of future transport, and the truck is not the only place where innovation reigns. The trailer body is built almost exclusively with carbon fiber, and it incorporates other technologies such as advanced adhesives and low-profile LED lighting. Read more at http://articles.sae.org/13507.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Transportation

Unmanned Ocean Drone

Liquid Robotics
Sunnyvale, CA

Accurately forecasting weather conditions and currents prior to mission deployment is an invaluable intelligence tool for the warfighter. Being able to accurately predict a Category-5 typhoon or hurricane, instead of a tropical storm, also saves lives, saves property, and saves time in evacuations. The Liquid Robotics' Wave Glider®, a surfboard-sized ocean drone filled with sensors, computers, and communications equipment, can survive a Category-5 typhoon while continuously collecting and transmitting meteorological and oceanographic data. Previously this type of data was unobtainable because it was too risky to send manned ships out in the middle of a hurricane/typhoon; buoys can become severely damaged or come off their moorings in such conditions; and satellites have difficulty seeing through the dense cloud cover.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Communications, Defense, Thermal Management, Data Acquisition, Robotics, Marine vehicles and equipment, Unmanned aerial vehicles

Reaching the Benchmark in Secure Unmanned Vehicle Software

Security concerns currently dominate software thinking wherever sensitive or safety-critical information is potentially accessible. Embedded software is no exception. Security researcher Barnaby Jack demonstrated this in 2011 when he used a modified antenna and software to wirelessly attack and take control of Medtronic’s implantable insulin pumps. He demonstrated how such a pump could be commanded to release a fatal dose of insulin. Obviously, that vulnerability puts dependent diabetics at risk.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Antennas, Embedded software, Medical, health, and wellness, Cyber security, Autonomous vehicles, Military vehicles and equipment, Unmanned aerial vehicles

Submersion and Directed Flow Cooling Technology for Military Applications

As the US military shifts from boots on the ground to drones in the sky, there will be an increasing need for computing power on foreign soil, under the sea and in the air. Design objectives will be difficult to achieve with legacy technology. Electronic gear must be deployed by transport plane and require rapid setup once the destination is reached. Systems will need to be hardened to survive extreme temperatures, desert sand, salt air and pollution. Fuel logistics to serve remote locations can be difficult and expensive. Every kilowatt-hour of electricity converted to heat must be dissipated and, ideally, the waste energy should be recycled. For ground installations, it will be useful to consider distributing computing resources around rather than concentrating them at a single location that may be vulnerable to attack. Silent operation also is desirable.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Computer software / hardware, Electronic equipment, Military vehicles and equipment

Flying on Vegetation

Fuel is expensive for airlines. According to sources interviewed for this article, fuel accounts for 30 to 50% of operating costs, depending on the size of the aircraft. And fuel prices remain volatile.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Sustainable development, Alternative fuels, Biofuels, Jet fuel