Materials

Coming Soon - Air Force Produces Light, Thin Transparent Armor

The Air Force Research Laboratory is manufacturing transparent ceramic armor for both air and ground vehicles. ALON is a transparent ceramic material composed of aluminum, oxygen, and nitrogen. It begins as a powder that is formed into unique shapes and made transparent through the application of high temperature and pressure.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Ceramics, Materials
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AFRL Achieves “Shocking” Materials Technology Breakthrough

The Air Force Research Laboratory, along with research partners at Los Alamos National Laboratory, are working to change the shape of materials technology with a breakthrough development that could open up a new range of possibilities for the military and beyond. The collaborative team has developed a 3-D printed polymer-based foam structure that responds to the force of a shock wave to act as a one-way switch, a long sought-after goal in shock research.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Materials, Plastics
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Electrical Characterization of Crystalline UO2, THO2 and U0.71TH0.29O2

Tracking and identifying radiation sources in the age of nuclear proliferation and well- resourced non-state actors is a national priority. Current neutron detection methods favor large detector volumes and long data collection times. Additionally, portable neutron detection methods have persistent problems with low signal-to-noise (small pulse height) and require large applied voltages.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Semiconductors & ICs, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors
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Coating Technology Enables Effective Missile Countermeasures

Heat-seeking missiles have been in use against both rotorcraft and fixed wing aircraft since the mid-1950s, and countermeasures to deceive their guidance systems have been employed for nearly as long. Typically, countermeasures operate by generating a strong infrared signature which confuses the missile tracking system. At the heart of these systems is some form of powerful infrared emitting source. Often this source requires optical coating(s) to perform wavelength filtering needed for optimum operation. However, both the mechanical configuration of the thin film filter coatings used and the operating extremes to which they are subjected present challenges for the manufacturer.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Machinery, Mechanical Components
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Matrix-Free Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Using Metal-Organic Frameworks

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) is a soft ionization technique that is widely applied in the characterization of large biomolecules using various mass spectrometry (MS) analyzers, specifically, time-of-flight (TOF) analyzers. The MALDI process involves the deposition of an analyte solution onto a metal substrate before the addition of a matrix. The matrix/analyte dry spot is exposed to a UV laser, and the laser energy that is absorbed by the matrix/analyte is converted into heat energy that initiates charge transfer, which results in the desorption of the matrix and analyte molecules in ionized form. The positive ions are then accelerated through a vacuum into MS analyses.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Metals, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement
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New Products: June 2019 Aerospace & Defense Technology

Lange Couplers

The construction and port orientation of the Lange Coupler from SemiGen (Londonderry, NH) makes it useful as both a power combiner and splitter for RF and microwave applications. It is a specific type of directional coupler, which allows passive coupling of a defined amount of electromagnetic power. The sweet spot for Lange Couplers has traditionally been UHF to Q-band; the limit becomes frequency. Substrate height and strip width are inversely related to frequency, increasing loss due to the reduced amount of metal available to act as a conductor.

Posted in: Products, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense, Batteries, Board-Level Electronics, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, PCs/Portable Computers, Power Management, Power Supplies, Materials, Fastening, Joining & Assembly, Machinery, Mechanical Components, Motors & Drives, Positioning Equipment, Automation, Robotics, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement, Testing Procedures
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Machining Titanium Aero-Frames

The rise of titanium for aerospace applications has been well documented in recent years. Equally, the challenges associated with the efficient, productive and high-quality machining of this popular material, have also been a topic of debate and scrutiny. Of course, every machine shop wants optimized performance from its cutters when milling titanium, but this can prove less than straightforward without the right technology and know-how in place. Today, however, thanks to a breakthrough in this area, things are beginning to change.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace Manufacturing and Machining, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Consumer Product Manufacturing, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Industrial Controls & Automation, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Materials, Metals, Joining & Assembly, Machinery, Mechanical Components
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Getting the Most Out of Industrial CT Scanning

Quality assurance and flight certification of critical aerospace parts and assemblies have reached new levels of sophistication in recent years. Leading aerospace and defense manufacturers worldwide now consider computed tomography (CT) scanning to be an essential part of their non-destructive testing (NDT) toolkit. Far more powerful than the CT used to scan the human body, industrial CT can penetrate almost every material, from superalloys to lead, revealing hidden details that previously could only be found by cutting and destroying finished parts.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace Manufacturing and Machining, Aerospace, Defense, Imaging, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Industrial Controls & Automation, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Ceramics, Composites, Materials, Joining & Assembly, Machinery, Mechanical Components, Computer-Aided Design (CAD), Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM), Simulation Software, Software, Inspection Equipment, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement, Testing Procedures
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Aerospace Work Platforms — More than Meets the Eye

For maintenance personnel in the aerospace industry to do their jobs effectively, they need to be able to get physically close to the equipment they are working on. This statement sounds obvious, but in order to meet this requirement, it is very important to utilize quality work platforms. Although most people are familiar with the basic uses of work platforms, there is not always much thought given to everything that goes into their design and fabrication.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace Manufacturing and Machining, Aerospace, Defense, Design, Industrial Design and Human Factors, Consumer Product Manufacturing, Contract Services, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Industrial Controls & Automation, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Metals, Machinery, Mechanical Components
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US and Japanese Scientists Conduct Joint Composites Study

Dr. Keisuke Umezawa of the Air Systems Research Center in the Japanese Ministry of Defense (JMoD) recently joined the Air Force Research Laboratory on an engineers and scientists exchange program (ESEP). The JMoD chose Umezawa for the ESEP based on his experience as a stress analysist of polymer matrix composite materials. Also, Umezawa has been heavily involved in the development of the next generation Japanese fighter aircraft, including the development of the test program for prototype PMC structures.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Composites, Materials
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