Materials

Space Weather’s Critical Effects on Satellite Materials

The Air Force Research Laboratory has investigated the effects of space weather damage to polyimides – materials used extensively in spacecraft construction due to their high heat resistance. The researchers determined the previously unknown chemical and physical effects of electron bombardment in Earth's magnetosphere on these polymers.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Materials
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Air Force Scientists Study Artificial Silk for Body Armor, Parachutes

Who doesn’t like to feel warm in the winter and cool in the summer?

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Materials, Wearables
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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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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.

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NASA to Advance Unique 3D Printed Sensor Technology

Mahmooda Sultana recently won funding to advance a potentially revolutionary, nanomaterial-based detector platform. The technology is capable of sensing everything from minute concentrations of gases and vapor, atmospheric pressure and temperature, and then transmitting that data via a wireless antenna — all from the same self-contained platform that measures just two-by-three-inches in size.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Defense, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Nanotechnology, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors
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Thermoplastic Drive Shaft System Developed for Aerospace Applications

herone GmbH, (Dresden, Germany) recently won the prestigious 2019 JEC Innovation Awards, in the Aerospace application category. The winning application was the company's all-thermoplastic drive-shaft system overmolded with an integral gear, designed for use in aerospace applications.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Defense, Thermal Management, Materials, Plastics, Joining & Assembly, Machinery, Mechanical Components, Motion Control, Motors & Drives, Positioning Equipment
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NASA Unveils Radically New Airplane Wing

NASA built and tested a radically new kind of airplane wing assembled from hundreds of tiny identical pieces. It could provide a significant boost in aircraft production, flight, and maintenance efficiency. The flexible wing uses carbon fiber composite units arranged in a lattice pattern.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense, Materials
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AFRL, Universities Partner on 3D-Printed Composites

Joining forces with various universities, the Air Force Research Lab has demonstrated additively manufactured epoxy/carbon fiber composites used in many structural parts on aircraft and spacecraft. The materials have higher thermal and environmental durability and are extremely strong and lightweight.

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Ultra-lightweight Ceramic Withstands Extreme Temperatures

An extremely light, highly durable ceramic aerogel was developed that could ultimately be an upgrade for spacecraft insulation. The new material is made of thin layers of boron nitride with atoms that are connected in hexagon patterns, like chicken wire.

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