Materials

Preventing Premature Part Failures with Electropolishing

Design engineers in the aerospace industry are constantly challenged to improve fit and function of components used in commercial and military aircraft. Parts used in these aircraft must withstand high-stress, corrosive conditions with long-term use. They also must meet highly demanding cycle life specifications.

Posted in: News, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Government, Consumer Product Manufacturing, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Joining & Assembly, Machinery, Mechanical Components
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3 Key Benefits: Better Corrosion Resistance, Fatigue Life, Part Integrity

Electropolishing has become a common metal finishing process used in the aerospace industry to help improve the overall quality of metal components. These components come in many forms including high-performance fasteners, fittings, nozzles, housings, and welded assemblies. In order to maintain reliable performance, these components must be precisely manufactured and have an impeccable surface finish that is free of burrs and other contaminants.

Posted in: News, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Consumer Product Manufacturing, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Metals, Joining & Assembly, Mechanical Components
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Advantages of Electropolishing for Penetrant Testing

It’s common, especially in the aerospace industry, for parts that are fracture critical to be Liquid Penetrant Inspected (LPI) prior to installation. Also known as Dye Penetrant Inspection (DPI) or simply Penetrant Testing (PT), this method is used to detect micro-cracks or other defects that could serve as an initiation site for failure. In order to properly execute a penetrant test, the surface of a metal part must be thoroughly clean of any debris, smeared metal, or any amorphous layer that may be hiding a hairline crack, thus yielding a false reading.

Posted in: News, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Materials, Metals, Test & Measurement
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Recycled Water Bottles Could Help Avoid Military Supply Snags

Soldiers on the battlefield or at remote bases often have to wait weeks for vital replacement parts. Now scientists report they have found a way to fabricate many of these parts within hours under combat conditions using water bottles, cardboard and other recyclable materials found on base as starting materials for 3D printing. They say this ‘game-changing’ advance could improve operational readiness, reduce dependence on outside supply chains, and enhance safety.

“Ideally, soldiers wouldn’t have to wait for the next supply truck to receive vital equipment,” Nicole Zander, Ph.D., says. “Instead, they could basically go into the cafeteria, gather discarded water bottles, milk jugs, cardboard boxes and other recyclable items, then use those materials as feedstocks for 3D printers to make tools, parts and other gadgets.”

Posted in: News, Defense, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Materials, Plastics
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Integrated Magneto-Optical Devices for On-Chip Photonic Systems

The magneto-optical (MO) oxide layer consists of (Bi,Y)3Fe5O12 or BiYIG, bismuth garnet. This material was selected because it has a better figure of merit than the CeYIG previously used, especially at lower wavelengths (1310 nm vs. 1550 nm). A top-down deposition process was developed in which BiYIG/YIG stacks are grown on the Si waveguide with YIG on top. The stack is annealed at 800°C/5 min to crystallize both layers, with the YIG templating the BiYIG leading to garnet phases rather than other oxides, and the BiYIG is directly on the Si waveguide. Initial attempts led to a film with Bi oxide phases, because the Bi was in excess and could not escape during the anneal as occurs in Si/YIG/BiYIG stacks. Hence the composition was adjusted to include slightly more Fe, which yielded films with only garnet peaks.

Posted in: Briefs, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Optical Components, Optics, Photonics, Semiconductors & ICs
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Low Power Optical Phase Array Using Graphene on Silicon Photonics

Despite enormous advances in integrated photonics over the last decade, an efficient integrated phase delay remains to be demonstrated. This problem is fundamental – most monolithic thin film deposition relies on centro symmetric materials (such as silicon, silicon dioxide, silicon nitride), which by definition do not have an electro-optic effect. Such materials have been shown to be excellent transparent materials, however they are either optically passive, or rely on very small plasma dispersion effect or power-hungry thermo-optic effect for tunability. These phase change materials have losses associated due to heating or carrier injection in the waveguides. This research shows that graphene can be used to provide electro-optic properties to traditionally passive optical materials.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Materials, Optical Components, Optics, Photonics
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Combating Infrared Threats on the Battlefield

There have been several news headlines lately about offenders pointing commercial lasers at helicopters or police personnel, temporarily blinding and distracting them. An increasing number of “laser assault” incidents have led to tougher penalties with fines and jail time in various countries. The lasers typically used in these attacks operate in the visible light spectrum; therefore, these lasers can be blocked by special absorbing optical dyes contained in special laser defense eyewear.

Posted in: Articles, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Fiber Optics, Lasers & Laser Systems, Optical Components, Optics, Sensors
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Using Thermoplastics in Aerospace Applications

In August 2017, Qantas Airlines laid down the challenge to both Boeing and Airbus to offer an aircraft that can cross one of aviation's “last frontiers.” That “last frontier” was an aircraft capable of flying an economical passenger load non-stop for over 20 hours. This would allow Qantas to offer direct service from Sydney to London or New York. Weight reduction through the use of thermoplastics and other technologies would be the key to any chance of success in this endeavor.

Posted in: Articles, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Thermal Management, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Composites, Materials, Metals, Plastics, Data Acquisition, Sensors
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Hydraulic Testing of Polymer Matrix Composite 102mm Tube Section

The objective of this research was to hydraulically pressurize the internal diameter of one 102mm Polymer Matrix Composite (PMC) over-wrapped cylinder up to 25,000 pounds per square inch (psi) and during pressurization, in real time, collect and store pressure and strain data simultaneously. Strain data must be captured from the inside diameter of the oil filled metallic cylinder and from the outside diameter of the composite over-wrap material.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Data Acquisition, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Composites, Materials, Metals, Joining & Assembly, Mechanical Components, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement
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3D Printed Spacecraft Parts

Stratasys Ltd.
Eden Prairie, MN
952-937-3000
www.stratasys.com/aerospace
Phoenix Analysis and Design
Technologies (PADT) Tempe, AZ
1-800-293-PADT
www.padtinc.com

Stratasys Ltd., a company that specializes in applied additive technology solutions, and Phoenix Analysis & Design Technologies, Inc. (PADT) have teamed up with Lockheed Martin Space to deliver next-generation 3D printed parts for NASA's Orion deep-space spacecraft. Key to the project are Stratasys advanced materials – including an ESD variant of the new Antero™ 800NA, a PEKK-based thermoplastic offering high performance mechanical, chemical, and thermal properties.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Thermal Management, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Plastics
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