Superstrong Al Alloys May Change Aerospace Manufacturing Processes

Purdue University researchers have developed a superstrong material that may change some manufacturing processes for the aerospace and automobile industries.

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

Meeting Environmental Objectives and Regulations

Gone are the days when the impact of products on the environment or human health were optional business concerns. Regulatory constraints on materials and chemicals are increasing, and many companies struggle to respond – and to do so quickly and efficiently. Restrictions on hexavalent chrome are one well-known example. Another is REACH – the European Union regulation concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & restriction of Chemicals – which applies to products that are either manufactured in, or imported into, the EU. Companies are under obligations to report the use of restricted substances, and to limit or avoid their use.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Government, Environmental Monitoring, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Data Acquisition, Computer-Aided Design (CAD)

Low-Cost Ground Sensor Network for Intrusion Detection

Perimeter surveillance of forward operating locations, such as Forward Arming and Refueling Points (FARPs), is crucial to ensure the survivability of personnel and materiel. FARPs are frequently located well outside the protective cover of the main forward operating bases. Therefore, they must provide their own organic perimeter defenses. Such defenses are manpower intensive. Research shows how cheap, remote, unattended sensors using commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components can help reduce the manpower requirement for this task and yet not compromise the security of the operating location.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Power Management, Power Supplies, Cameras, Imaging, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Materials, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Optical Components, Optics, Power, Power Transmission, Propulsion, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors

Improving Component Life in Abrasive, Corrosive Aerospace Environments

In industries such as aerospace, characterized by extreme operating environments that push materials and components to the edge of their design capabilities, companies are challenged to continually seek economically viable ways to maintain and improve performance.

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

Taming the Thermal Behavior of Solid-State Military Lasers

Laser diodes and laser diode arrays (LDAs) are widely used throughout military systems, for sighting and range finding, but also at high power levels as offensive and defensive weapons. In companion with much higher-power chemical lasers, these high-power optical sources can generate kilowatts of optical power (as arrays) for use in neutralizing incoming missiles, rockets, and armaments and for long-distance offensive strikes. But laser diodes are also still inefficient, and a great deal of the energy supplied to a laser diode or an LDA is converted into heat, which must be safely dissipated to ensure a long operating lifetime for the solid-state devices.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Board-Level Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Power Management, Thermal Management, Ceramics, Materials, Metals, Packaging, Lasers & Laser Systems, Optics, Photonics, Semiconductors & ICs

Converting Existing Copper Wire Firing System to a Fiber-Optically Controlled Firing System for Electromagnetic Pulsed Power Experiments

After extensive review from the US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) Electrical Safety Office, it was determined that the existing firing system in Experimental Facility 167 (EF 167) was not adequate to safely perform pulsed-power experiments with gunpowder- or air-driven guns. This firing line used solid copper wire, which provided a continuous electrical conduction path between the high-voltage capacitor in the test chamber and the firing/control room, where personnel are stationed when experiments are performed (Figure 1). This poses a safety risk since high voltage can travel from the test chamber and potentially result in personnel injuries and damaged equipment.

Posted in: Briefs, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Automotive, Defense, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Power Management, Power Supplies, Materials, Metals, Mechanical Components, Power, Power Transmission, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement, Automotive, Transportation

How Additive Manufacturing is Changing the Aerospace Industry

Additive manufacturing was invented more than 30 years ago and, from small beginnings in prototyping, has developed and grown into a $6 billion industry. While additive manufacturing for aerospace and defense has seen slower adoption than some other industries, the velocity is now visibly increasing. This has been enabled by the ongoing development of additive technologies that apply more increasingly to aerospace and defense -namely better plastics materials, faster 3D printing technologies, focused development of metals materials, and resulting technologies and processes that are increasingly easier to get qualified.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Materials, Metals

Adaptive Materials Could Help Protect Rotorcraft

Engineers developed a technique that causes a composite material to become stiffer and stronger on-demand when exposed to ultraviolet light. This on-demand control of composite behavior could enable a variety of new capabilities for future Army rotorcraft design, performance, and maintenance.

Posted in: News, Defense, Composites, Materials

New Products: May 2018 Aerospace & Defense Technology

Rapid Deployment SIGINT Sensor

VStar Systems (San Diego, CA) announced the addition of a pod version of its MA-C SIGINT Sensor, the MA-C MiniPod™. Two active high frequency (HF) antennas allow for intercept and copy of land mobile radios from both direct Line of Sight (LOS) as well as Near Vertical Incidence Skywave (NVIS) signals for Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) communication methods. The MA-C MiniPOD can be installed on most standard airborne racks/missile launchers for integration on a wide variety of platforms.

Posted in: Products, Board-Level Electronics, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Composites, Materials, Robotics, Sensors, Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM), Software, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

Robotic Paint Removal System

Air Force Research Laboratory
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH
+1 937-255-0017

AFRL Materials Integrity engineers recently played a key role in enabling the safer and more efficient removal of paint from F-16 aircraft through the newly-adopted Robotic Laser Coating Removal System.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aeronautics, Aviation, Defense, Thermal Management, Coatings & Adhesives, Composites, Materials, Lasers & Laser Systems, Robotics