The 10 Greatest Inventors of the Mid-20th Century
Blog 4/24/2015 5 comments The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
6 New Bio-based & Renewable Plastics
Engineering Materials 4/23/2015 Post a comment Although bio-based polymers face challenges from petroleum-based polymers, in certain markets they can displace the petro-based incumbents. Here are six new bio-based and renewable plastics for a variety of applications.
Sustainability Expert: Solar Energy Can Help Alleviate Drought
Blog 4/22/2015 22 comments Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
BASF Pushes Sustainable Materials, Design
Engineering Materials 4/22/2015 Post a comment BASF has developed tools and initiatives to help engineers use more of its renewable materials in their designs, more effectively, as well as to build parts using them with more predictable performance.
Top 10 3D Printing Projects
Blog 4/21/2015 Post a comment From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
Bayer MaterialScience Gets Green with PU Foams
Engineering Materials 4/21/2015 Post a comment Just in time for Earth Day, chemicals leader Bayer MaterialScience reported from the UTECH Europe 2015 polyurethane show on programs and applications using its materials to help reduce energy usage. The company also gave an update on its CO2-based PU as that eco-friendly material comes closer to production.
NSA Encourages Trash Picking for Earth Day
Blog 4/21/2015 8 comments In honor of Earth Day, the National Security Agency has launched the STEM Recycling Challenge in Maryland schools to encourage kids to think about where the garbage they throw out every day actually goes. The agency has also introduced “Dunk,” a muscular blue cartoon recycling bin wearing shorts and sneakers.
8 New Materials & Designs for Lightweighting Planes, Trucks, Cars
Engineering Materials 4/20/2015 1 comment A slew of announcements about new materials and design concepts for transportation have come out of several trade shows focusing on plastics, aircraft interiors, heavy trucks, and automotive engineering. A few more announcements have come independent of any trade shows, maybe just because it's spring.
The Samsung Galaxy S6 Teardown
Blog 4/17/2015 6 comments Samsung's Galaxy line of smartphones used to fare quite well in the repairability department, but last year's flagship S5 model took a tumble, scoring a meh-inducing 5/10. Will the newly redesigned S6 lead us back into star-studded territory, or will we sink further into the depths of a repairability black hole?
Origami-Inspired Solar Panels Could be Headed for Space
Blog 4/17/2015 Post a comment NASA engineer Brian Trease studied abroad in Japan as a high school student and used to fold fast-food wrappers into cranes using origami techniques he learned in library books. Inspired by this, he began to imagine that origami could be applied to building spacecraft components, particularly solar panels that could one day send solar power from space to be used on earth.
11 Not-to-Miss Composites, Software, and Processes from JEC Europe
Engineering Materials 4/16/2015 Post a comment At the JEC Europe 2015 composites show in Paris last month, makers of composite materials, software, and process equipment showed off their latest innovations. This year's show saw some announcements related to automotive applications, but many of the improvements came in the world of aerospace.
Smart Windows Harvest Energy From Wind and Rain
Blog 4/15/2015 4 comments Windows are supposed to let the sun in and keep the fiercer elements of nature out. Now a team at the Georgia Institute of Technology has gone one step further, creating windows that not only protect against the elements -- specifically wind and rain -- but also use them to create energy.
Want to Be an Engineer? Brush Up on 3D Printing
Blog 4/14/2015 9 comments It used to be that budding engineers just needed a solid grasp of physics, math, and their own healthy scientific curiosity, but these days, you need a fairly good working understanding of 3D printing too, apparently.
These 15 Robots Will Weird You Out
Blog 4/9/2015 7 comments When it comes to robots, as well as other things, weird is definitely in the eye of the beholder. We've collected 15 of them here, in recognition of National Robotics Week, including a few favorites you may have missed, and a bunch of new ones we want to make sure you see.
Software Is Using Biomimicry to Optimize Part Design
Blog 4/8/2015 3 comments As additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, becomes more and more sophisticated and capable of direct production in some applications, a class of software is emerging that exploits the capability of AM technology to produce objects in a highly freeform manner.
SABIC Focuses on 3D Printing's Shift to Manufacturing
Engineering Materials 4/3/2015 Post a comment Plastics leader SABIC recently announced a global initiative to help its customers take advantage of additive manufacturing (AM) and also advance 3D printing (3DP) technologies in several application areas. The company's plans go way beyond materials, and also include design, processing, and part performance.
Design Engineer Pay Varies Widely in 15 US Cities
Blog 4/2/2015 4 comments Design engineer compensation varies widely by location. If you live in Boston, your salary will average more than $90,000, nearly $20,000 above the national average. But if you live in Cleveland, your salary will average almost $10,000 below the national average.
3D Printing Partners With Injection Molding At NPE 2015
Engineering Materials 4/2/2015 Post a comment A theme that was reflected in several ways at NPE 2015 was the use of 3D printing to assist in, or improve on, injection molding, as well as improvements in 3D printing materials and processes that are making better functional prototypes and end-use parts.
3M Sharpens Assembly Focus on Info & Access to Experts
Engineering Materials 3/27/2015 Post a comment Instead of sifting through huge amounts of technical data looking for answers to assembly problems, engineers can now benefit from 3M's new initiative -- 3M Assembly Solutions. The company has organized its wealth of adhesive and tape solutions into six typical application areas, making it easier to find the best products to solve their real-world assembly and bonding problems.
9 Next-Gen Materials from NPE2015
Engineering Materials 3/26/2015 3 comments Many of the materials in this slideshow are resins or elastomers, plus reinforced materials, styrenics, and PLA masterbatches. Applications range from automotive and aerospace to industrial, consumer electronics and wearables, consumer goods, medical and healthcare, as well as sporting goods, and materials for protecting food and beverages.
PlastiVan Drives Kids' Interest in Plastics
STEM Connection 3/24/2015 1 comment A program to educate kids about the science and technology of plastics as well how they can have future careers in the field has received a $200,000 funding boost from the National Plastics Center to expand
At NPE2015, Transparent and Plastic Klear Can Looks to Eat Away at Metal
Guest Blogs 3/23/2015 8 comments Of the products and technologies on display at the NPE2015 plastics expo in Orlando, Fla., this week, one in particular could dramatically change segments of food packaging – Klear Can. It's a transparent plastic can with a metal top and pull tab for fruits, vegetables, and meats that competes with metal cans.
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
The age of touch could soon come to an end. From smartphones and smartwatches, to home devices, to in-car infotainment systems, touch is no longer the primary user interface. Technology market leaders are driving a migration from touch to voice as a user interface.
Soft starter technology has become a way to mitigate startup stressors by moderating a motor’s voltage supply during the machine start-up phase, slowly ramping it up and effectively adjusting the machine’s load behavior to protect mechanical components.
A new report from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) makes a start on developing control schemes, process measurements, and modeling and simulation methods for powder bed fusion additive manufacturing.
If you’re developing a product with lots of sensors and no access to the power grid, then you’ll want to take note of a Design News Continuing Education Center class, “Designing Low Power Systems Using Battery and Energy Harvesting Energy Sources."
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.