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Engineering Materials
Content posted in October 2013
Single-Piece Aluminum Tank Hull Will Resist IEDs
Engineering Materials 
10/31/2013  7 comments
The US Army Research Lab and Alcoa Defense are developing a single-piece forged aluminum tank hull designed to protect soldiers and ground combat vehicles from Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).
Engineers Reinvent Metal 3D Printing
Engineering Materials 
10/29/2013  15 comments
Engineers are reinventing 3D printing and additive manufacturing (AM). The latest idea, from father/son-startup Vader Systems, uses liquid metal jet printing (LMJP) to make solid metal, full-production parts.
Slideshow: Optimizing the Design of Cars & Planes
Engineering Materials 
10/25/2013  15 comments
Sophisticated optimization software turns out to be a secret weapon behind aerospace and automotive companies' ability to successfully incorporate new materials like carbon composites into their designs. It's also behind several other innovations in aerospace and automotive design.
Video: Robotic Cubes Self-Assemble
Engineering Materials 
10/18/2013  26 comments
MIT researchers have developed self-assembling, flywheel-driven modular cube robots that roll around each other and across a surface. They also appear to jump through the air.
Researchers Use Engineered DNA to Develop Programmable Glue
Engineering Materials 
10/16/2013  6 comments
Researchers have used engineered DNA to develop a programmable glue that can be used with a variety of materials to create self-assembling, small-scale systems, such as surgical glue that stitches together selected tissues, reconfigurable computer chips, or lenses.
Muscle-Bound Bots Bench 80 Times Their Own Weight
Engineering Materials 
10/15/2013  34 comments
An electroactivated polymer (EAP) produces robotic muscles that lift 80 times their own weight, a new benchmark. They also store and convert energy that robots can use to operate themselves.
Plastic Car Sandwich Material Modeled on Bone
Engineering Materials 
10/14/2013  19 comments
Bayer MaterialScience has designed a prototype car trunk lid, using a sandwich structure with a dense outer skin made of a glass fiber/polycarbonate-based thermoplastic composite and a polyurethane foam inner core.
Slideshow: Composite Bridge Deck Lightens Loads
Engineering Materials 
10/11/2013  29 comments
Washington, D.C.'s crumbling 29th Street bridge has been replaced with one that has a fiberglass-reinforced composite deck.
DIY: Build Your Own Robotic Bug
Engineering Materials 
10/2/2013  27 comments
A crowdfunded DIY version of the cockroach-like DASH robot invented by engineering students at the University of California, Berkeley, is now available on Dragon Innovation.
Slideshow: 3D Printing Multiple Materials, Colors & Textures Gets Closer
Engineering Materials 
10/1/2013  21 comments
The ability to 3D-print multiple materials, colors, and textures in the same piece is getting closer with some major breakthroughs in hardware and software.




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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."
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