In automated control-valve applications, large, expensive, and cumbersome actuators (solenoids, motors, or cylinders) often dwarf the actual valves that they control. By splitting the upstream pressure, the BP valve conquers an old problem: the need for large operating forces. Instead, counterbalanced pistons, linked to a common shaft, roll open with relative ease, reducing valve size, mass, and power requirements.
Three components at the heart of the concept include a reciprocating cylindrical seat, a reciprocating solid plug, and a fixed-axis rotary shaft. A seated plug presents a solid face to block flow. When unseated, fluid flows around the plug and through the seat cylinder. Although fluid pressure pushes these two elements in a downstream direction, rotary-shaft linkage prevents movement. Because the pressure-induced forces on the seat and plug act on the shaft in opposite directions, they balance each other. Consequently, a slight torque applied to the shaft moves the plug and seat cylinder in opposite directions to each other, even with very high upstream pressures.
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?
In 2003, the world contained just over 500 million Internet-connected devices. By 2010, this figure had risen to 12.5 billion connected objects, almost six devices per individual with access to the Internet. Now, as we move into 2015, the number of connected 'things' is expected to reach 25 billion, ultimately edging toward 50 billion by the end of the decade.
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.
Biomedical engineering is one of the fastest growing engineering fields; from medical devices and pharmaceuticals to more cutting-edge areas like tissue, genetic, and neural engineering, US biomedical engineers (BMEs) boast salaries nearly double the annual mean wage and have faster than average job growth.
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.