Anyone who has had to start from scratch to perform materials' testing knows the amount of design effort required to execute a single test. For plain-woven fabrics that can consist of composite materials with complex microstructures, the task is more difficult. Measuring multi-axial and shear, material properties, seam strength and joint strength raises the difficulty level even further. However, plain-woven fabrics are frequently used as structural materials in air-inflated structures and quick set-up temporary structures such as shelters and bridges. As a result, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Div. Newport (NUWCDIVNPT) was very interested in verifying the mechanical properties of these materials. To accomplish this testing, NUWCDIVNPT designed and patented a multi-axis technique and developed a fixture to implement the approach. Patent #6,860,156 was issued for a combined in-plane shear and multi-axial tension or compression testing apparatus.
To perform in-plane shear and multi-axial tension or compression, the tester has four upper linkage arms and four lower linkage arms connected by pivoting sleeves. Load transfer plates secure the specimen and provide pivot mounting points for the linkages. When the vertices are under compressive or tensile forces, each linkage can rotate toward the other linkages and apply compression or tension to the specimen. The testing machine can rotate the vertices for shear testing and apply a torsional load to the specimen. The fixture enables materials testing in several modes including uniaxial tension, uniaxial compression, biaxial tension both with and without shear, biaxial compression with and without shear, and shear only.
Both the Army and the Navy have used the fixture to successfully design air-inflatable composite structures.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.