Ehthanol was once viewed as a way to help solve the climate change problem. Then we heard about the huge amounts of enegy used to make ethanol, anad then the effects of crop prices. It turns out there’s another issue–the impact on plastic used under the hood.
A new fuel tank pressure sensor from Robert Bosch GmbH uses BASF’s Ultramid T KR 4355 G7, a partially aromatic polyamide (PA 6/6T) that fulfills a new and crucial requirement for materials used in electronic housings. Any material that comes into contact with modern fuels has to be able to resist not only gasoline but also water and alcohols such as methanol and ethanol. These substances are found in the tank, especially due to the emergence of flex fuels that contain alcohol. The new polyamide (also called nylon) can withstand the presence of zinc chloride. At the underbody area the sensor may come into contact with this zinc salt that can be formed by splash water.
To give engineers a better idea of the range of resins and polymers available as alternatives to other materials, this Technology Roundup presents several articles on engineering plastics that can do the job.
The first photos made with a 3D-printed telescope are here and they're not as fuzzy as you might expect. A team from the University of Sheffield beat NASA to the goal. The photos of the Moon were made with a reflecting telescope that cost the research team £100 to make (about $161 US).
A tiny humanoid robot has safely piloted a small plane all the way from cold start to takeoff, landing and coming to a full stop on the plane's designated runway. Yes, it happened in a pilot training simulation -- but the research team isn't far away from doing it in the real world.
Some in the US have welcomed 3D printing for boosting local economies and bringing some offshored manufacturing back onshore. Meanwhile, China is wielding its power of numbers, and its very different relationships between government, education, and industry, to kickstart a homegrown industry.
You can find out practically everything you need to know about engineering plastics as alternatives to other materials at the 2014 IAPD Plastics Expo. Admission is free for engineers, designers, specifiers, and OEMs, as well as students and faculty.
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.