Materials structure can at times have as profound an impact on properties as chemical composition.
PepsiCo is testing a new type of salt whose crystals are shaped in a manner that reduces the amount of sodium humans ingest. Duke researchers developed metamaterials that derive unique electromagnetic properties from their physical structures.
Now, a California startup company called EoPlex is manipulating tiny bricks of materials to enhance performance. EoPlex CEO Arthur Chait says that voxel deposition in the company’s patented High-Volume Print Forming can produce micron-level metastructures. Chait says a Voxel is like a tiny Lego brick. Little bricks made of a given material can be “woven” through the printing process with little bricks made of another material to create metastructures of multi materials that normally don’t bond. Chait says that metastructures made this way offer the potential to increase bandwidth in small antennas.
EoPlex illustration shows an example of a voxel metastructure
Many of the new adhesives we're featuring in this slideshow are for use in automotive and other transportation applications. The rest of these new products are for a wide variety of applications including aviation, aerospace, electrical motors, electronics, industrial, and semiconductors.
A Columbia University team working on molecular-scale nano-robots with moving parts has run into wear-and-tear issues. They've become the first team to observe in detail and quantify this process, and are devising coping strategies by observing how living cells prevent aging.
Many of the new materials on display at MD&M West were developed to be strong, tough replacements for metal parts in different kinds of medical equipment: IV poles, connectors for medical devices, medical device trays, and torque-applying instruments for orthopedic surgery. Others are made for close contact with patients.
New sensor technology integrates sensors, traces, and electronics into a smart fabric for wearables that measures more dimensions -- force, location, size, twist, bend, stretch, and motion -- and displays data in 3D maps.
As we saw on the show floor this week at the Pacific Design & Manufacturing and co-located events in Anaheim, Calif., 3D printing is contributing to distributed manufacturing and being reinvented by engineers for their own needs. Meanwhile, new fasteners are appearing for wearable consumer and medical devices and Baxter Robot has another software upgrade.
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