The surge toward smaller, turbocharged automotive engines continues. Now comes word that a powerful four-cylinder engine from BMW with direct injection and turbocharger (designated X1 28i), has more torque than its six-cylinder predecessor; goes from 0 to 100 km per hour faster; and has a higher maximum speed.
One of the reasons is a Low-Emission Sealing Solutions (LESS) from Freudenburg, an automotive supplier specializing in materials technology. Friction is reduced at the crankshaft while at the same time increasing running performance.
Encoder technology, using precise magnetization technology, controls the combustion process in the engine. Freudenberg is using dynamic magnetization, which is used in encoders to give electricity impulses a magnetic pattern. This procedure allows for very accurate and highly variable signal transmission. This allows the signal from the encoder to be adapted exactly to meet the requirements of the sensor.
An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
Alcoa has unveiled a new manufacturing and materials technology for making aluminum sheet, aimed especially at automotive, industrial, and packaging applications. If all its claims are true, this is a major breakthrough, and may convince more automotive engineers to use aluminum.
NASA has just installed a giant robot to help in its research on composite aerospace materials, like those used for the Orion spacecraft. The agency wants to shave the time it takes to get composites through design, test, and manufacturing stages.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is working with architects Foster + Partners to test the possibility of using lunar regolith, or moon rocks, and 3D printing to make structures for use on the moon. A new video shows some cool animations of a hypothetical lunar mission that carries out this vision.
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