Detroit—Keeping passengers cool in the 2001 PT Cruiser was a design challenge involving efficiency. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine taking up only 148.2 inch3 total volume necessitated designing a special air conditioning accumulator that would fit into a confined area.
The accumulator from Parker Hannifin Corp. (Lyon, NY) uses a patented helix design that improves oil circulation. "The helix design provides a swirling and stirring motion that helps keep the oil and refrigerant mixture consistent," says Cary Horamoto, engineering manager of Parker Hannifin's refrigeration and air conditioning division. Keeping the mixture consistent reduces the amount of oil needed for charging the system, creating a cost savings for DaimlerChrysler.
Producing high-quality end-production metal parts with additive manufacturing for applications like aerospace and medical requires very tightly controlled processes and materials. New standards and guidelines for machines and processes, materials, and printed parts are underway from bodies such as ASTM International.
Engineers at the University of San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering have designed biobatteries on commercial tattoo paper, with an anode and cathode screen-printed on and modified to harvest energy from lactate in a person’s sweat.
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