Albuquerque, NM —Developed by the Department of Energy's Sandia National Laboratories, the Z accelerator is designed "to deliver large amounts of current in a short time span," says Marcus Knudson, a staff scientist for the project. Scientists are now using it to measure impacts, particularly the impact of space particles on satellites and orbiting space observatories.
The current generated by the machine creates a magnetic field that, in turn, creates intense pressure. It propels "dime-sized" flyer plates a few hundred millimeters at a speed of 20 km/sec. Combined with the measurements of material thickness and shockwave speed, scientists may liken the impact results to outer space collisions.
New versions of BASF's Ecovio line are both compostable and designed for either injection molding or thermoforming. These combinations are becoming more common for the single-use bioplastics used in food service and food packaging applications, but are still not widely available.
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 radio show will show what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.