Bruce Wessels wants to increase the data transmission connection on your computer. The Northwestern University professor of material science and engineering patented a device and material for integrated optic circuits. He says his thin-film electro-optical modulator provides a faster way to transmit information. Wessels uses a metal-organic molecular beam epitaxy apparatus for the thin-film deposition. In addition to the modulators, Wessels and associate professor Seng-Tiong Ho developed wave guides and optical amplifiers using ferroelectric material. They point out that bulk crystals used in optical circuits now have limits and their thin film is superior because it enables high-speed operations with low voltage for less expense. The researchers demonstrated that their thin-film modulators work at frequencies up to 20 gigahertz. SVT Associates is working with Wessels to develop and commercialize the technology. For more information, go to www.northwestern.edu.
A simple new chemical method for repairing and recycling notoriously difficult carbon fiber composites has been developed by the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research. An entire component can be completely recycled, including reclaiming its expensive carbon fibers for reuse.
In today’s connected world we are seeing the beginning of connected homes, smart grids, self-driving automobiles, drones, and many other amazing devices. Out of all the soon-to-be connected devices, which device poses the greatest dangerous to its users and society?
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