Los Angeles —The figure in the picture is no dwarf. It's a technician at Boeing Satellite Systems (BSS), formerly Hughes Space and Communications Co. BSS is building the 12.25-m (40-ft) reflector designed for geostationary satellites used in regional mobile communications. Known as the Boeing GEM spacecraft, it transmits and receives signals from an L-band feed array, which forms a large number of small spot beams whose position can be adjusted as phone traffic warrants. Composite materials provide a 78-kg (170-lb) reflector that compresses into a 1.3-m (50-inch) diameter 3.8-m (150-inch) long package for launch. The first GEM spacecraft is the Thuraya-1 satellite, which will be part of a mobile satellite system including the Arab world, Indian subcontinent, Central Asia, and eastern Europe including Turkey.
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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