The latest flat-rolled steels from AK Steel have it in for bacteria and mold spores. Thanks to an ionic-silver and ceramic coating from AgION Technologies (Wakefield, MA), the steels meet the Environmental Protection Agency standards for an antimicrobial agent, according to AK applications engineer Eric Welte. AK can apply the AgION material to both carbon and stainless steels, using either a liquid or a powder coating process. The thickness of the coating varies from 0.2 to 2 mils, depending on abrasion requirements. "You can still see the polish of stainless steel through the thinnest of the coatings," Welte notes. The new steels target HVAC, appliance, food equipment, and medical applications. AK is even building a concept house from the material to show how it keeps mold at bay. What's more, Electrolux's Fridgidaire brand will use the antimicrobial steels in a new line of stainless steel consumer appliances. AK Steel : Enter 515
Stainless beefs up solenoids
The latest stainless steel alloy from Carpenter Technology goes into corrosive operating environments that can spell trouble for solenoids. Carpenter Chrome Core 29 Solenoid Quality Stainless stacks up favorably against Type 430FR stainless. The two materials have similar magnetic properties—including high resistivity—but Chrome Core 29 outshines Type 430FR when it comes to corrosion resistance. In corrosion tests (ASTM G150), Chrome Core 29 exhibited a critical pitting temperature of 14.8C, compared to 5C for Type 430FR. As for magnetic properties, the new alloy offers a saturation flux density of 13.2 kG, coercive field strength of 1.26 Oe, residual induction of 5.20 kG, and a maximum permeability of 1,624. In its annealed condition, Chrome Core 29 has a tensile strength of 586 MPa, a yield strength of 379 MPa, and a Rockwell B hardness of 85. Carpenter Technology Corp. : Enter 516
Say good-bye to beryllium in mold making
For mold-making applications that can benefit from the cooling power of copper, but can do without beryllium, Ampco Metal Inc. has developed a new copper alloy. Called MoldMATE 90, the material features a high thermal conductivity of 90 Btu/ft/hr/°F, better than the 60 Btu/ft/hr/°F offered by a beryllium copper grade (2% Be) commonly used in mold making. At the same time, MoldMATE 90 has enough nickel in it to meet the hardness and mechanical properties that tooling components require. Ampco Metal Inc. : Enter 517
Are they robots or androids? We're not exactly sure. Each talking, gesturing Geminoid looks exactly like a real individual, starting with their creator, professor Hiroshi Ishiguro of Osaka University in Japan.
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 discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.