The National Institute of Standards and Technology has developed three ASTM International standard test methods for the thin films used to make micromachines (MEMs). Published in The Annual Book of ASTM International Standards, the test proceduresófirst such standards in the worldócould faciliate global commerce in MEMs by enabling reliable measurements of MEMs devices. Detailed instructions are given for measuring thin-film dimensions and strain. For more info, go to www.eeel.nist.gov/812/test-structures.
The amount of plastic clogging the ocean continues to grow. Some startling, not-so-good news has come out recently about the roles plastic is playing in the ocean, as well as more heartening news about efforts to collect and reuse it.
Some of our culture's most enduring robots appeared in the 80s. The Aliens series produced another evil android, and we saw light robot fare in the form of Short Circuit. Two of the great robots of all time also showed up: The Terminator and RoboCop.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.