A sample of PICA-X heat shield material subjected to temperatures of up to 1,850C (3,360F), at the Arc Jet Complex at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. The NASA-originated PICA material holds the record for high-speed reentry into the Earth's atmosphere. The SpaceX-developed and manufactured PICA-X variants meet or exceed the performance of the original material, to protect the Dragon spacecraft on its return to Earth. (Source: SpaceX)
What should be the perception of a product’s real-world performance with regard to the published spec sheet? While it is easy to assume that the product will operate according to spec, what variables should be considered, and is that a designer obligation or a customer responsibility? Or both?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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