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Ask The Search Engineer

Ask The Search Engineer

Dear Search Engineer: I've been looking for a round, clear indicator light lens with a metal ring that will snap into a 2-inch diameter hole. This will be used as a view port, so I don't need the whole indicator light assembly.-C.A. in AL

Dear C.A.: If this is something to be used as a view port only, then use a clear plastic lens something akin to the lens of a Maglite(R) flashlight.

Hey there Search Engineer: I need both the static and sliding coefficients of friction for Inconel 600 or 601 upon itself. Can you respond? -M.M. in CA

Dear M.M.: The coefficient of friction of a material upon itself always presents a difficulty as, in addition to Van Der Waals forces, exposed atoms from one surface will want to weld to the other. So, the surface quality and finish become important factors. Also affecting it are separating elements, such as nanothickness, the direction of the machining marks, etc. These considerations may be the reason the data is difficult to obtain, since they are dependent on the test protocols.

Dear Search Guy: I need to know the in-depth protocol, headers, packets, and commands as used for digital video on IEEE 1394a or FireWire. -W.W. from WA

Hello, W.W.: This sounds like something the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers would standardize. Try their website at You can also check out the website for the Industrial FireWire organization at

Mr. Search Engineer: I am working on a problem relating to heat transfer to fluid on an outside boundary-an ugly problem at best. Any suggestions in software to help me?-R.R. in India

Greetings, R.R.: There is a product named PAM-FLOW that could help-check it out at There's an option in PAM-FLOW solver that allows heat transfer equations. It is possible to assign some heat transfer parameters on a wall. This specific boundary condition allows you to specify time-varying parameters for conduction and radiative heat transfer at the wall.

Dear Search Engineer: I need a mini-pump/dc motor combination that can fit into an envelope of 75 x 100 mm. Pump delivery is 1.8 lpm/hydraulic oil (32cSt) and the motor is 0.3 kW/24V dc. Any ideas? -R.M. in Seattle

Dear R.M.: Fluid Metering Inc. (FMI), manufactures a line of positive displacement dosing and metering pumps. The one moving part pump head incorporates ceramic internals and has no valves. Check out the company's website at

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