"What do velvet, the skin of a shark, and advancements in aircraft aerodynamics have in common? The answer rests in a field of scientific study that involves examining what can be extracted, learned and duplicated from the natural world. Known as ‘biomimicry,” or biologically inspired engineering, this is the study and imitation of nature’s best ideas to help solve human challenges. A growing number of aeronautical innovations have been inspired by an array of natural structures, organs and materials – and these tried and tested patterns of the natural world will continue to be a powerful source of inspiration in the future."
As part of NASA's Avionics Steering Committee's stated goal to advance the avionics discipline ahead of program and project needs, the committee initiated a multi-Center technology roadmapping activity to create a comprehensive avionics roadmap. The roadmap is intended to strategically guide avionics technology development to effectively meet future NASA missions needs. The scope of the roadmap aligns with the twelve avionics elements defined in the ASC charter, but is subdivided into the following five areas: Foundational Technology (including devices and components), Command and Data Handling, Spaceflight Instrumentation, Communication and Tracking, and Human Interfaces.Collection:NASA
Vikas Berry, William H. Honstead professor of chemical engineering, and his research team are using graphene quantum dots to improve sensing devices in a twofold project. The first part involves producing the graphene quantum dots, which are ultrasmall pieces of graphene. The second part of the project involves incorporating these quantum dots into electron-tunneling based sensing devices.
The prestigious MIT Technology Review has named General Electric's work on 3D printing as one of its "10 Breakthrough Technologies 2013".
Specifically, GE is developing a metal nozzle for its LEAP jet engine. They will use 3D metal printers to produce the nozzles, which will be lighter in weight due to an advanced design producible only on 3D printers.
Wait, we've heard this story many times before. A company improves their business process by involving 3D printing. What's the big deal?
The big deal here is the volume. GE is MASS PRODUCING these nozzles with 3D printing.
An X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System (UCAS) demonstrator sits on an aircraft elevator of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77). George H.W. Bush is scheduled to be the first aircraft carrier to catapult-launch an unmanned aircraft from its flight deck. George H.W. Bush is preparing to conduct training operations in the Atlantic Ocean. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Tony D. Curtis/Released)
Orbital Sciences Corp. says the first full-up test flight of its Cygnus cargo resupply ship to the International Space Station will probably slip to September due to a combination of factors, including an engine replacement on the mission's Antares rocket and a scheduling conflict with a Japanese logistics spacecraft.
An unmanned BAE Systems' Jetstream aircraft known as 'The Flying Test Bed' has successfully completed its maiden flight, becoming the world's first unmanned flight across the UK shared airspace. The aircraft, specially adapted...
The rough skin of sharks has long been known for the low friction of its myriad tiny, sharp-edged scales. Airbus tested aircraft in the 1990s which were partially covered with a foil that mimicked the animals' surface texture. But despite the promise of aerodynamic improvement, the technology has yet to pass the experimental stage.
Obama Administration Launches Competition for Three New Manufacturing Innovation Institutes:
Department of Defense – “Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation”Department of Defense – “Lightweight and Modern Metals Manufacturing”Department of Energy – “Next Generation Power Electronics Manufacturing”
Scientists at Argonne National Laboratory have recently discovered that they could substitute one-atom-thick graphene layers for oil-based lubricants on sliding steel surfaces, enabling a dramatic reduction in the amount of wear and friction.
MANASSAS, VA, May 8, 2013 — Aurora Flight Sciences’ Centaur Optionally Piloted Aircraft was awarded the "Big 25 Award" from C4ISR Journal on April 26 during the annual C4ISR Journal Conference. Centaur was selected under the "Innovations" category due to its unique design that permits both manned and unmanned flight with the same aircraft.
The K-MAX, which has dual intermeshing rotors, can be used autonomously to rapidly transport a myriad of items, including food, water, medical supplies and ammunition in emergency situations.
To date, the K-MAX has delivered more than 3.2 million pounds of cargo, officials said. Brought to Afghanistan in November of 2011, the Marine Corps recently announced the indefinite extension of the K-MAX mission.
ProjectionWorks is 3D projection technology that is a key component of the Fastener Insertion Live Link System (FILLS) that automates assembly line fastening of large workpieces. FILLS was developed by a team of aerospace companies, including Variation Reduction Solutions Inc., Delta Sigma, Lockheed Martin Aerospace, and Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems under a Small Business Innovative Research Grant from the Air Force Research Laboratory to automate data input and compare data against original specifications for fastener assembly.
With FILLS, mechanics on the assembly line see the most recent information relative to any aircraft or product they are working on in order to install the right part in the most efficient and accurate manner. Dozens of mechanics on the F-35, P3, C-5, and C-130 production lines, for example, are using Delta Sigma’s ProjectionWorks 3D technology to project assembly instructions directly onto aircraft parts.
As a result, FILLS is credited with saving more than 200 hours per plane and a potential $111 million for the F-35 program alone, according to David See, project manager for the Air Force Research Laboratory. "FILLS will revolutionize how we assemble, maintain and repair our fleets from jets to submarines to ships to satellites," said See.
The FILLS team’s accomplishment is developing improved "digital thread process" in which digital information collected by a computer is directly linked to the factory floor. "FILLS automates the hole measurements that are done on the assembly line and stores the measurements in a database," said Roger Richardson, director of business development for Delta Sigma. "FILLS then automatically creates a list of fasteners that are brought to the assembly line. ProjectionWorks then projects a color-coded map showing where the correct fasteners are to be installed in the sequence they are to be installed. The 3D map includes part numbers, directions and access to an encyclopedia of assembly information."
For their accomplishment, the FILLS team members received the 2012 Defense Manufacturing Technology (ManTech) Innovation Award. ME
NASA’s remotely piloted X-48C hybrid-wing-body subscale aircraft, has completed an eight-month flight research campaign The aircraft shaped like a manta ray, was designed by Boeing and built using composite materials by Cranfield Aerospace in the...
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