Aeronautics & Space

Disorders of protection—high-entropy oxides for environmental barrier coatings

By Jonathon Foreman / October 1, 2021

Many researchers are working to uncover alternatives to yttria stabilized zirconia for use as environmental barrier coatings. High-entropy oxides are among the classes of materials being explored, and two papers in Journal of the American Ceramic Society explore different high-entropy oxide systems.

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A ‘gentle’ process for aircraft machining—researchers explore shaping SiC/SiC composites via plasma etching

By Lisa McDonald / September 10, 2021

SiC/SiC composites are one of the main ceramic matrix composites being investigated for aerospace applications. Researchers from Germany and China explored the potential of shaping such composites using the “gentle” machining process of plasma etching.

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Processing of high-performance materials, plus more inside September 2021 ACerS Bulletin

By Lisa McDonald / August 19, 2021

The September 2021 issue of the ACerS Bulletin—featuring processing of high-performance materials—is now available online. Plus—ACerS Awards and C&GM.

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Video: NASA technology extracts oxygen from Martian atmosphere

By Lisa McDonald / May 5, 2021

To achieve future manned missions to Mars, we must be able to extract oxygen from the Martian atmosphere. An experimental instrument aboard the Perseverance rover called MOXIE succeeded in extracting oxygen for the first time during a test on April 20.

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Filling in the gaps: A review of self-crack-healing in ceramics

By Lisa McDonald / January 5, 2021

As ceramics find more uses in the automotive and aerospace industries, interest in creating ceramics that can self-heal cracks continues to grow. A review paper published in ACerS’ premier open-access journal looks at some of the experimental and numerical studies on this topic.

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Video: Remembering Arecibo Observatory

By Lisa McDonald / December 2, 2020

On Dec. 1, 2020, the instrument platform of the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico collapsed on the radio dish below. In honor of the observatory’s nearly 60-year run, today’s CTT highlights some of the important discoveries made using data collected from the radio telescope.

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Video: Tracking the moon with laser beams

By Lisa McDonald / August 19, 2020

For more than 50 years, the Apollo-era Laser Ranging Retroreflector experiment helped scientists track the moon’s orbit and distance from Earth. The efficiency of the moon-based reflectors decreased over time, though, so NASA scientists looked to reflect light from a spacecraft-based reflector instead—a feat they recently achieved for the first time.

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Will it spall? Phase diagrams, thermal expansion, and barrier coating degradation

By Jonathon Foreman / August 11, 2020

Thermal and environmental barrier coatings are often used to protect turbine blades made from ceramic matrix composites—but these coatings are prone to damage caused by environmental silicate contamination. In three papers published in JACerS, researchers provide extensive insights into the many aspects of damage.

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Video: Harvest solar energy from outer space

By Lisa McDonald / June 3, 2020

In their search for places to install PV infrastructure, solar companies have taken several creative approaches, including floating solar panels on reservoirs and co-locating them with crops. Space-based solar power is another concept studied since the 1970s, and this May, the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory launched the first orbital experiment with space-based solar power.

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Preparing for hypersonic flight—wing shape affects thermal shock behavior of UHTCs

By Jonathon Foreman / March 27, 2020

Ultrahigh-temperature ceramics are promising materials for protecting aircraft wings from friction during hypersonic flight—but thermal shock can cause these ceramics to crack. In the cover article for the March 2020 International Journal of Ceramic Engineering & Science, researchers in China report how wing shape affects thermal shock behavior of UHTCs.

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