Aeronautics & Space

Monday materials fun: Robotic flying ‘maple seed’ vehicle with two moving parts

By / August 22, 2011

I used to imagine a lot of the bio-inspired ideas, such as flying maple seed pods (above) and artificial jellyfish arose on Thursday or Friday afternoons around happy hour time by brain-fried engineers. You know: It’s easy to imagine sensor, battery, propulsion and aeronautics wonks knocking down a few IPAs and hatching a new scheme…

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Hafnium and zirconium diboride composites for leading edges of hypersonic vehicles

By Eileen De Guire / August 12, 2011

Artist’s rendition of DARPA’s Falcon HTV-2 hypersonic aircraft. Credit: DARPA.   It’s not often that the latest issue of the Journal of the American Ceramic Society to hit the newsstands ties in with current events, but the August issue does. Yesterday DARPA conducted its second test flight of a hypersonic vehicle and, unfortunately, lost communication…

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Defense agency soliciting proposals for materials research for countering WMDs

By / August 9, 2011

Credit: DTRA. We received the following from the DOD Basic and Applied Sciences Directorate, Defense Threat Reduction Agency: DTRA’s mission is to safeguard America and its allies from Weapons of Mass Destruction. The university-centric DTRA Basic Research Program supports basic science research within five Thrust Areas of relevance to DTRA, an essential ingredient of which is…

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University of Limoges developing composite ceramics for aeronautics applications

By Martin Grolms / August 4, 2011

ZrC-SiC materials from poly(methylvinylsilane) Credit Pizon, et al.; Advanced Engineering Materials. New advanced materials are often drivers of technologies, especially for aeronautics applications. Many materials have been developed to resist severe working conditions, which usually couple high-temperature and mechanical-stress corrosion resistance. For these applications, non-oxide ceramics are promising materials, particularly transition metal carbides, such as zirconium…

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Ceramics and glass business news of the week

By / July 27, 2011

Here is what we are hearing: NexTech Materials receives ISO 9001:2008 certification NexTech has been awarded the International Organization for Standardization 9001:2008 certification for its Quality Management System.  Recognizing the quality needs of its clients, NexTech has voluntarily registered with ISO to provide independent assessment of our quality processes. Corning announces expansion of clean air…

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NASA: Is it worth every half-penny?

By Eileen De Guire / July 22, 2011

The final Space Shuttle mission was completed on Thursday with the landing of  Atlantis in Florida. In this video, astrophysicist and science evangelist, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, laments the end of the Shuttle program and rifs on the value of NASA to the nation. What do you think? Hat tip: The Scholarly Kitchen

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NASA awards management contract for ISS National Lab

By Eileen De Guire / July 15, 2011

United States ISS lab module Destiny during manufacture in fall 1997. Credit: NASA NASA has chosen the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space Inc., a new Florida-based nonprofit, tax-exempt research management organization, to develop and manage the US portion of the International Space Station that is designated a US national lab, including the…

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Video of the week: The Shirtsleeve Invention

By / June 22, 2011

I learned about the existence of this video after I wrote my review of Gloria Beasley Lausten’s book about the work by her husband (Bob Beasley) on the NASA’s Space Shuttle tile-based thermal protection system.

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Beasley biography details quest for space shuttle’s thermal protection system

By / June 21, 2011

If mechanical systems and the weather cooperate, July 8 will bring the 135rd and final mission of the American Space Shuttle program (STS-135). Coincidentally, I recently received a charming biography of the late Robert M. Beasley, the man who led the team that developed the shuttles’ high-temperature reusable surface insulation tiles. I think for those…

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Video of the week: Ash, sand-resistant thermal barrier coatings and novel test rig

By / June 2, 2011

[flash mode=1 f={image=/ceramictechtoday/wp-content/video/osu_turbine_coatings.jpg}] Apropos to the latest round of ash clouds spewing from the EyjafjallajökullI volcano, plus indications that some utilities are going to be building new high-temperature fast-cycle gas turbines for peak electrical power generation, we offer this video that expands on a story I first wrote about in April. It regards an…

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