news & trends Big awards for little SOFC device When the Consumer Electronics Show was going on in Las Vegas in January, one item that got a lot of attention aims to set us free from the power cords that recharge the cell phones, laptops, tablets, and other power-hungry electronics we happily lug around. The aptly named company, Lilliputian Systems, showcased its portable SOFC device—Nectar—that provides up to two weeks of grid-free juice. The little power device was a big winner at CES and brought several sweet awards home from the show, according to a company press release. They include the CES Innovations Award for Engineering and Design in the Portable Power category, Popular Science Product of the Future Award (one of 15 selected), and the Gotta be Mobile Best of CES Award (one of twelve selected). (Keep in mind, thousands of new products are launched at CES.) “Nectar is the only solution that truly addresses the challenge of keeping today’s mobile devices powered,” says Mouli Ramani, the company’s vice president of business development. The YSZ-electrolyte SOFC is fueled with small butane canisters that are easily replaced. The company has a nice white paper describing how the technology works available online. Lillliputian says it expects to start shipping the devices in summer or fall of this year. Preorders are being accepted online through retailer Brookstone. There is some evidence that the company is gearing up—a hiring spree has been underway. Visit: www.nectarpower.com n Good news for touchscreen glass: Tablet market expected to hit 72 million by 2018 If it feels like iPads, Kindle Fires, Galaxys, and similar tablet devices are everywhere, you are right. If you feel like you are the only one without one, you are nearly right. One measure of tablet devices trends is to look at activation levels on Christmas Day. Historically, more devices are activated on Dec. 25 than any other day of the year. The trend held for Christmas 2012, but blew previous records out of the water, according to an analysis by Flurry, a company specializing in mobile app analytics. Christmas Day 2012 saw 17.4 million activations compared to 6.8 million activations on Christmas Day 2011 (itself a recordbreaker). That is an increase of more than 150 percent. With so many tablets out there, what are the prognosticators saying about the future for tablets? A new report by Business news 3M launches high-performance embedded capacitance material (www.3m. com)… Nippon Electric Glass Co. offers widest and thinnest glass-ribbon (www. neg.co.jp)… Pilkington is to close its factory site in Aintree, UK (www. pilkington.com)… RHI also signed share purchase agreement to acquire Indian Orient Refractories Ltd. (www.rhi-ag. com)… Ceram signs agreement with AstraZeneca on drug delivery system (www.ceram.com)… Owens-Illinois reports an annual profit in 2012 (www.o-i. com)… Raytheon achieves UK first with opening of new silicon carbide foundry (www.raytheon.com)… Zircoa transfers product business activities from Didier, forms Zircoa GmbH (www.zircoa.com)… Saint-Gobain begins Verallia exit with $1.7 billion deal (www.saint-gobain.com)… RT Vanderbilt announces new structure, major expansion (www.rtvanderbilt. com)… Electrochromic glass from Sage keeps operating rooms bright (www. sageglass.com)… PyroMax proppant facility slated to open in March (www. pyramaxceramics.com)… MesoCoat’s metal cladding plant in Euclid is first step in growth plan (www.abakaninc.com)… PPG touts coatings, fiberglass and silica innovations at international auto show (www.ppg.com)… Nanovea offers white paper on surface boundary measurement using 3D profilometery (www.nanovea. com)… Crystex Composites LLC announces ‘green’ achievement (www.crystexllc. com)… Lafarge creates joint venture with Elementia to combine cement assets in Mexico (www.lafarge.com)… Netzsch to supply SpaceX’s thermal analysis lab (www.netzsch.com)… Morgan Thermal Ceramics offers mastics for maintenance and hot spot repair (www.morganthermalceramics. com)… Orbite Aluminae Inc. named as national winner of Canada’s 2012 new technology awards (www. orbitealuminae.com)… Cabot Aerogel introduces industrial insulation blanket for high temp applications (www.cabot-corp. com) n American Ceramic Society Bulletin, Vol. 92, No. 2 | www.ceramics.org 3 (Credit: Lilliputian Systems.) Nectar portable SOFC.
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