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R&D
Medical

Thermoresponsive Smart Materials

The researchers used water as the solvent and developed an LCST-type thermoresponsive polymer by adding alkaline earth metal ions — which are divalent cations — to polymers and aqueous solutions.

Briefs
Green Design & Manufacturing

A New Fabrication Process Produces Smart Textiles

By incorporating a special type of plastic yarn and using heat to slightly melt it — a process called thermoforming — the researchers were able to greatly improve the precision of pressure sensors woven into multilayered knit textiles, which they call 3DKnITS.

Briefs
Medical

Smart Skin Mimics the Sensing Capabilities of Natural Skin

Study confirms that hydrogels work in a similar way to how humans detect pressure, paving the way for more ionic devices.

Briefs
Materials

Helmet Made of Magnetic Metamaterials Could Improve Brain Scans

It may look like a bizarre bike helmet, or a piece of equipment found in Doc Brown’s lab in Back to the Future, yet this gadget made of plastic and copper wire is a...

Briefs
Design

Single-Step 3D-Printing Process to Build Robots

The piezoelectric “meta-bot” is capable of propulsion, movement, sensing, and decision-making.

Briefs
Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Material Inspired by Chain Mail Transforms from Flexible to Rigid on Command

Applications include a smart fabric for exoskeletons, an adaptive cast that adjusts its stiffness as an injury heals, or a deployable bridge that could be unrolled and stiffened.

Briefs
Power

Piezoelectric Material Remains Effective at High Temperatures

The material remains effective as an energy harvester or sensor at temperatures to well above 572°F.

R&D
Sensors/Data Acquisition

Hybrid Material Enables Next-Gen E-Skin

Researchers have developed three-in-one hybrid material smart skin for the next generation of artificial, electronic skin using a novel process. With 2,000 individual sensors per square millimeter,...

Briefs
Manufacturing & Prototyping

Painting 3D-Printed Objects

Engineers have created a highly effective way to paint complex 3D-printed objects, such as lightweight frames for aircraft and biomedical stents, that could save manufacturers time and money and provide new...

Briefs
Robotics, Automation & Control

Developing a Flexible Polymer with Robust Piezoelectric Effectiveness

A Penn State-led team of interdisciplinary researchers developed a polymer with robust piezoelectric effectiveness, resulting in 60 percent more efficient electricity...

R&D
Medical

Lead-Free Piezoelectric Materials

Gadolinium-doped cerium oxide could be a promising alternative to certain piezoelectric materials. It is lead-free, which means that it could be employed in biocompatible medical applications. Further...

R&D
Medical

Lens Offers Tunable Focus

A metasurface lens has been created that uses a piezoelectric thin film to change focal length when a small voltage is applied. Because it is extremely compact and lightweight, the new lens could be useful for...

Global Innovations
Materials

Nontoxic, Variable-Stiffness Threads Enable Dexterous Cardiac Catheters

Engineers at EPFL and ETH have developed a variable stiffness catheter made of nontoxic threads that can transition between soft and rigid states during surgery. It...

Briefs
Materials

Fast-Acting Molecular Probe

A reversible polymer changes color when it senses a material is about to fail.

Briefs
Robotics, Automation & Control

Soft Sensing, Self-Healing Materials for Robotic Hands and Arms

These materials can detect when they are damaged, take the necessary steps to temporarily heal themselves, and then resume work.

Briefs
Materials

Optimization Theory Leads the Way for Soft Robotics and Metamaterials Design

A new study challenges the conventional approach to designing soft robotics and metamaterials by utilizing the power of computer algorithms.

Briefs
Manufacturing & Prototyping

Inkjet Printing of Metamaterials

Metamaterials that manipulate microwave energy can be fabricated using low-cost inkjet printing.

Briefs
Electronics & Computers

Nanothin Piezoelectrics for Self-Powered Electronics

The nanothin material could advance self-powered electronics, wearable technologies, and even deliver pacemakers powered by heartbeats.

Briefs
Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Shape-Shifting Materials Offer Infinite Possibilities

Totimorphic structural materials can achieve any shape.

Briefs
Materials

Soft, Mechanical Metamaterials

These “living machines” hold potential for applications from medical treatments to improving the environment.

Briefs
Materials

Load-Bearing Material Mimics Human Cartilage

The synthetic material is soft but can withstand heavy loading with minimum wear and tear for engineering applications.

Briefs
Sensors/Data Acquisition

3D-Printed Objects Sense How a User is Interacting with Them

Sensing is incorporated directly into an object’s material, with applications for assistive technology and “intelligent” furniture.

R&D
Materials

‘Weeping’ Ceramics Lead to New Shape-Shifting Material

An international team of researchers has discovered a path that could lead to shape-shifting ceramic materials.

Briefs
Sensors/Data Acquisition

Smart Wound Dressings with Built-In Healing Sensors

The built-in nanosensors glow to alert patients when a wound is not healing properly.

Briefs
Nanotechnology

Implantable Stimulator Speeds Tendon Healing

The device combines with body power to treat tendon disease and damage, and sports injuries.

Briefs
Robotics, Automation & Control

Robot Arms with Artificial Muscles are Lightweight and Flexible

These shape memory robotic arms eliminate the need for joints, rigid skeletons, or framework.

Briefs
Manufacturing & Prototyping

4D Bioengineering Materials Bend and Curve Like Natural Tissue

The hydrogels can morph multiple times in a preprogrammed or on-demand manner in response to external trigger signals.

Briefs
Green Design & Manufacturing

Water Purification System Engineered from Wood

The eco-friendly process removes heavy metals, dyes, and other pollutants.

Briefs
Photonics/Optics

Thermochromic Photovoltaic Windows

The windows reduce the need for air conditioning and simultaneously generate electricity.