Popular aluminum oxide created by interlacing different crystal forms

Bonding Aluminum OxideYour automobile exhaust system, the plastic cup holding your favorite drink, along with many, many other products, rely upon chemical reactions driven by catalysts supported on aluminum oxides. Characterizing these aluminum oxides or alumina has been challenging. Now, scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and FEI Company obtained an atomically resolved view of the alumina form known as delta alumina. Using experiments and computational approaches, the team showed that the oxide is made up of two crystal forms or variants woven together.

As researchers continue to characterize the structure and behavior of delta alumina and its related polymorph, gamma alumina, “the materials present a lot of questions,” said Dr. Libor Kovarik, PNNL scientist and lead author on the study. “We are working to understand them, particularly the aluminum bonding on the catalysts surface.”

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2014-11-popular-aluminum-oxide-interlacing-crystal.html

Ceramic-Metal Bonding – Metalization of Ceramics and Vacuum Seals by Morgon Technical Ceramics

Dissimilar Metals JoiningThe joining of ceramics to metals creates its own engineering challenges that require specialist expertise.

Morgan Technical Ceramics are favored in a wide range of electronics and engineering applications for their chemical and mechanical properties. Compared to metals, they are stronger in compression, especially at higher temperatures, they have a good thermal stability (i.e. a low coefficient of thermal expansion) and good thermal and electrical resistivity. They are also hard, and have excellent dimensional stability.

To read the entire article go to the Morgan Technical Ceramics site: http://www.azom.com/article.aspx?ArticleID=4240

Self-arranging Molecules Could Form The Basis For Efficient Optoelectric Memory Devices

Self-arranging Molecules Efficient Optoelectrical Memory DevicesA way to use weak molecular bonding interactions to create well-ordered and stable metal–organic monolayers with optoelectronic properties has been found by researchers from the RIKEN Surface and Interface Science Laboratory. The development could form the basis for the scalable fabrication of molecular optoelectronic devices.

A variety of emerging technologies are being investigated as potential replacements or enhancements of the electrical-charge-based electronics that lie at the heart of all electronic devices.

To read this article in its entirety go to: http://phys.org/news/2014-12-self-arranging-molecules-basis-efficient-optoelectronic.html

New Aluminum “Foam” Makes Trains Stronger, Lighter, Safer

New Aluminum FoamTrains made of aluminum foam, a material that’s stronger, lighter, and better in a crash than fiberglass or regular old metal.  Engineers in Chemitz, Germany unveiled a prototype high-speed train cab made with the stuff earlier this year. The composite material is built like a sandwich. Between two pieces of aluminum, each just two millimeters thick, is a 25-millimeter-thick layer of the “foam,” actually a low-density, sponge-like composite of magnesium, silicon, copper and aluminum. And like a good sandwich, there’s no glue. The layers are held together by metallic bonding, the electrostatic attraction of negatively charged electrons and positively charged ions.

To read the complete article go to: http://www.wired.com/2014/12/aluminum-foam-trains/

Thermal Management – Printed Circuit Boards: A Mobile Market

As networking and processor chips continue to advance, innovative thermal management technologies are becoming more important.
As networking and processor chips continue to advance, innovative thermal management technologies are becoming more important.

Glass fiber/epoxy laminates have been the foundational structural substrate in printed circuit boards (PCBs) for decades. Glass/epoxy’s dominance, however, is under challenge as a variety of trends — notably, toward miniaturization, better thermal management, increased speed and performance, and the 3-D printing process — force PCB manufacturers to re-examine their material options.

As computers and mobile devices get smaller, faster and more sophisticated, more heat-producing internal electronics are packed into smaller spaces, increasing temperatures in PCB laminates and, thus, threatening performance. As devices get more compact, there is less room to accommodate a material’s expansion or contraction as internal temperature fluctuates. There also can be a mismatch between a PCB substrate’s CTE and the temperatures and dynamic loads it sees in service. Another issue threatening glass fiber/epoxy’s reign is conductive anodic filamentation (CAF), the result when copper corrosion residue grows along the glass fiber/resin interface in a PCB laminate as current passes from anode to cathode.

It is now possible to combine one of the variety of proven 3-D printing techniques with an established commercial printed electronics process and successfully build complete electronic products that exhibit the small feature sizes, high density and high performance now in demand.

To read the entire article go to: http://www.compositesworld.com/articles/printed-circuit-boards-a-mobile-market

Affordable Lightweight Ceramic/Aluminum Brake Rotors Developed

The latest Tesla Model S is supposed to be an upgrade from the 2010 iteration pictured here, though some questions persist.
The latest Tesla Model S is supposed to be an upgrade from the 2010 iteration pictured here, though some questions persist.

When it comes to making cars more energy-efficient getting their weight down is one of the best things you can do. Unfortunately, the cast iron brake rotors currently used in most vehicles are quite heavy. Soon, ceramic-coated aluminum rotors may be a cost-effective lightweight alternative for economy cars.

Aluminum expands three to four times more than ceramics. Ceramic coating can’t be applied to the aluminum rotors in one continuous piece. If it was, it would crack as the aluminum beneath it expanded. The solution comes down to soldering the ceramic onto the aluminum in the form of individual tiles laid side-by-side.

To read this article in its entirety go to: http://www.gizmag.com/ceramic-coated-aluminum-brake-rotors/34133/

Ceramic Bonding Is Ultra-Stable For Space Missions

Ceramic Bonding Ultra-Stable For Space MissionsA new ultra-stable adhesive identified through ESA research could be a key to assembling rock-solid structures for space, including large telescopes, instruments and antennas to peer deeper into the cosmos or sharpen views of our terrestrial environment. The ceramic bonding promises composite structures of several meters rigid down to a few thousandths of a millimeter. Such stability will be essential for new classes of space mission.

The challenge is greatest for optical, radio and other precision instruments, where rigidity is essential.

To read the complete article go to: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/10/ceramic-bonding-ultra-stable-space-missions

Sputtering Targets and Sputtered Films: Technology and Markets

Sputter Targets

BCC Research projects that the global market for sputtering targets and sputtered films will grow from $3.0 billion in 2013 to $3.2 billion in 2018, a CAGR of 1.3% over the five year period.

This report provides:

An overview of the global market for sputtering targets and sputtered films.
Analyses of global market trends, with data from 2013, and projections of compound annual growth rates (CAGRs) through 2018. (more…)

New Techniques For Joining Plastic To Metal

Battery and Electrical Contacts - Bonding Dissimilar MaterialsIf it rolls, floats or flies, light weight is always good.  Manufacturers of planes, trains, automobiles, trucks and tractors are hungry for new materials that improve efficiency and reduce weight.

Engineers have many options for joining plastic parts to plastic parts or metal parts to metal parts.  However when joining plastic parts to metal parts, options are few. (more…)