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May 01, 2012Volume 08 Issue 17

Image - Custom Wave Springs
Custom Wave Springs
Smalley can manufacture custom Wave Springs quickly and economically to meet your specific application requirements. Because force and deflection requirements are application-specific, custom springs are often needed. With Smalley's No-Tooling-Cost™ manufacturing process, specials can be produced from .200" to 120" diameters in carbon steel, stainless steel, or other readily available exotic alloys. Prototypes can be available in as little as two weeks for testing.
Design a custom spring now.

In this issue of Designfax

  • Maximum precision for largest radio telescope
  • Build 3D parts for $560 a month
  • Study evaluates vibrating steering wheels
  • Wheels: Army remote-firing system for vehicles
  • Mike Likes: ‘Clickable' switch for automotive HMIs
  • Engineer's Toolbox: Super-sweet all-in-one workstation
  • Quick Look: The future of hydraulic control
  • Quick Look: Small, lightweight DC compressor
  • Quick Look: Digital servo drive with Ethernet/IP
  • Videos+: Technologies and inspiration in action
    • Moguls aim to mine asteroids
  • Most Popular Last Issue
    • Army tech promises greater lethality
    • Video: Most advanced electric motorcycle
  • New Products
    • Electrical, Mechanical, Motion, Special: Software
    Cover Image: HEIDENHAIN encoders position ALMA antennas [Photo credit: collage using image from ESO/José Francisco Salgado (]


Researcher finds faster, cheaper way to cool electronic devices

Pultrusion process is one key to larger, lighter, and cheaper composite parts

Turbocharger with low-pressure exhaust gas recirculation wins 2012 Automotive News PACE Award

Be a part of the manufacturing momentum: Boothroyd Dewhurst hosts 2012 International Forum on DFMA, June 11-13

Image - How To Stay On Top
How To Stay On Top
A cool mechatronics demonstrator featuring FAULHABER motors and GIGATRONIK electronics can balance autonomously on a hollow mobile ball. Complex position control and miniature drives with auxiliary modules, such as encoders, gearing, and integrated controllers, are the keys to this application that is literally on a roll.
Read about the engineering behind this challenging project.

Feature articles
Maximum precision provides a new view of the universe
The ALMA observatory in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile aims to be the most powerful radio telescope in the world, and the world's most complex terrestrial observatory. When all 66 antennas are online in 2013, the system will have a resolution 10 times greater than the Hubble Space Telescope, according to its creators.

For now, only about one-third of the 100-ton antennas are installed and live, but the results have proven to be better than imagined. Exact positioning, so critical for the whole operation, is handled by HEIDENHAIN angle encoders for 25 of the antennas.
Read the full article.

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This quick-reference user guide, for engineers and designers, talks about the guidelines and limitations for rapid injection molding.

Start building your own 3D parts for $560 a month
Stratasys has announced it will offer bundled, complete 3D printing packages for its Dimension line of printers. The 3D Print Pack includes the 3D printer and everything you need to print parts, including start-up supplies and a support-removal system.
Read the full article.
Study evaluates effectiveness of vibrating steering wheels
A vibrating steering wheel is an effective way to keep a driver's eyes safely on the road by providing an additional means to convey directions from a car's navigation system, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University and AT&T Labs have shown – but there are differences between how younger and older drivers respond.
Read the full article.
Army lauds manufacture of 10,000th CROWS remote-firing system for vehicles

The Army recently marked the manufacture of the 10,000th M153 Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station (CROWS), which allows a weapon to be mounted atop a Humvee, for example, and be targeted and fired remotely from inside the vehicle.
Read the full article.

Image - Mike Likes: <br>‘Clickable' switch for complex automotive HMIs
Mike Likes:
‘Clickable' switch for complex automotive HMIs

C&K Components' CLK Series ‘clicker' switch concept provides haptic feedback, adaptable to any surface size, in touch-sensing human machine interfaces (HMIs). The energy-free electromechanical device provides consistent, self-guided motion with uniform haptic feedback for automotive touch-sensing applications. Automotive HMIs that feature capacitive controls, such as touchpads or touchscreens, can integrate the CLK Series inside their architecture to make them feel clickable.
Click here to learn more.

Image - Engineer's Toolbox: <br>All-in-one workstation with swappable parts
Engineer's Toolbox:
All-in-one workstation with swappable parts

Design-wise, who hasn't wished for a powerful computer with easily accessible, changeable parts? Well, HP's new Z1 all in one is just that, featuring a tool-less chassis and a very sweet 27-in. display. Built for CAD, digital media, and entertainment professionals, this just-launched customizable powerhouse brings "plug and play" to new heights. Be sure to check out the "making of the HP Z1" video for insights from the designers. Pricing starts at $1,899.
Click here to learn more about the HP Z1.

Image - Quick Look: <br>The future of hydraulic control
Quick Look:
The future of hydraulic control

The HAWE CAN-IO14 hydraulic control unit for mobile equipment provides an infinite number of programmable options. Using this little 60- × 60- × 30-mm device will simplify wiring and decentralize control of all components. The unit has four proportional outputs and four pulse-width modulation (PWM) outputs that can all be configured as inputs. These output ports combined with six analog inputs, which have ranges between 0-10 V and 4-20 mA, provide unprecedented flexibility to HAWE's hydraulic systems.
Click here to learn more.

Image - Quick Look:<br>Small, lightweight brushless DC compressor
Quick Look:
Small, lightweight brushless DC compressor

The Thomas 2220 Series brushless DC, oil-less air compressor is designed for medical and other applications requiring a compact, lightweight unit with variable output. At only 4.70 in. long and weighing only 1.48 lb, this compressor features an efficient variable-speed motor that produces flow to 1.1 cfm (32.3 l/min) and pressure to 30 psi (2.1 bar). The WOB-L piston technology combined with the enclosed crankcase design provide durable, quiet (45 dB(A)) performance.
Click here to learn more.

Image - Quick Look: <br>Digital servo drive with Ethernet/IP
Quick Look:
Digital servo drive with Ethernet/IP has just added Applied Motion Product's New SVAC3 Series Digital Servo Drives to its broad range of high-performance servo amplifiers used in industrial automation applications. This AC-powered drive is loaded with features and options that make it a great choice for many OEM applications. SVAC3 drives can be controlled via analog signal or step and direction inputs. Alternatively, they can be programmed to act as stand-alone units with the power of Q Programmer. Three drive models are available, each in 120-VAC and 220-VAC versions.
Click here to learn more.

Most popular last issue
New Army technology holds promise of greater lethality
Imagine a warhead with fragments that flare and burn when the warhead detonates. Now imagine the potential lethality of an artillery shell made almost entirely of that stuff.
Read the full article.

Image - Video: Designing the world's most advanced electric motorcycle
Video: Designing the world's most advanced electric motorcycle
Meet Michael Czysz, a man on a mission to build the world's most technologically advanced – and fastest! – electric motorcycle, and learn how he uses SolidWorks in his design process. [Image courtesy: motoczysz]
View the video.

Videos+: Technologies and inspiration in action
Moguls aim to mine asteroids
Backed by Internet and Hollywood big shots, a new company called Planetary Resources aims to mine precious metals from asteroids in our solar system. There were lots of small stories on this last week, but we felt that the CSM's "Is it really cheaper to mine platinum from an asteroid?" had a solid mix of video and reporting elements.
View the video.

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