September 11, 2018 Volume 14 Issue 34

Mechanical News & Products

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Compact electronic slide bolt

Southco has expanded its line of electronic access control solutions with a compact electronic slide bolt that simplifies the upgrade from mechanical to electromechanical latching. The lightweight EM-05 5 Series Electronic Slide Bolt is suitable for light-load applications where space is limited, and the efficient gear motor-driven mechanism can be easily integrated with any control system. This unit features simple push-to-close functionality and offers an upgrade in energy efficiency compared with solenoid solutions, as no power is required to maintain the product's retracted or extended position. It offers simple installation and retrofits.
Click here to learn more.


Spinning flare nuts eliminate loose fasteners in thin metal sheet applications

PEM SFN spinning flare nuts from Penn-Engineering become permanently captivated upon installation in thin metal sheets and, when paired with a self-clinching stud or other fixed externally threaded hardware, can eliminate all loose fasteners (including flange nuts) in attachment applications. These one-piece, flanged hex nuts additionally will spin freely in a sheet enabling quick attachment to mating hardware. Their use ultimately promotes savings in assembly time and costs.
Learn more.


Test your knowledge: High-temp adhesives

Put your knowledge to the test by trying to answer these key questions on how to choose the right high temperature-resistant adhesive. The technical experts from Master Bond cover critical information necessary for the selection process, including questions on glass transition temperature and service temperature range. Some of the answers may surprise even the savviest of engineers.
Take the quiz.


Maintenance-free bearings help pool owners keep it clean

A company in Austria has designed a swimming pool cleaning device with maintenance-free polymer ball bearings from igus that helps people keep their water crystal clear. Poolwonder designers chose corrosion-resistant and maintenance-free components because of the unique application for underwater use.
Read the full article.


Build a mini synchronous drive system

With the Miniature Synchronous Drive System from Stock Drive Products (SDP), you can put your own 1-, 2-, or 3-mm design together in a snap. The tiny timing belts and pulleys are engineered and manufactured to give high accuracy and smooth, dependable operation in 3D printers, moving security cameras, med devices, robotic surgical equipment, self-service machines, and more. Advantages include no-slip synchronization, accurate positioning, high torque transmission with low backlash, quiet operation, and long belt life.
Click here to learn more.


How colorants affect plastic characteristics

If you're starting a custom plastic injection molding project, you'll want to select a material with the properties most suitable for the function of your parts. One aspect of polymer characteristics that doesn't always get the consideration it deserves is the addition of colorant. Believe it or not, there is a whole scientific body of knowledge about the ways in which adding color to plastic can affect the behavioral properties of the plastic. This short article by Denny Scher of ICO Mold takes a high-level look at some of the different, and surprising, ways colorants can have an effect on plastics.
Read the full article.


New hybrid nylon TPEs are tough, flexible, and more

Nylon Corporation of America has launched an extended product family of nylon (polyamide) -based thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs), also known as polyether-block-amides (PEBA), for a range of applications in the automotive, sporting goods, personal electronics, composite, and specialty films markets. These materials are block copolymers of nylon segments and polyether segments. The nylon block is the hard segment and the polyether block is the soft, flexible segment. NY-FLEX grades are thus hybrid materials, offering a unique combination of rubber-like elastomeric properties and thermoplastic-like processing capabilities. By varying the type and the ratio of these two blocks, a wide range of NY-FLEX grades can be offered.
Learn more.


New 3M metal bonding adhesive

3M Scotch-Weld Metal Bonder Acrylic Adhesive DP8407NS delivers strength, corrosion resistance, and reliable performance for bonding metal without extensive surface prep. This high-strength, fast-curing structural adhesive offers high peel and durability, and maintains its strength at temps as low as -40 F. With the ability to bond active metals like steel, copper, brass, and bronze, 3M's Metal Bonder is ideal for a wide range of assemblies in metal fabrication, transportation, specialty vehicle, architectural panels, appliances, and office furniture. It bonds plastics and composites for multi-material bonding and is also well suited for bonding metals prior to powder coating and paint processes.
Click here to learn more.


Clamping levers with eccentrical cam

JW Winco now offers GN 927 Clamping Levers with Eccentrical Cam in Tapped Type and Threaded Stud versions. The RoHS-compliant clamping levers are used for rapid clamping and releasing operations. In contrast to a clamping operation utilizing threads, these levers permit torque-free clamping. The zinc die-cast, plastic-coated lever has been designed to ensure its movement cannot exceed the maximum clamping position. In addition, there are no loose components, since all are assembled and mounted in their correct order. Thrust forces up to 1.8 lb (8 N) can be obtained.
Learn more.


Replace traditional fasteners: 50+ retaining ring applications

The benefits of a Rotor Clip Retaining Ring are simple: The ring is made from less material than traditional fasteners, eliminating machined shoulders, threads, cover plates, and heat-formed studs -- so you save. Using a retaining ring to fasten your assembly instead of a traditional fastener not only reduces your costs, but also saves the environment. Fewer parts and less material means cost savings for you and less waste for the planet. This quality part offers lot traceability. Want to know what you can do with a Rotor Clip Retaining Ring?
View more than 50 application examples.


Top Technical Tips: Noisy bearings?

Smalley wave springs are ideal for bearing preload. The wave spring preloads the bearing through its outer race, taking up play in the bearing. Preloading will reduce bearing damage, wear, noise, and vibration. The wave spring prevents sliding between the rolling elements. Smalley has over 150 standard springs available, from .188" to 16". Customs are available for unique bearing sizes with No-Tooling-Charges™.
Learn more. You can also request samples.


Metal bonding: Solvent-free activators from DELO speed up curing time

DELO, one of the world's leading manufacturers of industrial adhesives for automotive, consumer, and industrial electronics applications, has developed two solvent-free activators that speed up the curing time of metal adhesives like DELO-ML. These new activators prevent solvent vapors escaping into the environment, potentially causing both health and environmental hazards. DELO's low-viscous DELO-QUICK 5910 and the higher-viscous DELO-QUICK 5975 can be dispensed together with adhesive, without having to evaporate first. Components can be joined and processed immediately after dispensing of the activator, reducing cycle time in the production process.
Learn more.


Adhesives formulated in different colors

Master Bond epoxy systems are formulated in a variety of standard colors, including black, red, green, blue, gray etc. Many optically clear grades are also available. Upon request, compounds can be manufactured in custom colors in order to meet specific requirements. This task requires blending multiple RoHS-compliant pigments in precise proportions to ensure no color variation and uniform appearance. These colored adhesives can be formulated to meet industrial certifications such as medical grade, NASA low outgassing, ISO 10993-5 for cytotoxicity, and more. Compliance testing is performed by independent testing laboratories.
Click here to learn more.


New 3M tape tackles high-temp fastening applications

Since 1980, 3M VHB Tapes have opened the door to faster and easier assemblies. Now, the new GPH series from 3M combines the extreme, permanent bonding power and convenience of 3M VHB Tapes with high-temperature resistance. It can withstand operating temperatures up to 450 F, with long-term durability in conditions up to 300 F. Users will experience excellent adhesion to high and medium surface energy materials, as well as coated or painted surfaces. 3M VHB Tapes, including the new GPH series, replace traditional mechanical fasteners, subsequently eliminating processes like drilling, grinding, refinishing, screwing, welding, and associated rework/clean-up.
Click here to learn more.


Permanent threads in thin sheet applications -- with only one-sided access

ATLAS SpinTite blind threaded inserts from Penn-Engineering provide strong, permanent, and reusable threads in thin sheet materials where only one side is accessible for hardware installation. Installation is performed from the accessible "front" side using spin-spin tooling technology. The inserts then become permanently mounted on the "back" side to accept a mating screw for final component attachment. This "blind" installation capability especially suits applications such as tubing, extrusions, and others where access to the back side is either limited or nonexistent. These steel, aluminum, brass, or stainless steel inserts support close-to-edge applications and can be installed at any stage during the production process (even after assemblies have been painted).
Click here to learn more.


Human pilots vs. machines: Lockheed Martin and Drone Racing League launch groundbreaking AI innovation challenge

Lockheed Martin and the Drone Racing League (DRL) announced an innovation competition on Sept. 5 that challenges teams to develop artificial intelligence (AI) technology that will enable an autonomous drone to race a pilot-operated drone -- and win. Participating teams will compete in a series of challenges for their share of over $2 million in prizes.

Lockheed Martin Chief Technology Officer Keoki Jackson announced the challenge at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco, kicking off a multi-year partnership with DRL, the global professional circuit for drone racing. The AlphaPilot Innovation Challenge will enlist university students, technologists, coders, and drone enthusiasts to push the boundaries of AI, machine learning (ML), and fully autonomous flight.

"At Lockheed Martin, we are working to pioneer state-of-the-art, AI-enabled technologies that can help solve some of the world's most complex challenges -- from fighting wildfires and saving lives during natural disasters to exploring the farthest reaches of deep space," said Jackson. "Now, we are inviting the next generation of AI innovators to join us with our AlphaPilot Innovation Challenge. Competitors will have an opportunity to define the future of autonomy and AI and help our world leverage these promising technologies to build a brighter future."

The AlphaPilot challenge aims to accelerate the development and testing of fully autonomous drone technologies. AlphaPilot participants will design an artificial intelligence/machine learning framework, powered by the NVIDIA Jetson platform for AI at the edge, capable of flying a drone -- without any pre-programming or human intervention -- through challenging multi-dimensional race courses in DRL's new Artificial Intelligence Robotic Racing (AIRR) Circuit.

"This challenge changes the game," said DRL CEO and Founder Nicholas Horbaczewski. "How close is AI performance to the world's best human piloting? We're excited to find out next year when AlphaPilot drones compete in adrenaline-packed, futuristic drone races on complex courses in the AIRR Circuit."

The Lockheed Martin AlphaPilot Innovation Challenge will open for entries in November. Selected participants are eligible for over $2 million in cash prizes, including an extra $250,000 award for the first team that outperforms a professional DRL human-piloted drone. Undergraduate and graduate students, drone enthusiasts, coders, and other technologists interested in learning more and applying to participate can visit lockheedmartin.com/alphapilot.

Source: Lockheed Martin

Published September 2018

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