June 25, 2019 Volume 15 Issue 24

Mechanical News & Products

Designfax weekly eMagazine

Subscribe Today!
image of Designfax newsletter


View Archives


Manufacturing Center
Product Spotlight

Modern Applications News
Metalworking Ideas For
Today's Job Shops

Tooling and Production
Strategies for large
metalworking plants

Design Tips: Fasteners for printed circuit boards

When specifying hardware for printed circuit board applications, many designers may still turn either to loose fasteners or broaching fasteners. While both provide the necessary functionality, each carries potential risks that may impact the production process, the integrity of boards, and even disassembly if required. Leon M. Attarian of PennEngineering runs through profiles of the latest surface-mount fastener families.
Read the full article.

Copper is newest material available for 3D printing

With the Markforged Metal X 3D printer, you can now easily manufacture electrically and thermally conductive complex copper parts -- and replace a conventional manufacturing process that's often difficult and expensive. From heat sinks to bus bars to custom welding arms, Markforged customers are reinventing the way they manufacture copper components.
Read the full article.

Plastic alternative to metal: Delrin

One of the more popular plastic material choices Proto Labs offers for injection molding and machining is Delrin acetal homopolymer (Polyoxymethylene POM). Delrin works as an excellent replacement for metal because of its high tensile strength, low friction and high wear resistance, creep and warp resistance, and overall durability and toughness. Ideal for industrial applications, Delrin exhibits low moisture absorption and is chemically resistant to hydrocarbons, solvents, and neutral chemicals.
Read this informative Proto Labs blog.

Signal-operated air pressure relay

ControlAir has just introduced the Type 7150 Precision Air Relay, a high-precision, multi-stage pressure relay offering fine adjustment and maximum stability under variable operating conditions. High-resolution output control combined with very high relief capacity makes the Type 7150 the choice for pneumatic counter balance applications such as articulating arms and balancers. Other applications include volume boosting, roll loading, tension control, cylinder control, and industrial clutch and brake control.
Learn more.

Build your own mini synchronous drive systems

With the Miniature Synchronous Drive System from Stock Drive Products/ Sterling Instrument (SDP/SI), 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.
Learn more.

DENSO launches next-gen MovinCool spot coolers

Reconfigured from the ground up, the sleek Climate Pro spot air conditioning units offer upgraded design features including a streamlined control panel, a black matte finish, reinforced bumpers, built-in power cord holder, heavy-duty casters, and state-of-the-art connectivity. The new series features 11 models: six models for office use, three models for industrial applications, and two that offer both heating and cooling. All units are covered by MovinCool's industry-leading three-year warranty.
Learn more.

Benefits of hybrid bearings

Hybrid bearings have shown good performance in poor lubrication and contaminated conditions, but the understanding of the contributing mechanisms and their effect on performance is still lacking. SKF has developed more insight into the tribology of hybrid bearings through both dedicated experiments and modeling.
Read about it here.

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.

Edge protection seal for corner profiles

JW Winco offers a comprehensive portfolio of edge protection profiles for softening and rounding edges as well as preventing injuries on flaps, doors, access holes, and sheet metal edges of all kinds. These edge protection seals include an additional sealing profile feature that provides both protection and sealing alike. With corresponding contact pressure, they offer protection against splash water, dust, and steam, while also reducing noise emissions.
Learn more.

hyperMILL CAM software gets additive mfg capability

CAD/CAM software solutions developer OPEN MIND Technologies now offers an ADDITIVE Manufacturing (AM) capability option in hyperMILL CAM software to support 3D printing/additive processes. hyperMILL with AM also provides efficient hybrid processing with simultaneous additive and subtractive processing on one machine. For highly complex 5-axis simultaneous processing, hyperMILL AM enables an array of flexible options for Directed Energy Deposition processes (DED) and Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM). Both laser-based powder nozzle machining heads and WAAM can be controlled using hyperMILL AM for selective material deposition, as well as conveniently programmed and automatically simulated for collision avoidance.
Learn more.

Fasteners: The aliens have landed. Lock 'em up.

It looks "alien," but it's the ultimate in box-security fasteners. In fact, the Alien Lock from Micro Plastics is the first and only dedicated box fastener. It is a much less expensive solution than banding or taping your boxes, and it keeps them more secure too. It's easy and fast to insert, and it's incredibly strong. It cannot be pulled out without it being obvious that the box was tampered with -- it must be cut off. This is a 1-step fastener: Push Alien Lock through the lock port, and the locking process is finished.
Learn more.

Siphon-fed spray nozzles for non-pressurized liquids

EXAIR's new 1/8 NPT siphon-fed spray nozzles atomize fluids in a range of spray patterns for a wide variety of uses. These are EXAIR's smallest air atomizing nozzles and are suitable for tight spaces. Siphon-fed atomizing nozzles require no liquid pressure and can be used with gravity-fed liquids or lift liquids from a siphon height as much as 36 in. (91 cm). They combine liquid and compressed air to create a mist of atomized liquid that can be easily adjusted to meet the needs of your application.
Learn more.

Top Tech Tip: Low-profile retaining rings

Smalley Hoopster® Rings fit into shallower grooves than regular snap rings or retaining rings. Where retaining rings once were not an option because of groove depth, the low profile, precision circularity, and small radial size allow Hoopsters to be unobtrusive components, ideal for thin wall tubes.
Learn more.

Adhesives: The importance of hardness testing

According to Master Bond, measuring hardness is a simple, yet powerful test to ensure proper curing and evaluate the performance of adhesive materials. Why? Hardness is generally a good indication of the product's overall functionality. If the mix ratio used was incorrect or if parts A and B were not mixed thoroughly or properly, the adhesive will cure "tacky" or with blotches. Hardness can also be used to determine how a material is holding up to various experiments and accelerated aging tests.
Read this informative Master Bond blog.

Next-gen low-friction bearing for improved lubrication

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has developed an optimized design for its proven Levitorq axial thrust washers. Through a new "scoop" feature, the enhanced Levitorq design is able to collect and push lubrication under the washer to enable higher critical speeds and enhanced performance. A team of experts developed the scoop design based on the types and availability of lubricants used in powertrain applications. These designs help optimize the availability of lubrication at the inner diameter, thus improving lubrication across the washer. These designs are ideal for applications with limited or splash lubrication. Levitorq is part of the company's Low Emission Sealing Solutions (LESS) product portfolio.
Learn more.

The big squeeze: Scientists develop new type of refrigeration via force-driven liquid gas transition

A Japanese research team of Tohoku University, Nissan Motor Co., Shinshu University, and Okayama University made a groundbreaking discovery in the quest to replace hydrofluorocarbons in refrigeration systems with natural refrigerants such as water and alcohol. Their study involved carrying out a liquid-to-gas phase transition via a nanosponge -- a soft, elastic material equipped with small nanopores less than 10 nanometers. Their findings could lead to more efficient refrigerants with a smaller carbon footprint.

The cooling effect involves squeezing a special sandwiched nanosponge. [Credit: Hirotomo Nishihara]



Refrigeration systems are widely used in air conditioners and refrigerators. Conventional systems use hydrofluorocarbons as a refrigerant. However, hydrofluorocarbons are super pollutants. Their Global Warming Potential is about 1,300 times higher than that of CO2.

The team of researchers successfully carried out a force-driven liquid-to-gas phase transition using a nanosponge. When a normal, wet sponge is squeezed, naturally, water is expected to come out. However, when using a nanosponge with a pore size of under 10 nanometers, a different phenomenon occurs. Even under low pressure, the sponge retains its liquid.

When applying force, however, the expelled liquid immediately evaporates into gas. Furthermore, as the sponge returns to its natural shape, it adsorbs the gas as a liquid into the nanopores again.

Until now, researchers have not carried out the squeezing process of nanoporous materials because conventional materials are too hard to be deformed. Nevertheless, the team circumvented this by creating their own soft, elastic, nanoporous materials, consisting of a single-layer of graphene walls. They measured their results using home-made equipment designed to monitor liquid-gas phase transition when mechanical force is applied.

[Editor's Note: There is a temperature change using this method just like in traditional liquid-to-gas phase transition technologies, although it does not seem to be as great (using water) as current methods. Perhaps other liquids could result in larger temperature changes.]

The team thought about the squeezing method after developing soft nanoporous materials. But even they could not anticipate their prediction becoming reality at the first attempt.

To date, there have been only two methods of converting trapped liquid into gas: 1. heating, or 2. decreasing the gas-phase pressure. The squeezing method provides a third way, generating a new theme in the field of physical chemistry and paving the path for more environmentally friendly refrigeration systems.

The researchers published their findings in Nature, June 2019. See "Force-driven reversible liquid-gas phase transition mediated by elastic nanosponges."

Source: Tohoku University

Published June 2019

Rate this article

[The big squeeze: Scientists develop new type of refrigeration via force-driven liquid gas transition]

Very interesting, with information I can use
Interesting, with information I may use
Interesting, but not applicable to my operation
Not interesting or inaccurate

E-mail Address (required):


Copyright © 2019 by Nelson Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction Prohibited.
View our terms of use and privacy policy