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The Lead

Particulate Filter Relies on RF

August 19, 2014 4:54 pm | Award Winners

Jointly developed by Filter Sensing Technologies Inc., Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the RF-DPF Diesel Particulate Filter Sensor is a radio frequency (RF)-based sensor and control system used to measure the amount, type and distribution of contaminants on ceramic diesel particulate filters (DPFs).

Calcium Loop for Carbon Capture

August 19, 2014 4:11 pm | Award Winners

Industrial Technology Research Institute’s HECLOT: High efficiency...

A Safire in the Rough

August 19, 2014 3:51 pm | Award Winners

A multi-phase flow meter, Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Safire...

Hold the Mercury

August 19, 2014 3:22 pm | Award Winners

Novinda Corp.’s Amended Silicates HgX (AS-HgX) is a non-carbon...

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A Better Battery Choice

August 19, 2014 2:31 pm | Award Winners

As consumers we are ever more connected these days through tablets, smartphones, smart watches, and smart glasses, while the abundance of apps has made our lives more convenient and interesting. However, the battery in these electronics barely lasts a day. SolidEnergy SystemsSolid Polymer Ionic Liquid (SPiL) rechargeable lithium battery could potentially be the biggest breakthrough in battery technology since Sony introduced the first Li-ion battery in 1991.

No Overcharging Here

August 19, 2014 2:14 pm | Award Winners

Thorough testing by A123 Systems LLC has shown that ANL-RS2 Advanced Redox Shuttle Additive is a highly reliable and high-performance electrolyte additive for EV battery cells using LiFePO4 as the cathode material. When dissolved in the electrolyte of a LiFePO4-based lithium-ion battery cell, the ANL-RS2 Redox Shuttle Additive remains inert until the potential of the cell increases from 3.6 to 3.9 V during an overcharging event.

A New DDF Engine Conversion Kit

August 19, 2014 1:57 pm | Award Winners

PTT Public Co. Ltd.’s PTT DIESEL CNG is a new concept for DDF engine conversions which improves the gas engine characteristics by increasing the diesel replacement ratio to 50%, increasing engine efficiency 30% and reducing methane emission 30% compared with conventional technologies.

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An Electric Charge

August 19, 2014 1:39 pm | Award Winners

Arkansas Power Electronics International Inc.’s High-Performance Silicon Carbide-based Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle Battery Charger is a Level 2 isolated on-board vehicular battery charger that utilizes silicon carbide (SiC) power devices for application in electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).

A Magnetic Solution to Power Flow

August 19, 2014 1:09 pm | Award Winners

The control of power flow in power systems is a major concern for utilities and system operators. But full power flow control has been prohibitively expensive, requiring large numbers of complicated and costly devices. As a result, power systems almost always operate sub-optimally at billions of dollars per year. A simple, magnetic-field-based valve-like device for power flow control, the Continuously Variable Series Reactor (CVSR), developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory, SPX Transformer Solutions Inc. and the Univ. of Tennessee, has introduced substantial improvements.

A Leap in Power Generation

August 19, 2014 12:37 pm | Award Winners

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Solar Thermochemical Advanced Reactor System (STARS) addresses a major criticism of solar energy, which, like wind power, can’t provide continuous output. Because of its design, STARS doesn’t require power plants to cease operations when the sun sets or clouds cover the sky.

Faster Semiconductor Inspections

August 19, 2014 11:40 am | Award Winners

Industrial Technology Research Institute developed the ICTA In-Line Compact Thermal Analyzer. ICTA technology is a shipping inspection technique used for LED manufacture, mainly in solving the thermal-induced stress in semiconductor devices, improving package design, identifying material properties or estimating facilities lifespan.

Enhanced Oscilloscopes

August 19, 2014 11:39 am | Agilent Technologies Inc. | Award Winners

Agilent Technologies recently introduced the N2820A Series High-Sensitivity, High Dynamic Range Oscilloscope Current Probe. Though labeled as a current probe, the N2820A is actually a highly sensitive oscilloscope voltage probe. By measuring voltages as small as 5 uV, across a current sense resistor, the probe can determine the current flowing through the resistor.

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An Industry First

August 19, 2014 11:37 am | Award Winners

Texas Instrument’s LDC1000 is the industry’s first inductance-to-digital converter (LDC), providing electronics system designers with a new platform for developing breakthrough solutions to difficult system problems. The LDC1000 design team combined unique circuit and architecture topologies to create the product.

Nano Charge

August 19, 2014 11:36 am | Award Winners

Texas Instruments' bq25570 is a new, highly integrated energy-harvesting nanopower management solution that meets the needs of ultra-low power applications. Energy harvester design is tricky; it’s important that power management electronics consume the lowest amount of power to maximize efficiency.

Cooling for Space Applications

August 19, 2014 11:34 am | Award Winners

NASA Glenn Research Center and Thermacore Inc. have developed Therma-Base. Therma-Base is a heat pump design that offers several advantages in addition to its basic passive heat transfer capability: simple and reliable operation; highly effective thermal conductivity; no moving parts; and quiet, vibration-free operation.

Sanitation in the Third World

August 19, 2014 11:31 am | Award Winners

Lack of safe sanitation facilities causes 2,000 deaths/day worldwide, mostly among children. American Standard set out to help save these lives with a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Reinvent the Toilet Challenge to develop and test a low-cost, pre-fabricated toilet system for use in developing countries.

The Eye as a Screen

August 19, 2014 11:30 am | Award Winners

Current wearable media devices can cause eye strain, induce nausea or create other discomforts, particularly over extended periods. Such devices also struggle to provide the natural depth of perception necessary for a true 3-D experience. Designed to correct these shortcomings, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Avegant’s Glyph uses a micromirror array and a combination of proprietary optics in a head-mounted display to reflect an image from a media source directly onto the retina using the viewer’s own eye lens, effectively making the back of the eyeball into a screen.

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Lasercom Facilitates Space Data

August 19, 2014 11:24 am | Award Winners

Despite major advances in radio frequency (RF) systems, users will soon require higher data rates than radio can achieve. The use of optical frequencies, on the other hand, has the potential to achieve perhaps 100 or even 1,000 times the data rates of the best RF systems because of its huge unregulated spectrum and shorter wavelengths. Several so-called near-Earth lasercom systems have been demonstrated, but they have not scaled to practical use. MIT Lincoln Laboratory’s Lunar Laser Communication System (LLCS) combines several technologies to permit high-data-rate lasercom between distant platforms.

Radar for Pedestrian Safety

August 19, 2014 11:22 am | Award Winners

Several types of radar-enabled early warning and pedestrian sensing systems have been developed by automotive OEMs, but Toyota Motor Corp. is the first to manufacture an Automotive Phased Array Radar (APAR) that satisfies the requirements for widespread use in vehicle safety system while also providing a wide 100-degree sensing arc capable of effectively detecting pedestrians.

Edible Authentication Microtag

August 19, 2014 11:19 am | Award Winners

Counterfeiting affects almost every industry, and losses can be heavy: $170 billion in the electronics and semiconductor sector, and $80 billion in the pharmaceutical sector. No one measure can bring a solution to the problem, but better product authentication can help mitigate the risk at a fundamental level. TruTag Technologies Inc. has introduced a new type of high-purity silica microtag that uses unique spectral patterns to encode high-volume products.

Driver’s Ed for Self-driving Vehicles

August 19, 2014 11:19 am | Award Winners

Self-driving vehicles may soon become commonplace on our roads as rapidly advancing sensing technologies converge with the prospect of better passenger safety and traffic efficiency. Through companies such as Google have made great strides in this area of research, current autonomous ground vehicles lack some capabilities, including the inability to sense vehicle position in adverse conditions. Localizing Ground Penetrating Radar (LGPR), introduced by MIT Lincoln Laboratory, can provide this capability using a new class of ground-penetrating radar technology to map underground features that are inherently stable over time.

RF Switching, No Sticking

August 19, 2014 11:17 am | Award Winners

In demand for portable applications because of their light weight and compact size, traditional microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) technologies suffer from a major problem: sticking. This is caused by the charged dielectric, which also suffers from deformation failure and contact welding. A new design engineered by MIT Lincoln Laboratory and implemented in a fabrication setting by Innovative Micro Technology solves these problems by allowing the electrode assembly to “curve”.

Range-independent Radar

August 19, 2014 11:15 am | Award Winners

The space environment directly above the Earth is crowded with orbiting objects and debris. Accurate, fast imaging is necessary to protect assets operating within this debris zone, namely the International Space Station, low-Earth orbit satellites and other science missions. The Haystack Ultrawideband Satellite Imaging Radar (HUSIR) constructed by MIT Lincoln Laboratory was engineered for this task.

Corrosion Prevention Goes Green

August 19, 2014 11:12 am | Award Winners

The replacement of hazardous hexavalent chromium compounds in structural adhesive bond primers has been a vexing problem for the aerospace industry. Because they are extremely vulnerable to localized corrosion, aluminum structures must be bonded with high-performance materials. The highly toxic strontium chromate additive is currently used to meet stringent safety standards, despite its heavy regulation throughout the world. But now there’s an effective alternative: EcoTuff.

Permanent Water-Repellency

August 19, 2014 11:11 am | Award Winners

With support from Under Armour Inc., Green Theme Technologies LLC has created The ChemStik Technology: Water-Repellent Treatment for Performance Outdoor Apparel. Whereas prior methods used “wet” chemistry, ChemStik technology is “dry” and free of solvents and volatile organic compounds.

Aluminum Joining Intensifies

August 19, 2014 11:10 am | Award Winners

The use of aluminum in cars is expected to nearly double by 2025, and today it is already the second-most-used material to produce cars. Manufacturers have had to develop new joining and assembly methods to meet the demand for aluminum-intensive vehicles (AIVs). “Alcoa 951” by Alcoa Inc. is one of these new technologies.

Lighter but Still Crash Ready

August 19, 2014 11:09 am | Award Winners

Today’s automakers face the challenge of producing vehicles that meet consumer expectations as well as government standards for safety, comfort, performance and sustainability. Structural adhesives help them fulfill many of these goals, and bonding technologies have become critically important in the successful design and construction of modern vehicles. The Dow Chemical Company is a major supplier of these adhesives.

Low-friction Engine Oil

August 19, 2014 11:07 am | Award Winners

A research team that includes Oak Ridge National Laboratory, General Motors Research and Development Center, Shell Global Solutions and Lubrizol Corp. has developed a new group of ionic liquids (ILs) for use as next-generation lubricant additives. The molecules of these oil-miscible, phosphorus-containing, halogen-free ILs have a strong tendency to physically absorb to the metallic bearing surface by electrical attraction.

New Insecticide Class

August 19, 2014 11:05 am | Award Winners

Dow AgroSciences is constantly searching for technological advances for its insecticide products. The company does this by investigating new chemistries that are discovered and rigorously tested using a variety of techniques, such as bioassays.

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