Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Smart materials' process promises to revolutionize manufacturing of medical devices, other products

Date:
September 2, 2010
Source:
University of Waterloo
Summary:
A new "smart materials" process -- Multiple Memory Material Technology -- promises to revolutionize the manufacture of diverse products such as medical devices, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), printers, hard drives, automotive components, valves and actuators. The breakthrough technology will provide engineers with much more freedom and creativity by enabling far greater functionality to be incorporated into medical devices such as stents, braces and hearing aids than is currently possible.

A new "smart materials" process -- Multiple Memory Material Technology -- developed by University of Waterloo engineering researchers promises to revolutionize the manufacture of diverse products such as medical devices, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), printers, hard drives, automotive components, valves and actuators.

The breakthrough technology will provide engineers with much more freedom and creativity by enabling far greater functionality to be incorporated into medical devices such as stents, braces and hearing aids than is currently possible.

Smart materials, also known as shape memory alloys, have been around for several decades and are well known for their ability to remember a pre-determined shape.

Traditional memory materials remember one shape at one temperature and a second shape at a different temperature. Until now they have been limited to change shape at only one temperature. Now with the new Waterloo technology they can remember multiple different memories, each one with a different shape.

"This ground-breaking technology makes smart materials even smarter," said Ibraheem Khan, a research engineer and graduate student working with Norman Zhou, a professor of mechanical and mechatronics engineering. "We have developed a technology that embeds several memories in a monolithic smart material. In essence, a single material can be programmed to remember more shapes, making it smarter than previous technologies."

The patent pending technology, which is available for licensing, allows virtually any memory material to be quickly and easily embedded with additional local memories.

The transition zone area can be as small as a few microns in width with multiple zones, each having a discrete transition temperature. As the processed shape memory material is subject to changing temperature, each treated zone will change shape at its respective transition temperature. As well, transition zones created side-by-side allow for a unique and smooth shape change in response to changing temperature.

Several prototypes have been developed to demonstrate this pioneering technology.

One mimics a transformer robot. The robot's limbs transform with increasing temperature at discrete temperatures, whereas in conventional shape memory technology this is limited to only one transformation temperature.

A video demonstrating the miniature robot can be seen at: www.research.uwaterloo.ca/watco/technologies/eng_memory_material.asp

The engineering technology was developed in the Centre for Advanced Materials Joining, based in Waterloo's department of mechanical and mechatronics engineering.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Waterloo. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Waterloo. "'Smart materials' process promises to revolutionize manufacturing of medical devices, other products." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 September 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100901161554.htm>.
University of Waterloo. (2010, September 2). 'Smart materials' process promises to revolutionize manufacturing of medical devices, other products. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100901161554.htm
University of Waterloo. "'Smart materials' process promises to revolutionize manufacturing of medical devices, other products." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100901161554.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Australian Airlines Relax Phone Ban Too

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) Qantas and Virgin say passengers can use their smartphones and tablets throughout flights after a regulator relaxed a ban on electronic devices during take-off and landing. As Hayley Platt reports the move comes as the two domestic rivals are expected to post annual net losses later this week. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Hurricane Marie Brings Big Waves to California Coast

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 26, 2014) Huge waves generated by Hurricane Marie hit the Southern California coast. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Chinese Researchers Might Be Creating Supersonic Submarine

Newsy (Aug. 26, 2014) Chinese researchers have expanded on Cold War-era tech and are closer to building a submarine that could reach the speed of sound. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Breakingviews: India Coal Strained by Supreme Court Ruling

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 26, 2014) An acute coal shortage is likely to be aggravated as India's supreme court declared government coal allocations illegal, says Breakingviews' Peter Thal Larsen. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins