The Tek Pulse: The latest and greatest engineering and science posts

Informative, innovative and interesting articles from our favorite blogs

  1. New research identifies how 3-D printed metals can be both strong and ductile, University of Birmingham, December 11, 2017, EurekAlert -- A new technique to print 3D metals has been proven to exceed expectations in strength and ductility. The research has helped refute skepticism around the ability to create strong metals through 3D printing, as such; this discovery is crucial to moving the technology toward the manufacturing of heavy-duty parts. However, the quality of products from metal 3D printing has been subpar due to issues with reduced ductility. The team was able to get around this obstacle through a new cooling process. Their work gives researchers a new tool to design alloy systems with ultra-mechanical properties. The technique also helps metal 3D printing gain access to the aerospace and automotive industry where mechanical properties are required. For the full article visit EurekAlert.

  2. Basic element for quantum computer – stable quantum gate – created, University of Konstanz, December 11, 2017, ScienceDaily -- A new milestone on the path to the elusive quantum computer has been achieved. Scientists have developed a stable quantum gate for two-quantum bit systems. The quantum gate can perform all necessary basic operations of the quantum computer. It will be quite awhile before the first quantum computer will be available to consumers. However, a fully functional quantum computer will mark a big leap in computer technology. It will be more efficient and solve problems that current computers cannot. Unfortunately, the quantum computer reacts more sensitively to external disturbances than a conventional computer. Consequently, a main goal has been to create stable quantum gates – the basic building block of a quantum computer. This new quantum gate uses electrons in silicon to store the information and it can control and read out the interaction of two quantum bits. For the full article check out ScienceDaily.

  3. Wearable Computing Ring Lets Users Write with Thumb, Kenny Walter, December 11, 2017, Research & Development -- A computing thumb ring will enable users to write numbers and letters on a computer screen without having to look at or touch a computer. The device allows users to trace letters and numbers with their fingers in order for the symbols to appear on the user’s computer screen. The ring is outfitted with a gyroscope and a small microphone, called Fingersound, which allows users to recognize the beginning and end of a gesture. By using sound and movement to identify intended gestures, this new system has much better accuracy compared to a system looking only for movements. The system sends the sound captured by the microphone and motion data captured by the gyroscope sensor through filtering mechanisms and then analyzes the sound to determine whether a gesture was performed or whether it was noise from inadvertent activity. The technology could one day be used to send phone calls to voicemail or answer text messages without the user needing to reach for their phone. For more information visit Research & Development.

  4. Aperture mask allows for 3D ultrasound imaging with just one sensor, Bob Yirka, December 11, 2017, TechXplore -- Researchers have found a way to perform 3D ultrasound imaging using a single sensor. A traditional ultrasound machine uses transducers that have thousands of very small sensors, which send a signal and then listens for the signal that’s bounced back. Electronics inside the ultrasound device then stich the images together. Having hundreds or even thousands of sensors makes these machines very expensive. The team adapted the traditional design to allow it to operate using a single larger sensor -- leading to lower-cost ultrasound machines. The team tested their device by creating imagery of 3D letters that were submerged in water. The device not only could make out the letters, it was able to place them in a 3D context within the water. Although the device is not yet ready for commercialization due to its steep price, researchers believe with further refinement, the price can be set low enough so groups in developing nations could afford them. For the full article visit TechXplore.

  5. And lastly, the most popular Tektronix download of the week goes to – Making Standby Power Measurements. Our definitive guide to making standby power measurements covers common measurement challenges with standby power, connecting to the system under test and more. In addition, our download also provides example measurements.

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Do you have a great article, blog or idea that you’d like to see featured in our series? Please be sure to share in the comments below. Stay tuned next week for another installment of The Tek Pulse, featuring more trending articles from the engineering, technology and science worlds.

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