Additional Users Stories can be found in the 2014 edition of COMSOL News. view it now in your browser
M. Bachmann, V. Avilov, A. Gumenyuk, and M. Rethmeier
BAM Federal Institute For Materials Research and Testing
High-power laser beam welding uses a localized heat source to achieve narrow deep welds and high welding rates. Engineers run into some difficulties because the use of a localized heat source often results in the distortion of metal components; spattering and the ejection of droplets from the weld pool results in underfills, undercuts, craters, blowholes, or blowouts. A stationary magnetic field ...
The design and testing of high-voltage cables for terrestrial and submarine applications is paramount to Prysmian's business model. A fundamental challenge in designing power transmission systems is optimizing the cables so that they can reliably deliver the required steady-state current while remaining at, or preferably below, the maximum permissible operating temperature. Incorporating ...
P. Lazarou, C. Rotinat
CEA LIST, France
Robotic devices for minimally invasive surgery procedures require flexible tools and careful actuation. But most robotic surgery devices are bulky, expensive, and physically draining for surgeons to operate for long periods of time. At the French Atomic and Alternative Energies Commission (CEA LIST), researchers are investigating miniature phase-change actuators that will reduce the strain placed ...
G. Barbella, P. Geraldini
Nuclear sites in Italy are being decommissioned, leaving questions about how to safely manage and store radioactive waste. Nuclear waste can be stored temporarily in steel drums encased in concrete, but environmental factors must be carefully controlled to prevent corrosion of the steel. It is difficult to constantly monitor the corrosion process, and the relative humidity in the storage area ...
C. de Jonge
Deep-space telescopes require ultrasensitive detectors and calibration to pick up weak far-infrared signals. The SpicA Far-InfraRed Instrument (SAFARI), an infrared camera that will fly aboard the Space Infrared Telescope for Cosmology and Astrophysics (SPICA), has sensors that measure the far-infrared spectrum. The SAFARI system includes a radiation source, needed for calibration, that is so ...
J. Knox, R. Coker
NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, AL, USA
To ensure astronaut safety on space missions, it is necessary to routinely revitalize the atmosphere in manned spacecraft. Jim Knox, Rob Coker, and a team of engineers at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center have developed a water-saving system called an Isothermal Bulk Dessicant (IBD). The IBD is used to collect water from the atmosphere for re-use. It consists of packed beds lined with silica ...
Michele Gosso & Antonio Fiumara
Fiat Research Center, Orbassano, Italy
At the Fiat Research Center in Italy, Michele Gosso and Antonio Fiumara are working on the development of providing power for electric and hybrid vehicles. The team must combine individual lithium-ion battery pouch cells into battery packs to generate the 350V needed, while providing the packs with sufficient cooling. At the same time, they want to keep the packs as small and light as ...
Lam Research Corporation, CA, USA
With technological advancements accelerating so rapidly, more powerful computer chips are needed to meet the high demands of fast-growing industries. Lam Research Corporation manufactures semiconductor devices and equipment used to deposit, etch, and clean material layers laid onto wafers during semiconductor processing. With processes as precise as chemical vapor deposition (CVD), temperature ...
Human activity steals oxygen from natural water sources such as lakes and this oxygen-deficient water often contains high levels of toxic substances such as metals and organic material. Thus the number of lakes that can be used as a source of water is reduced, straining the available resources and creating a need for water-treatment plants of water which can have negative impacts when powered ...