Swagelok Northern California Blog

Self-Healing Metal Oxides Ward Off Corrosion

Ultra-thin layer of this solid can flow like a liquid preventing leaks

Engineers at MIT have found that an ultra-thin layer of aluminum oxide applied as a protective coating to metals can flow like a liquid instead of cracking. This allows it to fill in cracks and gaps, preventing leakage of the tiny molecules that can penetrate through most materials.

Topics: Mission Critical

Direct Air Capture Promises a Virtually Unlimited Fuel Supply

Pulling carbon dioxide from the sky for fuels and more

Engineers at Carbon Engineering’s facility in British Columbia have built a plant that achieves both direct CO2 capture and fuel generation—and unlike previous attempts, the process is both scalable and cost-effective.

Topics: Mission Critical

New Research Demonstrates Why Soft Particles Won't Clog Up

Physicists show why it's hard to clog a drain with soft particles

Physicists at Emory University have shown that when soft particles flow through an opening, unlike hard particles, they rarely clog. Hard particles will often form an arch across the opening, after which pressure stabilizes behind the arch and forms a clog, but soft particles, simply squish together under pressure and the arch breaks.

Topics: Mission Critical

New Metal-Organic Framework Material Can Capture Atmospheric Gas

Metal-organic framework (MOF) material offers fantastic future filtration 

Scientists at the University of Manchester in England, the DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and several other institutions have developed a metal-organic framework (MOF) material that can remove ambient atmospheric nitrogen gas.

Topics: Mission Critical

Predicting the Movement of Gases, Liquids, and Cattle

New tools to determine when things are about to become random

Engineers at Washington University in St. Louis have developed mathematical tools that describe the movement in a stochastic (random) system just before it becomes random. The diffusive motion of such systems, called a “random walk,” is found in physical and nonphysical systems.

Topics: Mission Critical

FAQ: How Do Regulators Cut Delay?

Gas travels faster when pressure is lower, so a regulator can speed up a sample in an analytical system

Topics: Sampling Systems Downloads Tips Best Practices FAQs

World's Strongest Bio-Material

World's strongest bio-material outperforms steel & spider silk

Engineers at the Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) have produced the strongest bio-material ever made. It is stronger than steel. It is also stronger than dragline spider silk—usually considered the strongest bio-material.

Topics: Mission Critical

Thermoacoustics in Solids

Heat and sound wave interactions could run engines

New research by Purdue University scientists on solids as media for heat and sound wave interactions—just like a fluid does for thermoacoustic engines—has got us thinking.

Topics: Mission Critical

Nearly Frictionless, Forever-Dry Lube

Meet the material with 10x lower friction than fluoropolymers

Researchers at the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have experimented with the usual recipe of graphite paste for commercially used dry lubricants. They combined nanodiamonds with two-dimensional (2D) molybdenum disulfide layers—and then broke them. The resulting onion-like material composed of spherical graphitic shells experiences friction 10 times lower than that of fluoropolymers.

Topics: Mission Critical

High-Sensitivity Microsensors

Design breakthrough at CUNY's Advanced Science Center

Another promising advance on the horizon is the development of highly sensitive sensors that are small enough to be placed in hard-to-monitor locations like toxic areas and vehicle or machinery components.

Topics: Mission Critical

Affordable Carbon Nanotubes

Making small diameter carbon nanotubes less costly to produce

The strongest material in the world may soon be cheap enough to use more widely. Small diameter carbon nanotubes, which can be stronger than steel and more conductive than copper, have applications from energy storage to photovoltaics and more. But they've been expensive to produce—until now.

Topics: Mission Critical