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Showing posts from March, 2017

Aluminium & Kevlar Shield - The art of Origami for saving lives!

Remember the paper planes and the boats you used to make in your school days with your friends? A swan, a flower or a windmill maybe?
Everybody has had a go at the art of Origami - the Japanese art of folding paper to create structures of beauty at some point in their lives. They are usually used as decorative pieces or showcase exquisite craftsmanship involving various forms and folding patterns. But a team of engineers at Brigham Young University (BYU) has created a lightweight bulletproof shield inspired by a Yoshimura origami crease pattern. The shield is made of 12 layers of bulletproof Kevlar with an aluminum core in the middle.

It solves two very critical aspects of physical protection of law enforcement officers – This structure is extremely lightweight and compact unlike rigid shields which are cumbersome to deploy at times. The origami shield can be easily deployed in about 5 seconds and can be easily carried in the trunk of the police vehicles as it is foldable and requires le…

Fire-resistant Aluminium cladding - A key step to prevent disasters

It’s a no brainer that as land availability shrinks we are going to see a spurt in the construction of high-rise buildings in the future. One of the key challenges architects face here is to make them safe from fire hazards. This is where aluminium can step in big time if used as a cladding material. The aluminium composite panels are designed for exterior cladding that minimizes the risk of fire in the city of modern high-rise offices and apartments. These aluminium panels are either 4.4 or 6mm thick, with a central fire-resistant core. What makes the panels different is that the 3 mm interior core doesn't melt or drip when exposed to the flames, but instead turns into a powder that keeps the fire from spreading. Aluminium, while it has a relatively high initial energy cost, offers unparalleled manufacturing flexibility, the broadest ranges of finishes, an excellent strength-to-weight ratio, unlimited recyclables and has a far better environmental profile than many specifiers beli…

Team Indus's All-Aluminium Lunar Rover - Ticket to India's Moonshot Moment

“Sometime in late 2017, a tiny vehicle will blast into space from India on a 10-day journey to the moon. As it finally lands on the lunar surface some 238,900 miles later, its fate will rest entirely on four small aluminium parts in its shock absorbers. They need to work in a vacuum, with lubrication that doesn’t freeze or jam no matter what the angle. And if they fail, there’s no one to go up and fix it – meaning that eight years of work and $20m (£13.2m) in prize money will be lost in space.” - Late in the year 2015, The Guardian wrote about “Google Lunar XPrize: India's moonshot at the space race” and about Team Indus, India’s only representation at the prestigious competition.
So, what is the Google Lunar XPrize and what is the big deal about it? For starters, it is one of the biggest competitions of robotic space exploration in the world in which any participating team has to: Successfully place a spacecraft on the moon’s surfaceTravel 500 metersTransmit high-definition video …