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Category: Petroleum Engineering

Innovative grilling technique improves air quality

The team grilled large quantities of skewered meat to measure the emissions. Credit: Fraunhofer IBP Restaurant owners are increasingly turning to fired charcoal grills to prepare meals for customers—but the odors and fumes emitted by these grills are often a source of irritation for nearby residents. The German Environment Agency asked a team of researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics (IBP) to investigate whether the exhaust air treatment systems used in grills actually get the job done and…

Balancing Supercapacitor Stack Voltages | Electronic Design

You can use supercapacitors as a storage element for energy harvesting (Fig. 1). They’re also used to store energy for camera flash circuits. Electric cars and hydrogen fuel-cell cars might use supercaps to provide a low-impedance reserve for fast acceleration and store a large amount of power from regenerative braking systems. The virtue of supercaps in electric vehicles was validated by Tesla’s acquisition of supercapacitor maker Maxwell Technologies in 2019. 1. Supercapacitors and ultracapacitors come in various shapes and sizes,…

Research suggests significant benefits to investing in advanced machinery maintenance

The maintenance of machinery in the manufacturing industry consists of three primary approaches: reactive, preventive, and predictive. Reactive maintenance is when a manufacturer runs the machinery until it breaks down and requires maintenance. Preventive maintenance is when maintenance is scheduled based on time or cycles. This is similar to changing a car’s oil after 3 months or 3000 miles. Lastly, predictive maintenance is based on data and observations. This is similar to how newer cars track different variables and indicate…

Switching from aluminum to zinc alloys could improve sustainability of automotive parts

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain A new study reveals that switching from aluminum to zinc alloys in the production of automotive parts could greatly enhance their longevity and sustainability. The study, conducted by Cranfield University’s Sustainable Manufacturing Systems Centre, compared three different alloys (Aluminium-A380, Magnesium-AZ91D and Zinc-ZA8). Over recent years aluminum alloys have been favoured by the automotive manufacturing industry for their lightweight properties and lower cost. The study, published in the International Journal of Sustainable Manufacturing, suggests that aluminum is…

May PMI Rebounds as Optimism Mixes with Caution

Sparking hopes that the manufacturing downturn sparked by the global pandemic may be starting to reverse, the monthly PMI Index from the Institute for Supply Management rose 1.6 percentage points in May to 43.1%. The index still finished well below the manufacturing growth level of 50% and just slightly above the 42.8% overall economic growth threshold. Still, the rebound is the first time the index had improved since the beginning of the year, sparking hope that the decline may have…

Sweat-Powered E-Skin Patch Monitors Body Vitals, Reports via Bluetooth

Using some form of energy harvesting to power personal medical devices that monitor body parameters is clearly an attractive proposition, but it’s difficult to realize in practice. Addressing this issue, a team based at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) has developed a harvesting-powered electronic skin (e-skin) made from soft, flexible rubber that’s applied directly on top of the subject’s skin. The e-skin contains embedded sensors and an active circuit comprising the entire signal chain, including analog front end (AFE)…

Engineers develop near-zero emissions engine technology

Southwest Research Institute engineers have developed the next generation of clean diesel engine technology to reduce hazardous nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon dioxide emissions while minimizing fuel consumption. Working with regulatory agencies, vehicle manufacturers and suppliers, SwRI combined engine modifications with integrated aftertreatment technology and control strategies to reach near-zero emissions levels. SwRI developed the technology for the California Air Resources Board (CARB), a state organization charged with combatting air pollution. “Through the continued efforts of a multidisciplinary team, SwRI…

New 3-D printing study shows promise for predictive maintenance

Army researchers study the performance of 3-D-printed metal parts and how they degrade as part of ongoing research in vehicle technology. The CCDC Army Research Laboratory at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, prints metal parts from powder. Credit: Dave McNally Army researchers have discovered a way to monitor the performance of 3-D printed parts, which tend to have imperfections that affect performance in ways traditionally-machined parts do not. A new study published recently in the International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology…

Energy Storage Systems Boost EV Fast-Charger Infrastructure (Part 1)

Electric vehicles (EVs) will gain more and more market share, eventually taking over internal-combustion-engine vehicles. Direct-current (dc) fast-charging stations will replace, or integrate with, petrol stations, and renewable energies like solar and wind will be used to power them. People will want to charge their EVs in less than 15 minutes and they won’t want to wait in a queue for a unique charger. Considering multiple charging points, the peak power required can be more than 1 MW. This could…

Fluid Power Shipments Continue Downward Trend

The one-two punch of global tariff wars and a global pandemic have wiped out 11 years of economic growth, according to the monthly PMI index from the Institute for Supply Management. The April PMI plummeted 7.6 percentage points to 41.5%, driven by sharp declines in new orders, production and employment. Not only is the April PMI at its lowest level since the Great Recession of 2008, the drop was the fastest since a 9-percentage point fall in April 2009. And…