Materials and mechanical scientists are using machine learning to rapidly vet combinations of elements that could be used in next-generation environmental barrier coatings needed to protect vehicles traveling in the extreme conditions of aerospace and space environments. The project, led by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, is supported by the National Science Foundation.
Faculty from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute served as experts in an exchange of information about developments in the field of sustainable energy, large-scale environmental change, and innovative and interdisciplinary research into energy storage and smart systems in the built environment on a recent visit by two members of the U.S. Congress.
In the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing protocols did not slow Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute students Wyatt Delans and Jake Szottfried down when they needed to design and develop code for a robotic system capable of assembling a model trophy for a class project. Using new simulation and virtual reality lab capabilities at the university, they were able to design most of the project in their dorm rooms and then test it in a virtual environment before physically manufacturing it in the Manufacturing Innovation Learning Lab (MILL) at Rensselaer.
TROY, N.Y. — Researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will study whether body heat, or even humidity from a person’s breath, for instance, may impact the effectiveness of the porous fibers that are used to make protective technologies, like face masks. With the support of a National Science Foundation grant, the team will use its expertise in fluid and solid mechanics to study the mechanical performance of fibrous materials when they are exposed to warm temperatures and humidity.
Nuclear power plants produce about 20% of the United States’ electricity. In order to increase the amount of carbon dioxide-free energy these plants can yield, improvements in efficiency and safety must be made. With support from $1.5 million in grants from the Department of Energy (DOE), researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute will lead projects aimed at upgrading nuclear power plants with those goals in mind.
An innovative testing platform that more closely mimics what cancer encounters in the body may allow for more precise, personalized therapies by enabling the rapid study of multiple therapeutic combinations against tumor cells. The platform, which uses a three-dimensional environment to more closely mirror a tumor microenvironment, is demonstrated in research published in Communications Biology.
Accurate predictive simulations of the electrochemical reactions that power solar fuel generators, fuel cells, and batteries could advance these technologies through improved material design, and by preventing detrimental electrochemical processes, such as corrosion. However, electrochemical reactions are so complex that current computational tools can only model a fraction of all relevant factors at one time — with limited accuracy. This leaves researchers reliant on the trial and error of significant and expensive experimentation.