Intelligently recovering and recycling balsa wood

There are 30,000 wind turbines in operation in Germany, many of which are starting to age. In 2019, 2000 rotor blades had to be discarded; in 2024, this figure will shoot up to 15,000. But where to put these up to 90-meter-long, ...

Measuring the wear and tear of metals

For the past 50 years, researchers at the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) have been conducting detailed short- and long-term testing of a wide variety of structural materials manufactured in Japan to ensure ...

Anti-fatigue-fracture hydrogels

Hydrogels are polymer networks infiltrated with water, widely used for tissue engineering vehicles of drug delivery and novel platforms for biomedical engineering. Emerging applications for new hydrogel materials call for ...

Predicting the life expectancy of solar modules

Solar modules are exposed to many environmental influences that cause material to fatigue over the years. Researchers have developed a procedure to calculate effects of these influences over the long term. This allows ...

How long do insects last?

Researchers from Trinity College Dublin have shown that although insects are made from one of the toughest natural materials, their legs and wings can wear out over time. The findings have been just published in the Journal ...

Spotting the invisible cracks in wind turbines

(Phys.org)—A significant percentage of the costs of wind energy is due to wind turbine failures, as components are weakened under turbulent air flow conditions and need to be replaced. The challenge for the team was to ...

Predicting fatigue: Nanocrystals reveal damaged material

A small crack in a metal wheel caused Germany's worst-ever rail accident—the 1998 Eschede train disaster. The problem: it was practically impossible to detect damage of that nature to a metal by inspecting it externally. ...

Metals for a new era

Cars that change colour at the push of a button; metals that strengthen with use; buildings that harness energy from the wind... research into designing structural materials that are both responsive and functional is shifting ...

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