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The Air Force Research Laboratory’s Autonomous Research System, or ARES, uses artificial intelligence to design, execute and analyze experiments at a pace much faster than traditional scientific research methods. This robotic research machine is revolutionizing materials science research and demonstrates the benefits of human-machine interaction for rapid advancement and development of knowledge today. (U.S. Air Force photo/Marisa Novobilski). Disrupting the research process: changing materials science with robotics, AI and autonomy
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio --ARES may not look like Johnny Five, the famous robot from the 1986 movie scene, but this robot’s ability to integrate robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and data science is altering materials research in a big way at Air Force Research Laboratory.The AFRL Materials and Manufacturing Directorate’s
0 10/21
2016
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – 1st. Lt. Jason Goins, a materials research engineer at the Air Force Research Laboratory, shows a prototype of a new flexible body armor plate. The design makes the use of a ceramic ball matrix encapsulated in foam material, which is then backed with multiple layers of polyethylene sheets. (U.S. Air Force photo by Marisa Novobilski/released)

Flexing in the line of fire: lightweight, flexible body armor for the force of the future
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- In the line of fire, protective body armor plays a critical role in survival. Hard-plated, rigid and heavy—today’s National Institute of Justice Type IV body armor—the kind that protects warfighters against armor piercing bullets-- defends the wearer, but adds weight and bulk that a fast-moving operator
0 10/14
2016
Dr. Michael Caton (left), the Assistant Chief Scientist at the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, discusses his mentoring philosophy with a potential future mentee. The directorate’s inaugural “speed mentoring” event took concepts from “speed dating” to help match mentors and future mentees for a year-long career enlightening opportunity. (U.S. Air Force photo by Marisa Alia-Novobilski/released) ‘Speed mentoring’ matches mentors, protégés
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- Nervous laughter and quiet conversation ensued as participants entered a room set with cloth-covered tables, bowls of mints and punch. Light music played in the background, setting the scene for what looked to be another round of speed dating in the Dayton area.But on this particular afternoon, the 23
0 10/07
2016
A researcher at Air Force Research Laboratory demonstrates the ability of a flexible lithium-ion battery to conform under stress. The batteries developed here have proven themselves to maintain steady voltage even after exposure to more than 250 rounds of extreme mechanical manipulations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Marisa Alia-Novobilski/released) Flexible batteries: evolving energy for the ‘new’ reality
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- It’s a $7 million research industry today, expected to be worth $400 million dollars by 2025. For researchers at the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, the “energy” spent in this research area is worth much more. By using highly conductive, flexible carbon nanotube mats,
0 10/07
2016
AFRL Biological Materials and Processing Research Team members perform sample tests of various aircraft locations at the conclusion of the Joint Biological Agent Decontamination System process.  (U.S. Air Force photo) Air Force Research Laboratory discovering what’s “bugging” military aircraft
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- As any aircraft maintainer can attest, corrosion is a major factor affecting the overall health of military aircraft.  Anything from changing temperatures to environmental factors can precipitate corrosion.  One major contributor, however, is often overlooked:  microbes.The AFRL Biological Materials and
0 9/09
2016
Dr. Adam Pilchak, materials research engineer at the Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, loads a piece of a fractured titanium disk into a scanning electron microscope. By looking at the microscopic features on the fracture surface, researchers are able to determine how the crack initiated and spreads through the component to cause the failure. (Air Force photo/Michele Eaton) Air Force lab investigating microscopic crack formation for aircraft
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- The B-52 is one of the oldest legacy aircraft in the Air Force. Since the 1950s, this aircraft has led the force in its dominance as the world’s best. However, just as humans begin to age, so do aircraft. Repeated loading and unloading, changes in air pressure, exposure to altitude and more, contribute to
0 8/31
2016
Users of the Maker Hub’s 3-D printer can make their own creations using computer-aided design or can explore the many shared designs available through the vast online Maker community.  (U.S. Air Force photo/Lori Hughes) Maker Hub turns researchers into builders
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- The Air Force Research Laboratory has unveiled a new project that will introduce Wright-Patterson employees to the innovative prototyping community known as the Maker Movement.The Maker Hub, a one-year pilot project in partnership with the Wright Brothers Institute, was conceived and spearheaded by AFRL
0 8/30
2016
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – Brig. Gen. Stacey T. Hawkins, Director, Logistcs, Engineering and Force Protection, Air Mobility Command (center) learns more about additive manufacturing capabilities for functional materials during a visit to the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Aug. 26. The laboratory visit was part of a larger tour of AFRL facilities to gain in-depth knowledge of current capabilities for additive manufacturing technology. The visit included a directorate overview, discussions on additive manufacturing applications and visits to multiple research laboratories, highlighting 3-D printing capabilities for metals, polymer-based materials and functional material applications. AMC is exploring the possibilities of using additive manufacturing for replacement parts for aircraft during the life-cycle maintenance process. (Air Force photo by Marisa Novobilski/released)

Air Mobility Command logistics leadership visits AFRL/RX
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – Brig. Gen. Stacey T. Hawkins, Director, Logistcs, Engineering and Force Protection, Air Mobility Command (center) learns more about additive manufacturing capabilities for functional materials during a visit to the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Aug. 26. The laboratory
0 8/30
2016
The C-17 Globemaster III was certified for unlimited use of hydro-processed blended biofuels known as hydro-treated renewable jet fuels, officials announced Feb. 9, 2011. (U. S. Air Force photo / Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson) Fueling the future: Air Force Title III program working to “home-grow” biofuels for DOD, industry
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- Creating, maintaining, protecting and expanding critical technology and technology resources is paramount to national security. A need to address increases in petroleum costs with an environmentally-friendly fuel source has led to a new way of looking at production—and the Defense Production Act Title III
0 8/29
2016
Thomas Lockhart (center), Director, AFRL Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, and Chad Watchorn (right), Executive Director, Regional STEM Collaborative, speak with interns Connor Eviston and Megan Imel (unpictured), undergraduate students from the University of Cincinnati and Wright State University, respectively, during the 2016 RX Summer Student Poster Session, Aug. 5. Eviston and Imel researched nondestructive evaluation and thermal signals for impact-damaged polymer matrix composites this summer. (U.S. Air Force photo/Marisa Novobilski) Future scientists “poster” success at annual RX summer session
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- More than 60 students from the Air Force Research Laboratory Materials and Manufacturing Directorate (RX) showcased their summer research for a crowd of research scientists, engineers and distinguished guests from across the region during the 2016 RX Summer Student Researcher Poster Session here, Aug. 5. 
0 8/08
2016
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