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  • 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
  • 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
  • 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,
  • 711 HPW researches Human-Machine Trust

    WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- A research team in the 711th Human Performance Wing’s Airman Systems Directorate here focuses on how humans make reliance decisions with technology - or in other words, how humans develop, maintain and lose trust. At first glance, this may seem like a small feat, but Dr. Joseph Lyons, Human Trust and
  • 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
  • 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
  • Materials and Manufacturing Directorate hosts DARPA leadership

    Dr. Lawrence Drummy, a material scientist is the Functional Materials Division, Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Lab (left) provides an overview of current research in Nano Tomography for Dr. Stephanie Tompkins, Director, Defense Sciences Office, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, during a visit to AFRL Materials
  • Changing Air Force healthcare through innovation

    Innovation is a buzzword often associated with new technology platforms or successful sports teams, but in reality innovation can apply anywhere someone comes up with a new idea or way of doing something.When it comes to health innovation and research, it’s all about finding new solutions to improve healthcare throughout the Air Force.“There’s
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