by Staff Writers
Salt Lake City (UPI) Jun 12, 2012
U.S. researchers say microscopic mechanical devices that withstand intense radiation and heat can be used in robots dealing with damaged nuclear power plants.
Such devices can withstand high amounts of radiation that can quickly fry silicon-based electronic circuits, University of Utah engineers reported Tuesday.
Such electronic circuits were in robots sent to help contain the meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant after Japan's catastrophic 2011 earthquake and tsunami, they said.
"Robots were sent to control the troubled reactors, and they ceased to operate after a few hours because their electronics failed," Utah researcher Massood Tabib-Azar said.
Tabib-Azar and his colleagues have been working on mechanical substitutes for such electronics and showed their devices, known as micro-electro-mechanical systems, kept working despite intense ionizing radiation and heat by dipping them for two hours into the core of the University of Utah's research reactor.
"We have developed a unique technology that keeps on working in the presence of ionizing radiation to provide computation power for critical defense infrastructures," Tabib-Azar said. "Our devices also can be used in deep space applications in the presence of cosmic ionizing radiation, and can help robotics to control troubled nuclear reactors without degradation."
Space Technology News - Applications and Research
Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.
Lawrence Livermore research identifies precise measurement of radiation damage
Livermore CA (SPX) Jun 11, 2012
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory researchers have for the first time simulated and quantified the early stages of radiation damage that will occur in a given material. "A full understanding of the early stages of the radiation damage process provides knowledge and tools to manipulate them to our advantage," said Alfredo Correa, a Lawrence Fellow from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|