As it did, Thomas Chiou explained how the technology would allow Iowa State University researchers to take a close and unique look at materials reliability, biofuels combustion, environmental clean-up, cancer screening, biomass conversion, ionic liquids and many other research areas in science and engineering.
The Terahertz Ray (or “T-ray”) Research Facility at Iowa State’s Center for Nondestructive Evaluation (CNDE) gives researchers a state-of-the-art tool to measure and characterize materials, said Chiou, an associate scientist at the center who’s managing the new T-ray facility.
The instrument should produce useful data for the automotive, aviation, food, energy, materials, pharmaceuticals, medical, forensics, defense and homeland security fields.
“This machine represents a new frequency regime in which measurements can be made,” said R. Bruce Thompson, an Anson Marston Distinguished Professor in Engineering, the director of the Center for Nondestructive Evaluation and leader of the collaboration that brought the instrument to Iowa State. “When you have a new way to make measurements, there are new things you can do in applied and fundamental sciences.”
Iowa State acquired the instrument with the help of a $342,500 grant from the National Science Foundation’s Major Research Instrumentation program.
Researchers who worked to acquire the instrument include Thompson; Chiou; Viren Amin, an associate scientist at CNDE and adjunct assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering; Daniel Barnard, an assistant engineer for CNDE and an assistant scientist for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory; Stephen Holland, a group leader at CNDE and an assistant professor of aerospace engineering; David Hsu, a senior scientist for CNDE and adjunct professor of aerospace engineering; John McClelland, a scientist for the Institute for Physical Research and Technology, the Ames Laboratory and an adjunct associate professor of mechanical engineering; Terry Meyer, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering; Say-Kee Ong, a professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering; and Jacob Petrich, professor and chair of chemistry.
Chiou said the new instrument is made possible by advances in ultra-fast laser technology. It emits terahertz rays that are focused on a material or object. The rays reflect back to the receiver and the instrument’s controlling computer records and displays the resulting data. That data can show 3-D spatial images of the object’s inner structures and also provide spectroscopic analyses of chemical and physical compositions.
The rays – they’re between microwave and infrared rays in a relatively unexplored segment of the electromagnetic spectrum – can penetrate many common gases, non-metal solids and some liquids, Chiou said. They’re not known to cause harm to people or materials. They also show unique signatures for many materials.
Chiou said the Iowa State T-ray facility will feature two separate systems. One is a time-domain pulsed system suitable for high-speed, time-resolved imaging tasks. The second is a frequency-domain, continuous-wave system for applications requiring finer resolution.
Chiou said the National Aeronautics and Space Administration was the first to demonstrate the technology’s potential in nondestructive evaluation when NASA engineers successfully used T-rays to look for defects in the foam that insulates and protects the Space Shuttle’s external fuel tanks.
“There are a lot of applications for this technology and we’re discovering more and more of them,” Chiou said.
And so researchers at Iowa State’s Terahertz Ray Research Facility are looking for university and industry collaborators who want to see what the new equipment can do for their projects.
“There is a lot of emphasis on innovation these days,” Thompson said. “We see this technology as a way to encourage innovative ideas. We’re excited just to try some new things.”Contacts:
C. Thomas Chiou, Center for Nondestructive Evaluation, (515) 294-0299, email@example.com
Mike Krapfl | Newswise Science News
MoreGrasp: significant research results in the field of thought-controlled grasp neuroprosthetics
17.09.2018 | Technische Universität Graz
Wearable ultrasound patch monitors blood pressure deep inside body
13.09.2018 | University of California - San Diego
The building blocks of matter in our universe were formed in the first 10 microseconds of its existence, according to the currently accepted scientific picture. After the Big Bang about 13.7 billion years ago, matter consisted mainly of quarks and gluons, two types of elementary particles whose interactions are governed by quantum chromodynamics (QCD), the theory of strong interaction. In the early universe, these particles moved (nearly) freely in a quark-gluon plasma.
This is a joint press release of University Muenster and Heidelberg as well as the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung in Darmstadt.
Then, in a phase transition, they combined and formed hadrons, among them the building blocks of atomic nuclei, protons and neutrons. In the current issue of...
Thin-film solar cells made of crystalline silicon are inexpensive and achieve efficiencies of a good 14 percent. However, they could do even better if their shiny surfaces reflected less light. A team led by Prof. Christiane Becker from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) has now patented a sophisticated new solution to this problem.
"It is not enough simply to bring more light into the cell," says Christiane Becker. Such surface structures can even ultimately reduce the efficiency by...
A study in the journal Bulletin of Marine Science describes a new, blood-red species of octocoral found in Panama. The species in the genus Thesea was discovered in the threatened low-light reef environment on Hannibal Bank, 60 kilometers off mainland Pacific Panama, by researchers at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama (STRI) and the Centro de Investigación en Ciencias del Mar y Limnología (CIMAR) at the University of Costa Rica.
Scientists established the new species, Thesea dalioi, by comparing its physical traits, such as branch thickness and the bright red colony color, with the...
Scientists have succeeded in observing the first long-distance transfer of information in a magnetic group of materials known as antiferromagnets.
An international team of researchers has mapped Nemo's genome, providing the research community with an invaluable resource to decode the response of fish to...
21.09.2018 | Event News
03.09.2018 | Event News
27.08.2018 | Event News
21.09.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
21.09.2018 | Life Sciences
21.09.2018 | Event News