Sandia LabNews

Security in a heartbeat

Sandia is collaborating with a New Mexico small business to test and develop a biometric security system based on the human heartbeat. Sandia signed an agreement with Albuquerque-based Aquila Inc. to develop and test a wearable prototype that can stream in real time an identifying signature based on the electrical activity of a person’s heart.

Engineering success through predicting failure

Around the world, materials scientists and engineers are trying different ways to predict fractures in ductile metals, but it’s not clear which approach is most accurate. To compare the different methods, Sandia researchers have presented three voluntary challenges to their colleagues: Given the same basic information about the shape, composition and loading of a metal part, could they predict how it would eventually fracture?

Lowering the bar for hydrogen-powered technology

The Hydrogen Materials Advanced Research Consortium, or HyMARC, a multilab collaboration co-led by Sandia, is developing two types of hydrogen storage materials to meet challenging energy density targets set forth by DOE. The newly expanded collaboration is using the most promising strategies to optimize the materials for future use in vehicles.

Armoring satellites to survive, operate through attacks

Researchers at Sandia launched a seven-year mission campaign this month to develop the science, technology and architecture needed for autonomous satellite protection systems. The campaign, called STARCS, will fund dozens of Laboratory Directed Research and Development projects.

MESA fabs get an upgrade

Sandia has completed phase one of an anticipated three-year upgrade at its plant responsible for making integrated circuits, similar to computer chips. The facility is now fully compatible with industry-standard, 8-inch silicon wafers — thin, round starting materials used for making chips.