Vote for NASA Tech Briefs’ 22nd Annual Readers’ Choice Awards

Each December, we ask our readers to cast their vote for the annual NASA Tech Briefs' Readers' Choice Product of the Year Awards.

You're invited to cast your vote for the one product among the 12 nominees listed below that you feel was the most important new product introduced to the engineering community in 2016.

Voting deadline is January 23, 2017


The 2016 nominees (vote for only one):

ANSYS AIM 17.2 simulation software from ANSYS, Pittsburgh, PA, features combined fluid thermal and solid thermal-stress capabilities. Momentum and heat sources are available for fluid and conjugate heat transfer analysis, enabling simulations to include such features as electronic package power sources, fans, and filters. Other features include options for optimizing bolted connections, integrated geometry modeling, automated meshing tools, and a flow solution.
Dewetron, Wakefield, RI, announced the TRIONet compact data acquisition system that accepts any two of the company’s multi-channel TRION series plug-in modules. The system connects to any Windows computer via either USB 3.0 (or USB 2.0) or Ethernet. TRIONet mainframes can be interconnected using Ethernet. As a result, TRIONet mainframes can be placed up to 100 meters apart from each other. A 9- to 36-VDC power input allows TRIONet to be operated from vehicle power.
FLIR Systems, Wilsonville, OR, announced the identiFINDER® R200 handheld radiation detector that delivers ANSI N42.48-compliant identification and weighs less than one pound. The wearable detector provides continuous radiation monitoring without any user interaction. The detector provides high-resolution identification so the user can quickly determine whether a gamma radiation source is a true threat or a benign source from medical patients, normal occurring radiation, or industrial use.
Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence, North Kingstown, RI, introduced the BLAZE 600M non-contact optical measurement solution. The flexible, manually operated system provides ultra-rapid 3D data acquisition and actionable data for measurement, inspection, product development, line tuning, and reverse engineering. The scanner performs feature and surface measurements of parts and assemblies in various sizes, combining high-resolution digital imaging with blue light LED illumination.
The PADS PCB Product Creation Platform from Mentor Graphics, Wilsonville, OR, is a design creation platform that provides schematic capture, component management, simulation and analysis, PCB layout and routing, and manufacturing analysis and outputs. The platform also provides intelligent component selection and data management, definition of rules and constraints, circuit reuse, and variant creation and management during circuit creation.
Molex, Lisle, IL, offers Soligie® printed electronic sensor systems that provide a thin, flexible alternative to rigid printed circuit boards (PCBs) or copper flex circuits in a range of applications. An integrated design and manufacturing process produces printed electronic sensor systems that incorporate a wide variety of components on printed electronic substrates. The printed electronic components and interconnects can be fabricated on flexible substrates such as plastic, paper, and foil.
MSC Software Corp., Newport Beach, CA, announced the release of Marc 2015 nonlinear and multiphysics simulation software. Enhancements include new material models to simulate complex dynamic behavior of elastomers, permanent deformation of thermoplastics, and anisotropic plastic deformation in metal forming. The software provides a cohesive contact behavior that allows users to apply a finite stiffness in the normal and tangential direction, improving stress results in the contact zones and the overall deformation.
National Instruments, Austin, TX, announced LabVIEW 2016 system design software that introduces new channel wires to simplify complex communication between parallel sections of code. The software features enhanced interoperability with Python and third-party devices. Five add-ons are now supported with LabVIEW 64-bit that enable users to harness all the memory of an operating system when developing and debugging applications.
Paul N. Gardner Co., Pompano Beach, FL, announced the SmarTest coating thickness measurement system that consists of an app and a wireless sensor for measuring coating thickness with the help of a smartphone or tablet. The system uses Sensor-integrated Digital Signal Processing (SIDSP®) sensors combined with wireless technology to measure coating thickness. The digitally generated readings on the sensor are relayed by Bluetooth to a smartphone or tablet.
Stratasys, Eden Prairie, MN, introduced the J750 3D printer that produces full-color, multi-material prototypes and parts in a single 3D print without post-processing. Users can choose from more than 360,000 different color shades plus multiple material properties ranging from rigid, to flexible and opaque, to transparent. Prototypes such as tooling, molds, jigs, and fixtures can include an array of colors, materials, and material properties in the same part.
Tecplot, Bellevue, WA, announced Tecplot 360 EX 2016 Release 2 computational fluid dynamics (CFD) post-processing software with SZL technology. An updated FEA data loader supports data files from Abaqus 6.14, ANSYS 16.2, and CFX 16.2. Features include triangulation, streamtrace seeding, conditional expressions in equations, Fourier transforms, probe sidebar, custom color maps, animation speed control, and interactive macro debugging.
Wolfram Research, Champaign, IL, released Mathematica 11 technical computing software that features more than 500 new functions, including improvements in machine learning, 3D printing and geometry, mathematics, visualization and graphics, graphs and statistics, geography, text and language processing, knowledge base, units and dates, cloud and Web interfaces, and audio, imaging, and signals. The new version enables users to print 3D models and plots directly through local or cloud-based 3D printers.