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Patents

Universally Oriented Renewable Liquid Mirror
Dmitri D. Ryutov, Arthur Toor
U.S. Patent 6,764,187 B2
July 20, 2004
A liquid mirror that can be universally oriented is made by connecting a liquid and a penetrable unit.

Using Impedance Measurements for Detecting Pathogens Trapped in an Electric Field
Robin R. Miles
U.S. Patent 6,764,583 B2
July 20, 2004
Impedance measurements between the electrodes in an electric field are used to detect pathogens trapped in the field. When particles are trapped in an electric field by the dielectrophoretic force, the impedance between the electrodes can be changed by changing the dielectric material between the electrodes. Therefore, the degree of particle trapping can be determined by measuring the impedance. This measurement is used to determine whether a sufficient amount of pathogen has been collected to further analyze or possibly identify the pathogen.

Hydraulically Amplified PZT MEMS Actuator
Robin R. Miles
U.S. Patent 6,811,133 B2
November 2, 2004
In this hydraulically amplified microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) actuator, a piece of piezoelectric material or stacked piezo bimorph is bonded or deposited as a thin film and then connected to a primary membrane. A reservoir containing fluid is also connected to the primary membrane, and a second membrane is connected to the reservoir. Energizing the piezoelectric material causes the material to bow, which causes the primary membrane to move. This movement transmits a force to the liquid in the reservoir, which causes the next membrane to move. Movement of the membrane results in an operating actuator.

Method for Making Thick and/or Thin Film
Ai Quoc Pham, Robert S. Glass
U.S. Patent 6,811,741 B2
November 2, 2004
This method for making low-cost thick or thin films is similar to the conventional tape-casting techniques, but it is more flexible and versatile. A slip (solution) of the desired material is prepared. Solvents such as ethanol and an appropriate dispersant are included in the solution to prevent agglomeration. An atomizer then sprays the slip in a fine mist onto a substrate. When the mist hits the substrate, the solvent evaporates, leaving a green tape that contains the powder and other additives. This tape may be punctured, cut, and heated for the desired application. Tape thickness can vary from about 1 micrometer upward.

Flexible Interconnects for Fuel Cell Stacks
David J. Lenz, Brandon W. Chung, Ai Quoc Pham
U.S. Patent 6,815,116 B2
November 9, 2004
This interconnect facilitates electrical connection and mechanical support for fuel-cell stacks with minimal mechanical stress. The interconnects are flexible and provide mechanically robust fuel-cell stacks with higher stack performance at lower cost. The rigid ribs used in previous interconnects are replaced with flexible “fingers,” or contact pads, that will accommodate the imperfect flatness of the ceramic fuel cells. The mechanical stress of stacked fuel cells will be smaller because of the fingers’ flexibility. The interconnects can be one- or two-sided.

Fuel Cell Apparatus and Method Thereof
John F. Cooper, Roger Krueger, Nerine Cherepy
U.S. Patent 6,815,105 B2
November 9, 2004
Highly efficient carbon fuels, exemplary embodiments of a high-temperature, molten electrolyte electrochemical cell, can directly convert ash-free carbon fuel to electrical energy. Ash-free, turbostatic carbon particles perform at high efficiencies in certain direct carbon conversion cells.

Inorganic Metal Oxide/Organic Polymer Nanocomposites and Method Thereof
Alexander E. Gash, Joe H. Satcher, Randy Simpson
U.S. Patent 6,818,081 B2
November 16, 2004
This synthetic method for preparing hybrid inorganic–organic energetic nanocomposites uses stable metal in organic salts and organic solvents as well as an organic polymer with good solubility in the solvent system. In addition, fuel metal powders, particularly those that are oxophilic, can be incorporated in the composition. This material has been characterized using thermal techniques, energy-filtered transmission electron microscopy, nitrogen adsorption–desorption methods, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. According to these characterization results, the organic polymer phase fills the material’s nanopores, providing superb mixing of the component phases in the energetic nanocomposite.

Laser Peening with Fiber Optic Delivery
Herbert W. Friedman, Earl R. Ault, Karl F. Scheibner
U.S. Patent 6,818,854 B2
November 16, 2004
This system uses a laser that produces at least one laser pulse and a laser processing unit to process the workpiece. A fiber-optic cable transmits the laser pulse (or pulses) from the laser to the laser processing unit.

Selectively-Etched Nanochannel Electrophoretic and Electrochemical Devices
Michael P. Surh, William D. Wilson, Troy W. Barbee, Jr., Stephen M. Lane
U.S. Patent 6,818,964 B2
November 16, 2004
Nanochannel electrophoretic and electrochemical devices have selectively etched nanolaminates located in the fluid transport channel. The normally flat surfaces of the nanolaminate, which has exposed conductive (metal) stripes, are selectively etched to form trenches and baffles. These modifications increase the amount of exposed metal to facilitate electrochemical redox reaction or control exposure of the metal surfaces to large analytes. The etched areas variously increase the sensitivity of electrochemical detection devices to low analyte concentrations, improve the plug flow characteristic of the channel, and allow additional discrimination of the colloidal particles during cyclic voltametry.

Awards



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UCRL-52000-05-3 | March 15, 2005