What the Heck is A Cleanroom?

What the Heck is A Cleanroom?

A cleanroom, or clean room (which is a waste of space), is a carefully controlled environment used in manufacturing and scientific research, among other applications. Invented by the excellently-named American physicist Willis Whitfield, the cleanroom uses advanced filtration and specially-modified HVAC equipment to eliminate, or at least significantly reduce, airborne contaminants and pollutants in the atmosphere. For reference, the average ambient outdoor air in an average urban environment contains 35 million particulates per cubic meter; particulate levels in a cleanroom…

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What the Heck is A Thermoelectric Generator Circuit?

What the Heck is A Thermoelectric Generator Circuit?

“Smart” technology—like smartphones and smart TVs—is big and getting bigger. The tech evolves so fast, it makes Speedy Gonzales look like Regular Gonzales. One of the newest “smart” whatnots to hit the big time is the smartwatch. These gizmos are brilliant because they can do a whole bunch of the same stuff that your smartphone can do, plus it tells time. Wait a minute… Anyway, the newest new innovation in smart technology, exclusive to the smartwatch market, is a special,…

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What the Heck Is Grohmann Engineering?

What the Heck Is Grohmann Engineering?

If you’re even a little bit of a fan of green technology, surely you’re familiar with Tesla. And don’t call me Shirley. If you’re unfamiliar, Tesla makes all-electric cars, and danged good ones, at that. Like electric vehicles in general, Tesla brand automocars are rapidly growing in popularity. Tesla sightings on the road used to be something of a novelty; now they’re a common occurrence, and will soon get even commoner. That’s because the Tesla Motor Company has just acquired…

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How the Heck is the iPod Good for the Environment?

How the Heck is the iPod Good for the Environment?

Fifteen years ago yesterday (fifteen years!) the first iPod was introduced by some kind of fruit company, or something. While the original, “classic” iPod was discontinued in 2014, and iPhones that include the exact same functionality (plus a few other features) have been around since 2007, you can still get a brand new iPod Touch today. There’s no doubt that iPods are convenient as heck. And they helped both kill and resurrect the record industry. But good for the environment?…

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What the Heck is 10-Nanometer Technology?

What the Heck is 10-Nanometer Technology?

Samsung recently announced that they’ve started building processor chips using a “10-nanometer process” that makes it possible to build complete transistors that are just 0.2 nanometers across. (A nanometer, BTW, is one billionth of a meter.) This is, of course, ridiculously small, and in the tech world, smaller is always better. Also, it presumably will not catch fire or explode whilst charging, unlike other recent Samsung products. What the Heck is FinFET? FinFET is Samsung’s 10-nanometer manufacturing process, used to…

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What the Heck is Wire EDM & How is It Good for the Planet?

What the Heck is Wire EDM & How is It Good for the Planet?

So, chances are pretty darn good that you’ve never heard of the manufacturing term “wire EDM” before. It’s not like metal stamping or plastic molding, something that’s at least fairly common and in the average person’s wheelhouse o’ knowledge. And the “EDM” part thankfully does not mean that crappy electronic disco music that that Corey Feldman-looking dude farts out of his computer. Instead, EDM here means “electrical discharge machining,” and it’s a process by which flat metal parts are made….

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How the Heck Does Paint Help the Environment?

How the Heck Does Paint Help the Environment?

So… paint is pretty great, right? It makes things look nicer (or worse, depending on who’s doing the painting [and his/her intention]), it’s one of the few things that works as both a noun and a verb without alteration, and it helps the environment. Wait, what’s that last one now? Look Good, Feel Good For most folks, the main benefit of putting a coat of paint on something is aesthetic. “I’ve been staring at these taupe walls for eleven years,…

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How the Heck is Corporate Rivalry Good for the Environment?

How the Heck is Corporate Rivalry Good for the Environment?

First off, no, corporate rivalry is not technology. However, this corporate rivalry is built on technology, and this particular technology happens to be extremely good for the environment, so we’re going to count it. Tesla & GMC Duke It Out in A Steel Cage Match! All-electric automobile technology is still in its infancy, but so far, Tesla Motors has been far and away the market leader. A decade ago, despite starting out with only one available model—a two-seat roadster, with…

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Who the Heck Wouldn’t Prefer Used Printing Equipment?

Who the Heck Wouldn’t Prefer Used Printing Equipment?

Even with the “death of newspapers” shtick that’s been foretold for years, among other doom and gloom predictions for the physical printed word, publishing and printing are still big businesses. And here’s a fun fact you might not know (but likely would’ve guessed had you thought about it): professional-quality, high-quantity, “large format” printing equipment is really, really expensive—as in, so expensive the manufacturer doesn’t even list the price on the website. These machines are also, generally, really big, really heavy,…

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What the Heck is Torlon?

What the Heck is Torlon?

Sometimes, it’s not the machine that’s environmentally friendly, it’s parts of the machine. An airplane, for example, is not the most eco-friendly mode of travel (although…). But, parts of that airplane are making it at least a little better for the environment. The nuts and bolts of this conversation are—half-pun intended—the rivets. “Polyamide-imide” Doesn’t Have Quite the Same Ring to It Torlon is a so-called “advanced plastic”—a plastic material that has been molecularly engineered to provide certain beneficial properties—commonly used…

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