Tag: Material

Making a remarkable material even better | MIT News

In recent decades, the search for high-performance thermal insulation for buildings has prompted manufacturers to turn to aerogels. Invented in the 1930s, these remarkable materials are translucent, ultraporous, lighter than a marshmallow, strong enough to support a brick, and an unparalleled barrier to heat flow, making them ideal for keeping heat inside on a cold winter day and outside when summer temperatures soar.

Five years ago, researchers led by Evelyn Wang, a professor and head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Gang Chen, the Carl Richard Soderberg Professor in Power Engineering, set out to add one more property

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College Textbook & Course Material Costs: AAP Releases Preview Version of Student Monitor’s Fall 2020 Report

Average student spending on college textbooks and course materials continued to decline during the fall semester of 2020, dropping 7% compared to the same term last year, according to a special preview of the latest data from independent research firm Student Monitor.  A high-level version of Student Monitor’s Fall 2020 report is due out in November, followed by the full report in December.

“We are pleased to once again partner with Student Monitor to offer a sneak peek of its Fall 2020 report, which reaffirms the incredible array of options that students and college administrators have today to access course

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New research study indicates chitin could be a suitable building material for Mars habitation | News


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A picture of a Martian made out of chintin. 'Chintin is produced and metabolized by organisms across most biological kingdoms. Chitin is a primary component of cell walls in fungi, the exoskeletons of arthropods, such as crustaceans and insects, and the scales of fish and amphibians.' Image ©...

A picture of a Martian made out of chintin. “Chintin is produced and metabolized by organisms across most biological kingdoms. Chitin is a primary component of cell walls in fungi, the exoskeletons of arthropods, such as crustaceans and insects, and the scales of fish and amphibians.” Image © Javier G. Fernandez, 2020. CC-BY



A study conducted by Javier Fernandez and colleagues from Singapore University of Technology and Design provides research that the bioinspired material, chitin, would be a viable building material for Mars inhabitation and tool production. 

Fernandez shares

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Home-builder confidence soars to all-time high despite rising material costs

The numbers: Home builders are more confident about the state of their industry than ever before as foot traffic of prospective buyers continues to improve, according to research from a trade group released Wednesday.

The National Association of Home Builders’ monthly confidence index rose five points to a reading of 83 in September. The index reading was the highest on record in the 35-year history of the data series, surpassing the previous month’s record high.

“The suburban shift for home building is keeping builders busy, supported on the demand side by low interest rates,” Robert Dietz, chief economist for the

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Construction costs fall as material prices continue to rise

The ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic is continuing to wreak havoc on the architecture and construction markets (see the catastrophic May Architecture Billings Index numbers for proof), even as construction jobs return in states that have eased restrictions on non-essential projects.

Case in point: Construction costs have reportedly fallen for the first time since 2010, but according to Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), a national construction industry trade association, raw material costs rose by 2.2 percent in June. Non-residential material inputs rose by 2.3 percent.

The increase in material costs follow (for a second consecutive month, costs were up

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