Content posted in February 2013
Video: Robotic Droplets Will Assemble Satellites
Researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder are developing small, swarming robots that will assemble a space station or a satellite, or clean up oil spills on Earth. Dubbed droplets, they form a "liquid that thinks" when they swarm together.
3D Printing & Robots at MD&M West
Engineering Materials 2/26/2013
There are lots of ways to build a product, from high-speed robotic assembly lines to small, refrigerator-sized 3D printing machines that make actual metal production parts for medical or aerospace uses. Many were on display at MD&M West and co-located shows.
A More Natural Way to Learn
Guest Blogs 2/26/2013
With MapleSim, students can easily connect the analytic models in textbooks to the numeric solutions that result from the simulation. This openness is critical to student learning.
SoCs Target Motor Control
Freescale, TI, and STMicroelectronics offer SoCs that bring together a lot of features to address particular application areas.
AC-DC Power Supplies Are Shrinking
Guest Blogs 2/21/2013
Power-supply design trends are clear and dramatic. For the AC-DC supplies, these changes are due to multiple factors combining to yield these more-compact designs. Some of the factors are obvious, but others are not.
Floodlights in the Spotlight
Guest Blogs 2/21/2013
Floodlights provide the bright conditions necessary for nocturnal leisure or industrial activities and can increase security. However, with some lights powered for up to 10 hours a day, electricity and maintenance costs can really add up.
MD&M Show Highlights New Technologies
Electronics News 2/20/2013
From sensors to electronics to additive manufacturing systems, the recent Medical Design & Manufacturing Show in Anaheim demonstrated thousands of new and existing products.
Engineering Education Starts at an Early Age
STEM Connection 2/18/2013
It's National Engineers Week! As the level of system complexity escalates, and we begin solving some of the worldís biggest problems, our society will grow increasingly dependent upon the talents of generations who are just now beginning to explore their creativity and learn about the way things work.
The European Pump Market, Post Financial Crisis
Guest Blogs 2/12/2013
Whatís the trend that will shape the pump market in Europeís building services industry in the future? The answer lies in the incorporation of more electronic features in pumps, leading to greater connectivity and integration into the overall system.
Onshoring: A Trend in Automation?
With automation, companies are able to bring manufacturing back to the US, respond to changing market demands quicker, protect Intellectual Property, and have total quality control.
Metal/Plastic Car Wheel Boosts MPG
Engineering Materials 2/8/2013
A wheel made of metal and plastic designed for the 2012 MYFord Focus SE has shown an increase of 1.1 MPG highway in third-party tests, compared to the car's standard production wheel.
Distance-Based Sensors Measure Up
Guest Blogs 2/7/2013
When some objects must be seen and others ignored, or when the objectís presence and its position must both be known, SPT, MPT, or PRT distance-based sensors are the best options.
Former DARPA official and Google executive Dr. Kaigham Gabriel believes sensor companies think too much like suppliers and need to bring their products closer to the consumer.
One way to keep a Formula One racing team moving at breakneck speed in the pit and at the test facility is to bring CAD drawings of the racing vehicleís parts down to the test facility and even out to the track.
Most of us would just as soon step on a cockroach rather than study it, but thatís just what researchers at UC Berkeley did in the pursuit of building small, nimble robots suitable for disaster-recovery and search-and-rescue missions.
Engineers at Festo were inspired by how a caterpillar builds its cocoon when designing its new 3D Cocooner printer.
Design engineers need to prepare for a future in which their electronic products will use not just one or two, but possibly many user interfaces that involve touch, vision, gestures, and even eye movements.
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