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Blogs
Content tagged with Automation & Control posted in September 2012
Robot Takes Care of Your Vino
Blog 
9/28/2012  13 comments
A new robot may have a hand in tending the grapes it takes to make your next glass of wine.
Thoughts Control Avatar-Like Robot
Blog 
9/27/2012  21 comments
Like the movie Avatar, researchers use functional magnetic resonance imaging to scan the brain of a subject who uses thought to control a robot thousands of miles away.
Robotic Tuna Inspects Oil Tankers (& Sea Chests?)
Blog 
9/26/2012  14 comments
The latest underwater unmanned vehicle being developed for the Department of Homeland Security navigates oily waters and cramped spaces.
The Expedition’s Difficult Dash
Made by Monkeys 
9/26/2012  21 comments
The 2011 Ford Expedition has a dashboard full of what one driver says are design flaws.
Avoiding the Dangers of Groupthink
Guest Blogs 
9/25/2012  42 comments
How do engineers, who pride ourselves on our rationality and individualism, get caught up in a collective denial of reality?
Do Engineers Need an MBA?
Blog 
9/25/2012  20 comments
Is an MBA a worthwhile academic pursuit or a total waste of precious time?
We Want the Top 40 Under 40
Blog 
9/21/2012  15 comments
Design News, in partnership with Mouser Electronics, is asking for your nominations for engineers who are ahead of the trends and are significantly performing in the industry.
Video: Flexible Robot Hands Get Cheaper
Blog 
9/21/2012  12 comments
Sandia National Laboratories has created a low-cost, highly dexterous robotic hand to help soldiers disarm IEDs.
Design a Barcode Scanner With Reduced BOM, Not Reduced Functionality
Guest Blogs 
9/21/2012  3 comments
Having many of the required components integrated into the MCU can save time and cost while increasing functionality.
Robots Get Genetically Engineered Skeletal Muscles
Blog 
9/20/2012  22 comments
Researchers at MIT and the University of Pennsylvania have engineered skeletal muscles they will use to build robots that move like animals -- or people.
Video: This Isn't Your Mother's Pasta
Blog 
9/19/2012  30 comments
Cui Runquan, a Beijing chef, has created an army of noodle-slicing robots.
Swarming Robots Rescue Coral Reefs
Blog 
9/18/2012  26 comments
Scotland's coral reefs, which are currently healthy but threatened, may soon get some help from groups of swarming underwater robots being developed by a Scottish university research team.
'Move the Picker, Move the Tote'
Sherlock Ohms 
9/18/2012  22 comments
The trick to speeding up the number of totes on the line was programming the movement of picking the totes.
Robotic Solar Panels Produce More Electricity
Blog 
9/17/2012  30 comments
A Silicon Valley startup has designed an innovative new monorail system of robots for tilting solar panels toward the sun, increasing the amount of electricity produced by up to 15 percent and changing the game for the future management of solar-energy systems.
Control Panel Not Included in Train Communicator
Made by Monkeys 
9/17/2012  12 comments
The control panel for the train maintenance yard had no way of communicating to the switches and signals.
If I Only Knew Then...
Blog 
9/17/2012  25 comments
Our LinkedIn group members discuss what they would have done differently if they knew then what they know now.
Motor Kits Let BLDC Designs Roll
Mechatronics Zone 
9/14/2012  4 comments
If your design plans include a brushless DC motor, contributing technical editor Jon Titus recommends starting with a motor drive dev kit.
Slideshow: 3D Printing Will Go to Mars
Engineering Materials 
9/13/2012  29 comments
It turns out that 3D printing techniques are perfect for use in space, but additive manufacturing isn't just for astronauts.
Video: You Can Teach a Robotic Mule New Tricks
Blog 
9/13/2012  11 comments
The DoD’s robotic pack mule can now play follow the leader and walk backward for a considerable distance over rough terrain, bringing the robot closer to serving as a sophisticated mechanical companion for US soldiers in the field.
Solar Inverter Optimization
Blog 
9/12/2012  8 comments
Automation control technology plays a key design role in balancing energy-efficiency gains with the need for lifetime reliability and low-cost solutions.
Video: Robot Security Camera Patrols RNC
Blog 
9/11/2012  16 comments
A remote-controlled Roomba-like robot with a wide-angle camera for inspecting under cars helped the Republican National Convention's security detail look for bombs.
Petroski on Engineering: Everyone Loves Good Design
Guest Blogs 
9/10/2012  23 comments
Unlike buildings, which hide their engineering behind architectural facades, bridges tend to lay bare their structural design features.
When Is a Robot Not Mechanical? When It's an Android
Blog 
9/10/2012  26 comments
An artificial jellyfish created by Harvard and Caltech researchers goes a lot further than biomimicry, resembling an android more than a robot.
Video: Create 3D Scans of Everything
Blog 
9/7/2012  7 comments
The Kinect@Home crowdsourcing project will help engineers create a catalog of scans that will help robots recognize what's around them.
Robot Collects Storm Data During Hurricane Isaac
Blog 
9/6/2012  22 comments
A robot collecting oceanographic data in the Gulf of Mexico got a close-up look at Hurricane Isaac, whose eye passed 60 miles east of where it was cruising.
Calling All Messy Engineers!
Blog 
9/6/2012  18 comments
We want photos of your disheveled desks.
Handbook Can Help Mechatronics Engineers
Mechatronics Zone 
9/5/2012  7 comments
Contributing technical editor Jon Titus found a free copy of the Electrical Engineering Pocket Handbook, published by the Electrical Apparatus Service Association, particularly useful.
Honda's Latest Robot Mows Your Lawn
Blog 
9/4/2012  54 comments
Miimo is a robotic lawnmower that works via electronic sensors to continuously cut grass and safely navigate slopes and obstacles.
Keeping Track of Emerging Markets
Blog 
9/4/2012  15 comments
Depending on the markets and applications you serve, different countries can be at varying states of “emergence.”




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MIT students modified a 3D printer to enable it to print more than one object and print on top of existing printed objects. All of this was made possible by modifying a Solidoodle with a height measuring laser.
A battery management system to support an electric motorcycle lithium-ion battery pack took first place in Texas Instruments' annual engineering innovation contest.
This Gadget Freak Review looks at a keyless Bluetooth padlock that works with your smartphone, along with a system that tracks your sleep behavior and wakes you at the perfect time in your sleep cycle to avoid morning grogginess.
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