My Triumph TR3 sports car needed new disk brake pads. I replaced them, but the little retention clips were rusted steel and broke off. Ever cavalier about the details, I left the pads unretained.
Later, driving on a very bumpy dirt road at excessive speed, one of the pads was ejected and I lost brakes. Coasting into my rural destination, I found no source of TR3 brake pads and instead cut one from ¾” plywood.
It got me home successfully, 90 miles, although after heavy braking the car smelled like woodsmoke. The pad had shrunk to 3/8″ of charcoal…
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.