Did a fuel line give way? Did a fuel pump not shut down as it should? Did a fitting of some sort fail? Investigators will be looking at all those possibilities from the fire and explosion on the left engine of a China Airlines B-737-809 yesterday as it stood parked at the gate at Naha Airport in Okinawa, Japan. Fortunately, there were no fatalies. After the flames were extinguished, the crumpled fuselage resemmbled a beached whale.
In investigating the accident, I did not turn to CNN or the NYTImes. Rather, I look at sites like Planecrashinfo.com and 1001.com. Digging into these sites are not for the squeamish flyer who hears every odd noise and feels every bump. Err, that would be me. I estimate I’ver flown at least 1.5 million miles, almost all of it on commercial jetliners. My only brushes with disaster were severe turbulence and an on-the-taxiway fender bender.
Anyhow, there’s an amazing amount verbiage, hair-raising accounts, sounds and videos about plane crashes on the web. Did you know, American Airlines has had 38 accidents since 1931? Do you want to read or hear the last words from pilots and co-pilots (this one offers a warning that it may be "disturbing" to some.) How about an account from Delta 767 pilot who took right behind United Flight 93 on 9-11? How about fatal events per millions of flights?
For someone who flies, viewing these stats and stories seems like tempting fate. But I feel better when internalizing this reassuring statistic from Planecrashinfo.com: "If a passenger boarded a flight at random, once a day, every day, it would be approximately 22,000 years before he or she would be killed."
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
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.