MOTION CONTROL: Steinmeyer Inc. has announced a new product to its extensive line of miniature ball screws. These 5-mm diameter screws are the perfect solution in applications such as micromanipulators, miniature robotics and compact actuators. Available in four nut styles: series 1112 single nut with connecting thread without wipers; series 1412 is a single nut with double flange and wipers on both ends; series 1214 is a cylindrical nut without wipers; and series 2422 is the company’s “quiet line” series, with a single nut that uses end-cap ball returns manufactured from plastic rather than metal tubes, making the screw virtually noiseless. All are available with leads ranging from 0.5 3 mm and offer a maximum speed of 4500 RPM.
Two researchers from Cornell University have won a $100,000 grant from NASA to continue work to develop an energy-harvesting robotic eel the space agency aims to use to explore oceans on one of the moons of Jupiter.
Is the factory smarter than it used to be? From recent buzzwords, you’d think we’ve entered a new dimension in industrial plants, where robots run all physical functions wirelessly and humans do little more than program ever more capable robotics. Some of that is actually true, but it’s been true for a while.
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