For the last 26 years during National Engineering Week (the first week of March) civil engineering students from both Canada and the United States gather at the Troitsky Bridge Building Competition at Concordia University in Montreal. In order to enter a bridge in the competition the teams must meet these requirements: “Each team must design & build a bridge with an open span of 1 meter and composed solely of Popsicle sticks, white glue, dental floss and toothpicks” and have an overall weight limit of 6 kg. Previous winners have built bridges weighing only 1.29 kg (2.8 lbs).
This year’s winning team is from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario and they are aptly named “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.” Their extraordinary bridge successfully carried 2,733 kg, beating the event’s previous record by 200 kg. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen also beat out the reining champions from UQAC in Chicoutimi, Ontario who have held the title for the past six years.
The bridges were judged on aesthetics and originality of design (10 points), booth layout and presentation (10 points), ultimate load carrying capacity (20 points), predicted ultimate load carrying capacity (25 points), structural efficiency (25 points) and predicted mode of failure (10 points). The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen had a total score of 92.49 out of 100.
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.