Electronic engineers from the R&D department at Philip Morris U.S.A. of Richmond, VA. Work on their Robolab entry.
Engineers are taking on children and college students in a LEGO construction project, striving to see who can develop the best autonomous vehicle. Tuesday, teams came together to spend three hours building Lego vehicles that use National Instruments hardware and software that can follow tape lines to various pickup stations and carry objects back to the starting point.
Wednesday evening, 20 teams will compete to see who can pick up the heaviest payload during their two-minute shot at fame. Not only must the vehicles heft payloads from their station to the dumping base, they must also determine whether it’s best to pick up hefty golf balls, lighter Silly Putty eggs or lightweight cylinders. The fifth annual NI Week contest will also include four judges’ awards in addition to the winner’s prize.
The 2014 Ig Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded to Dr. Kiyoshi Mabuchi and his team members for their work measuring the slipperiness of banana peels. Turns out they're slipperier with the yellow side up.
Many scientists have been working battery-free ways to power wearable electronics that can replace bulky battery packs, particularly through the use of energy-harvesting materials. Now a team of researchers in China have upped the game by developing a lightweight and flexible solar cell that can be woven into two-way energy-harvesting fabric.
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