Endevco Corp., San Juan Capistrano, CA, has completed what it claims to be the first available cold-gas shock tube that can effectively analyze the response of a pressure transducer. The device, along with its computerized analysis system, is designed to check the accuracy of pressure transducers used in turbine engines installed in aircraft, electrical power plants, and other industries. Engineering students from Texas Christian University (TCU) developed the shock tube in collaboration with Endevco engineers. The two-semester-long project involved researching shock tubes built and applied to pressure-transducer testing since the 1940s. Research included acquiring data analysis software and hardware to process the pressure-transducer signals resulting from the shock-tube environment. National Instruments' LabVIEW helped generate results used by the TCU team. The 12-ft-long x 3.5-inch-diameter shock tube, using helium as the driver gas, can be pneumatically or hydraulically activated. FAX (714) 661-7231.
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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