A low-cost technology introduced by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) has substantially increased the output of an Australian combustion-turbine power plant. Using the EPRI technology, air passing through compressors at the Ecogen Jeeralong Power Station in Victoria is sprayed with a fine mist of demineralized water. This cools the inlet temperatures, increasing flow through the combustion turbine. In all, 2,500 fine nozzle sprays per unit are fitted to the turbine inlet air duct. The result: a 10% increase in power output during peak summer demand. Moreover, on hot, dry summer days, when industries and households switch on their air conditioners, the station can be brought to its peak load capacity of 465 MW within a half hour. In another installation in Missouri, the Utilicorp Energy Group estimates a similar system will save the utility more than $3 million through the year 2010. "With EPRI's aid, we identified ways of raising our plant capacity at a fraction of the cost of building a new plant or buying expensive power," notes Mike Jonagon, superintendent of gas turbines at Utilicorp. E-mail email@example.com.
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.