A great thing about college demonstration projects is they don't have to have any commercial prospects. That's a good thing for students at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, who call their model an anti-gravity device. Despite that moniker, the machine uses the same principles that let high-speed magnetic levitation trains float above their tracks. The MSOE levitator uses analog instrumentation amplifiers donated by Analog Devices, a pulse-width modulated H-bridge from National Semiconductor, a coil, a feedback control compensator and Allegro MicroSystems Hall-effect sensors to magnetically suspend an object in mid-air.
Siemens and Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology have achieved a faster production process based on selective laser melting for speeding up the prototyping of big, complex metal parts in gas turbine engines.
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