The first automated fiber placement machine in the UK, shown here with employee Tim Smith of GKN Aerospace, will help speed production of complex composite aircraft structures like wings. (Source: National Composites Centre)
williamlweaver, thanks for quoting Twain, one of my favorite authors. The image that quote always gives me is the idea of the spiral path of time and change. I think your comparison with the automated loom invention is a good one. Automating carbon composite production could have effects at least as far-reaching.
As Mark Twain famously said, "History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme." This sure looks similar to the invention of the automated loom that produced textiles using patterns of holes placed on punch cards. That development helped to spur the Industrial Revolution. Solving the problem of long composite lay-up time may spark a similar revolution in materials...
The Beam Store from Suitable Technologies is managed by remote workers from places as diverse as New York and Sydney, Australia. Employees attend to store visitors through Beam Smart Presence Systems (SPSs) from the company. The systems combine mobility and video conferencing and allow people to communicate directly from a remote location via a screen as well as move around as if they are actually in the room.
An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.