Interesting that you would look at it that way. But I do think you make a great point about the nature of FEA and other types of simulation. As these tools become more and more accessible and visual, they are instrumental in helping engineers leverage insights to work through problems in ways that otherwise would never had landed on their radar screen.
Looking at the FEA image its surprising the differences in apparent stresses on the front of the arm (red/yellow/green) compared to those of the similar geometry on the back side arm (deep blue).That's a big disparity and not what I would have expected to see in the relatively simple box beam design.I would have expected a more balanced distribution, based on the symmetry.Just goes to show how FEA can provide insight not necessarily intuitive for designers.
It does look like something out of one of those futuristic rescue movies. I too was impressed that the articulation arm approach can achieve the same effects in terms of movement whether in quicksand or through ice filled waters. While it was designed and built specifically to address the water/ice problem, the fact that there is applicability for other environments really expands the use case of the vehicle. It's now being used in a lot of seismic and oil and gas applications in the desert, apparently, and I'm sure they'll be more to come.
In a bid to boost the viability of lithium-based electric car batteries, a team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has developed a chemistry that could possibly double an EV’s driving range while cutting its battery cost in half.
Using Siemens NX software, a team of engineering students from the University of Michigan built an electric vehicle and raced in the 2013 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge. One of those students blogged for Design News throughout the race.
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.
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.