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Save Your Assembly Space and Weight with Smalley Wave Springs

Smalley Wave Springs offer the unique advantage of space savings when used to replace coil springs. By reducing spring operating height, wave springs also produce a decrease in the spring cavity and assembly size.

Posted in: White Papers, Mechanical Components, Motion Control, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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Light-Up Skin Stretches Robotic Boundaries

Cornell University researchers have developed an electroluminescent skin capable of stretching to nearly six times its original size while still emitting light.

Posted in: News, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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Executive Perspectives: Robotics

CHETAN KAPOOR Senior Director of Technology Innovation Yaskawa America, Motoman Robotics Division Miamisburg, OH www.motoman.com Programmable machines are increasingly joining the ranks of the workforce. Ironically, these machines have been around for 40 years. I call them Generation Bot. Since the 1970s, industry and consumers have seen robots successfully perform highly repetitive tasks where the value proposition was improving the rate of production, controlling or reducing labor costs, ensuring quality, and addressing ergonomic concerns.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Robotics

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Executive Perspectives: Robotics

JIM LAWTON Chief Product and Marketing Officer Rethink Robotics Boston, MA www.rethinkrobotics.com In 1961, Unimate — the first large-scale industrial robot — transformed the assembly lines at General Motors. Reading the headlines today, it seems we’re on the precipice of a new era where robots will do just about anything that humans can. These machines will drive our cars, report the news, perform surgery, and fold our laundry — and it all comes across as though the innovation just started at the turn of the century.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Robotics

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Autonomous Flight Termination System Reference Design Hardware

John F. Kennedy Space Center, Florida The current range ground-based infrastructure is extremely costly to operate and maintain. NASA has developed an Autonomous Flight Termination System (AFTS) that is an independent, self-contained subsystem mounted onboard a launch vehicle. The AFTS reference system eliminates the need for a ground-based infrastructure by moving the flight termination function from the ground to the launch vehicle. It will allow multiple vehicles to be launched and tracked at the same time. AFTS is necessary to support vehicles that have multiple flyback boosters.

Posted in: Briefs, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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RoboSimian: Software Algorithms for a Mobile Manipulation Quadruped Robot

This software system has been designed for semi-autonomous operation of the robot. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California RoboSimian, a statically stable quadrupedal robot capable of both dexterous manipulation and versatile mobility in difficult terrain, was built to compete in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Robotics Challenge, a competitive effort to develop hardware and software in the area of mobile manipulation platforms to assist humans in responding to natural and manmade disasters.

Posted in: Briefs, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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Robot Task Commander with Extensible Programming Environment

This application can be used in programming robotic systems in real-world environments such as factory floors and disaster sites. Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas As robotic systems are expected to perform complex tasks, system developers require tools for application programming that are more advanced than the current state of the art. Robot application programs need to allow the system to respond to different, and possibly unforeseen, situations either autonomously or by enabling operators to modify these programs quickly in the field.

Posted in: Briefs, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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