News

Control Scheme Improves Motor Operation and Interaction

A team of researchers from the Polytechnic University of Bari, Italy, is working to improve how industrial electric drives operate. They propose a new control scheme that will not only improve motor operation, but also how the motor interacts with other systems.

Posted in: News, Motion Control, Motors & Drives, Mathematical/Scientific Software, Simulation Software

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Tool Helps Design Soft Robots That Can Bend and Twist

Designing a soft robot to move organically — to bend like a finger or twist like a wrist — has always been a process of trial and error. Now, researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have developed a method to automatically design soft actuators based on the desired movement.

Posted in: News, Implants & Prosthetics, Motion Control, Robotics, Computer-Aided Design (CAD), Software

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Will touchscreens take over the dashboard?

This week's Question: With backup cameras now mandatory in today's vehicles, screens in cars are increasingly becoming a standard feature. At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this month, Corning Glass presented a demo of a new kind of automotive interior — one making full use of touch-based smart glass, from the windshield to the console. A head-up display built into the driver's side, for example, provided on-windshield navigation; a smart screen in the steering wheel provided access to all of the car's controls; and a full video display enabled passengers to watch videos. The maker of "Gorilla Glass," used in the latest iPhone, envisions a future a where a driver's dashboard will be entirely screen-based. What do you think? Will touchscreens take over the dashboard?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Automotive

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Researchers Awaken Graphene's Hidden Superconductivity

Since its discovery in 2004, scientists have believed that graphene contained an innate ability to superconduct. Now researchers from the University of Cambridge have found a way to activate that previously dormant potential, enabling the material to carry an electrical current with zero resistance.

Posted in: News, Materials

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Would you use a flexible phone?

This week's Question: The Korea Herald reported last week that Samsung is developing a "fold-in" phone. The device's flexible display folds open into a 7-inch tablet. According to the article, the team is expected to ship more than 100,000 units during the third quarter of 2017. The paper reported that the Korea-based company had initially abandoned development out of concern that consumers would find it inconvenient to continuously unfold the phone before each use. New designs, however, could perhaps spark interest in a market that, some analysts say, has reached its saturation point. What do you think? Would you use a flexible phone?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Communications

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Researchers Spin Artificial Spider Silk

Researchers from the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Karolinska Institutet has, step by step, developed a way of "spinning" artificial spider silk.

Posted in: News, Manufacturing & Prototyping

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Will the voice become a mainstream way to control our devices?

This year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas showcased many new consumer products featuring voice control. LG, for example, introduced a smart refrigerator equipped with Amazon's Alexa voice service. Other CES technologies with voice-recognition capabilities included televisions, home lighting systems, and vehicles. Last Tuesday, Shawn Dubravac, Chief Economist of the Consumer Technology Association, said vocal computing is replacing the traditional graphical user interface, and "the ability to infuse AI into small things at relatively low cost is present." What do you think? Will the voice become a mainstream way to control our devices?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Data Acquisition, Sensors

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