News

System Enables Collaboration Among Fleets of Robots

Writing a program to control a single autonomous robot navigating an uncertain environment with an erratic communication link is hard. Writing one for multiple robots that may or may not have to work in tandem, depending on the task, is even harder.

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Motion Capture Assists Skaters with Jumps

According to a recent poll, almost a fourth of Americans say figure skating is their favorite Olympic sport. But while most of us just sit back and enjoy the show Jim Richards zeroes in on the skaters’ air position. Richards, a Professor at the University of Delaware, knows that proper air position is critical to successful jumps.

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Will Retinal Displays Catch On?

The Glyph headset, from the Ann Arbor, MI-based Avegant, beams video into a user's eyes, without requiring a screen. To emulate the way the eye processes images, the technology uses a set of 2 million microscopic mirrors to reflect visuals, even 3D content, into the eye. The headset’s screen can be connected to personal computers, the Xbox, the PlayStation, and Android devices. To address style concerns, Glyph looks like a wearable headset. What do you think? Will retinal displays catch on?

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Launching the Fastest Plane of the Future

It's a sci-fi concept that's at the center of a 25-year exploratory project: building a hypersonic aircraft that takes off from the runway and doesn't need a rest, inspection or repair after it lands – unlike the space shuttle – but can zip back around the world within an hour of landing. University of Cincinnati researchers are developing the validation metrics that could help predict the success or failure of such a model before it is even built, as test data becomes available from component, to sub-system, to the completely assembled air vehicle.

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Head-Mounted Display Embeds an Augmented Reality Chip

Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) developed K-Glass, a wearable, hands-free head-mounted display (HMD).Unlike virtual reality which replaces the real world with a computer-simulated environment, augmented reality (AR) incorporates digital data generated by the computer into the reality of a user. With the computer-made sensory inputs such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data, the user’s real and physical world becomes live and interactive. The AR processor has a data processing network similar to that of a human brain’s central nervous system. When the human brain perceives visual data, different sets of neurons, all connected, work concurrently on each fragment of a decision-making process; one group’s work is relayed to other group of neurons for the next round of the process, which continues until a set of decider neurons determines the character of the data. Likewise, the artificial neural network allows parallel data processing, alleviating data congestion and reducing power consumption significantly.   Source Also: Learn about a Volumetric 3D Display System with Static Screen.

Posted in: Semiconductors & ICs, News

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Bats Inspire Micro Air Vehicles

By exploring how creatures in nature are able to fly by flapping their wings, Virginia Tech researchers hope to design "micro air vehicles.”In Virginia Tech's study of fruit bat wings, the researchers used experimental measurements of the movements of the bats' wings in real flight, and then used analysis software to see the direct relationship between wing motion and airflow around the bat wing.Among the biggest surprises in store for the researchers was how bat wings manipulated the wing motion with correct timing to maximize the forces generated by the wing.The team wants to keep the wing motion as simple as possible, but with the same force production as that of a real bat.Source Also: Learn about Predicting Aircraft Ice Formation with Simulation.

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Carbon Nanotube Fibers Outperform Copper

Carbon nanotube-based fibers have greater capacity to carry electrical current than copper cables of the same mass, according to new research. A series of tests at Rice University showed the wet-spun carbon nanotube fiber still handily beat copper, carrying up to four times as much current as a copper wire of the same mass.The nanotube-based cables are an ideal platform for lightweight power transmission in systems where weight is a significant factor, like aerospace applications.The team plans to further investigate and explore the fiber’s multifunctional aspects, including flexible optoelectronic device applications.Source Also: Learn about Carbon Nanotubes on Titanium Substrates for Stray Light Suppression.

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