Special Coverage

Soft Robot “Walks” on Any Terrain
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Using Microwaves to Produce High-Quality Graphene
Transducer-Actuator Systems for On-Machine Measurements and Automatic Part Alignment
Wide-Area Surveillance Using HD LWIR Uncooled Sensors
Heavy Lift Wing in Ground (WIG) Cargo Flying Boat
Technique Provides Security for Multi-Robot Systems
Bringing New Vision to Laser Material Processing Systems
NASA Tests Lasers’ Ability to Transmit Data from Space
Converting from Hydraulic Cylinders to Electric Actuators
Automating Optimization and Design Tasks Across Disciplines

Will origami-inspired crawler robots support pipe inspection?

This week’s lead story featured an origami-inspired robot. Assistant professor Aimy Wissa sees possible pipe inspection applications for the crawler.

"Pipes have different kinds of diameters, and you want something that can fit in there with ease," Wissa said in our Tech Briefs Q&A.

What do you think? Will origami-inspired crawler robots support pipe inspection?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Robotics
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Do you see valuable applications for 3D-printed Kapton?

Our lead INSIDER story today showcased a new Kapton-like material, developed by a team at Virginia Tech. The researchers hope that the 3D-printed polymer will support new applications, including deep space exploration.

"We're only used to designing a product and then wrapping it in this foil," engineer Chris Williams told Tech Briefs. "The fun part now is to actually show this to a designer and get them to start dreaming about what is possible."

What do you think? Do you see valuable applications for 3D-printed Kapton?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials
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Will carbon nanotubes play a role in the next generation of commercial water filters?

Our lead INSIDER story today featured a demonstration of carbon-nanotube water filters. What do you think? Will carbon nanotubes play a role in the next generation of commercial water filters?

Posted in: Question of the Week
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Have you faced internal hurdles when trying to introduce additive manufacturing?

This week's "Sound-Off" article featured advice on how to bring a 3D-printing approach to the organization. What do you think? Have you faced internal hurdles when trying to introduce additive manufacturing?

Posted in: Question of the Week
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Are you concerned about the integrity of 3D-printed parts?

This week's INSIDER story features a new method for verifying the integrity of critical 3D-printed parts, from brakes to aircraft components. What do you think? Are you concerned about the integrity of 3D-printed parts?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling
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Will water-based propulsion support space missions?

Our lead INSIDER story this week features a micro-propulsion system that uses water to maneuver nanosatellites. What do you think? Will water-based propulsion support space missions?

Posted in: Question of the Week
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Will "Electric Clothing" appeal to consumers?

Last week's INSIDER lead story featured an ultra-thin energy harvester from Vanderbilt University. Made from materials five thousand times thinner than a human hair, the technology may someday be woven into clothing to power personal devices. What do you think? Will "Electric Clothing" appeal to consumers?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Energy, Energy Harvesting, Energy Storage
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Do you see augmented reality as a way of improving design processes?

A report last week concluded that the augmented reality (AR) market is expected to grow from $2.39 billion in 2016 to $61.39 billion by 2023. The research from the Hadapsar, India-based analyst firm MarketsandMarkets cites increasing demand for AR devices and applications in healthcare, retail, and e-commerce sectors.

AR plays a potential role for design engineers looking to model a product directly into an environment. What do you think? Do you see augmented reality as a way of improving design processes?

Posted in: Question of the Week, Displays/Monitors/HMIs, Imaging, Visualization Software, Computer-Aided Design (CAD), Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE), Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM)
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Can autonomous systems make moral judgments?

Today’s lead INSIDER story highlighted Osnabrück University researchers’ attempts to model morality in self-driving vehicles. What do you think? Can autonomous systems make moral judgments?

Posted in: Question of the Week
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Will the smart grid become a reality?

Today’s lead INSIDER story featured a new building block for the smart grid: a solid-state transformer."

The SST is a fundamental building block in the smart-grid concept," said NC State Distinguished Professor Iqbal Husain. "It can scale down voltage for use in homes and businesses, but it can also scale up voltage from solar panels or other residential-scale renewable sources in order to feed that power back into the grid."

What do you think? Will the smart grid become a reality?

Posted in: Question of the Week
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