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

Launchable and Retrievable Tetherobot

The reach of an exploratory robot on rough terrain would be extended.

A proposed robotic system for scientific exploration of rough terrain would include a stationary or infrequently moving larger base robot, to which would be tethered a smaller hopping robot of the type described in the immediately preceding article. The two-robot design would extend the reach of the base robot, making it possible to explore nearby locations that might otherwise be inaccessible or too hazardous for the base robot.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Mechanical Components, Mechanics, Architecture, Electronic control systems, Architecture, Electronic control systems, Robotics
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Physics of Life: A Model for Non-Newtonian Properties of Living Systems

New analytical tools focus on the geometry and kinematics of behavior of living things.

This innovation proposes the reconciliation of the evolution of life with the second law of thermodynamics via the introduction of the First Principle for modeling behavior of living systems. The structure of the model is quantum-inspired: it acquires the topology of the Madelung equation in which the quantum potential is replaced with the information potential. As a result, the model captures the most fundamental property of life: the progressive evolution; i.e. the ability to evolve from disorder to order without any external interference.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Mathematical models, Kinematics, Thermodynamics, Thermodynamics
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Parameterized Linear Longitudinal Airship Model

A parameterized linear mathematical model of the longitudinal dynamics of an airship is undergoing development. This model is intended to be used in designing control systems for future airships that would operate in the atmospheres of Earth and remote planets.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Trajectory control, Mathematical models, Spacecraft guidance, Spacecraft guidance, Aerodynamics
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Teleoperation of Unmanned Vehicles Using Immersive Telepresence

In order to extend the usefulness of small, unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) to a wider range of missions, techniques are being developed to enable high-speed teleoperated control. Our goal is to quadruple the speed of teleoperated UGVs compared to currently deployed models. The key limitation is not mechanical, but in the capability of the operator to maintain situational awareness and control at higher speeds. To address these issues, we are developing technologies for immersive teleoperation and driver-assist behaviors.

Posted in: Articles, Automation, Robotics, Autonomous vehicles
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Camera/Robot System Increases Quality and Reduces Costs for Vehicle Component Supplier

The Piston Group (Redford, MI and Liberty, MO) builds cooling modules for seven different vehicles. These cooling modules are built on five different assembly lines, with each line building more than 50 different variants in sequence to the customer’s demand. Many different inspections need to be performed on each module, including verifying the build variation, checking electrical connections, and all dimensional requirements.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Cameras, Robotics, Assembling, Quality control, Quality control, Inspections
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Dr. Adrian Ponce, Deputy Manager, Planetary Science Section, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Dr. Adrian Ponce joined JPL/NASA as a postdoctoral scholar in 2000 after receiving a Ph.D. in chemistry from Caltech. In 2002 he invented the Anthrax Smoke Detector, a device capable of detecting the presence of anthrax in less than fifteen minutes. He recently developed a new technology called Germinable Endospore Biodosimetry, which not only rapidly detects the presence of bacterial spores on spacecraft but also determines whether they are alive or dead. Dr. Ponce currently serves as Deputy Manager of NASA JPL’s Planetary Science Section, and heads up the Ponce Research Group, an interdisciplinary team made up of researchers from JPL and California Institute of Technology.

Posted in: Who's Who
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Dr. Adrian Ponce, Deputy Manager, Planetary Science Section, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Dr. Adrian Ponce joined JPL/NASA as a postdoctoral scholar in 2000 after receiving a Ph.D. in chemistry from Caltech. In 2002 he invented the Anthrax Smoke Detector, a device capable of detecting the presence of anthrax in less than fifteen minutes. He recently developed a new technology called Germinable Endospore Biodosimetry, which not only rapidly detects the presence of bacterial spores on spacecraft but also determines whether they are alive or dead. Dr. Ponce currently serves as Deputy Manager of NASA JPL’s Planetary Science Section, and heads up the Ponce Research Group, an interdisciplinary team made up of researchers from JPL and California Institute of Technology.

Posted in: Podcasts
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Advances in Magnetic Bearings

In this age of environmental consciousness, OEMs around the world are competing to build better, safer, and greener machines. In striving toward such lofty goals, many industries are rediscovering a fundamental principle — magnetics. Magnetic bearings improve reliability, reduce friction, minimize vibration, and offer advanced health monitoring and diagnostics — all without the disadvantages of lubricants.

Posted in: Articles, Motion Control, Sustainable development, Magnetic materials, Materials properties, Bearings
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Data Management Speeds Up Simulation of Crash Test Dummy Models

The idea for the automotive crash test dummy first came to life in the 1950s when U.S. Air Force flight surgeon Col. John Stapp realized that more of his fighter pilots were dying in car crashes than from accidents in their hi-tech jet aircraft. The Stapp Car Crash Conferences started that decade and continue today as a venue to share information on the latest research and advancements for improving vehicle crashworthiness and occupant safety.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Simulation Software, Simulation and modeling, Data management, Anthropometric test devices
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Motor Design Software

Cobham Technical Services

(Aurora, IL) has introduced the 3D Advanced Machines Environment that combines finite-element analysis simulation with a design entry system to create 3D models of electric motors or generators. The electromagnetic design tool for rotating electrical machines is an application-specific toolbox of the Opera electromagnetic simulator. The software provides a front end to the electromagnetic simulator that uses “fill in the blanks” dialog boxes. Users select the form of motor they want to design from a list of common types. By entering a list of parameters to define mechanical geometry, material properties, and electrical data, the 3D models are automatically created.

Posted in: Products
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White Papers

Developing and Testing Electronic Control Units for Electric Drives
Sponsored by dSPACE
3D Printing’s Impact on the Value Chain
Sponsored by Stratasys Direct Manufacturing
High-Speed Switched Serial Fabrics Improve System Design
Sponsored by Pentek
Algorithms for Change Point Analysis
Sponsored by Numerical Algorithms Group
Integrating Novel Materials to Improve Medical Device Performance
Sponsored by Pulse Technologies
Improving Corrosion Resistance of 303 Stainless Steel
Sponsored by Able Electropolishing

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