Mechanical/​Mechatronics

Stay updated on advancements in mechanical components and mechatronics systems. New technologies in MEMs, fluid systems, and propulsion are driving breakthroughs in transportation, electrification, autonomous driving, and manufacturing.

Latest Briefs & News

Articles : Robotics, Automation & Control
Collaborative Automation: It's More Than Just the Cobot
Collaborative Automation: It's More Than Just the Cobot
“Cobots” allow companies of almost any size to automate processes that were previously out of reach.
Collaborative Automation: It's More Than Just the Cobot
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Self-Contained Wheel Unit
Self-Contained Wheel Unit
Researchers have developed a self-contained wheel unit that combines a wheel and an electric motor.
Self-Contained Wheel Unit
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Precision Low-Speed Motor Controller
Precision Low-Speed Motor Controller
The technology can be used in commercial motors, robotic systems, and hybrid and electric vehicles.
Precision Low-Speed Motor Controller
Application Briefs : Motion Control
Docking System Enables Safe Rendezvous in Space
Docking System Enables Safe Rendezvous in Space
The ESA has commissioned its industry partners to design a new docking system called the International Berthing and Docking Mechanism (IBDM).
Docking System Enables Safe Rendezvous in Space
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Algorithm Gives Robots a Faster Grasp
Algorithm Gives Robots a Faster Grasp
The algorithm speeds up the planning process that robots use to adjust their grip on objects.
Algorithm Gives Robots a Faster Grasp
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Artificial Skin Provides Haptic Feedback
Artificial Skin Provides Haptic Feedback
The skin could help rehabilitation and enhance virtual reality by instantaneously adapting to a wearer's movements.
Artificial Skin Provides Haptic Feedback
Application Briefs : Motion Control
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Salty air the Dutch city of Harlingen causes exposed metal parts to corrode.
Valve Position Sensor Protects Switch Boxes from Salt Environment
Briefs : Communications
WiFi-Based Technique Measures Speed and Distance of Indoor Movement
WiFi-Based Technique Measures Speed and Distance of Indoor Movement
A technology uses a combination of WiFi signals and accelerometer technology to track devices in near-real-time.
WiFi-Based Technique Measures Speed and Distance of Indoor Movement
Blog : Sensors/Data Acquisition
A Breakthrough in Earthquake Forecasting: Floating Buoy Measures Seafloor Motion
A Breakthrough in Earthquake Forecasting: Floating Buoy Measures Seafloor Motion
New measurements could help experts guess the location and size of the next earthquake.
A Breakthrough in Earthquake Forecasting: Floating Buoy Measures Seafloor Motion
Question of the Week : Transportation
Will We Develop Trust in Autonomous Drones and Vehicles?

For developers of A.I.-guided drones and autonomous technologies, failure is not an option.

Briefs : Data Acquisition
Robots Can Pick Up Any Object After Inspecting It
Robots Can Pick Up Any Object After Inspecting It

For decades, robots in controlled environments like assembly lines have been able to pick up the same object over and over again. More recently, breakthroughs in computer vision have enabled...

Robots Can Pick Up Any Object After Inspecting It
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Flying Robot Mimics Rapid Insect Flight
Flying Robot Mimics Rapid Insect Flight

Flying animals both power and control flight by flapping their wings. This enables small natural flyers such as insects to hover close to a flower but also to rapidly escape danger. Animal flight has...

Flying Robot Mimics Rapid Insect Flight
Q&A : Electronics & Computers
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Sherry Towfighian and her team made a big improvement on how microphones are manufactured.
Q&A: Innovative Linear Electrostatic MEMS Actuator
Articles : Energy
2019 'Create the Future' Sustainable Technologies Category Winner: Wave-Powered Water Desalination
2019 'Create the Future' Sustainable Technologies Category Winner: Wave-Powered Water Desalination
Learn about the world's first wave-driven desalination system.
2019 'Create the Future' Sustainable Technologies Category Winner: Wave-Powered Water Desalination
Articles : Automotive
2019 'Create the Future' Automotive/Transportation Category Winner: A Standalone AC Battery
2019 'Create the Future' Automotive/Transportation Category Winner: A Standalone AC Battery
A prototype of the AC 'Biode' battery has been developed at 20W.
2019 'Create the Future' Automotive/Transportation Category Winner: A Standalone AC Battery
Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Passive Smart Container
Passive Smart Container

Although Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology is being used widely for pallet and box-level tracking in the commercial sector, significant technology gaps remain for tracking dense quantities at the item...

Passive Smart Container
Briefs : Imaging
Tiny Lensless Endoscope Captures 3D Images of Objects Smaller Than a Cell
Tiny Lensless Endoscope Captures 3D Images of Objects Smaller Than a Cell

Researchers have developed a new self-calibrating endoscope that produces 3D images of objects smaller than a single cell without a lens or any optical, electrical, or...

Tiny Lensless Endoscope Captures 3D Images of Objects Smaller Than a Cell
Briefs : Aerospace
Battery-Free Sensor for Underwater Use
Battery-Free Sensor for Underwater Use

To investigate oceans, researchers aim to build a submerged network of interconnected sensors that sends data to the surface. Supplying constant power to scores of sensors designed to stay for long...

Battery-Free Sensor for Underwater Use
Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
2019 'Create the Future' Manufacturing/Robotics/Automation Category Winner: The HPCI® Joining Gun
2019 'Create the Future' Manufacturing/Robotics/Automation Category Winner: The HPCI® Joining Gun
A team of inventors found a fast way to join plastic to metal.
2019 'Create the Future' Manufacturing/Robotics/Automation Category Winner: The HPCI® Joining Gun
Articles : Test & Measurement
Expanding Traditional Machine Vision With High-Speed Digital Imaging
Expanding Traditional Machine Vision With High-Speed Digital Imaging
Machine vision systems shed light on processes too small or too fast to see with the human eye.
Expanding Traditional Machine Vision With High-Speed Digital Imaging
Facility Focus : Information Technology
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
In recent decades, NSF-funded researchers have discovered quite a bit, including many of the fundamental particles of matter.
Facility Focus: National Science Foundation
Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
2019 Create the Future Design Contest Special Awards Section
See the eight winners of the 2019 "Create the Future" Design Contest
Articles : Photonics/Optics
Bringing Precision Anamorphic Micro-Optics to Consumer-Level Laser Applications
Bringing Precision Anamorphic Micro-Optics to Consumer-Level Laser Applications
Laser illumination is scaling in a new direction.
Bringing Precision Anamorphic Micro-Optics to Consumer-Level Laser Applications
Briefs : Materials
Optical Neural Network Could Lead to Intelligent Cameras
Optical Neural Network Could Lead to Intelligent Cameras

UCLA engineers have made major improvements on their design of an optical neural network — a device inspired by how the human brain works — that can identify objects or process...

Optical Neural Network Could Lead to Intelligent Cameras