Motion Control

Motion Control

Browse innovative developments in motion control technologies. Find essential news, technical briefs, and applications used in PID controllers, servo motors, direct drive solutions, autonomous positioning, and motion-related components.

Since the first airplane took flight, virtually every aircraft has flown with the help of moving parts such as propellers, turbine blades, or fans that produce a persistent, whining buzz. MIT has built...

Application Briefs: Materials
Imaging Innovation for Spinal Care

Motion capture (Mocap) is a technique used in the film industry to digitally track a human actor's movements and precisely transfer those motions to an animated figure. But it has other applications as...

Reliability and longevity directly impact the cost of using Q-switched, diode pumped, solid state, ultraviolet lasers in industrial applications. Damage to the intracavity harmonic crystal is...

An unexpected source recently identified a global Martian dust storm. The source was an actuator, or motor, that powers a lid to a funnel that takes in samples of powdered...

The need for Ethernet-based communication within the factory has grown over the past 10 years. Detailed information about the tasks and performance of machines at every stage is...

A technique was developed to quickly teach robots novel traversal behaviors with minimal human oversight. The technique allows mobile robot platforms to navigate autonomously in...

In today’s fast-paced industrial settings, speed and efficiency are key. Reducing time spent on sourcing, installing, and testing motion control systems can play a big...

When heated, popcorn can expand more than 10 times in size, change its viscosity by a factor of 10, and transition from regular to highly irregular granules with surprising force. These unique qualities can...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Robotic Modules Modify Their Environment for Specific Tasks

Given the exact parameters of the task at hand, a robot can assemble a car door or pack a box faster and more efficiently than a human, but such purpose-built machines are not...

The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), under construction atop 8,737-foot El Peñón peak in northern Chile, is a partnership project of the National...

Multi-Voltage Motors

Simotics SD Pro low-voltage motors from Siemens (Munich, Germany) are suited for mains-fed operation or with a converter for voltages up to 690 volts. There is generally...

Traditional videos and photos for studying motion are two-dimensional, and don’t show the underlying 3D structure of the person or subject of interest. So, researchers are using an...

INSIDER: Motion Control
Controlling Nanomotors with Light

Engineers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed the first method for selecting and switching the mechanical motion of nanomotors among multiple modes with simple visible light as the...

The increasing variety of applications for the Internet of Things is driving predictions that the sales volume for sensors will reach 75 billion units by 2025. Applications unforeseen just five...

A cageless bearing with rolling separator elements was developed for applications including portable medical devices, toys, and robotic applications with medium force requirements. The normal...

A thin layer of conducting thermoplastic, applied to common paper with an inexpensive 3D printer or even painted by hand, serves as a low-cost, reversible actuator. When an...

Question of the Week: Motion Control
Can Popcorn Power Robots?

In last week's INSIDER, we featured a Q&A with Cornell University researcher Steven Ceron, who is experimenting with a new way — and delicious — way of powering robots: Popcorn.

Blog: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
How to Power Robots with Popcorn

Cornell researchers have discovered a novel – and delicious – way to power simple robots: Popcorn.

Articles: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Conical, Floating-Piston Isolation Valve

A new valve concept consists of a solid piston floating in a medium to control a flowstream. Although the conical shape of the seat is a prominent feature of the valve, especially when the concept was...

Application Briefs: Motion Control
High-Speed Reluctance Machine Design

Silphenix GmbH is an engineering and consulting firm in Switzerland specializing in high-speed electrical machines, magnetic bearings, and electromagnetic field analysis. One project focus is compact...

The unique capabilities of soft robots are to bend, deform, stretch, twist, or squeeze in all the ways that conventional rigid robots cannot. Today, it is easy to envision a world in...

Application Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Drive Technology: The Recipe for Precise Actuator Control

Worldwide, there are only a handful of manufacturers of electrical actuators for the process industry, and the Vienna, Austria-based company Schiebel Antriebstechnik GmbH is the...

Articles: Test & Measurement
Machine Vision Can Do More Than You Think

The ability to automatically extract information from digital images opens many doors for manufacturers striving to cut costs, improve quality, and streamline their processes overall. The primary...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Ultra-Thin Capacitive Sensor Has the Least Possible Resistance to Motion

A thin and flexible sensor was developed for sensing sounds, since it can move with the airflow made by even the softest noises. With the least possible resistance to motion, the sensor addresses issues with accelerometers, microphones, and many other similar sensors. The...

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping
IMTS2018 Preview

Presented by the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT), the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) has been the premier manufacturing technology show in the Northern Hemisphere. IMTS is held every even...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Variable-Camber Compliant Wing

In the early years of manned flight, wing warping was used for lateral control of an aircraft. This technique consisted of a system of pulleys and cables used to twist the trailing edges of the wings in...

Resistance welding with direct current (DC) using inverter technology reduces costs by improving quality, reducing maintenance, and increasing productivity. Switching from...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Autonomous Crop-Counting Robot

Today's crop breeders are trying to boost yields while preparing plants to withstand severe weather and changing climates. To succeed, they must locate the genes for high-yielding, hardy traits in crop...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Hydraulic-Based Spherical Robot

Current spherical robots rely upon rotating mechanical weights inside the sphere to change the center of gravity of the sphere, causing the robot to roll. The use of rotating mechanical weights is not optimal due to the reliance upon moving parts, which can present burdensome maintenance issues. It would be...

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