Motion Control/​Automation

Robotics, Automation & Control

Stay updated on the fast-changing advancements in robotics, automation, and control. Access the technical briefs and applications that are trending in AI, robotic operating systems, and machine learning.

Application Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Valve Leakage Detection in Industrial Pumps

As an integral part of onshore and offshore drilling, mud pumps circulate drilling fluids to facilitate drilling oil and natural gas wells. Mud pumps stabilize pressure and support the well during...

Application Briefs: Motion Control
Traverse System Enables Vertical Farming
See how a system feeds plants, delivering about 5,417 gallons of water per hour.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Gripper Handles Freely Moving Cables
The gripper’s soft, sensitive fingers could enable robots to help with tying knots, wire shaping, or surgical suturing.
Inspired by a coral polyp, this plastic mini robot moves by magnetism and light.
Complex locomotion techniques enable the rover to climb hills covered with soft granular material.
This technology can help robots walk up to 40 percent faster on uneven terrain such as pebbles and wood chips.
Facility Focus: Robotics, Automation & Control
Facility Focus: Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory
See how "APL" is developing ways to ensure the safety and performance of autonomous systems.
An ultrafast image sensor with a built-in neural network can be trained to recognize certain objects.
This approach could be used to cost-effectively make soft robots and wearable technologies.
Briefs: Motion Control
4D Printing of Morphing Structures
A new method manufactures complex shapeshifters for soft robots and biomedical implants.
This technology shows potential for the detection of subtle human motions and the real-time monitoring of body postures for healthcare applications.
The sensor has applications in fields such as robotics, healthcare, and security.
This technique offers enhanced resolution and improved system reliability for mapping and obstacle recognition and navigation for vehicles.
Multiple commercial applications include defense, search and rescue, and disaster relief.
On-Demand Webinars: Robotics, Automation & Control
Collaborative Robotics: Sharing the Workspace

Manufacturing robots were kept in cages previously, programmed by specialists, and often used for a single task. Today’s collaborative robots are being used by manufacturers to automate...

Blog: Robotics, Automation & Control
Watch: The Mars 2020 Perseverance Launch

Watch below as the Perseverance rover and its Ingenuity helicopter make their way to Mars.

INSIDER: Robotics, Automation & Control
Human-Like Hands with Flexible, Hybrid Actuators

In industrial settings, robots often are used for tasks that require repetitive grasping and manipulation of objects. A humanoid hand design that is a soft-hard hybrid flexible gripper can...

Mars 2020 NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and other NASA experts offer a briefing on this week's launch of the Perseverance rover.
Blog: Robotics, Automation & Control
Watch: NASA's Mars 2020 Sample Return Briefing

Watch below as NASA experts review how they plan to return samples from the surface of Mars back to Earth.

In the past 24 months, there has been increased skepticism regarding the ability of the automotive industry to deliver fully functional Level 3...

Can NASA "joystick" the landing of the next Mars rover? A Tech Briefs reader asks our NASA expert.
We plug in our headphones everyday. Now a robot can perform the task.
On-Demand Webinars: Robotics, Automation & Control
The Path to High-Level Autonomy for Commercial Vehicles

Automated-driving technology experts continue to project commercial vehicles as the most promising early adoption sector for high-level automation. But ever-evolving technology...

Question of the Week: Unmanned Systems
Will ‘Roboats’ Catch On?

Our July issue of Tech Briefs highlighted a fleet of “roboats” that could someday transport people, collect trash, and self-assemble into floating structures.

The Roboat autonomous robotic boats — rectangular hulls equipped with sensors, thrusters, microcontrollers, GPS modules, cameras, and other...

A tiny underwater robot may someday filter out water contaminants by catching them with its tentacles.
The Mars rover Perseverance has a helicopter. Will the rover have to carry it around?
Ben Jennet is a PhD student at MIT and a former space research fellow at NASA. He is working with NASA to develop a new kind of aircraft wing that's flexible and changes mid-flight.
A new low-cost imaging system could make it easier to track mosquito species that carry disease, enabling a more timely and targeted response.
Sensors in the hand can actually detect forces being transmitted through the thickness of the robot.

Videos