Motion Control/​Automation

Explore the latest developments in motion control and automation. Discover innovative advances from NASA and major research labs in robotics, autonomous vehicles, industrial automation, PID controller applications, motor drives and power transmissions.

INSIDER : Motion Control
InSight Measures Motion on Mars
NASA’s InSight lander has provided the first ever "sounds" of Martian winds on the Red Planet. Sensors captured a haunting low rumble caused by vibrations from the wind, estimated to be blowing between 10 to...
White Papers : Robotics, Automation & Control
Disruption is Here in Automotive and Ground Transportation: Are You Ready?

Connected, self-driving and electric vehicles are forging a totally different automotive industry from the one that has thrived for the past century. We are on the cusp of major disruption.

White Papers : Robotics, Automation & Control
Automotive Research User Handbook

Within the next 10 years, we will see remarkable change in the automotive industry. From improved engine efficiency to autonomous vehicles to electrification, innovation will begin in academic institutions around the world. NI solutions integrate hardware and software to help automotive scientists and engineers...

Application Briefs : Motion Control
Multi-Axis Motion Controller Accelerates Gear Testing

Materials testing and characterization is often a lengthy process. It can take more than a year and billions of testing cycles for a manufacturer to characterize the properties of a new...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Optical Gyroscope-on-a-Chip

Gyroscopes are devices that help vehicles, drones, and wearable and handheld electronic devices know their orientation in three-dimensional space. Originally, gyroscopes were sets of nested wheels, each spinning...

Application Briefs : Propulsion
One-Cable Automation Streamlines Robotic Non-Destructive Inspection Systems

There are few industries where the demands for material testing and quality assurance are more challenging than in the aerospace industry. Ensuring the safety of all...

Products : Sensors/Data Acquisition
New Products: December 2018, Motion Design

Motor/Drive/Controller

Advanced Micro Controls (Terryville, CT) offers a size 17 PLC-based SMD Series integrated stepper motor/drive/controller system. The integrated solutions are suited...

Briefs : Motion Control
High-Performance Cageless Bearings with Minimal Frictional Loss

The global bearings market is expected to grow significantly due to increasing commercial and industrial machinery and manufacturing activity. Bearings are used in virtually...

Articles : Lighting
Smart Actuators Deliver on the Promise of Industry 4.0

As Industry 4.0 initiatives bring more and more industrial axes of motion into the realm of automation, the need for cost-effective control across them grows as well. Advances in...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Device Detects Subatomic-Scale Motion

It is relatively easy to measure small movements of large objects, but is much more difficult when the moving parts are on the scale of nanometers, or billionths of a meter. The ability to accurately...

Briefs : Medical
Inductive Non-Contact Position Sensor

The Inductive Non-Contact Position Sensor is a highly accurate sensor for motion control applications. The sensor was designed to monitor the precise movements of an optical inspection system that...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Compound-Lens Camera for Industry and Smartphones

A process has been developed that enables the production of a 2-mm flat camera. The lens is partitioned into 135 tiny facets, similar to the eyes of an insect. The facetVISION camera is...

Products : Sensors/Data Acquisition
New on the Market: December 2018

Data Acquisition Devices

The USB-1808 Series simultaneous-sampling data acquisition devices from Measurement Computing Corp., Norton, MA, provides synchronous and concurrent voltage I/O, waveform...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Sensor Combination Detects People by Smell

Trained rescue dogs are the best disaster workers — their sensitive noses help them track down people buried by earthquakes or avalanches. But dogs need breaks. A new measuring device is always...

Briefs : Propulsion
Submarine Swims Without an Engine

Researchers have developed a new propulsion concept for swimming robots that exploits temperature fluctuations in the water for propulsion without the need for an engine, propellant, or power supply.

Blog : Aerospace
Q&A: After a Successful Landing, What’s Next for the InSight Mission?
InSight project manager Tom Hoffman spoke with Tech Briefs about the importance of digging deep in our knowledge of Mars.
White Papers : Robotics, Automation & Control
What's Driving Automotive Traceability Today?

Manufacturers in the automotive industry are dealing with a variety of changes – new technologies, new automation strategies, new consumer preferences and even the advent of the driverless vehicle. As automobiles become more complex, the practice of marking and tracking works-in-progress – a...

White Papers : Green Design & Manufacturing
Small IPM Gearmotors: Not for Everyone, Ideal for Many

IPM’s overwhelming advantages over AC Induction motors, DC motors, and gearmotors used with variable speed drives, in conjunction with continued OEM customer demand to reduce operating costs, will lead to significant growth in the motor topology market share.

White Papers : Materials
Producing Manufacturing Aids with HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D Printing

In the era of mass production and lean manufacturing, companies are looking for ways to help boost productivity and reduce unit costs while maintaining quality and repeatability. The focus is on continuously improving production techniques, accelerating the various phases within...

White Papers : Motion Control
Easy and Profitable Measurement Solutions Using Smart Laser Sensors

For fast measurements of displacement, distance and position with high accuracy and resolution, laser triangulation sensors can be used in a variety of applications. Reasons for this are non-contact and wear-free measurement, a large measuring range, high precision and easy...

White Papers : Motion Control
Stainless Steel Band Tie Corrosion Testing Drives Alloy Selection

Stainless steel ties are strong, corrosion resistant and durable, and increasingly used in place of welding in applications ranging from Construction, Manufacturing, Automotive and Aerospace. But with a variety of stainless steel grades, widths and lengths, the first question you...

White Papers : Robotics, Automation & Control
MVRC: Mark, Verify, Read and Communicate

To keep track of the works-in-progress of a single automobile, up to 20,000 parts require markings. This is just one of the difficulties of traceability – the process of marking individual parts and products and scanning them to collect data on location and status. Despite the challenges, traceability...

Blog : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Modular Robots Change Shape – Depending on the Task
Professor Hadas Kress-Gazit tells Tech Briefs about the "great promise" of autonomous modular robots.
White Papers : Motion Control
Hermetic Feedthroughs For Magnetic Bearing Chiller Compressors

Magnetic bearings help chiller compressors reach new levels of efficiency. These high-tech bearings, however, need extra signal connections thorugh the pressurized compressor housing. Epoxy-based hermetic feedthroughs can facilitate those signal—and power—connections without...

Application Briefs : Imaging
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...

Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Custom Optomechanics in Industrial UV Lasers

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...

Articles : Motion Control
2018 Create the Future Design Contest: Automotive/Transportation Category Winner

ISCAD — ELECTRICAL DRIVE WITH 0% RARE EARTHS, 25% HIGHER DRIVING RANGE, AND 100% SAFETY

Conventional electrical machines suffer from the problem that...

Articles : Data Acquisition
Smart Sensor Technology for the IoT

Internet of Things (IoT) applications — whether for city infrastructures, factories, or wearable devices — use large arrays of sensors collecting data for transmission over the Internet to a central,...

Articles : Manufacturing & Prototyping
2018 Create the Future Design Contest Special Awards Section

The Create the Future Design Contest was launched in 2002 by Tech Briefs Media Group (publishers of Tech Briefs magazine) to help stimulate and reward engineering innovation. Since...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
A Biologically Inspired Method of Improving Systems and Survivability Through Self-Sacrifice

In human beings, the self-destruction behavior of human body cells is considered as an intrinsic safety mechanism of the human body. It seems that the lifetime of a cell is programmed, and that cells know when to commit suicide. This self-destruction is...

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