Motion Control/​Automation

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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.

Question of the Week: Robotics, Automation & Control
Have You Used Collaborative Robots?

Last week, a Tech Briefs reader asked our expert: "Can collaborative robots help manufacturers looking to scale their business?"

Briefs: Motion Control

Mechanical systems such as engines and motors rely on two principal types of motions of stiff components: linear motion, which involves an object moving from one point to another in a straight...

Articles: Electronics & Computers

Smarter, better, faster, less expensive — those words are the mantra of today’s global economy. As organizations seek to streamline operations and do more with less, they...

Articles: Motion Control

Linear permanent magnet brakes, also known as eddy current brakes, are a failsafe, power-free deceleration system that is used in conjunction with a metal reaction plate. Ceramic or rare earth magnets are...

Briefs: Motion Control

Fast-response, stiffness-tunable (FRST) soft actuators — or movable machine elements — were developed that could be used in soft robots.

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control

Researchers, drawing inspiration from bacteria, have designed smart, bio-compatible microrobots that are highly flexible. Because these devices are able to swim through fluids and modify their shape...

Briefs: Motion Control

By mixing carbon fibers into polymer-based brakes, researchers designed brakes that are self-lubricating. These new and improved brakes can prevent wear-and-tear and have better frictional...

Articles: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

When choosing a gas spring for a particular application, it’s imperative to have a basic understanding of the workings and terminology used when specifying gas springs. This article offers...

Application Briefs: Photonics/Optics

In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, Hawaii Island is surrounded by thousands of miles of thermally stable seas. The 13,796-foot Maunakea mountain summit has no nearby ranges to roil the upper...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

Making electric cars lighter also involves reducing the weight of the motor. One way to do that is by constructing it from fiber-reinforced polymer materials. A new cooling concept...

Products: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Bearing Sensor

ABB (Zurich, Switzerland) introduced the ABB Ability™ smart sensor that enables health checks for bearings. The smart sensor technology provides an early indicator of...

Products: Sensors/Data Acquisition

nanotron, Munich, Germany, introduced 360° Edge Analytics tools and location-aware wireless sensors for manufacturing and healthcare. The products automatically extract event information...

Briefs: Energy

Recent technical advances have enabled flywheel energy storage systems (FESS) to become more compact and able to support higher-power applications. Due to their proven...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Industrial machinery, agricultural equipment, transportation vessels, and home applications depend on lubricants; however, they leave a heavy environmental footprint. Common lubricants, oils,...

Products: RF & Microwave Electronics
Wave Springs

Smalley, Lake Zurich, IL, announced a Nested Spirawave Wave Springs series. The multiple-turn, flat wire wave springs are coiled in parallel to produce two to three times as much force as...

Special Reports: Test & Measurement
Automotive Manufacturing - April 2019

Factories are getting smarter thanks to advances in robotics, analytics, simulation, metrology and more. To help you keep pace with the latest developments, we present this compendium of recent articles...

Blog: Robotics, Automation & Control
Cobots can help manufacturers automate tasks both known or unknown, says engineer Israel Nunez.
INSIDER: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Vehicles could be affordably produced for a wide variety of specialized purposes using a self-contained wheel unit that combines a wheel and an electric motor with braking, suspension,...

INSIDER: Robotics, Automation & Control

Robots using a system of RFID tags can locate tagged objects within 7.5 milliseconds on average with an error of less than a centimeter. TurboTrack could replace computer vision for some...

Blog: Robotics, Automation & Control
A reader asks: What types of considerations need to be made before you go in on collaborative robots?
Blog: Robotics, Automation & Control
Blog: Motion Control
The wearable is fireproof, thanks to a carbon aerogel nanocomposite material.
Briefs: Motion Control
Precision Low-Speed Motor Controller

Innovators at NASA Johnson Space Center have developed a method for controlling precise motion of a brushless DC (BLDC) motor using relatively inexpensive components. Precision motors are usually quite expensive and inefficient when operating at slow speeds. Current motors are only capable of operating at...

Products: Electronics & Computers
Controller and Datalogger

Watlow, St. Louis, MO, introduced a batch processing feature for the F4T temperature and process controller and D4T datalogger. The new feature helps collect manufacturing...

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping

This column presents technologies that have applications in commercial areas, possibly creating the products of tomorrow. To learn more about each technology, see the contact information provided for that...

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Computer-Controlled Exercise Equipment

While a wide variety of computer-controlled exercise machines for training and rehabilitation exist — some of which can be automatically adjusted to vary resistance or incline — such systems provide for preprogrammed changes in load or resistance. What is needed is a system that overcomes the...

Technology Leaders: Materials

One of the first things an electrical engineer will learn is that the number-one enemy of designing and manufacturing any electrical/electronic product is heat. It's the one...

Articles: Communications

We recently interviewed Justin Bessette, Manager, Wireless Systems and Software Engineering at LORD Corporation, Micro-Strain® Sensing Systems, about the nuts and bolts of a wireless...

Products: Communications
Torque Measurement System

To address the demand for a more accurate, reliable, customizable, and easy-to-use force measurement device, Interface Force Measurement Systems (Scottsdale, AZ)...

Trending Stories

Briefs: Aerospace

Self-Healing, Recyclable, Shape Memory Polymers

NASA Spinoff: Materials

Nanotechnology Repairs Engine Damage in Cars

INSIDER: Robotics, Automation & Control

Autonomous Robot Opens Doors, Finds Wall Outlets

Application Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition

Sensing Hazardous Gases Can Save Lives

INSIDER: Semiconductors & ICs

Smaller, Cheaper, and More Dynamic Computer Chips

INSIDER: Motion Control

Non-Contact Tip/Tilt Sensor

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