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Microtechnics - Life Sciences - 17.07.2024
Ant insights lead to robot navigation breakthrough
Ant insights lead to robot navigation breakthrough
Have you ever wondered how insects are able to go so far beyond their home and still find their way? The answer to this question is not only relevant to biology but also to making the AI for tiny, autonomous robots. TU Delft drone-researchers felt inspired by biological findings on how ants visually recognize their environment and combine it with counting their steps in order to get safely back home.

Health - Microtechnics - 18.06.2024
Graphene plus liquid crystals equals 'Hot Fingers'
Graphene plus liquid crystals equals ’Hot Fingers’
Eindhoven researchers have developed a soft robotic 'hand' made from liquid crystals and graphene that could be used to design future surgical robots. The new work has just been published in the journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. In our future hospitals, soft robots might be used as surgical robots.

Microtechnics - Astronomy / Space - 17.06.2024
Engineers unlock design for record-breaking robot that could jump twice the height of Big Ben
Manchester engineers unlock design for record-breaking robot that could jump twice the height of Big Ben Engineers at The University of Manchester have unlocked the secrets to designing a robot capable of jumping 200 metres - higher than any other jumping robot designed to date. Using a combination of mathematics, computer simulations, and laboratory experiments, the researchers have discovered how to design a robot with the optimum size, shape and the arrangement of its parts, allowing it to jump high enough to clear obstacles many times its own size.

Microtechnics - Materials Science - 14.06.2024
Robots au chocolat for dessert?
Robots au chocolat for dessert?
A fully edible robot could soon end up on our plate if we overcome some technical hurdles, say scientists involved in RoboFood - an project which aims to marry robots and food. Robots and food have long been distant worlds: Robots are inorganic, bulky, and non-disposable; food is organic, soft, and biodegradable.

Health - Microtechnics - 29.05.2024
How autonomous ultrasound can make everyday medical work easier
How autonomous ultrasound can make everyday medical work easier
Diagnostic support with artificial intelligence and robotics Prof. Nassir Navab from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) uses robotic ultrasound systems that perform routine examinations autonomously and support doctors in the operating theater. His research shows that these systems can make everyday life easier for doctors.

Microtechnics - Life Sciences - 24.05.2024
Imperceptible sensors made from 'electronic spider silk' can be printed directly on human skin
Imperceptible sensors made from ’electronic spider silk’ can be printed directly on human skin
Researchers have developed a method to make adaptive and eco-friendly sensors that can be directly and imperceptibly printed onto a wide range of biological surfaces, whether that's a finger or a flower petal. The method, developed by researchers from the University of Cambridge, takes its inspiration from spider silk, which can conform and stick to a range of surfaces.

Life Sciences - Microtechnics - 15.05.2024
Animal brain inspired AI game changer for autonomous robots
Animal brain inspired AI game changer for autonomous robots
A team of researchers at Delft University of Technology has developed a drone that flies autonomously using neuromorphic image processing and control based on the workings of animal brains. Animal brains use less data and energy compared to current deep neural networks running on GPUs (graphic chips).

Computer Science - Microtechnics - 15.05.2024
Danoy on Swarm Intelligence Powered by Automated Algorithm Design 
Swarm intelligence will revolutionise autonomous systems like robots or satellites. Inspired by nature, swarms of autonomous agents can display collectively intelligent behaviours, even though every single agent follows simple rules based on its individual perception. Thinking ahead, such systems can enable completely new possibilities for a multitude of use cases.

Astronomy / Space - Microtechnics - 15.05.2024
Robotic 'SuperLimbs' could help moonwalkers recover from falls
Robotic ’SuperLimbs’ could help moonwalkers recover from falls
A new MIT system could help astronauts conserve energy and extend missions on the lunar surface. Need a moment of levity' Try watching videos of astronauts falling on the moon. NASA's outtakes of Apollo astronauts tripping and stumbling as they bounce in slow motion are delightfully relatable. For MIT engineers, the lunar bloopers also highlight an opportunity to innovate.

Microtechnics - Life Sciences - 06.05.2024
Field reality reshapes robotic design
Field reality reshapes robotic design
In 2016, the BBC commissioned two reptilian robots from the BioRob laboratory for a documentary on the African wilderness. The scientists never imagined how testing the devices in the wild would change their approach to robotic design. Auke Ijspeert and his team at the Laboratory of Biorobotics ( BioRob ) in EPFL's Faculty of Engineering had already tested their bio-informed robots in the wild.

Microtechnics - 06.05.2024
Through the Eyes of a Robot
Through the Eyes of a Robot
Safely entering potentially unsafe areas with a robot from a distance using VR goggles. Eduardo Veas is making this possible at the Institute of Interactive Systems and Data Science at TU Graz.

Microtechnics - Life Sciences - 30.04.2024
Trotting robots reveal emergence of animal gait transitions
Trotting robots reveal emergence of animal gait transitions
A four-legged robot trained with machine learning by researchers has learned to avoid falls by spontaneously switching between walking, trotting, and pronking - a milestone for roboticists as well as biologists interested in animal locomotion. With the help of a form of machine learning called deep reinforcement learning (DRL), the EPFL robot notably learned to transition from trotting to pronking - a leaping, arch-backed gait used by animals like springbok and gazelles - to navigate a challenging terrain with gaps ranging from 14-30cm.

Transport - Microtechnics - 24.04.2024
Virtual Sensors Help Aerial Vehicles Stay Aloft When Rotors Fail
No crystal ball is needed to envision a future that engineers have in mind, one in which air taxis and other flying vehicles ferry passengers between urban locations, avoiding the growing gridlock on the ground below. Companies are already prototyping and testing such hybrid electric "flying cars" that take off and land vertically but soar through the air like winged aircraft to enable efficient flight over longer distances.

Microtechnics - Materials Science - 18.04.2024
An ink for 3D-printing flexible devices without mechanical joints
An ink for 3D-printing flexible devices without mechanical joints
Researchers are targeting the next generation of soft actuators and robots with an elastomer-based ink for 3D printing objects with locally changing mechanical properties, eliminating the need for cumbersome mechanical joints. For engineers working on soft robotics or wearable devices, keeping things light is a constant challenge: heavier materials require more energy to move around, and - in the case of wearables or prostheses - cause discomfort.

Microtechnics - 11.04.2024
How to have a more natural conversation with a robot
How to have a more natural conversation with a robot
New Waterloo Engineering-led research quickens the response time for robots to react to human conversation Talking to a robot often feels stilted or delayed, thanks to computer software trying to keep up with the conversation. However, new research from the University of Waterloo has improved the ability for humans to communicate naturally with humanoid robots.

Microtechnics - 09.04.2024
Helping robots make a better first impression
Helping robots make a better first impression
Researchers track the personalities of social robots to improve how they interact with humans An interdisciplinary research team from the University of Waterloo's Social and Intelligent Robotics Research Lab (SIRRL) has found that people prefer interacting with robots they perceive to have social identities like their own.

Microtechnics - 08.04.2024
Engineers design flexible 'skeletons' for soft, muscle-powered robots
Engineers design flexible ’skeletons’ for soft, muscle-powered robots
New modular, spring-like devices maximize the work of live muscle fibers so they can be harnessed to power biohybrid bots. Our muscles are nature's perfect actuators - devices that turn energy into motion. For their size, muscle fibers are more powerful and precise than most synthetic actuators. They can even heal from damage and grow stronger with exercise.

Microtechnics - Computer Science - 14.03.2024
Researchers help robots navigate efficiently in uncertain environments
A new algorithm reduces travel time by identifying shortcuts a robot could take on the way to its destination. If a robot traveling to a destination has just two possible paths, it needs only to compare the routes' travel time and probability of success. But if the robot is traversing a complex environment with many possible paths, choosing the best route amid so much uncertainty can quickly become an intractable problem.

Microtechnics - Health - 13.03.2024
Robotic interface masters a soft touch
Researchers have developed a haptic device capable of reproducing the softness of various materials, from a marshmallow to a beating heart, overcoming a deceptively complex challenge that has previously eluded roboticists. The perception of softness can be taken for granted, but it plays a crucial role in many actions and interactions - from judging the ripeness of an avocado to conducting a medical exam, or holding the hand of a loved one.

Microtechnics - 28.02.2024
Building Bionic Jellyfish for Ocean Exploration
Jellyfish can't do much besides swim, sting, eat, and breed. They don't even have brains. Yet, these simple creatures can easily journey to the depths of the oceans in a way that humans, despite all'our sophistication, cannot. But what if humans could have jellyfish explore the oceans on our behalf, reporting back what they find? New research conducted at Caltech aims to make that a reality through the creation of what researchers call biohybrid robotic jellyfish.
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