Monday, 23 May 2016

Solar Impulse 2 lands in Ohio




Solar Impulse 2 has touched down in Dayton, Ohio, on the latest leg of its global circumnavigation flight. With André Borschberg at the controls, the single-seater solar-powered aircraft landed at Dayton International Airport at 9:56 pm EDT after 16 hours and 34 minutes in the air. This is the fourth flight of the Solar 2 this year and the 12th leg of its round-the-world mission that began in Abu Dhabi in 2015.

.. Continue Reading Solar Impulse 2 lands in Ohio

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Saab's underwater robot tackles terrorist bombs



Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) aren't just a threat on land, they're also a major problem underwater as well. To help track down and neutralize these devices, Saab has developed its Sea Wasp Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), which was unveiled at the US Navy League's Sea-Air-Space Exposition in National Harbor, Maryland.

.. Continue Reading Saab's underwater robot tackles terrorist bombs

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Experimental hypersonic craft hits Mach 7.5



The Australian Department of Defence has announced the successful launch of a hypersonic aircraft called Hypersonic International Flight Research Experimentation (HIFiRE) 5B at the Woomera Test range. According to a statement, the craft reached a velocity of Mach 7.5 (5,710 mph, 9,188 km/h) and an altitude of 278 km (173 mi) as part of an Australian-United States program to study fundamental technologies needed to travel over five times the speed of sound.

.. Continue Reading Experimental hypersonic craft hits Mach 7.5

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Saab rolls out latest-generation Gripen E fighter



Saab has unveiled its next-generation multi-role fighter. The Gripen E prototype 39-8 "Smart Fighter" is the latest product of the Swedish/Brazilian fighter program and is aimed at markets not cleared to purchase the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. According to Saab, the single-seater E is a major advance over previous Gripens with greater range and endurance, as well as more advanced weaponry and electronic warfare capability.

.. Continue Reading Saab rolls out latest-generation Gripen E fighter

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Pittsburgh Steelers recruit robot player



The Pittsburgh Steelers have a new MVP ... and it's a robot. In this case, MVP stands for "Mobile Virtual Player" – a remote controlled robotic dummy designed to help players practice tackling and other plays with less risk of repetitive injuries.

.. Continue Reading Pittsburgh Steelers recruit robot player

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US Navy takes possession of its largest ever destroyer



The US Navy took formal possession of its largest ever destroyer as the future USS Zumwalt(DDG 1000) changed hands from the Bath Iron Works shipyard in Maine. Billed as "the most technically complex and advanced warship the world has ever seen," the handover follows months of sea trials during which the first in its class, multi-mission land attack and littoral dominance warship was tested to certify its hull, mechanical, and electrical systems, propulsion, and anchor and mooring systems.

.. Continue Reading US Navy takes possession of its largest ever destroyer

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Saturday, 14 May 2016

Catch up





Disney Research has come up with a glockenspiel-playing robot that can indulge in balloon toss ... when it isn't safely picking up fresh eggs. The telepresence robot uses a new type of hydrostatic transmission that combines hydraulic and air lines to provide more degrees of freedom, as well as greater precision and delicacy of touch in a lighter, simpler design.

.. Continue Reading New hybrid system gives robot arms human-like grace and precision

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With a night landing at Tulsa Airport, the solar-powered aircraft Solar Impulse 2 completed the 11th leg of its solar-electric circumnavigation. With Bertrand Piccard at the controls the one-man composite aircraft touched down at approximately 11:15 pm CDT after a slight delay due to a slow ascent caused by the aircraft's low power... Continue Reading Solar Impulse 2 reaches Oklahoma on 11th leg of circumnavigation

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In the runup to an open-air display of a key aspect of its Hyperloop technology, Hyperloop Technologies has announced a rebranding. Before an invited audience of guests and media in Las Vegas, the transportation startup declared that it will now be known as Hyperloop One. In addition, the company announced that it has secured US$80 million in Series B financing as well as partnerships with a number of technology and infrastructure companies... Continue Reading Hyperloop Technologies (now Hyperloop One) on runup to test

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After a six month hiatus, ground tests have resumed on the third prototype (A/C3) of theAgustaWestland AW609 tiltrotor. The aircraft recently underwent restrained ground testing with all engines and systems online after testing was suspended following a fatal air crash on October 30, 2015, which cost the lives of two test pilots... Continue Reading Third AW609 tiltrotor prototype resumes testing following fatal crash

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Getting a robot to walk is one thing, getting it to walk without tripping on the first obstacle it encounters is quite another. Engineers at the University of Michigan are developing a set of algorithms that allow an unsupported bipedal robot named MARLO to negotiate steep slopes, thin layers of snow, and uneven, unstable ground without toppling over. Designed as a general purpose robotic system, the algorithms may also have applications in advanced prosthetics... Continue Reading Bipedal robot conquers uneven ground

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With a population of under 600,000, it's not surprising Luxembourg isn't currently on the list of spacefaring nations. But that hasn't stopped its government, along with the Luxembourg Société Nationale de Crédit et d'Investissement (SNCI), entering into a partnership with the US asteroid mining company Deep Space Industries (DSI) as part of the country's spaceresources.lu initiative to develop new commercial space technologies with an emphasis on asteroid mining... Continue Reading Luxembourg joins asteroid mining space race

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From the bow to the bunker buster to the hydrogen bomb, new technologies have changed the face of warfare, and 3D printing looks set to be just as revolutionary. It's been around since the 1980s, but as key patents expire and access to the technology becomes more readily available, its effects on the military promise to be considerable – though the biggest and most immediate impact may be from a surprisingly humble quarter... Continue Reading 3D printing goes to war

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Deep space exploration has taken one small step (or roll) forward with the successful test of space-based control of a robot rover from aboard the International Space Station. The experiment saw British ESA astronaut Tim Peake take control of a British-built rover named "Bridget" and guide it around a simulated Martian landscape back on Earth, avoiding obstacles and locating scientific targets along the way... Continue Reading British astronaut pilots earthbound rover from aboard ISS

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Exomars 2018 is now ExoMars 2020 after the Euro-Russian Mars landing mission was officially postponed for two years. The joint ESA/Roscosmos venture has been beset by delays over the past four years and recent setbacks in mission preparations have placed the 2018 launch window out of reach, prompting the rescheduling.
.. Continue Reading ExoMars 2018 now ExoMars 2020 after two-year postponement

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The sea urchin may be a restaurant delicacy, but it's also well equipped to satisfy its own appetite. The spiny invertebrate has a rock-crushing mouth so powerful that a herd of them can destroy a kelp forest or devastate a coral reef. Now its dinner manglers have inspired a team of engineers and marine biologists at the University of California, San Diego, to create a claw-like manipulator for robotic rovers tasked with collecting soil samples on other planets... Continue Reading Mouthy sea urchin inspires engineers to take a bite out of other planets

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NASA has teamed with Honeywell Aerospace to help bring its dream of the return of commercial supersonic flight a bit closer to reality. NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center and Honeywell have flight tested a cockpit display that allows pilots to visualize the location of sonic booms before they occur. With this knowledge, aircraft can change course and minimize the boom over populated areas... Continue Reading NASA and Honeywell (literally) look at sonic booms

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SpaceX has nailed a night landing of its Falcon 9 booster. Against all expectations, the rocket not only achieved its second landing on the unmanned "Of Course I Still Love You" droneship, but did so in the dark, at high speed and with little fuel... Continue Reading Falcon 9 beats the odds with nighttime barge landing

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It looks as if Britain's £200 million (US$284 million) state-of-the-art polar research ship won't be christened "Boaty McBoatface" after all. According to the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), the UK Science Minister Jo Johnson confirmed today that the vessel will be named"Royal Research Ship Sir David Attenborough" in recognition of the broadcaster's contributions to natural science and education... Continue Reading Out: Boaty McBoatface. In: RRS Sir David Attenborough

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Friday, 29 April 2016

New imaging technique provides "drone's eye" view of Mars

University College London (UCL) has released images of the Martian surface with five times the resolution of anything previously sent back from Mars orbit. The images come courtesy of the new Super-Resolution Restoration (SRR) imaging technique developed by a UCL research team, which takes images from spacecraft orbiting Mars and stacks and matches them to create new, more detailed images of the Beagle 2 lander, ancient Martian lake beds, and the tracks of the NASA MER-A rover.

.. Continue Reading New imaging technique provides "drone's eye" view of Mars

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Wednesday, 27 April 2016

DARPA awards Ground X-Vehicle Technology contracts as it swaps agility for armor

The days of tanks as giant steel behemoths may be numbered with DARPA awarding eight development contracts for its Ground X-Vehicle Technology (GXV-T) program. The awards to Carnegie Mellon University, Honeywell International, Leido, Pratt & Miller, QinetiQ, Raytheon BBN, Southwest Research Institute and SRI International are aimed at creating a smarter, faster generation of armored vehicle that replaces steel with speed and agility.

.. Continue Reading DARPA awards Ground X-Vehicle Technology contracts as it swaps agility for armor

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Maiden flight for Japan's X-2 stealth fighter prototype

NASA isn't the only one with X-Planes. Japan is developing it's own experimental aircraft to test an airframe, engines, and other advanced systems and equipment for fifth-generation fighter aircraft for the country's self-defense forces. The project's primary contractor, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, has conducted the successful maiden flight of the X-2 advanced technology demonstrator jet, the first Japanese-built warplane to incorporate stealth technology.


.. Continue Reading Maiden flight for Japan's X-2 stealth fighter prototype

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Giant wave-riding platform design puts solar power out to sea

Sea-based wind farms are becoming a common sight in many parts of the world, but why not floating solar power stations? Engineers at the Vienna University of Technology foresee a future where platforms 100 m long and covered with solar panels float on even heavy seas thanks to a new floatation system called Heliofloat. Still under development, Heliofloat uses flexible, open-bottom floats that are capable of standing up to rough seas that would destroy such a platform sitting on conventional tanks.

.. Continue Reading Giant wave-riding platform design puts solar power out to sea

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Sunday, 24 April 2016

Catch up

Solar Impulse 2 breaks records by reaching California

Last night, Solar Impulse 2 completed the Pacific Ocean crossing leg of its round-the-world flight. According to the Solar Impulse organization, the aircraft with founder and chairman Bertrand Piccard at the controls touched down in a night landing at Moffett Airfield in Mountain View, California on April 23 at 11:44 pm PDT after a flight time of 62 hours and 29 minutes from Kalaeloa Airport, Hawaii.

.. Continue Reading Solar Impulse 2 breaks records by reaching California

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HYT H1 Ghost watch combines mechanics and hydraulics

Upmarket Swiss watchmaker HYT has come up with a watch that should be impossible to read due to the lack of an hour hand, but isn't. In the latest iteration of the company's hydrological horology, HYT's H1 Ghost has a sub-dial for counting off minutes and another for seconds, but the hour hand has been replaced by a retrograde complication that displays the hours via a liquid-filled tube... Continue Reading HYT H1 Ghost watch combines mechanics and hydraulics

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NASA taps Aerojet Rocketdyne for new space propulsion system

In anticipation of future deep-space missions, NASA has awarded a US$67 million, 36-month contract to Redmond, Washington-based Aerojet Rocketdyne to design and develop an Advanced Electric Propulsion System (AEPS). Based on previous ion thrusters like prototype NEXT and the Dawn mission to the asteroid Ceres, the new propulsion system could to supply a future manned Mars mission.. Continue Reading NASA taps Aerojet Rocketdyne for new space propulsion system

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Scott Sight mask gives firefighters hands-free thermal vision

A fire is no place to be blind, but firefighters face that prospect every time they enter a smoke-filled building. Thermal imagers can improve the odds, but they're too often handheld and bulky, so Scott Safety has come up with the Scott Sight, a lightweight imaging system integrated into a breathing mask to provide individual firefighters with real-time thermal images... Continue Reading Scott Sight mask gives firefighters hands-free thermal vision

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Big-i robot butler learns from its masters

It may look like a one-eyed trash can, but Nxrobo calls its Big-i a "personal robot butler." Combining the features of domestic robot, home automation, and personal assistant that learns and adapts to its owner's behavior, the multi-function automaton was recently unveiled at Pepcom DigitalFocus in New York by its inventor, Dr Tin Lun Lam... Continue Reading Big-i robot butler learns from its masters

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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

World's largest commercial aircraft engine fired up for the first time

The world's largest commercial aircraft engine has been started up for the first time at GE Aviation's Peebles Test Operation in Ohio. According to GE, ground testing of the GE9X development engine will enable data to be gathered on the engine's overall and aerodynamic performance, mechanical verification, and aero-thermal system validation leading up to flight testing and certification before entering service at the end the decade.

.. Continue Reading World's largest commercial aircraft engine fired up for the first time

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DARPA VTOL X-plane takes flight in miniature

It may look like a backwards airplane with a collection of fans for wings, but a miniature test version of DARPA's Vertical Take-off and Landing Experimental Plane (VTOL X-Plane) took to the skies recently. According to the builder, Aurora Flight Sciences, the subscale vehicle demonstrator (SVD) prototype of the LightningStrike successfully completed a series of takeoff, hover, and landing maneuvers at an undisclosed US military base.

.. Continue Reading DARPA VTOL X-plane takes flight in miniature

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Monday, 18 April 2016

Boeing proposes 3D printing "ice" for aircraft certification

In another potential aerospace application for 3D printing, Boeing has filed an application with the US Patent Office for a way to make artificial "ice." The company isn't planning on making novelty ice cubes for the first class passengers (yet), but has come up with a way of printing plastic and composite shapes that can be tacked onto the wings and other surfaces to simulate icing conditions. According to Boeing, this will help to streamline and reduce the cost of the aircraft certification process.

.. Continue Reading Boeing proposes 3D printing "ice" for aircraft certification

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Boeing proposes 3D printing "ice" for aircraft certification

In another potential aerospace application for 3D printing, Boeing has filed an application with the US Patent Office for a way to make artificial "ice." The company isn't planning on making novelty ice cubes for the first class passengers (yet), but has come up with a way of printing plastic and composite shapes that can be tacked onto the wings and other surfaces to simulate icing conditions. According to Boeing, this will help to streamline and reduce the cost of the aircraft certification process.

.. Continue Reading Boeing proposes 3D printing "ice" for aircraft certification

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