Tuna Robot Navigates Biomimicry Waters

Not only is the tuna a strong swimmer, but the front portion of its body remains stable as it propels itself through water. This unique style of movement was the inspiration for a U.S. Navy project, which employed biomimickry practices to create the optimal design for an autonomous unmanned underwater vehicle.

The so-called tuna robot, designed in partnership with Boston Engineering, builds off the seaworthy profile of the tuna and includes a propulsion system, a single oscillating foil, appropriately placed fins, and a finely-tuned muscular and sensory control system. The full set of technology makes the tuna robot efficient at a variety of speeds, unlike a traditional thruster propulsion system, which is typically optimized to operate at a single velocity. ']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

Wanted: Students to Design Unamanned Aircraft for Agriculture

On the outset, the challenge for the high school students seems straightforward: design “a UAS (unmanned aircraft system), which may have a fixed wing, rotorcraft, or hybrid design.” But this UAS needs to perform certain mission-critical tasks. It needs to fly over the cornfields of Iowa and pick out areas affected by a pest known as the European Corn Borer (in its lava stage, it can tunnel into the corn’s ear and feed on the plant). Oh, by the way, the project needs to stay within budget and come with a business plan.

The prizes are: $50,000 scholarships from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to each student on the national winning team; and a $1,000 stipend to the teacher who best integrates the challenge into their curriculum.

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10,000 Year Clock Serves As A Crash Course In Materials Science

Choosing the optimal materials mix has long been a vexing challenge for engineers, particularly when trying to zero in on a composition that can withstand the wear and tear of a product’s full lifecycle. But what about when the plans for that product call for it to be housed inside a mountainous cavern with a lifespan of 10,000 years? →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

PTC Gets Ready to Mobilize Windchill

Last June, during PlanetPTC Live user conference, Brian Shepherd, PTC’s executive VP of product development, decided to shake things up a bit, quite literally. He previewed an iPad app (only a prototype at the time) that lets you explode an assembly model by shaking the device. By the end of March, what Shepherd demonstrated could be available commercially. →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

Creo Direct 1.0, A Brand New Direct Modeler from PTC

Creo Direct 1.0, part of PTC’s Creo app family, was “built from the ground up,” in PTC’s own words. That warrants an explanation, as PTC already has a robust, commercial-class direct modeler. Under the campaign to remake itself as the house of Creo, PTC renamed CoCreate as PTC Creo Elements/Direct. In fact, PTC now has not two but four direct-modeling alternatives: →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading