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Can Wasps Revolutionize Robotic Surgery?
05/30/14 — Researchers from Indian Institute of Science have found that the egg-laying organs of wasps (ovipositors) have saw-like teeth coated with zinc. They lay eggs inside figs by drilling into the fruit. Insights gained from this study may help build tools that can aid in robot-assisted surgery, and novel mechanisms to…

Researchers Working on Better Grip for Robots
05/22/14 — Researchers at the University of Birmingham are developing a new method of teaching robots to pick up unfamiliar objects without dropping or breaking them. The researchers are programming a robotic hand to pick up an object and "then to use information learned in that first grip to grasp and move a…

$5M Unmanned Submarine Implodes at Bottom of Ocean
05/15/14 — A multimillion-dollar unmanned submarine has imploded during the final stages of a 10-kilometre dive into the Pacific Ocean, according to multiple reports. The Nereus submarine was lost on May 10 while diving in the Kermadec Trench, northeast of New Zealand. The US Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI), owner and operator…

NASA Tests Robotic Planetary Lander
05/08/14 — A prototype Morpheus lander from NASA named Bravo landed safely on a mock lunar landscape this week in Florida as part of its twelfth test flight at the Kennedy Space Center. The robotic vehicle uses automated landing and hazard avoidance technology (ALHAT) with a 400-pound suite of computers and three…

Do Robots Need Parental Controls?
05/01/14 — Older adults' fears that companion robots will negatively affect young people may create design challenges for developers hoping to build robots for older users, according to Penn State researchers.Companion robots provide emotional support for users and interact with them as they, for example, play a game, or watch a movie.Older…

NASA’s LADEE Moon-Orbiting Robot Crashes
04/18/14 — NASA's robotic moon explorer, LADEE, is no more. Flight controllers confirmed Friday that the orbiting spacecraft crashed into the back side of the moon as planned, just three days after surviving a full lunar eclipse, something it was never designed to do. Researchers believe LADEE likely vaporized upon contact because…

MIT Builds Voice-Controlled Robotic Wheelchair
04/16/14 — Working out of MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Matt Walter and Sachi Hemachandra have built something that could revolutionize the way people with progressive neurological conditions get from place to place — it's a robotic wheelchair that understands basic voice commands for navigating around a space. After building…

SpaceX Sending Robotic Capsule to Space Station
04/10/14 — A private spaceflight company will launch its third robotic resupply mission to the International Space Station next week. SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket carrying the company's unmanned Dragon vehicle loaded down with supplies is expected to launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on April 14. This will be…

New Yaskawa Motoman STEM Robotics Platform Promotes Workplace Skills
04/03/14 — A new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) robotics platform from Yaskawa Motoman will soon help students in secondary educational programs practice skills in advanced manufacturing and robotics. The company announced it is available in a general-purpose platform and a welding education cell, two fast-rising employment areas. The platform reportedly…

Robotic Telescope Discovers 2 Alien Planetary Systems
03/27/14 — The world’s first robotic planet-hunting telescope has bagged its first planets. The Automated Planet Finder (APF) – a 2.4-metre telescope located at Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton in California – started its self-directed operation in January, and has just confirmed the existence of two new systems of planets. “It’s just…

Robotnaut 2: First Humanoid Robot in Space
03/19/14 — The first-ever functional humanoid robot in space is almost here. A SpaceX rocket on a recent resupply mission to the International Space Station carried a set of programmed legs for Robonaut 2 aka R2, a humanoid torso already on board the station. Uniting legs with torso will make R2 operational,…

Lockheed Martin, NASA Collaborate on Deep Space Robots
03/12/14 — In a breakthrough that will help make it possible for astronauts and robots to work together in deep space, researchers at the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center (ATC), working with NASA astronauts aboard the International Space Station, have demonstrated coordinated control of robots in space by astronauts in space and…

Nao Humanoid Robot Can Keep Secrets
03/06/14 — Dying to share a secret but can't trust anyone? How about sharing it with your robot? Robots that can keep secrets are presently being designed by scientists from Britain. Humanoid robots are not just the stuff of science fiction — these computing devices are likely to be walking around our…

Bat Wings Revolutionizing Design of Flying Robots
02/27/14 — Robots may get their wings with a little help from bats. According to a new study published in the journal Physics of Fluids, researchers observed how bats flap their wings to gain inspiration for designing small flying vehicles called “micro air vehicles.” A Virginia Tech researcher studied the wing movements…

Researchers Developing Drone Boats Controlled via iPad
02/21/14 — A collaboration between shipbuilder Swiftships and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette imagines the possibility of captainless boats navigating inland waterways near and far. The Anaconda is a 35-foot boat marketed worldwide to military outfits seeking nimble maneuverability in tight and shallow waterways. UL researchers took to the Atchafalaya River…

MIT Research Enables Complex Multi-robot communication in Unstrctured Warehouses
02/13/14 — Writing a program to control a single autonomous robot navigating an uncertain environment with an erratic communication link is hard enough; write one for multiple robots that may or may not have to work in tandem, depending on the task, is even harder. As a consequence, engineers designing control programs…

GIT Controls Co-Worker Robots with Human Arm Sensors
02/06/14 — Using arm sensors that can "read" a person's muscle movements, Georgia Institute of Technology researchers have created a control system that makes robots more intelligent. The sensors send information to the robot, allowing it to anticipate a human's movements and correct its own. The system is intended to improve time,…

Ants on a Space Station: the Secret to Better Robotics?
01/29/14 — On January 12, the International Space Station crew unloaded the recently-arrived Antares rocket, which contained precious cargo like food, spare parts and tiny satellites. Along for the ride was a colony of ants with a very unique purpose: to demonstrate how the ever-efficient insects adapt to life in microgravity. If you’ve…




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