Month: August 2019

Researchers Hope to MassProduce Tiny Robots

first_img Explore further Mini robots to undertake major tasks? This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “I look upon them more like a manufacturing way for future robots,” Erik Edqvist of Uppsala University in Sweden told “There are cool experiments going on with flying insects, swimming robots and so on. But it is time for the miniaturized robots to leave the research laboratories and find useful applications. That is where this work fits in. It is an attempt (with a somewhat small budget) to try to build robots in a mass-fabricated way.”As this was the first test of this fabrication technique, the researchers noted that they encountered some fabrication problems. The single largest problem was to connect the naked integrated circuit to the flexible printed circuit board by the conductive adhesive. Also, some solar cells did not stick due to weak adhesion. At this stage in the production process, the robots were folded manually, but the researchers hope to design a tool to enable a faster and more accurate alignment when folding. Many of these complications could likely be corrected, with the important result being that the microrobots can be assembled using a surface mounting machine, whereas prior robots have usually been manually assembled with a soldering iron. Images of the robots showing their size proportional to various objects. Image credit: Edqvist, et al. In the future, the researchers hope to move from building academic prototypes to manufacturing the robot on a commercial basis, which is necessary for overcoming some of the technical issues. By mass-producing swarms of robots, the loss of some robotic units will be negligible in terms of cost, functionality, and time, yet still achieve a high level of performance. Currently, the researchers hope to find funding to reach these goals.“Right now the robots need a new ASIC [application-specific integrated circuit] and some other redesigns to be able to work properly,” Edqvist said. More information: Erik Edqvist, et al. “Evaluation of building technology for mass producible millimeter-sized robots using flexible printed circuit boards.” J. Micromech. Microeng. 19 (2009) 075011 (11pp).Copyright 2009 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of ( — Tiny robots the size of a flea could one day be mass-produced, churned out in swarms and programmed for a variety of applications, such as surveillance, micromanufacturing, medicine, cleaning, and more. In an effort to reach this goal, a recent study has demonstrated the initial tests for fabricating microrobots on a large scale. Citation: Researchers Hope to Mass-Produce Tiny Robots (2009, August 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from An illustration of the I-SWARM robot: (1) solar cell, (2) IR-communication module, (3) an ASIC, (4) capacitors, (5) locomotion module. Image credit: Edqvist, et al. The researchers, from institutes in Sweden, Spain, Germany, Italy, and Switzerland, explain that their building approach marks a new paradigm of robot development in microrobotics. The technique involves integrating an entire robot – with communication, locomotion, energy storage, and electronics – in different modules on a single circuit board. In the past, the single-chip robot concept has presented significant limitations in design and manufacturing. However, instead of using solder to mount electrical components on a printed circuit board as in the conventional method, the researchers use conductive adhesive to attach the components to a double-sided flexible printed circuit board using surface mount technology. The circuit board is then folded to create a three-dimensional robot. The resulting robots are very small, with their length, width, and height each measuring less than 4 mm. The robots are powered by a solar cell on top, and move by three vibrating legs. A fourth vibrating leg is used as a touch sensor. As the researchers explain, a single microrobot by itself is a physically simple individual. But many robots communicating with each other using infrared sensors and interacting with their environment can form a group that is capable of establishing swarm intelligence to generate more complex behavior. The framework for this project, called I-SWARM (intelligent small-world autonomous robots for micro-manipulation) is inspired by the behavior of biological insects.last_img read more

Introducing Cornucopia the food printer

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The food printer is at the concept design stage, and would work by storing and refrigerating ingredients and then mixing them, cooking layers of the mixture and printing them onto a serving tray. The concept design was introduced by two graduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Fluid Interfaces Group Media Lab: designer/engineer in algorithmic image process development Amit Zoran, and designer and research assistant Marcelo Coelho.The food printing process begins with selecting the required food canisters in which ingredients are stored and kept refrigerated. Ingredients are then fed into a mixing chamber and the mixture is extruded and deposited in layers of various and complex combinations of ingredients. During deposition of the layers onto the serving tray the ingredients are either cooked or cooled in the chamber or by heating/cooling tubes attached to the printing head. Citation: Introducing Cornucopia, the food printer (2010, July 23) retrieved 18 August 2019 from 3D printers already exist (see, for example, PhysOrg’s article on 3D printers for moon bases and the affordable desk top 3D printer). The printers are becoming more common and are already being used in applications such as creating three-dimensional prototypes or models.The researchers hope their concept will “provide a glimpse at the new aesthetic and cultural possibilities, which can be brought forth by a new, digital gastronomy.” More information: Cornucopia: Explore furthercenter_img The researchers say the printing process brings cooking technologies into the digital age and allows entirely novel textures and flavors to be created that would otherwise be unimaginable and which are unobtainable through traditional cooking techniques. They say users would be able to control the nutritional value, quality and flavors in each meal through a touch-screen interface and Internet connectivity, which would allow them to manipulate parameters such as carbohydrate or fat content and calories. The design also allows for the food printer to be able to automatically order new ingredients and suggest an alternative ingredient if one runs out. © 2010 New Affordable Desk-Top 3-D Printer ( — US scientists have introduced a concept design of the “Cornucopia” or Digital Fabricator, a “personal food factory” able to print food from specified ingredients, with no waste at the point of cooking.last_img read more

New evidence suggests earliest trilobites were able to partially roll up their

first_imgCredit: Credit: Javier Ortega-Hernández / Biology Letters More information: Humble origins for a successful strategy: complete enrolment in early Cambrian olenellid trilobites, Published 25 September 2013. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2013.0679AbstractTrilobites are typified by the behavioural and morphological ability to enrol their bodies, most probably as a defence mechanism against adverse environmental conditions or predators. Although most trilobites could enrol at least partially, there is uncertainty about whether olenellids—among the most phylogenetically and stratigraphically basal representatives—could perform this behaviour because of their poorly caudalized trunk and scarcity of coaptative devices. Here, we report complete—but not encapsulating—enrolment for the olenellid genus Mummaspis from the early Cambrian Mural Formation in Alberta, the earliest direct evidence of this strategy in the fossil record of polymerid trilobites. Complete enrolment in olenellids was achieved through a combination of ancestral morphological features, and thus provides new information on the character polarity associated with this key trilobite adaptation.Press release Trilobites were simple organisms that came into existence approximately half a billion years ago. They evolved over another 250 million years before eventually going extinct. During their time on Earth, they left behind many fossils which scientists have been studying for years. One facet of their development that has fascinated researchers is that the more recent versions of the organism were found to curl themselves into a ball to protect themselves from bad weather or predators—much like modern pill bugs. Early trilobite fossils showed no such ability. Now however, it appears that even the very earliest trilobites were able to curl up to protect themselves, but their mechanism was far less robust.When modern pill bugs, and later trilobites curl up, their anatomy allows for them to remain curled up without effort. That’s why their bodies remain curled up even after the organism has died. This does not appear to be the case for earlier trilobites, however, which had to use their muscles to keep curled. This is why, the researchers explain, examples of curling up by early trilobites had never been found before.The trilobite analyzed in the study was found in Jasper National Park in Canada. Prior research had dated it to the Cambrian Period—the time during which life all over the planet was greatly diversifying—in this case, to approximately 513 million years ago. The specimen was part of a larger group, but it stood out as it was folded over with its tail spines in front of its head. Their interest aroused, the researchers looked closer and after much study concluded that the trilobite had not simply been squashed into its position, but had folded itself over intentionally, likely, like its later ancestors, to protect itself. © 2013 The discovery creates a link between more modern easy-folding trilobites and their early ancestral behavior, providing scientists with an excellent example of evolution in action. The exoskeleton had terrace-like ridges that facilitated a primitive type of enrolment in these early trilobites. Journal information: Biology Letterscenter_img Explore further Fossils record ancient migrations and trilobite orgies ( —A trio of researchers—two from Cambridge University and one from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, has found evidence that suggests that the earliest trilobites were able to roll up their bodies for protection, much as their later ancestors did. In their paper published in the journal Biology Letters, the team describes their examination of a fossil found in Alberta Canada, and how they ruled out other causes for its rolled up position. Citation: New evidence suggests earliest trilobites were able to partially roll up their bodies (2013, September 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Shocks in the early universe could be detectable today

first_img The physicists, Ue-Li Pen at the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics in Toronto, and Neil Turok at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, have published a paper on the shocks in the early universe and their aftermath in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.As the scientists explain, the most widely supported model of the early universe is one with a radiation-dominated background that is almost perfectly homogeneous, except for some tiny waves, or perturbations, in the radiation. In the new study, Pen and Turok have theoretically shown that some of these early, tiny perturbations, which are small-amplitude waves, would have spiked to form large-amplitude waves, or shocks. These shocks would have formed only at very high temperatures, like those that occur immediately after the big bang.The physicists also showed that, when two or more shocks collide with each other, they generate gravitational waves. The results suggest that both colliding shocks and merging black holes—like those detected earlier this year by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) experiment—contribute to the gravitational wave background. Some researchers have previously speculated that the mergining black holes may have formed from the same perturbations that created the shocks and, further, that black holes of this size may make up the dark matter in our galaxy.However, it would be possible to distinguish between merging black holes and colliding shocks because the gravitational waves emitted by shocks would be detected at far lower frequencies today since the wavelength would have been stretched by the expansion of the universe. Today the gravitational waves from shocks would have frequencies of 3 nHz, as opposed to the 100 Hz regime in which the LIGO experiment currently operates. Based on their analysis, the scientists think that both current and future planned gravitational wave detectors will be able to detect the frequencies of gravitational waves emitted by shocks. These frequencies correspond to emission times of around 10-4 to 10-30 seconds after the big bang. Another interesting consequence of shocks in the early universe is that their interactions would have caused the surrounding radiation fluid to rotate, generating vorticity. This means that shocks in the early universe would have generated entropy in an otherwise perfect radiation fluid, in which normally the entropy cannot increase. The possibility that shocks in the early universe could have generated gravitational waves, vorticity, and entropy could help scientists solve some of the more perplexing puzzles of the early universe, such as why the universe has more matter than antimatter (the baryogenesis problem), as well as the origins of the magnetic fields that are observed in many astrophysical objects. (—Physicists have discovered a surprising consequence of a widely supported model of the early universe: according to the model, tiny cosmological perturbations produced shocks in the radiation fluid just a fraction of a second after the big bang. These shocks would have collided with each other to generate gravitational waves that are large enough to be detected by today’s gravitational wave detectors. Citation: Shocks in the early universe could be detectable today (2016, October 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Journal information: Physical Review Letters More information: Ue-Li Pen and Neil Turok. “Shocks in the Early Universe.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.131301Also at arXiv:1510.02985 [astro-ph.CO]center_img Did the LIGO gravitational waves originate from primordial black holes? Simulation showing cosmological initial conditions (left) evolving into shocks (right). Credit: Pen and Turok. ©2016 American Physical Society Explore further © 2016 Phys.orglast_img read more

Travel shop love

first_imgTravelista, India’s first travel film, photography and shopping festival returns for the second time this October. Dilli Haat will transform yet again into a travel and culture connoisseurs heaven. A host of activities ranging from travel film and photography screenings will be part of the festival along with over 55 stalls of apparel, jewellery, home décor, accessories, kitsch, pop art and vintage on display. Nomadic film screenings under the moon lit sky, funky rickshaws, roadside carts selling your favourite cutting chai and popcorn and colourful art installations will be some of the many amazing attractions of the Travelista festival.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Travelista aims to establish a platform for formally trained artists, upcoming women designers and entrepreneurs to showcase their talent – over 50 upcoming women entrepreneurs and designers have been represented at Travelista so far.23-year-old young entrepreneur Akshuna Bakshi organised the first edition of the festival by herself in February at Dilli Haat INA. Previously, she has organised a travel film and photography festival in 2012 in London and shot travelogues for UK based travel organizations. While the London festival focused exclusively on films, Akshuna decided to carry her dream forward back home at a bigger scale and took her proposal to Delhi tourism authorities at Dilli Haat.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixFor this edition, India’s leading backpacking company,’s Akshay Chhugani has joined hands with Travelista. The festival promises to be an absolute delight for travel junkies, culture vultures, art and shopping lovers! Travelista is also the first festival in India to give a platform to budding travel filmmakers and photographers and showcases their video postcards, travel documentaries and travel shots to the general audience. The festival will have a notable jury from Lonely Planet, BBC and Travel Channel to pick from over 200 travel films and 3000 travel photographs.   The films at the festival are fun, adventurous, colourful and path breaking. While some films explore the untraveled alleys of Middle East and breath-taking sceneries of Europe, others reveal the dangerous trade of diamond mining and poaching in Africa. The festival aims to entertain, educate and surprise the audience through its films & photographs. It even hopes to break the pre-conceived stereotypes people often carry about a destination or culture. A special festival attraction will be the ‘Travel Wall of Fame’ that will showcase photographs of people posing in various destinations round the world. Anyone who is a traveler at heart can send in their pictures of their voyages to the festival team and adorn the wall of fame.WHERE: Dilli Haat, INAWHEN: 11 to13 October, 11 am to 10 pmlast_img read more

Matter Hungary

first_imgThe Hungarian Information and Cultural Centre organised an International artworks exhibition Spirit and Matter- Three Artists- Three Generation by Ilona Lovas, Anna Makovecz and Villo Turcsány from Hungary, curated by Katalin Keserü organised by Anna Bagyó and Cocos Nuciferas by MD Deleep Franco Swiss from France-Switzerland.The opened on January 27 at the lawns and gallery of the HICC, followed by a short performance by János Palojtay (piano) and Dávid Simon (flute). Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The two exhibitions were inaugurated by Szilveszter Bus, Ambassador of Hungary, in the presence of François Richier, Ambassador of France. The exhibitions will be closed by the Dipali Khanna, Member Secretary, IGNCA, in the presence of curator, Katalin Keserü and artiste, Villo Turcsány from Hungary followed by Mohiniyattam performance by Hungarian dancer, Brigitta Hegedus at the HICC on February 26. The exhibition will be on view till February 28. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixSpirit and Matter- Three Artists- Three Generation is an exhibition-cum-performance, curated by art historian, writer and curator Katalin Keserü, organised by art consultant Anna Bagyó, with the participation of three Hungarian woman artists: Ilona Lovas, Anna Makovecz and Villo Turcsány. The three artises, representing three different generations, coexist well with each other. Their works examine the metamorphosis of matter, body and spirit. These evergreen topics of art are translated into the language of contemporary mediums and will be presented as installations, photos and videos. Cocos Nuciferas features spiritual insights with various imageries of Coconut and Rangolis. The artworks by MD Deleep (a Franco-Swiss artist) are an attempt to translate and share spiritual and ethnic emotions, sensations through these intermediaries. Thus, it is important that there exists barely any distance between the viewer and the work. With such participation, there is enough scope for the individuals to enter the specific work-scope and create new relationships between creation, creator and spectator. The artiste’s aim is to work in interaction with the public, resulting in a timeless piece, which everyone can interpret in his/ her own way.last_img read more

Chinmoy Roy admitted to hospital

first_imgKolkata: Notable Bengali comedian actor Chinmoy Roy has been admitted to the brought to the Emergency ward in Rabindranath Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences (RTIICS) with multiple injuries to his head, arms and legs. It was learnt that he fell from the 5th floor of a building, circumstances of which are under investigation by the concerned authorities. Though he is conscious and alert, he is being treated for other critical injuries, a spokesperson of the RTIICS said.last_img

Harassed by students CMCH principal falls sick protest enters 8th day

first_imgKolkata: Calcutta Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) Principal Uchhal Bhadra fell ill after he was heckled by some MBBS students, who continue to protest for the past eight days at the hospital premises, demanding a new hostel accommodation.It is alleged that it was a politically motivated incident, where the Principal was targeted with mala-fide intentions.It happened after a scuffle broke out during the agitation inside the hospital on Tuesday. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThe Principal was immediately taken to the Cardiology department of the hospital for treatment. He was, however, shifted to SSKM Hospital in an ambulance.A section of doctors in the hospital said that agitating students tried to put block the ambulance from going away. They called it an unfortunate incident.Earlier in the day, the Principal of CMCH held a press conference regarding the ongoing students’ agitation.He said the CMCH authorities have agreed to meet the demands. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe agitating students were assured that they would be given a new hostel accommodation, whereas in some of the cases, the condition of some hostel rooms would be improved. Around 276 hostel rooms have also been allotted by the CMCH authorities.But the agitating students refused to listen to the authorities and demanded rooms in the new hostel building.They gheraoed the Principal when he was coming out of the press conference. The incident triggered tension on the medical college campus on Tuesday. It was learnt that Bhadra, who has blood pressure, felt chest pain following the incident.After primary treatment in CMCH, the Principal was taken to SSKM Hospital, where he is currently undergoing treatment in the ITU. Several tests were performed on him.The agitating students, however, threatened to submit a memorandum to the Governor placing their demands.The second, third and fourth year MBBS students of CMCH started a protest agitation inside the hospital campus, nearly seven days ago, demanding a new hostel for them.The move was taken after the first year MBBS students were given a new hostel by the CMCH authorities.The students taking part in the agitation alleged that the hostel meant for them is not in a good condition.last_img read more

45yearold woman dies of unknown fever in Barasat

first_imgKolkata: A 45-year-old woman from Deganga in North 24-Parganas died of an unknown fever at a private hospital in Barasat on late Monday night.The victim, Dipika Pal, a teacher at a local school had been suffering from fever for the past one week. The family members of the victim claimed that she died of dengue shock syndrome. The state Health department is yet to confirm if it was a case of dengue. The victim had complained of high fever from August 15. Her family members took her to a local doctor on the next day. She was under the medication of the doctor till last Sunday after which her condition started deteriorating. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifePal was taken to a private hospital in Barasat on last Sunday evening. Her condition turned critical on Monday afternoon. She was kept on ventilation for a while. Despite several efforts, the doctors could not save the patient and she passed away on late Monday night. The victim’s family members claimed that she might have caught the disease from her locality as there was no proper surveillance to check the spread of disease. They said local civic bodies must be proactive enough to check the spread of dengue in the area. The family members said the hospital authorities had told them that their patient had died of dengue. But Health department has not confirmed this to be a case of dengue.last_img read more

Makeup tricks to try out during the monsoon

first_imgAs much as the cool weather soothes your soul after a rough summer, the monsoon is not everyone’s favourite time of the year. Hence, make-up has to be done differently during this season keeping in mind the high level of humidity while you are on the go.Experts say how:* Use minimal foundation on your skin and make sure the focus of your look is on your eyes and lips.* Use a gel liner as it can be easily blended onto your skin for different looks like a definite wing.* Top it up with some bold waterproof mascara and watch your eyes come alive regardless of how dull the skies are.* Matte lipsticks are great, especially long wearing ones, as they reduce touch-up worries. Go for a matte lipstick that keeps your lips moisturised, as they are made to glide on tenderly but with full impact on your lips.* Experiment with the trend – applying lighter colours on the middle of the mouth and blending it out into a deeper colour for a beautiful dimension. It will be matte, but not flat.last_img read more