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The Tek Pulse: The latest and greatest engineering and science posts

Fri, 2017-05-19 15:41 | by Tektronix Experts

Informative, innovative and interesting articles from our favorite blogs

1. Smartwatch that rotates, hinges, translates, orbits and rises to the occasion, Dartmouth College, May 8, 2017, ScienceDaily – Researchers have developed a digital smartwatch face that moves in five different directions. The watch face, called Cito, can rotate, hinge, translate, rise and orbit – improving the functionality of today’s fixed-face watches. Cito aims to remove awkward moments by improving how the device presents data to the user. The watch can orbit around the wristband to allow viewing when the watch is facing away from the wearer, hinging allows a companion to view the watch face, and translating reveals information underneath a shirt sleeve. The five watch faces can be performed independently or combined. This technology can also provide benefits to users with disabilities. In the next phase of research, the team plans to integrate an ultra-sonic motor to reduce bulk and increase battery life. For the full story visit ScienceDaily.

 

2. Scientists Develop Device to Predict Clear-Sky Turbulence for Safer Air Travel, May 8, 2017, Wireless Design & Development – Scientists are developing methods for detecting distant turbulence in clear skies for safer air travel. Once such technique involves using a “muon hodoscope,” which traces muon trajectories in the atmosphere for zones of possible turbulence. Muons are particles that result from interactions of space particles with Earth’s atmosphere. As muons pass through the atmosphere they lose energy and the flow changes, resulting in turbulence. The hodoscope records changes of each muon and produces a picture of the atmosphere, like X-ray imaging. Currently, scientists have a working hodoscope, called HURRICANE, along with a portable version of the device powered by a small electronic generator. Using muon diagnostics, the team can see the atmosphere in real-time and predict the development of atmospheric phenomena at height of up to 15 Km. For more information visit Wireless Design & Development.

 

3. Fabrication technology in the fourth dimension, ETH Zurich, May 8, 2017, TechXplore –Researchers have used a 4D printing method to develop a construction principle that can produce load-bearing and predictable structures. 4D printing creates moveable and shape variable objects, such as flat components that can be folded into 3D objects at a later time, or even objects that can change shape as a function of external influences. This new construction principle allows researchers to control deformation – changing in the exact way they were designed. The principle depends on an actuating element to take on retracted and extended states. The team also developed simulation software that can accurately predict the shapes, which helps in the design of objects. The team printed their structures in a single step on a multi-material 3D printer. This 4D printing construction principle could be used in the aerospace industry to transport a flat structure to save space and then deploy the final structure at its destination. For more information visit TechXplore.

 

4. Researchers create touchpads with a can of spray paint, Byron Spice, May 8, 2017, PHYS.ORG –New technology called Electrick can turn walls, furniture, steering wheels, toys, Jell-O and more into touch sensors. Researchers used a technique to apply electrically conductive coatings or materials to objects or surfaces, then they attached a series of electrodes to the conductive materials. To sense the position of a finger touch, the team used a technique called electric field tomography. Essentially the process uses a can of conductive spray paint to apply a touch screen nearly any surface. Electrick can detect the location of a finger touch to an accuracy of one centimeter, which is sufficient for using the touch surface as a button or slider. The team used the technology to add touch sensing surfaces to a 4-by-8-foot sheet of drywall, a steering wheel, a guitar and a Jell-O mold. In addition, the team used Electrick to make an interactive smartphone case, which opened applications based on how the user held the phone. For more information check out PHYS.ORG.

 

5And lastly, the most popular Tektronix download of the week goes to Vector Network Analyzer Fundamentals Poster. This poster shows Vector Network Analyzer (VNA) basics, such as types of measurement errors, understanding VNA calibration, basic VNA operation, Smith chart 101 and more.

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Do you have a great article, blog or idea that you’d like to see featured in our series? Please be sure to share in the comments below. Stay tuned next week for another installment of The Tek Pulse, featuring more trending articles from the engineering, technology and science worlds.

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