Mechatronics Zone Recent News

Consumers Are Right About Autonomous Cars

September 15, 2017

It would be easy to look at the results of Gartner Inc.'s recent survey about consumer attitudes toward autonomous cars, and conclude that the respondents are a quaint, technically-unsophisticated bunch. The truth, however, might be a little more complex than that.

Solving the OT/IT Battle by Certifying the Middle

September 15, 2017

For plant control operations, the immutable first priority is uptime. For the IT department in the plant’s office, the intractable mission is security. In today’s connected plant, the two groups have to find a compromise in order to move the overall goals of the plant forward. Yet both groups find it difficult to give up their number-one priority. Opto 22 has developed a certification program for its integrators that is designed to solve this thorny problem.

The Instagif NextStep-- Building a Camera That Takes Animated GIFs

September 14, 2017

I built a camera that snaps a GIF and ejects a little cartridge so you can hold a moving photo in your hand! I'm calling it the "Instagif NextStep." Don't ask me why I built it, it sounded like a fun challenge and I always wanted to hold a moving photo.

Apple's New A11 Chip is the Real iPhone X Innovation

September 14, 2017

On the 10th anniversary of the iPhone's release, Apple has decided to skip over nine and jump straight to 10 with the release of the iPhone X (pronounced “iPhone 10”). And while fans will be delighted with the larger “Super Retina” display, wireless charging, and improved cameras, the real innovation is going on under the hood, with a new chip, the A11 Bionic, that is optimized for next-gen technologies like advanced machine learning and augmented reality (AR).

New Thermoplastic Could Reduce Battery Pack Mass

September 14, 2017

A new thermoplastic material could enable battery makers to integrate cooling channels into a battery’s case, resulting in a lighter pack with higher energy density.

The new material, known as BayBlend TP4065, brings a new wrinkle to battery development because it can stand up to liquid coolants without degrading. As a result, battery makers can now mold channels into the plastic itself, instead of using metal conduits to carry the coolant throughout the pack.


Feds Aim to Streamline Autonomous Car Development

September 13, 2017

In an effort to speed development of autonomous vehicle technology, the US Department of Transportation on Tuesday rolled out an initiative that would help automakers put self-driving cars on public roads more quickly.