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New artificial skin can detect pressure and heat simultaneously

New artificial skin can detect pressure and heat simultaneously | Communication design | Scoop.it
A team of researchers with Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology and Dong-A University, both in South Korea, has developed an artificial skin that can detect both pressure and heat with a high degree of sensitivity, at the same time. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, the team describes how they created the skin, what they found in testing it and the other types of things it can sense.


Many scientists around the world are working to develop artificial skin, both to benefit robots and human beings who have lost skin sensation or limbs. Such efforts have led to a wide variety of artificial skin types, but until now, none of them have been able to sense both pressure and heat to a high degree, at the same time.


The new artificial skin is a sandwich of materials; at the top there is a flexible surface meant to mimic the human fingerprint (it can sense texture), beneath that sit sensors sandwiched between graphene sheets. The sensors are domed shaped and compress to different degrees when the skin is exposed to different amount of pressure. The compression also causes a small electrical charge to move through the skin, as does heat or sound, which is also transmitted to sensors—the more pressure, heat or sound exerted, the more charge there is—using a computer to measure the charge allows for measuring the degree of sensation "felt." The ability to sense sound, the team notes, was a bit of a surprise—additional testing showed that the artificial skin was actually better at picking up sound than an iPhone microphone.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Rescooped by Antonios Bouris from Amazing Science
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How 3D Printing Creates On-Demand Swarms of Disposable Drones

How 3D Printing Creates On-Demand Swarms of Disposable Drones | Communication design | Scoop.it

New advances in 3D printing are making it not only possible but also viable to manufacture cheap, print-on-demand, disposable drones designed simply to soar off over the horizon and never come back. Some British engineers did just that, and this is only the beginning. The team hails from the Advanced Manufacturing Research Center (AMRC) at the University of Sheffield, where they're exploring innovative ways to 3D-print complex designs. They built their disposable drone, a five-foot-wide guy made of just nine parts that looks like a tiny stealth bomber, using a technique called fused deposition modeling. This additive manufacturing technique has been around since the 1980s but has recently become faster and cheaper thanks to improved design processes.


The ultimate vision, as sUAS describes it, is for "cheap and potentially disposable UAVs that could be built and deployed in remote situations potentially within as little as 24 hours." Forward-operating teams equipped with 3D printers could thus generate their own semi-autonomous micro air force squadrons or airborne surveillance swarms, a kind of first-strike desktop printing team hurling disposable drones into the sky.


For now, the AMRC team's drone works well as a glider, and they're working on a twin ducted fan propulsion system. It will eventually get an autonomous operation system powered by GPS as well as on-board data logging of flight parameters. Presumably, someone will want to stick a camera on there, too. If they're successful at building these things cheaply enough, it will be a green flag for the rest of the industry to take a hard look at their designs and see if they can make a disposable drone, too.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Eli Levine's curator insight, April 4, 2014 10:36 PM

This is going to get ugly.

 

The arms race between the people and the government is just beginning. 

 

Cause, I can think of all sorts of mayhem that can be raised with this technology, all of it spontaneously generated from the conditions in which people are living, caused primarily by our elite factions, public and private alike.

 

You SURE you want to be holding those reigns of "power" when they come for you?

 

Think about it.