Telluride neuromorphic engineering workshop celebrates 20 years

Brain_Chip_Wide

Every year, Telluride, a small mountain town in Colorado, attracts an international roster of scientists from several disciplines for three weeks of intensive discussion and exchange of ideas about neuromorphic engineering, a rapidly expanding research field that promises to bridge the gap between the lifeless silicon of computer chips and the very much lively brain-based biological systems. This year is not an exception: the Telluride workshop is now in full swing and will continue until July 19.

Continue reading

Living Machines 2014

Screen Shot 2014-06-18 at 15.35.48

The 3rd Conference on Biomimetic and Biohybrid Systems will be held this year from 30 July to 1 August in Milan. As has become a tradition, the three-day event, organised by the Convergent Science Network, will be hosted at a fantastic venue consistent with the spirit of the conference: the Da Vinci Museum of Science and Technology, one of the largest technology museums in Europe.

Continue reading

Car-sized Crabster robot is the new king of the ocean floor

Crabs know their way around the ocean floor. These crawling creatures live in all the waters of the world, so if we want to learn something new about underwater exploration, it might be a good idea to take some cues from them. And this is precisely what a research team at the Korean Institute of Ocean Science and Technology did.

After two years of investigation, the team, led by Bong-Huan Jun, developed Crabster CR 200, a car-sized robot inspired by crustaceans and designed to survey shipwrecks and other areas of scientific interest.

Continue reading

Meet Romeo, a new rising star of humanoid robotics

2014-03-18T181029Z_01_RPR07_RTRIDSP_3_FRANCE

Romeo’s first public appearance at Innorobo 2014 Source: Robert Pratta/Reuters

Five years have passed since Aldebaran Robotics announced an ambitious joint project with over a dozen leading French research centres to make France one of the few countries to have developed an advanced humanoid robot. Finally, the robot, named Romeo, made its long-awaited debut at the Innorobo robotics fair, which was held earlier last month in Lyon.

Continue reading

Innovation Convention 2014

cover-convention-long1

This week, from March 10-11, over 2000 people from a variety of sectors involved in research, innovation and science gathered to take part in the 2nd Innovation Convention. The event, held this year in Brussels, is a key initiative of the Innovation Union, which aims to make Europe a more innovation-friendly environment – an idea that lies at the core of the European Union’s 2020 strategy.

Continue reading

Micro-robots play cell tetris

640px-Tetris_OpenerA new breed of micro-robots has been demonstrated to be capable of constructing complex 3D printed tissue architecture by gently guiding diverse cell-encapsulating building blocks, known as hydrogels, to their proper places in multi-layered and heterogeneous tissue structures.

Continue reading

Wings and fins bend…in the same way

1024px-Southern_right_whale_caudal_fin-2_no_skyWhat do a bat, a jellyfish and a humpback whale have in common? For one thing, these animals use their natural propulsors, such as wings, bells and flukes, to move through their environment, be it air or water. Last week a group of researchers published a study in Nature Communications that indicates that these and many other animals from distantly related groups seem to have attended the same school of propulsion. And one of the subjects they studied there was all about being flexible.

Continue reading

How ready are disaster-response robots?

Sandia Lab's Gemini-Scout Credit: Randy Montoya

Sandia Lab’s Gemini-Scout
Credit: Randy Montoya

The December DARPA trials saw possibly the biggest congregation of state-of-the-art humanoid robots ever. The DARPA Robotics Challenge was launched in 2012, after the Fukushima nuclear meltdown vividly demonstrated how unpractical our most advanced humanoid robots were for disaster response. Since then, things have improved considerably: robots have learned to climb ladders, open doors, turn valves and even drive vehicles. But are they ready to survive a full-scale rescue mission? Continue reading

ICT 2013: Create, Connect, Grow

From November 6–8, nearly 5000 of Europe’s top researchers, engineers, industry representatives, politicians, journalists, entrepreneurs, and students gathered in Vilnius, Lithuania to share insight and future visions for the future of ICT in Europe. The global event also provided  an inspiring setting for the discussion of European ICT policy as well as networking opportunities for business, research, and innovation groups.
Continue reading

Bio-Inspired Flight Takes Off

While creepy, crawly, or just plain gross, insects are in fact the object of many scientists’ affections.Those involved in the field of biomimicry are attempting to figure out exactly how some of these fascinating critters have honed in on some pretty amazing skills.
Continue reading