WHY DID WE MAKE THIS? To be blunt: Science, technology, and education are important to us. But we live in a world where the little news we hear of schools, research, and the arts is when they’re laying their heads on the chopping block. We live in a world where celebrity and “reality” entertainment is winning the war for our attention. Though this may just seem like it’s playing off a funny trope, we do need superheroes in our world. Super men, women (and puppets), like those actualized by PBS, who inspire young generations to be scientists, teachers, and artists. But those heroes will not appear unless we create them.
CREW Written by: David Hudson, Steven Hudson Editing: David Zimmermann VFX: Steven Hudson, David Hudson Sound Design/Mixing: David Zimmermann Coloring: David Hudson Grip: Kevin Lane
Scientists at the University of California Los Angeles have found a way to create stunningly detailed 3D reconstructing of platinum nanoparticles at an atomic scale. These are being used to study tiny structural irregularities called dislocations.
Read the paper here: nature.com/nature/journal/v496/n7443/full/nature12009.html
Inspired by the biology of a fly, with submillimeter-scale anatomy and two wafer-thin wings that flap at 120 times per second, robotic insects, or RoboBees, achieve vertical takeoff, hovering, and steering.
The tiny robots flap their wings using piezoelectric actuators — strips of ceramic that expand and contract when an electric field is applied. Thin hinges of plastic embedded within a carbon fiber body frame serve as joints, and a delicately balanced control system commands the rotational motions in the flapping-wing robot, with each wing controlled independently in real-time.
Applications of RoboBees could include distributed environmental monitoring, search-and-rescue operations, and assistance with crop pollination.