Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Making telescopes that curve and twist

13.07.2017

Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University introduce a computational method for complex telescoping structures, set for the burgeoning world of 3-D fabrication

A new tool for computational design allows users to turn any 3D shape into a collapsible telescoping structure. New mathematical methods developed by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University capture the complex and diverse properties of such structures, which are valuable for a variety of applications in 3D fabrication and robotics--particularly where mechanisms must be compact in size and easily deployable.


New computational tool automates design of telescoping structures that provide compact storage and rapid deployment. Shown here: a complex telescoping lizard expands to many times its original volume, serving as a stress test of the method.

Credit: Chris Yu/Carnegie Mellon University

The research, "Computational Design of Telescoping Structures," led by Carnegie Mellon Professors Stelian Coros and Keenan Crane and PhD student Christopher Yu, will be presented at the annual SIGGRAPH conference, 30 July to 3 August in Los Angeles. The conference each year spotlights the most innovative in computer graphics research and interactive techniques worldwide.

Traditional telescopes are perfectly straight, and their ability to expand from a compact form into a much bigger structure has been widely exploited in engineering design. So far, however, there hasn't been a systematic study of the types of shapes that can be modeled by telescoping structures, nor practical tools for telescopic design. At a recent maker faire, the researchers came across a set of retractable toy claws, fashioned after the popular X-Men character, Wolverine. Inspired by the claws' curved shape, they began to explore the idea of automating the design of telescoping structures, exploring a wide variety of shapes that could come out of a basic telescope model.

Far beyond the example of a typical straight telescope used for star gazing, other collapsible, deployable structures can benefit from a curved or twisted telescoping design: camping equipment such as tents or large outdoor structures used for music festivals; a heart stent that is tiny at the point of insertion but expands once it is surgically placed; or a robotic arm that can retract itself into a cylinder shape the size of a Coke can, enabling user portability and versatility.

"Among deployable mechanisms, telescopes are very interesting. Once you expand them, they are very flexible and you can make a lot of different shapes, all with the same telescope," notes Crane, coauthor and Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Robotics at Carnegie Mellon. "We wanted to know what are all the possible shapes you can make from a telescoping structure."

The team's mathematical model of telescoping structures starts with three common-sense requirements: each shell must be manufacturable from rigid material (like metal), the telescope must be able to extend and contract without bumping into itself, and there should be no empty wasted space between nested pieces. These basic requirements led to a key geometric insight: the complicated mechanical description of a telescope can be replaced by simple geometric curves that exhibit a constant amount of bend but arbitrary "twist," significantly generalizing the straight telescopes found in typical engineering designs. The team successfully prototyped applications in 3D fabrication and robotics, using their novel system to design both a flexible, controllable robot arm, and a tent-like structure that grows to several times its original volume.

###

The research was supported by an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. At Carnegie Mellon, Crane also directs the Geometry Collective, Stelian Coros is assistant professor in the Robotics Institute and Christopher Yu is a PhD student in computer science whose research is in computer graphics.

For the full paper and video, visit http://graphics.cs.cmu.edu/?p=1278. To register for SIGGRAPH 2017 and hear from the authors themselves, visit http://s2017.SIGGRAPH.org.

About SIGGRAPH 2017

The annual SIGGRAPH conference is a five-day interdisciplinary educational experience in the latest computer graphics and interactive techniques, including a three-day commercial exhibition that attracts hundreds of companies from around the world. The conference also hosts the international SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival, showcasing works from the world's most innovative and accomplished digital film and video creators. Juried and curated content includes outstanding achievements in time-based art, scientific visualization, visual effects, real-time graphics, and narrative shorts. SIGGRAPH 2017 will take place from 30 July-3 August 2017 in Los Angeles. Visit the SIGGRAPH 2017 website or follow SIGGRAPH on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or Instagram for more detailed information.

About ACM SIGGRAPH

The ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques is an interdisciplinary community interested in research, technology, and applications in computer graphics and interactive techniques. Members include researchers, developers, and users from the technical, academic, business, and art communities. ACM SIGGRAPH enriches the computer graphics and interactive techniques community year-round through its conferences, global network of professional and student chapters, publications, and educational activities.

About ACM

ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery, is the world's largest educational and scientific computing society, uniting educators, researchers, and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources, and address the field's challenges. ACM strengthens the computing profession's collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for lifelong learning, career development, and professional networking.

Media Contact

Dan Harary
danharary@siggraph.org
310-859-1831

 @theofficialacm

http://www.acm.org

Dan Harary | EurekAlert!

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht NASA CubeSat to test miniaturized weather satellite technology
10.11.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht New approach uses light instead of robots to assemble electronic components
08.11.2017 | The Optical Society

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Previous evidence of water on mars now identified as grainflows

21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope completes final cryogenic testing

21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New catalyst controls activation of a carbon-hydrogen bond

21.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>