For the first time since 1960, US scientists will be able to explore the deepest parts of the world’s oceans, up to seven miles below the surface, with a novel underwater vehicle capable of performing multiple tasks in extreme conditions. Researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are developing a battery-powered underwater robot to enable scientists to explore the ocean’s most remote regions up to 11,000 meters (36,000-feet) deep.
The hybrid remotely operated vehicle, or HROV, will be able to operate in two modes: as an autonomous, or free-swimming, vehicle for wide area surveys, and as a tethered, or cabled, vehicle for close-up sampling and other tasks. In the latter mode, it will use a novel fiber optic micro cable only one thirty-second of an inch thick, a major departure from the large heavy cables typically used with tethered vehicles. The deep-sea vehicle will require new technologies such as ceramic housings for cameras and other electronic equipment to withstand the pressures at the vehicle’s extreme operating depths.
Funding for the four-year, $5-million HROV project is provided by the National Science Foundation, with additional support from the US Navy and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Principal investigators are Andrew Bowen and Dana Yoerger of WHOI’s Deep Submergence Laboratory (DSL) in the Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering Department and Louis Whitcomb, an Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. Whitcomb is also a visiting investigator in DSL. The new vehicle will undergo initial trails in three years.
Shelley Dawicki | WHOI
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Heavy construction machinery is the focus of Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s latest advance in additive manufacturing research. With industry partners and university students, ORNL researchers are designing and producing the world’s first 3D printed excavator, a prototype that will leverage large-scale AM technologies and explore the feasibility of printing with metal alloys.
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Friction stir welding is a still-young and thus often unfamiliar pressure welding process for joining flat components and semi-finished components made of light metals.
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Technologie-Lizenz-Büro (TLB) GmbH supports the University of Stuttgart in patenting and marketing its innovations.
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The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP has been developing various applications for OLED microdisplays based on organic semiconductors. By integrating the capabilities of an image sensor directly into the microdisplay, eye movements can be recorded by the smart glasses and utilized for guidance and control functions, as one example. The new design will be debuted at Augmented World Expo Europe (AWE) in Berlin at Booth B25, October 18th – 19th.
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With the help of artificial intelligence, chemists from the University of Basel in Switzerland have computed the characteristics of about two million crystals made up of four chemical elements. The researchers were able to identify 90 previously unknown thermodynamically stable crystals that can be regarded as new materials. They report on their findings in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.
Elpasolite is a glassy, transparent, shiny and soft mineral with a cubic crystal structure. First discovered in El Paso County (Colorado, USA), it can also be...
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