Apple patents sensor to enable cars to communicate with each other

Apple has updated one of its patents which outlines the design of a sensor which would enable cars to communicate with each other, according to a report on CNBC

Apple CEO Tim Cook has said the company is developing autonomous systems, but did not say whether it would build a car of its own.

The new sensor could be integrated into Apple’s in-car information and entertainment console, CarPlay, which is already in some new cars on the market.  Continue reading Apple patents sensor to enable cars to communicate with each other

Framos and Pyxalis expand partnership on custom image sensors

Framos, an image sensor distributor, and Pyxalis, a advanced custom image sensor supplier, have extended their collaboration.

Framos has been working with Pyxalis for several years and, after a very productive relationship, have entered into a formal agreement.

This partnership provides Framos partners with fully customized, high performance sensors, including sensor specification elaboration support, sensor architecture, design, prototyping, validation, industrialization and manufacturing.  Continue reading Framos and Pyxalis expand partnership on custom image sensors

Smartphones have created a whole new world of opportunities, says Hillcrest Labs boss

Even for Apple, selling 60 million units of anything would be a big deal. For most small and medium sized companies, just six units might be the start of a wonderful voyage in the world of enterprise. 

For Hillcrest Labs, the journey started more than a decade ago, and over that time, the company has reached the milestone of having sold 60 million units.

Having started out selling software, the company moved into bundling that software into chips, which have become more elaborate over time and found an increasing number of applications.

In an exclusive interview with Robotics and Automation News, Chad Lucien, senior vice president of business development at Hillcrest Labs, tells the company’s story.  Continue reading Smartphones have created a whole new world of opportunities, says Hillcrest Labs boss

Innovative sensors are empowering the smart factory robot, says AMS

ams Industrial-Robotics

By Mark Donovan

The next industrial revolution is arriving on a shore near you. It’s called Industry 4.0, and like its three predecessors, it’s about to bring sweeping changes to manufacturing that will globally affect everyone.

Industry 4.0, and the resulting manufacturing changes that are coming with it, have spawned a new type of production plant called the smart factory.

Central to the smart factory is the prolific use of autonomous and collaborative robots that work symbiotically with each other and alongside human beings to yield a more productive and efficient manufacturing plant.  Continue reading Innovative sensors are empowering the smart factory robot, says AMS

Hillcrest Labs launches ‘industrial grade sensor for consumer products’

FSM300 Module vs Quarter_NEW_ExtraLarge crop

Hillcrest Labs has a new sensor system which the company says is “four times better” than competitor solutions.

Hillcrest says its new FSM300 delivers industrial-grade sensor fusion accuracy at prices suitable for consumer products with “four times greater accuracy versus competitor solutions in some tests”.

The FSM300 is what’s called a attitude and heading reference system, which is a sensor system, and an inertial measurement unit, which like a gyroscope.  Continue reading Hillcrest Labs launches ‘industrial grade sensor for consumer products’

World Economic Forum selects robotics and automation companies in its ‘Technology Pioneers 2017’ list

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The World Economic Forum, the global nonprofit foundation whose annual meeting in Davos is attended by global leaders from business and politics, has published a list of companies which it considers to be the most pioneering in the field of technology.

In publishing its Technology Pioneers 2017 list, WEF has chosen 30 different companies to highlight from a variety of industries including biotechnology, agriculture, energy, transport, as well as a number of companies from the robotics and automation sector.

One of them is Horizon Robotics, a Chinese company which develops computer infrastructure to enable artificial intelligence computing and real-time decision-making, mainly aimed at enhancing self-driving vehicle safety.  Continue reading World Economic Forum selects robotics and automation companies in its ‘Technology Pioneers 2017’ list

Epson boss says company’s advanced sensor could change the way industrial robots are used

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Seiko Epson president Minoru Usui says sensor technology the company has developed could change the way robots are used. 

In an interview with Reuters, Usui says he wants the company to increase its robot sales worldwide by more than five times what they are now.

And the Micro Piezo force sensor could help to achieve at least some of that growth.

Currently, Epson Robots is one of the top 10 industrial robot makers in the world, according to a list compiled by RoboticsAndAutomationNews.com. The company is placed ninth, with 55,000 industrial robots installed worldwide.  Continue reading Epson boss says company’s advanced sensor could change the way industrial robots are used

TI unveils ‘world’s most precise’ single-chip millimeter wave sensor portfolio available today

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Texas Instruments is bringing what it calls “an unprecedented degree of precision and intelligence” to a range of applications spanning the automotive, factory and building automation, and medical markets.

TI’s new millimeter wave (mmWave) single-chip complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) portfolio includes five solutions across two families of 76- to 81-GHz sensors with a complete end-to-end development platform.

Available for sampling today, the AWR1x and IWR1x sensor portfolio delivers up to three times more accurate sensing than current mmWave solutions on the market.

The combination of sophisticated analog design techniques paired with digital signal processing enables designers to implement intelligent and contactless sensing in their systems.

Aerotech demonstrates patent-pending motion control sensor

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Aerotech has launched a motion control sensor with a parallel-kinematic design which provides unmatched geometric performance, says company, adding that it also offers superior positioning resolution and linearity with the direct-metrology capacitive sensor.

Aerotech’s QNP3 series XYZ piezo positioning stages combine sub-nanometer resolution, high dynamics, and excellent geometric performance in a compact three-degree-of-freedom (DoF) package.

They come with a 40 mm x 40 mm clear aperture with closed-loop travels up to 100 µm x 100 µm x 10 µm (open-loop travels to 120 µm x 120 µm x 12 µm).

The design is ideal for optical and scanning probe microscopy or other inspection or manufacturing applications where two-sided part access is required with three-DoF manipulation.  Continue reading Aerotech demonstrates patent-pending motion control sensor

Machine learning helps researchers design less costly optical sensors

Finding practical solutions to detect proteins, cancer biomarkers, viruses and other small objects has been a key challenge for researchers worldwide for decades. These solutions hold promise for saving lives through more timely diagnosis and treatment of serious infections and diseases.

Now a UCLA team’s new research shows how such detections might be done for a fraction of the cost by using “smart” mobile devices designed by machine learning.

One method to detect small objects and related biomarkers is called plasmonic sensing, which involves shining light onto metal nanostructures to amplify the local electric field. The interaction between this amplified electric field and the molecule of interest can be measured, revealing important information about molecular concentration and kinetics. Continue reading Machine learning helps researchers design less costly optical sensors

Flexpoint and noDNA agree partnership on sensors

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Flexpoint Sensor Systems says it has received new purchase orders from major European distributor

Flexpoint Sensor Systems and one of Germany’s best known robotics component specialists noDNA, have agreed a new reseller-distributor relationship.

noDNA is said to be one of the biggest sources for robotics and robotics components, as well as 3D printing and electronics in Europe.

More than an e-commerce powerhouse, noDNA supports their customers with tremendous access to products and educational materials.  Continue reading Flexpoint and noDNA agree partnership on sensors

Industrial internet: Advantech joins LoRa Alliance

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Advantech, which claims to be one of the world’s leading suppliers of industrial computers and “intelligent systems”, has joined the LoRa Alliance. 

The LoRa Alliance is open, non-profit association which provides a forum for its 400 members to develop standards for internet of things technologies.

Advantech says it will provide the LoRa gateway and sensor node devices based on the M2.com open standard for Industry 4.0 and Smart City applications.  Continue reading Industrial internet: Advantech joins LoRa Alliance

Bosch launches ‘smallest, high performance’ barometric pressure sensor

Bosch BMP380 sensor
The Bosch BMP380 sensor measures 2 by 2 by 0.75 mm

Bosch Sensortec has launched what it says is the company’s smallest and best performing barometric pressure sensor, with a compact size of 2.0 x 2.0 x 0.75 mm.

The BMP380 sensor is aimed at the growing markets of gaming, sports and health management, as well as indoor and outdoor navigation.

By measuring barometric pressure, the sensor enables drones, smartphones, tablets, wearables and other mobile devices to accurately determine altitude changes, in both indoor and outdoor environments.  Continue reading Bosch launches ‘smallest, high performance’ barometric pressure sensor

Connected asparagus: Bosch outlines vision of a future with connected factories and robotic farmers

Bosch Apas workstation, which includes a cobot the company claims is “the first collaborative robot to be certified as an assistance system”

One of the world’s largest engineering companies, Bosch, has outlined its vision of the future, which includes a world full of smart factories, robotic farmers and connected asparagus. 

Bosch made its views available to Robotics and Automation News in a series of documents sent to us this week.

The company believes two main areas of technological development stand out from the rest: connectivity and sensors.  Continue reading Connected asparagus: Bosch outlines vision of a future with connected factories and robotic farmers

Industrial internet: Connecting motors to the Internet of Things

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Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of industrial equipment supplier EU Automation discusses how new developments help bring legacy systems forward

In the last few years, fitness tracking technology has been increasingly popular, with a range of devices available to help you become healthier, improve your fitness performance and ultimately live longer.

These devices use non-invasive, easy to use sensors that connect directly to your smartphone or computer, giving you instant results to track your progress. At this year’s Hanover Messe, a new ABB demonstrated a new fitness tracker. Only this time, it’s a fitness tracker for industrial motors.

At this year’s Hanover fair, ABB revealed that it has developed a smart sensor that can monitor the condition of a Low Voltage (LV) motor. This development consists of two parts; the sensor and the software.  Continue reading Industrial internet: Connecting motors to the Internet of Things