Shared Space Platform: The Next Big Thing In Makers Movement

Each person is innately built with an urging to develop things and this is what the makers movement is capitalizing on. And the next big thing about materializing each and everyone’s craving for designing and making products that are outputs of their imagination is an all-in one shared space platform.

makers movement

So why invest in such built-in-one designer space? Well advocates of maker movement education promote such type of working environment for a number of reasons but topping it all is the diversified workforce that can help realize each and everyone’s dream. Your own prototype of any personal invention will no longer remain a fraction of your imagination. All the hindrances and your hesitations before will now be addressed as you can have the set of skills you need by having all those who can help you by teaching you to acquire the skills can well be within your easy reach. That’s right.

With this shared space platform, you can have the people you need all in one such that you can produce the product that you want. No need to jump from one outsourcing company to the next as you can have all just in a single space. You can place in entrepreneurs, marketing people, hired hands and even runners all mixed up and coexisting in one space. This is thereby one of the most essential feature of shared space platform and the makers movement.

The shared space platform always abides by the maker movement manifesto in which all will be able to produce their products by learning how to actually produce it. If you do not have the skill for instance to weld then include someone in your in-house guys who can teach you how to do welding. In effect you actually can slash off the cost you need in order to acquire the skill. This is true since you can have the welder in house as the teacher while at the same time hire him to do massive welding for you.

With shared space platform and the makers movement, individuals who are still starting to make a name or those who desire to have their prototypes known may now have greater chances of becoming big. With less time and equal efforts, the dreams will no longer exist in one’s imagination.

Self-Assembling Robots In Space: The Likely Efficient Means For Space Search And Rescue

Robots in space
Self-Assembling Robot

There have been a number of robots used in space and several innovations had been made but nothing could have been way better than the production of those that can assembly by themselves. That’s right! These recent prototypes of space exploration robots appear like flat surface but with programmed sequences may assemble their own limbs and make movement and exploration in space possible. The science behind this batch of robots is grounded on the art of paper folding or the Japanese origami.

Unlike other robots in space, this self-assembling robot requires no human assistance and thus could make explorations in difficult areas pretty easy and safe. Inspections of damages site, collapsed structures in space is made far safer and more convenient as the new prototype of robots can crawl its way towards the deeper creases of these tight-spaced venues.

Robots in space with “folding mechanism” are made possible by embedding electrical filaments powered by battery. In this case, the typical hinge and bolt assembly which may hinder the robots from maneuvering areas that are often difficult to reach is no longer evident. Once the space exploration robot can transform into a flat surface when exposed to heat, other far more beneficial accessories like sensors, actuators, and other electronic devices can now be easily integrated into the flat robot. The entire machine is then programmed such that the machine can explore areas formerly difficult to discover.

This robots used in space prototype is also promising not only in terms of how it will provide more information from space but also due to its cost-efficient manufacturing. Compared to conventional assembly of space robots, flat and self-assembly robots appear cheaper since it will not utilize complex and more expensive machines. Self-assembly robots in space can be formed by putting together pieces of composite layers and can be connected by using etch tanks and laser cutters.

Makers Movement Impact On Public Health

Maker Movement Kids

For some time now, there has been a clamor about groups with their several programs that encourage different people from all various ages to create anything that could contribute to a better world. Makers movement are becoming diverse these days as their aims have been penetrating schools in hopes that the young ones will be able to materialize what they actually have in mind. Maker movement kids for instance have been generating brilliant outputs of various products that are utilized by schools while plainly providing a venue for their talented students.

But aside from providing a setting where anyone could put materialization into plans and blueprints of their products, the maker movement manifesto  goes beyond this for the products that are actually produced one way or the other has been quiet useful in so many ways. One great venue where the makers movement can be applied and potentially would have great impact is on public health. This is of significant concern given the emerging diseases that pose so much threat on the human population.

Advocates of organizations that allow one to create things, the makers movement, may venture on this field and embark on innovations that could help safeguard the public against potential or existing pathogens.  Several projects that may be quite useful in preserving and improving public health may include items that would move individuals around (so as to prevent cardiovascular diseases and related ailments to pop up); stuff that will help humans move around far more safely in a vastly populated and highly polluted environment; working on inventions that help retard the growth of antibiotic resistant microbes; items that are also helpful in safeguarding humans from disease outbreak, and so much more.

With such convergence of makers and those who are focused solely in public health-related issues, there is no way that man will not be triumphant against disease-causing organisms.

Gripping News: Robots In Space Moving Around Boulders

robots used in space
robots in space

Innovations in robots in space has been increasing for some time now as more and more explorations and outputs of which have shed light on what improvements needs to be done. Each difficulty encountered by previous robots used in space, has liittle by little been addressed. One of this is the issue on moving around areas in space that are too rocky or whenever there is a need to hold samples of boulders that are too heavy or big for human space explorers to get hold off.

Such concern has been addressed by space exploration robots built with robotic gripper. The gripper utilizes microspines which paves the movement and adherence of the robots on surfaces that are too rough to which common robots may not be be able to move around. The mechanism works best in venues where microgravity is evident and so this feature is expected to work best in outer space.

What’s very promising about this feature of robotic gripper is that it may enable transport of rock or boulder samples that were difficult to carry in previous space explorations. Robotic exploration may also be enhanced with the possibility of using much improved robots with robotic gripper to grab and hold samples of lava tubes that were observed in Mars and the Moon. The transport of these significant geological samples may shed light on the issue of whether or not other planets could be potential habitats for humanity and other living organisms.

The robots enhanced with robotic gripper has been tested in a lab-simulated micro-gravity environment and has been allowed to move around low-mass surface platforms as well as rugged terrains. Results have been promising and scientist are banking on a positive result too once these robots will be allowed to work their way in space.

 

 

The Makers Movement Has Already Encroached The African Continent

There is another type of revolution happening today and it is occurring right in the midst of the homes of many creative people. The makers movement is considered as a homemade revolution that is participated by  people from all walks of life. This movement is basically challenging the conventional methods of manufacturing and it has attracted young people as well as professionals all over the world who are interested in a new kind of DIY movement.

There are many reasons why the maker movement is becoming popular and  one of the reasons is that that people now have access to cheap components  as well as  different crowdsourcing models where individuals can share their ideas easily. With the popularity of the maker movement education, kids as young as 15 years old are now using their garage to create  and combine different disciplines like embroidery and robotics.

The popularity of the makers movement has also led to the organization of the Maker Faire which has grown to more than 60 events all over the world. In fact, major key cities like UK, Mumbai, Tokyo and Singapore have their own Maker Faire to entice other enthusiasts to meet other people as well as encourage those who are curious to join the movement.

Afrimakers Kenya

It is also interesting to take note that aside from major cities, the maker movement education has also made its way in the African continent. Dubbed as the “Afrimakers”,  the maker movement in Africa is a brainchild of ex-Google engineer Stefania Druga who wants to inspire young Africans through digital fabrication, social entrepreneurship and regional collaboration.

Currently, the maker movement in Africa is rampant in countries like Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana and Egypt. Druga believes that inspiring young African minds to partake in the maker movement can empower communities. Young people are empowered to make their own decisions as well as grab the future in their own hands. It changes the mindset of people which, in turn, can also lead to ideological revolution in the continent.

However, unlike the maker movement education in other continents, the Afrimakers are more focused towards creating technologies that will help them provide their daily needs. According to Druga, everything that Afrimakers do need to be connected to making practical solutions not only for themselves and their families but also for their community.

The makers movement in Africa looks very promising and as more young people embark on this movement, there is a possibility that this movement will be the next big thing in Africa.

Mars 2020 Rover To Use Space Exploration Robots To Carry Tools To Make Oxygen In Mars

In this day and age, everything seems possible including space exploration and robots. In fact, different organizations aside from NASA are aggressive enough when it comes to developing technologies that will make life in outer space more comfortable. This is the reason why space explorations robots are becoming popular technologies today.

Mars 2020
Space Exploration Robots

One of the most intriguing robotic space technologies being developed for space exploration is the Mars Oxygen ISRU (in situ research utilization) which is designed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This particular robot is bound for Mars in 2020  and it comes with a device that will convert Oxygen from Carbon dioxide. The robot also comes with a sensor to see if the air in the Red Planet can be converted to Oxygen so that the astronauts can easily breathe in the future.

The Mars Oxygen ISRU is one of the space exploration robots launched by NASA to explore the environment in Mars. According to William Gerstenmaier, the associate administrator for  the Human Exploration Mission in NASA, the robotic space technology plays a big role in  testing the environment  before astronauts set foot on the red planet.

Aside from converting Carbon dioxide to Oxygen, the robot also aims to identify and collect soil and rock samples as well as conduct geological assessments to determine the best landing site for the Mars 2020 rover. It also comes with a sensor to search for signs of life in Mars.

The robots used in the Mars 2020 rover is still being developed and the designers are still deciding to include advance cameras as well as spectrometers to test and detect organic compounds, chemical composition of the atmosphere and also the minerals found on the surface of the planet. It will also carry other sensors that will measure the temperature, wind speed, pressure, direction and relative humidity.

The robot will be communicating daily to Earth thus the data will be sent out regularly to be analyzed. This particular robotic space technology is very ambitious and NASA reported to value the development of this technology at $130 million. Although expensive, it will definitely shed light to  the age old mystery on what life on Mars is like. Space exploration robots are really promising because they provide data that will help astronauts and scientists alike to understand the conditions of the planet. The data that will be obtained by the Mars 2020 rover will be used as baseline study on how to improve the environment of Mars for future space exploration.

First 3D Printed Models Of Lightweight Planes Created

3D airplane
3D Printed Model Plane

3D printed models are not only limited to prototype scale models. In fact, aeronautical engineers from the United Kingdom have created the first uncrewed 3D aircraft in their hopes to revolutionize the economics of the design of lightweight planes.

The team of engineers is led by Jim Scanlan and Andy Keane both from the University of Southamptom and they believe that cheap 3D printing has the capacity to create aircraft drones that can be used for different purposes such as surveillance, infrared photography and crop spraying.

Creating 3D printed models have come a long way and from being made by expensive prototyping printers, many people now have access to cheap 3D printing. The best thing about creating lightweight airplanes using cheap 3D printing is that manufacturers no longer need to spend too much money on creating airplanes with poor design. With 3D printing,  aeronautical engineers can go back to pure forms and simply explore the math behind the airflow without  the need to spend too much money on the production line.

The first 3D airplane that Keane’s team created has a1.5-meter wingspan and it was designed to have low drag UAV to make it airborne easily. The material used to create this 3D printed airplane was hard nylon. They also designed printable hinges for the moving parts of the airplane. Basically, everything in the airplane was made using 3D printing technology.

To make the plane more interesting, the team of engineers only operated within the £5,000 budget. Although the budget constraint also resulted to several design limitations such as the absence of undercarriage to keep the weight down, it still went airborne perfectly. Other design limitations of the airplane include the use of electric motor and the use of a V-shaped tail.

Although there are many design limitations of the plane, the engineers designed it to have a strong geodesic frame thus contributing to the low drag design of the airplane. To make it more interesting, it only took a matter of days for the engineers to create the airplane which is a feat that hasn’t been achieved using conventional methods of creating aircrafts.

3D printed models are indeed no longer limited towards scale models of architectural designs. They are now also used to create interesting yet practical items such as drones and medical devices. Interestingly enough, the availability of cheap 3D printing technology will make it possible for people to  create all sorts of things in the future.

Future 3D Printer Models Will Be Printed By Bionic 3D Printers

Bionic 3D Printer

Is it possible for a bionic 3D printer to be available in the future? The answer is yes. Researchers from the University of Illinois created the 3D-printed robot called “bio-robot”. 3D printed models are created with precision as this printer has more precise control  and can do a wide range of motion to navigate its environment.

The 3D printer is just 0.2 inches long but it is constructed using a jelly-like material or tissue which is termed as  engineered muscle tissues. The researchers also indicated that the engineered muscle tissues can replace conventional motors in robots and 3D printer. Moreover, this type of 3D printer robot can also create artificial muscles to improve the movement of the robot.

Currently, this particular robot is used to make bionic 3D printers but researchers believed that it can also be used for other functions such as search and rescue operation, space exploration and natural disaster relief.  Wit the promising uses this 3D printer robot, it is estimated that the 3D printed models created will be better and the 3D printer cost will also become more competitive.

What makes this bionic 3D printer better than the current ones that are available in the market? The thing is that this type of 3D printer is a soft robot  thus aside from creating more complex motor tasks, it is also lightweight can match with other bio-compatible devices.

In order to create the 3D printed models, an electric shock is needed. Unfortunately, researchers still need to work on this because it requires a specific amount of shock in order to work properly. But if the researchers can eventually perfect this aspect, then they will be able to create  a very powerful 3D printer that can print highly precise prototypes that conventional printers cannot achieve.

Many researchers believed that this type of integration of engineered muscles tissues with robotics can lead to the improvement of the design of 3D printed models including prosthetic limbs.  However, there is much to be done in order to perfect this type of printer. Moreover, once this printer is available, the manufacturer needs to deal with the appropriate pricing of the 3D printer. Unfortunately, the 3D printer cost might be more expensive but if the technology  will be improved, the 3D printer price might also drop. This particular type of 3D printer is something that we need to look forward to in the future.

University Students Develop Robotic Space Technology

robotic space However, it is not only NASA that is interested in making space exploration robots. In fact, graduate students from the Colorado Boulder University is developing robots that can be used to perform different functions in space exploration.

XHAB
eXploration Habitat Academic Innovation Challenge

The University students created robots as their entry to the eXploration Habitat Academic Innovation Challenge. The theme of the contest was Plants Anywhere: Plants Growing in Free Habitat Spaces. The team of university students was able to develop a functional prototype system that can be used in planting vegetation in extraterrestrial habitats.

The University of Colorado students demonstrated their robotic space technology at the Kennedy’s Space Station. They have developed space exploration robots using the Distributed Remotely Operated Plant Production System  wherein the robots produce edible plants to sustain astronauts during their long-term space missions. The idea of this invention is to have robots do the monotonous tasks so the astronauts can save a lot of time and they can deal with other more important tasks in the mission.

XHAB

In the new system, the university students developed a Remotely Operated Gardening Rover that travels around the area to tend a fleet of pots that are distributed throughout the deep-space habitat. The robot is also connected to  telemetry to monitor the different plant conditions of the fleet of pots that are located in the habitat. This means that the entire system including the robot has the ability to monitor the soil content, pH, humidity and water issues so it can immediately provide the needs of the plants without any human intervention. This system is very effective because it allows the robot to determine which plants require maintenance and which plants are still okay.

To make the space exploration robots functional, it comes with wheels, a forklift to remove the fleets of pots. Moreover, it also comes with a mechanical arm to manipulate the plants  and a fluid delivery system to provide nutrients and water to the plants.

The dedication as well as the passion of the students from the University of Colorado and their ingenious system has impressed a lot of space engineers and this is the reason why the bagged the award of this prestigious contents. It will not be long before NASA will utilize this system in their own robotic space technology.

Cheap 3D-Printed Models Of Hands And Legs Revolutionizes Prosthetics

Prosthetic 3D printed model

Prosthetic body parts are very difficult to come by for most patients all over the world. The thing is that a prosthetic leg or arm can be very expensive as they have to be custom-made to fit the patient. This problem was acknowledged by a team of people who are enthusiasts of the marker movement. In order to lower the cost, they created 3D printed models of hands and legs use for prosthetics and gave it a name Robohand.

The initial focus of this prosthetic 3D printed models of body part is to create hands and finger replacement, they are also  setting their sights to 3D-printable legs which will cost less than your conventional prosthetics. Currently, the team of 3D printing enthusiasts are making several 3D printed models or prototypes of the prosthetic legs and if the prototypes are successful,  this could eventually provide low cost solution to all amputees all over the world. Robohand can give amputees the chance to be able to walk again.

In fact, the picture of the first 3D printed model of the prosthetic leg was introduced in the internet and the response is quite positive. However, there are still a lot of things that needs to be done such as testing and fitting before it can be made available in the market. Unfortunately, the fitting process needs to be perfected and the prosthetics need to be thoroughly tested but it will not be long before it will be available for human use.

To make the prosthetic leg, a 3D printer is used to make the plastic parts. To assemble the leg, the metal rods as well as the pneumatic pumps are made separately using traditional methods. But since it is now easier to make the plastic parts, you can theoretically order everything online so that you can assemble the parts on your own. In fact, many hospitals and charitable organizations are excited with the prospect of assembling their patients’ prosthetics.

So what about the price? Unfortunately, the final price range of the 3D printed model hasn’t been divulged yet but many industry experts believe that it will cost half than conventional prosthetics. This will give those who are in need of prosthetics a change to be able to walk and function just like normal people again.

Robohand is exclusively distributed by Makerbot Thingverse so it will be easier for you to access the 3D printed models design. Although the plans for the prosthetic legs are not yet available, you can still get designs for prosthetic hands for free from the website.