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AMT Tech Report: Issue #169

Pi-powered and cobot-equipped AGV. Aerospace-grade additive. Open-source reinforcement learning framework. HP takes additive to a higher fidelity. Guess who’s back? 3D-printed bridges!
Jul 30, 2021

“The distance between insanity and genius is measured only by success.”

Bruce Feirstein


1. Pi-Powered and Cobot-Equipped AGV

Sounds expensive, right? Ben and I have discussed on the AMT Tech Trends podcast that the future of industrial cobot arms is mobility – as in a collaborative robot arm mounted to an automated guided vehicle (AGV) with a vision system and Mecanum wheels. Heck, let’s give it LiDAR too! THIS is the cutting edge of automation – up there with Spot from Boston Dynamics. Spot, however, is about $75,000. This Pi-powered, cobot-armed AGV is $1,300. You read that right. What a time to be alive.

Read more here.


2. Aerospace-Grade Additive

Just as a reminder: Last week we had the first “mil-spec” additive material in the news. This week we’ve got TWO “aerospace-ready” additive composites under review by the National Center for Advanced Materials Performance (NCAMP), an authorized regulatory body for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Should these materials qualify, they’ll be officially considered aerospace grade. Plastic fantastic!

Read more here.


3. Open-Source Reinforcement Learning Framework

Here at AMT, we love us some open-source stuff like MTConnect! 😊 As of Tuesday, an open-source framework for developing reinforcement learning (RL) AI for robot control has emerged! Robo-gym is “an open source toolkit for distributed reinforcement learning on real and simulated robots … provides a collection of reinforcement learning environments involving robotic tasks applicable in both simulation and real-world robotics. Additionally, we provide the tools to facilitate the creation of new environments featuring different robots and sensors.”

Read more here.


4. HP Takes Additive to a Higher Fidelity

Using HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology, California-based audio company Syng was able to design a new speaker component structure and offer a completely different sound experience with this new generation of audio speakers. Additive manufacturing makes it possible to push the limits of geometries and harmonies with more complex shapes to create an enriched sound experience.

Read more here.


5. Guess Who’s Back? 3D-Printed Bridges!

Been a while, right? The bridge recently unveiled in Venice, Italy, is a fusion of ancient architectural techniques and modern computational design. The entire structure, dubbed Striatus, is held together through compression, with no reinforcements. This is made possible by 3D-printing concrete blocks, using a novel type of concrete ink. The installation is meant to be dismantled and reassembled in different locations but will be sitting at the Giardini della Marinaressa as part of the Venice Architecture Biennale until November 2021.

Read more here.


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Author
Stephen LaMarca
Manufacturing Technology Analyst
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