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Weapon Wednesday – Marines New Plywood Supply Drone

LG-1K, developed by Logistic Gliders Inc under contract with DARPA and the U.S. Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, is meant to be a very low-cost drone capable of being released from fixed-wing aircraft or helicopter. The plywood and aluminum drone is 10.4 feet long with a 23=foot wingspan. The LG-1K can carry up to 700 lb.s of supplies. It’s now flown twelve missions demonstrating its ability to glide—in some cases autonomously—to a landing zone with GPS precision.

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2020 Mars Lander Gets a Name

The ExoMars 2020 lander, shown here being packed for shipment, has been officially named

The ExoMars 2020 lander, shown here being packed for shipment, has been officially named(Credit: ESA)

The landing craft that will deliver Europe’s first rover to the planet Mars has arrived for assembly and testing in Turin, Italy and has been officially named. read more

The Nathalie Electric Supercar

The Nathalie electric supercar uses a methanol fuel cell as a range extender

The Nathalie electric supercar uses a methanol fuel cell as a range extender(Credit: Roland Gumpert)

Roland Gumpert, of Audi Quattro and Apollo fame, has put forth a supercar that solves the problem of limited electric range and slow charging. The 800-horsepower, all wheel drive Nathalie uses a cheaply refuellable methanol fuel cell to charge its batteries as you drive. read more

MIT’s Fly Trap Gripper

The Magic Ball gripper consists of a skeleton made from cone-shaped origami structure that is connected...
The Magic Ball gripper consists of a skeleton made from cone-shaped origami structure that is connected to a vacuum device and wrapped in an airtight skin(Credit: MIT (CSAIL))

From green blobs to hydrogel fish to boa constrictors, scientists have taken inspiration from some interesting sources in pursuit of robotic arms that can lift heavy items, but do so with a delicate touch. The latest solution from MIT resembles a Venus flytrap in the way it snatches up objects many times its own weight, and its creators hope it can open up some exciting possibilities for robotic assistants that can handle all kinds of objects. read more

Tokyo Olympics to Unveil Robot Helpers

Toyota's Human Support Robots and Delivery Assist Robots are the first robot helpers to be confirmed...
Toyota’s Human Support Robots and Delivery Assist Robots are the first robot helpers to be confirmed for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games(Credit: Tokyo 2020)

The Organising Committee for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo – that last month confirmed that Games winners would receive medals made using recycled electronic waste – has revealed the first Tokyo 2020 Robot Project helpers, which will assist spectators in wheelchairs to ensure they have “an experience they are unlikely to forget.” read more

Steinway Playback Piano

The Spirio | r from Steinway & Sons is available as a Concert Grand Model D...
The Spirio | r from Steinway & Sons is available as a Concert Grand Model D or a shorter Model B Grand(Credit: Steinway & Sons)

In 2015, Steinway & Sons launched a line of Grand pianos that, with the help of an iPad, allowed owners to tap into an archive of performances by some of the world’s top players, and have the piano play them back. Now the iconic maker has introduced the next generation of this piano – the Spirio | r – which can record a musician’s own live performance and play it back, while also allowing for tweaking and sharing through a companion app. read more

Alzheimer’s Treatment Found in Tea and Carrots

A new study in mice has shown the compounds in green tea and carrot could have...
A new study in mice has shown the compounds in green tea and carrot could have a role to play in reversing Alzheimer’s symptoms(Credit: Kesu01/Depositphotos)

One of the many ways scientists are working to unravel the mysteries of Alzheimer’s is by conducting experiments on mice that have been genetically engineered to develop the disease. Researchers pondering the protective potential of compounds found in green tea and carrots have again taken this route and returned some promising results, with the Alzheimer’s mice demonstrating unimpaired cognitive function following a carefully designed bout of treatment. read more

Weapon Wednesday – Dressing Up Russian Tanks

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A new video on YouTube shows a how U.S. troops train to operate against enemy mechanized forces, in this case Russian tanks. U.S. soldiers at a base in southern Germany have several aging armored personnel carriers modified to impersonate Russian tanks, giving units the ability to train against opponents that kinda, sorta look Moscow’s finest. read more

The EV4 Mountain Cart

The EV4 Mountain Cart was developed with input from a disabled extreme athlete, and has been...
The EV4 Mountain Cart was developed with input from a disabled extreme athlete, and has been tested in snowy Polish mountains and on jump tracks(Credit: EV4)

Jack Skopinski’s rivet-packing electric trikes and four-wheelers like to tilt. It’s become something of a signature for EV4 machines over the years. But now the Polish engineer has created an off-road electric trail hugger that doesn’t sport a tilting mechanism. The EV4 Mountain Cart is designed to allow disabled riders to cleanly and quietly zip down dirt tracks, up grassy hills and through forest trails. read more