As representatives of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of Houston explained, their research used computer algorithms, two different polymers and 3D printing. The engineered material expands and contracts in response to temperature changes, all without requiring any human intervention.
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In practice, this could be useful, for example, in the production of advanced robots. These, operating independently, can interact with the environment. Details of experiments on a substance with useful properties are available in Advancement of science.
The new material behaves very differently at low and high temperatures. It can be used to design autonomous robots
This amazing success would not have been achieved without the capabilities provided by modern technologies. Members of the research team used computer modeling, thanks to which they developed a bipolymer composite design. Its main feature is its temperature-dependent variable behavior. Importantly, these reactions can be based on data entered by the user or provided by independent sensors.
When temperatures are low, the material behaves like soft rubber, but when temperatures rise, it turns into something with properties similar to hard plastic. To see what this solution would look like in practice, the scientists decided to use this material to power LED lights.
This, of course, is a very simple application, but their possible list will be much longer. The study authors give the example of changes in robot load capacity, which may occur with changes in temperature. In addition, autonomous robots can obtain information about how to adapt to perform a specific activity.
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As they explain, they would like to further investigate using the same technique to increase the complexity of the programmed or autonomous behavior of matter. For example, it would include the ability to sense how quickly other objects will collide. This in turn must ensure that machines perform appropriate actions in response to threats in the field.
Echo Richards embodies a personality that is a delightful contradiction: a humble musicaholic who never brags about her expansive knowledge of both classic and contemporary tunes. Infuriatingly modest, one would never know from a mere conversation how deeply entrenched she is in the world of music. This passion seamlessly translates into her problem-solving skills, with Echo often drawing inspiration from melodies and rhythms. A voracious reader, she dives deep into literature, using stories to influence her own hardcore writing. Her spirited advocacy for alcohol isn’t about mere indulgence, but about celebrating life’s poignant moments.