July 19, 2024

World's smallest drum now a Guinness World Record

Boilermakers everywhere know that Purdue University is home of the World’s Largest Drum. But have you heard about the World’s Smallest Drum? David Cappelleri, professor of mechanical engineering, came up with the idea to test out a nano-scale 3D printing technique. At 47 microns across (half the width of a human hair), this drum now holds a Guinness World Record.
July 15, 2024

Soft robots take the wheel: shared control between humans and robots

The rise of soft robotics has drastically changed the perception of “robots” from hard metallic monoliths to flexible do-it-all devices with many shapes and form factors. But with that change has come a challenge: because soft robots sense the world differently than humans, they also must be controlled differently. Purdue University researchers are investigating how robots and humans can “share the load” of their operation, so that each can benefit from each other’s strengths.
July 10, 2024

Using two lasers to make nano-sized 3D printing more economical

To 3D-print complex high-resolution nanostructures, you usually need very expensive and powerful lasers. Purdue University researchers have developed a new technique that uses two lasers, reducing the cost and power needed, and helping nano-sized 3D printing find wider use in a variety of applications.
May 28, 2024

AI students break the ice in virtual classrooms

It’s an age-old dilemma: students afraid to raise their hand or participate in class. Studies show that when participation drops, so do learning outcomes. The solution? An AI student who senses the awkward silence, uses large language models to initiate a question, and helps to break the ice on behalf of human students.

May 24, 2024

Purdue Motorsports program to be housed in Dallara IndyCar headquarters

Purdue University’s nationally renowned motorsports engineering program has a new home. Dallara, the largest multinational Italian race car manufacturer, will house Purdue's motorsports program at their U.S. headquarters in Speedway, Indiana, just down the street from the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
May 15, 2024

Harvesting static electricity as an energy source

James Gibert has developed an apparatus to generate and measure gas breakdown during contact electrification — the process responsible for static electricity. Their findings, published in Nature Communications, offer insight into the potential and limitations of this type of electricity when harvested as an energy source for a variety of devices, including e-textiles, wearables, and smart packaging.
May 14, 2024

Cryogenics in zero gravity

As we plan for future interplanetary spaceflight, one major aspect remains untested: refueling in space. That’s because most rocket propellants are cryogenic liquids whose long-term behavior in space is still unknown. Purdue University researchers are collaborating with NASA to study cryogenic liquids in zero gravity, leading to the possibility of propellant depots and refueling spacecraft in orbit.

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