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Engineering Newswire: Making Humanoid Robots More Human

This Engineering Newswire looks at heating materials to be hotter than the sun, making humanoid robots more human and flying the world’s fastest personal plane.

Hotter Than the Sun

Theoretical physicists at the Imperial College London have developed a method that could allow lasers to heat certain materials to temperatures hotter than the Sun’s core in 20 quadrillionths of a second.
The new technique would be about 100 times faster than the world’s most energetic laser system at the Lawrence Livermore National Lab in California. Plus, it would be incredibly useful for future fusion research.

Making Humanoid Robots More … Human

To help advance humanot technology, NASA awarded prototypes to MIT and Northeastern University for advanced R&D work. The two groups were chosen from those entered in the DARPA Robotics Challenge and will receive up to $250,000 a year for two years with access to NASA’s onsite and virtual technical support.

The university principal investigators will serve as critical partners in NASA’s upcoming Space Robotics Challenge where the two R5 units will act as instruments. The goal is to create better software for dexterous humanoid robots used in space missions, giving them more autonomy.

World’s Fastest Private Plane

The Valkyrie private aircraft is officially available from Cobalt, and with the ability to travel up to 260 knots around 300 mph, it is the fastest single engine piston plane in its category. The aircraft design was inspired by classic fighter jets and features what the company claims is the largest one-piece canopy in the world, offering riders a 320-degree view.

Available for pre-order only, with a $15,000 deposit, the company estimates delivery for summer 2017, with the final price tag ringing in at $699,000.