Mechanical Engineering

Stanford d.school's Bernie Roth recommends a bias toward action

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Type: 
Research News

In his new book, Roth says he believes that people can lead more fulfilling lives by actually doing things, instead of merely trying to do things.

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Bernie Roth's Bias Toward Action
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In his new book, Roth says people can lead more fulfilling lives by actually doing things instead of merely trying.

Stanford Professor Bernie RothWhen he joined the Stanford design faculty in the 1960s, Bernie Roth crossed paths with many Silicon Valley engineers who dreamed of starting their own companies. But for many, it was just talk – they continued to work for large tech companies.

Last modified Tue, 7 Jul, 2015 at 9:12

Stanford high-speed video reveals how lovebirds keep a clear line of sight during acrobatic flight

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Research News

Lovebirds turn their heads at record speeds to maneuver through densely crowded airspace. Stanford Engineering's David Lentink says this strategy could be applied to drone cameras to improve visual systems.

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Learning from Lovebirds
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Stanford high-speed video reveals how the birds keep a clear line of sight during acrobatic flight.

Engineers looking for inspiration for better drone camera design might want to set their gaze toward lovebirds.

Lovebirds are famous for their ability to quickly maneuver through densely cluttered airspace, and Stanford engineers now show that this is probably made possible by the birds' ability to turn their heads at a speed that is tops in the animal world.

Last modified Mon, 6 Jul, 2015 at 13:20

Stanford researchers stretch a thin crystal to get better solar cells

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Research News

Crystalline semiconductors such as silicon can catch photons and convert their energy into electron flows. New research shows that a little stretching could give one of silicon's lesser-known cousins its own place in the sun.

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Stretching Solar-Cell Performance
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Stanford researchers stretch a thin crystal to create solar cells that absorb more energy.

Nature loves crystals. Salt, snowflakes and quartz are three examples of crystals – materials characterized by the lattice-like arrangement of their atoms and molecules.

Industry loves crystals, too. Electronics are based on a special family of crystals known as semiconductors, most famously silicon.

To make semiconductors useful, engineers must tweak their crystalline lattice in subtle ways to start and stop the flow of electrons.

Semiconductor engineers must know precisely how much energy it takes to move electrons in a crystal lattice.

Last modified Thu, 25 Jun, 2015 at 9:54

Stanford collaboration with General Motors recognized by the American Society for Engineering Education

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Research News

Excellence in Engineering Education Collaboration Award recognizes joint development of course that helps GM engineers improve products, processes and services.

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ASEE Honors Stanford, GM
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Excellence in Engineering Education Collaboration Award recognizes university's work with automaker on manufacturing design course.

 

Stanford University and General Motors have received an Excellence in Engineering Education Collaboration Award from the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) in recognition of Stanford’s long-standing collaboration with General Motors’ Technical Education Program (GM TEP). 

Last modified Thu, 25 Jun, 2015 at 12:55

Grippy, not sticky: Stanford engineers debut an incredibly adhesive material that doesn't get stuck

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Research News

A material inspired by the unique physics of geckos' fingertips could allow robotic hands to grip nearly any type of object without applying excessive pressure.

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Grippy, Not Sticky
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Stanford engineers debut an incredibly adhesive material that doesn't get stuck

A promising new adhesive material was born out of a scrap.

David Christensen, a mechanical engineering graduate student at Stanford, was trimming a piece of adhesive modeled after the grippy fingers of geckos and noticed that the thin scrap seemed particularly grippy. He shared this observation with his colleague Elliot Hawkes, who laminated a piece of non-stretchable, but very flexible, film to the back of the scrap. They found that the combination greatly magnified the grip and allowed some surprising properties.

Last modified Thu, 28 May, 2015 at 11:48

Mechanical engineering students showcase imaginative research at first MECON

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Research News

Students and faculty organized this inaugural Mechanical Engineering Conference to showcase the breadth of interdisciplinary research by the ME community.

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Mechanical Engineering Conference
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Mechanical engineering students showcase the breadth of interdisciplinary research.

Could we create 3D models of the brain so accurate that surgeons could use them to plan operations? Build space probes that hop over the surfaces of low-gravity comets and asteroids? Or develop micro-devices that would train lab-grown muscle cells to patch damaged hearts?

These were just three among the more than one hundred projects that were showcased at a recent conference designed to give students and faculty a chance to get a sense of the broad range of interdisciplinary initiatives being pursued by members of Stanford's mechanical engineering community.

Last modified Fri, 22 May, 2015 at 9:51

Revenge of the DrEd - ME218C Bot Presentations

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Revenge of the DrEd
Date/Time: 
Wednesday, May 27, 2015. 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Location: 
DrEd Swamp (ah hem…Terman Pond)
Sponsors: 
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Admission: 
Free

Last modified Mon, 18 May, 2015 at 14:35

Designing Life Critical Systems, a Surgical Robotics Seminar - Dr. Chris Carlson

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Friday, May 22, 2015 - 11:00am
Date/Time: 
Friday, May 22, 2015. 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Sponsors: 
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Contact Info: 
650-725-913, phicks@stanford.edu

Last modified Mon, 18 May, 2015 at 13:42

The Stanford Design EXPErience - Presentations & Fair

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The Stanford Design EXPErience - Celebrating Student Design Project Work

Date/Time: 
Thursday, June 4, 2015. 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
Sponsors: 
Mechanical Engineering Design Group
Contact Info: 
650-721-2896, rnariyos@stanford.edu
Admission: 
Free, open to the public with registration

Last modified Mon, 18 May, 2015 at 10:43

Beth Pruitt elected a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers

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Research News

In an interdisciplinary blend of engineering and medicine, Pruitt seeks to detect and measure the minute forces generated by living cells.

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Pruitt elected fellow of ASME
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Professor elected fellow of ASME for research on creating micro-electrical systems (MEMS)

Associate Professor Beth Pruitt has been elected a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME) for work that includes a focus on creating micro-electrical systems (MEMS) to detect the minute forces that cells exert upon one another as they carry out the basic mechanics of life.

Last modified Thu, 7 May, 2015 at 14:50