Gecko toes have the exciting ability to adhere strongly to nearly any surface and yet release with minimal effort. In an attempt to mimic those properties of the lizards, Stanford engineers have designed a controllable adhesive system that can stick to glass and support a person's weight.
If you spot someone stuck to the sheer glass side of a building on the Stanford campus, it's probably Elliot Hawkes testing his dissertation work.
Hawkes, a mechanical engineering graduate student, works with a team of engineers who are developing controllable, reusable adhesive materials that, like the gecko toes that inspire the work, can form a strong bond with smooth surfaces but also release with minimal effort.
Last modified Fri, 21 Nov, 2014 at 9:39
Sheppard receives a national honor for her innovative approach to teaching undergraduate students in a hands-on, problem-solving way that transforms large classes into small group-learning laboratories.
The U.S. Professor of the Year awards are sponsored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and administered by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
Last modified Thu, 20 Nov, 2014 at 9:59
What’s the NEXT BIG THING?
Come see for yourself!
Join us for Perfect Pitch, the project presentations for ME202 Mechaphonics! Student teams will pitch their smart-phone enabled mechatronic devices to a panel of judges from the heart of Silicon Valley’s start-up world: venture capitalists, incubator founders, entrepreneurs and executives from companies in related fields. These phone-controlled prototypes may become game-changers in home automation, infrastructure monitoring, shopping, medical devices and more.
Last modified Mon, 17 Nov, 2014 at 9:54
Mark Cutkosky has been recognized for achievements in robotics, and Thomas Kenny has been honored for achievements in microelectromechanical systems.
Mark Cutkosky and Thomas Kenny, both professors of mechanical engineering at Stanford, have been named fellows of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) in recognition of their significant contributions to the field. Cutkosky, who holds the Fletcher Jones Chair in the School of Engineering, was cited for noteworthy advances in robotics and mechanical design.
Last modified Wed, 12 Nov, 2014 at 12:26
In mechanical engineering course ME 202, Stanford students learn how to turn open-source smartphone operating systems into powerful control of mechatronic devices.
Caitlin Clancy gave her quadcopter one final inspection and backed away slowly. She had spent the past week designing and building the copter, mostly from scratch, and now, the moment of truth.
She pulled up the flight controls on her Android phone, and the rotors started whirring. Seconds later, the copter shot 30 yards across the d.school atrium, flipped midair and flew into a balcony before crashing to the floor.
Clancy, a second-year master's student in mechanical engineering, took the disastrous flight in stride. In fact, she almost seemed happy.
Last modified Thu, 6 Nov, 2014 at 12:27
An invention called a time capsule is a tiny chemistry lab designed to take a fingerprint of contamination and also disclose when it occurred.
Stanford engineers have invented a device that can record when chemicals appear in water and in what concentration, without electronics, creating a simple and inexpensive sensor to find unknown sources of contaminations in streams.
Last modified Mon, 3 Nov, 2014 at 9:42
The award recognizes Goodson’s work studying heat transfer in electronic nanostructures and packaging, microfluidic heat sinks, and thermoelectric and photonic energy conversion devices.
Kenneth Goodson, the Bosch Mechanical Engineering Department Chairman and Davies Family Provostial Professor, has received the Semiconductor Research Corporation’s Technical Excellence Award for his work studying heat transfer in electronic nanostructures and packaging, microfluidic heat sinks, and thermoelectric and photonic energy conversion devices.
Last modified Thu, 11 Sep, 2014 at 9:15
A quantitative analysis of hummingbird wings shows that they generate lift more efficiently than the best microhelicopter blades. The findings could lead to more powerful, bird-inspired robotic vehicles.
More than 42 million years of natural selection have turned hummingbirds into some of the world's most energetically efficient flyers, particularly when it comes to hovering in place.
Humans, however, are gaining ground quickly. A new study led by David Lentink, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Stanford, reveals that the spinning blades of microhelicopters are about as efficient at hovering as the average hummingbird.
Last modified Wed, 30 Jul, 2014 at 10:37
One of the most popular courses run by the Product Realization Lab, ME 204 teaches students how to build bicycles, but also patience and project management.
In the summer of 2001, Ryan Connolly wanted to build a bicycle from scratch. Connolly, a master's student majoring in manufacturing systems engineering, had met a master frame builder in Palo Alto and convinced him to come to the Product Realization Lab (PRL) and share his knowledge.
That fall quarter, Connolly learned to design and build a frame and fork. In the winter quarter, he built all of the necessary tools, jigs and fixtures required to build not just a single frame, but many.
Last modified Thu, 17 Jul, 2014 at 13:54
The award recognizes contributions to the science and technology of phonon and electron transport and scattering in films and nanostructures.
Last modified Fri, 20 Jun, 2014 at 9:06