Saturday, February 27, 2010

Blimp and Camera with Muscles, Digestible Golf Ball, Hydrogen Street Sweeper and Nanovision

Empa - a research institution in the ETH Domain has developed some interesting products including blimps that can swim and golf balls that cows can digest.  

An airship "swims" through the air  
The non-rigid airship, "Blimp" is an excellent example of a demonstration project with which Empa enthuses potential industrial partners for its new technologies. The artificial muscles which propel the airship soundlessly and very efficiently through the atmosphere, like a trout swimming in a stream, are a worldwide novelty

"Clean" cleaner hydrogen-powered  
The street sweeper is a world premiere. It is the first street cleaning vehicle that runs only on hydrogen. For four years, Empa staff were working "at this" clean street cleaner. It is now being put through18 months of testing in everyday use.

Artificial muscles for the camera phone  
A mobile phone with muscles? This is the redevelopment of the ETH spin-off "Optotune" in the Technology of Empa. Novel optical lenses that can change with the aid of electro-active polymers - "artificial muscles" - continuously change its focal length. It could replace the standard digital zoom, in two to three years on the market.

A well-digestible golf ball made with bioplastics 
A golf ball, that can be eaten by cows and  digested without a stomach ache? Maybe.   From a rather unusual idea has Empa scientists developed an organic golf ball. This consists of bioplastics, which is produced with the help of bacteria in the bioreactor - and that is biodegradable

The nanosciences are considered a key technology for our industrial future. Only a detailed understanding of the behavior of atoms and molecules makes that future  possible. In order to observe molecules and the nanocosmos Empa researchers are developing a variety of high-tech metrology devices.

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