Battlebots, tiny-sized

In the robotic competition known as Battlebots, hefty machines the size of blood hounds use buzz saws and other weaponry to duke it out in an arena.

Sarangapani

Jagannathan Sarangapani. (Photo by B.A. Rupert)

Funded through a $4.465 million grant from the U.S. Army Research Laboratory and led by Jagannathan Sarangapani, the William A. Rutledge-Emerson Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the researchers are developing technology that can detect the presence of various chemicals, electronic signatures and human activity.
The research centers on networks of motes — pocket-sized wireless devices that look like computer chips. The motes can sense and process a huge amount of information, and then relay that information to other motes in the network. Sarangapani says the motes are capable of sharing information with each other and interacting with existing Wi-Fi networks to spread messages. On the battlefield, the motes would be deployed in dangerous areas to effectively “listen in the wind” for evidence that someone is in a sensitive or restricted area.
A network of sensor-equipped motes, ranging into the hundreds in a given area, would be able to track activity. A very important aspect of the research, Sarangapani adds, is network security. The researchers want to make sure valuable information about possible hostile activities is kept out of the wrong hands.
Sarangapani says the chips could eventually be miniaturized to the size of dust particles. He envisions the technology being used in airports and in a wide variety of different industries.
Missouri S&T is working with KalScott Engineering Inc. in Lawrence, Kan., and Avetec Inc. in Springfield, Ohio. The University of Cincinnati is also involved.

Around the Puck

Q&A: Miners got game

What was the most memorable sports team during your time on campus? As part of his research for the S&T 150th history book, Larry Gragg, Curators’ Distinguished Teaching Professor emeritus of history and political science, asked you to share your memories. Here are a few of your answers.

[Read More...]

Honoring new academy members

In October, 12 alumni and friends were inducted into Missouri S&T academies. Academy membership recognizes careers of distinction and invites members to share their wisdom, influence and resources with faculty and students. Some academies hold induction ceremonies in the fall, others in the spring.

[Read More...]

Boosting cyber-physical security

A wide array of complex systems that rely on computers — from public water supply systems and electric grids to chemical plants and self-driving vehicles — increasingly come under not just digital but physical attacks. Bruce McMillin, professor and interim chair of computer science at Missouri S&T, is looking to change that by developing stronger safeguards […]

[Read More...]

MXene discovery could improve energy storage

In spite of their diminutive size, 2-D titanium carbide materials known as MXenes are “quite reactive” to water, a discovery S&T researchers say could have implications for energy storage and harvesting applications such as batteries, supercapacitors and beyond. Their findings were published in 2018 in the American Chemical Society journal Inorganic Chemistry.

[Read More...]

A faster charge for electric vehicles

One drawback of electric vehicles (EVs) is the time it takes to charge them. But what if you could plug in your EV and fully charge it as quickly as it takes to fill up a conventional car with gasoline? Missouri S&T researchers, in collaboration with three private companies, are working to make speedy charging […]

[Read More...]