2010年9月30日木曜日

High Performance Ferrite Magnet Motor Developed - No Rare-Earth Required

New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) has announced that the organization, working together with a group of School of Information Science, Hokkaido University, successfully developed a newly structured rotor segment type of axial-gap motor for use of hybrid electric vehicles (HEV). 


The output performance of the new motor is comparable with the conventional rare-earth magnet motor although its magnetic material consists of ferrite magnets only without using any rare earth.  A result of actual load testing under a constant torque range shows 51.5KW which is equivalent to conventional HEV battery performance.

This technology has been developed as a part of "technology development for the next generation high performance automobile battery systems ".  


The new technology has strong potential to relieve auto-manufacturers from extremely competitive situation in procurement of the rare-earth material which is supposed to be essential for the next generation vehicle development.


Source: Joint news release of NEDO and Hokkaido University


9/30/10

2010年9月28日火曜日

Holographic Display

National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) has announced that the institute successfully developed the electron holography method stereoscopic technology which enables the ultimate viewing zone angle of 15 degrees and 4 cm diagonal display size color video displayIn this development, by applying its own display technology to increase viewing area to high-resolution device with 3300 mega-pixels, the newly developed device is able to gain three time wider viewing zone angles than conventional devices and about two times broader two times broader video holographic display.


It seems that 3D video display technology development is accelerated to bring us to a virtually "real" world without glasses.


Source: NICT's news release (Japanese)


9/28/10

2010年9月21日火曜日

Humanoid robot HRP-4

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) has announced that Kawada Industries, Inc. and AIST have jointly developed a platform for working humanoid robot: HRP-4 (below "HRP-4").  Kawada Industries developed the hardware of HRP-4 while AIST was in charge of control software development for the humanoid robot. 

HRP-4 uses the high-density mounting technology which was developed for CybernetichHuman HRP-4C, and realizes flexibilities of 7 arm action levels and 34 levels of flexibilities in total with its height of 151 cm and weight of 39kg achieved. It's a slim and light weight body. HRP-4 has open interfaces to accommodate a number of software developed for national and international robotic systems.  The successful development of HRP-4 is expected to  accelerate next-generation robot system research and development in the robotics industry.


The following YouTube video demonstrates a part of HRP-4 functional movement.





Source: AIST's news release (Japanese)


9/21/10

2010年9月20日月曜日

New abrasive material

New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) announced that a team of Ritsumeikan University, Admatechs, Crystal Optics, and Kokonoe Electric working on a NEDO's project of "Development of alternative materials for rare metals" ( a part of rare earth) has successfully developed new materials and technologies to reduce the consumption of cerium. Cerium, which is mostly produced in China, is critical abrasive material in the process of manufacturing glass for LCD TV display panels. The new abrasive material is expected to free the glass panel manufacturers from dependency of the rare earth material of cerium.


Source: NEDO's press release (in Japanese)


9/20/10

2010年9月9日木曜日

High Coercivity Neodymium Magnet without Using Heavy Rare Earth Element Dysprosium

The National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) announced that its Magnetic Materials Center developed a method for increasing the coercivity of neodymium magnet powder without using dysprosium (hereinafter, Dy). Dy is a heavy rare earth element that is normally essential for achieving high coercivity in neodymium magnets for traction motors of hybrid vehicles (HV).  NIMS says that this technology developed led to an increase in coercivity of more than 20% without using any heavy rare earth elements such as Dy.  


According to the NIMS' press release, 90% of Dy is almost dominantly produced in PRC.  Hopefully, this technology will relieve us from the absolute dependency on the single country at least.

Source: NIMS Press Release


9/9/10

Glasses-Free Tabletop 3D Display Technology

The National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) announced that its Universal Research Center in Keihannna Research Labs developed a novel table-style 3D display called "fVisiOn". According to the news release, the 3D display floats virtual 3D objects on a blank flat tabletop surface like a centerpiece and allows multiple viewers to observe the standing 3D images from any angle without the use of 3D glasses, and its observation style is especially designed for tabletop tasks assuming seated condition.


As the technology being further blushed up and improved, NICT expects that the technology will be applied in a variety of fields, such as urban planning, traffic control, disaster prevention, medical surgical operations training, round table discussion on an object or material using the 3D virtual images in front.


I, this blog writer, would expect that the technology must be evolve to create a 3D virtual object which people at a round table will be able to feel, touch, push, and pull by hands.


Souce: NICT's Press Release


9/9/10

2010年9月8日水曜日

Communication Technology for Monitoring Power Generation of Solar Panel

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology of Japan (AIST) announced that its collaboration research team has developed a communication technology which uses the direct current (DC) power line of a solar panel as a communication line. The newly developed communication technology is expected to be used for monitoring of power generation in each solar panel, easy detection of malfunctions and high-efficiency power generation, etc.  Technologies of solar energy generation seem to be moving one step further intelligently to control and maintain the solar panel unit.  For details of the news announcement, please click here.


Souse: AIST News Release


9/8/10

2010年9月7日火曜日

i3(Cube)Space

National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology of Japan (AIST) announced iCubeSpace, a system which enabled an operator to feel and touch to control a virtual obstacle on 3D display panel. According to the spokes person on the TV news, possible application areas will be ranging from TV gaming, training for surgical operations to virtually touching an art object displayed in an famous museum. The press release is only in Japanese so far.  In the meantime, a DigInfoTV picked up the news at CEDEC 2010 held in Yokohama last week. The TV news available on YouTube is here although it's only in Japanese, too.





Source: AIST's New Release,  DigInfoTV news via YouTube


9/7/10


Voice and text translation in 21 languages on iPhone



Japan National Institute of Information Communications Technology (NICT) has announced that it's brought voice and text translation in 21 languages on iPhone. The press release says, "VoiceTra, a voice translation application enabling conversation via voice input, and TexTra, a text input-based translation application, are available for download from the App Store. Developed by NICT, both applications enable high-quality translation among multiple languages."  The "portable translation equipment for 21 languages" sounds pretty neat and exciting, isn't it?


Source: Press Release of National Institute of Information and Technology


9/6/10

Soft Touch Panel

Human Media System Laboratory of  University of Electro-Communications is developing a soft tactile touch-panel using a system which consists of a camera, polarizer film, transparent elastic medium, and a flat panel display with a computer.  With the system, the camera detects only polarized light pass through the polarizer film when the transparent elastic medium is distorted by finger touch, so that the detected light is fed back to the computer to respond to the feed back signal in some visible format on the display.



When the development is successfully completed, a range of applications will be quite broad, such as medical field, computer gaming, etc.


Souse: DigInfo TV via YouTube


9/7/10