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Current issue

ELEKTRO 3/2019 was released on March 11th 2019. Its digital version will be available on March 11th 2019.

Topic: Amper 2019 – 271 International trade fair for electrical engineering

Main Article
Smart Cities (part 8)

SVĚTLO (Light) 2/2019 was released on March 15th 2019. Its digital version will be available immediately.

Architectural and scenic lighting
The architectural lighting of Bečov nad Teplou castle
Lighting design in a nutshell – Part 41
The analyse of light picture a little more theoretic

Day light
Biggest mistakes in day lighting design of buildings

Spider silk could be used as robotic muscle

04.03.2019 | MIT | www.mit.edu

Spider silk, already known as one of the strongest materials for its weight, turns out to have another unusual property that might lead to new kinds of artificial muscles or robotic actuators, researchers have found.

The resilient fibers, the team discovered, respond very strongly to changes in humidity. Above a certain level of relative humidity in the air, they suddenly contract and twist, exerting enough force to potentially be competitive with other materials being explored as actuators — devices that move to perform some activity such as controlling a valve.

Spider silk for robots

Researchers recently discovered a property of spider silk called supercontraction, in which the slender fibers can suddenly shrink in response to changes in moisture. The new finding is that not only do the threads contract, they also twist at the same time, providing a strong torsional force. The researchers were able to decode the molecular structure of the two main proteins, that make up spider dragline silk. One of these, MaSp2, contains proline, which interacts with water molecules to produce the newly discovered twisting motion.

Read more at MIT

Image Credit: MIT

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