The Thomas Blog

Industrial marketing and manufacturing sales tips to help you grow your business.

Video: Soldiers Will Get A Boost With Exoskeletons

Soldiers are about to get a big upgrade courtesy of engineers at the U.S. Army Research Lab. The engineers are creating a DARPA-funded exoskeleton suit that will help soldiers carry heavier equipment, march longer distances and improve mental acuity. 

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Hyperloop One's First Pod Test Is A Success

The future of high-speed transportation blazed one step closer to reality last week. Hyperloop One, based in Los Angeles, just tested its pod for the first time, and the test was a big — and really fast — success.

The company launched its XP-1 passenger pod through a 1,600-foot-long, 11-foot-wide concrete tube in the Nevada desert. With the help of an electric propulsion system, the pod managed to hit 192 mph in about 5 seconds, producing 3,000 horsepower.

To accelerate the pod's speed, engineers pumped out nearly all of the air that was inside the tube, reducing the internal air pressure to levels that are common at altitudes of 200,000 feet. Once the pod was able to accelerate through the tube, its wheels retracted and magnetic levitation took over, reducing drag and giving the pod the energy required to reach near-supersonic speeds.  

The XP-1 stretches 28-feet in length, and it is made out of aluminum and carbon fiber. Its bus-like shape belies its impeccable top-end speeds, as well as the advanced motor that makes it possible. 

While this successful test was a huge step in the right direction for Hyperloop technology, it's just the first step. The company hopes to have their pods go as fast as 750 miles per hour, or around the speed of sound. Not only will Hyperloop One need to nail down faster pods, they'll also need to establish ways to make this mode of transportation practical for commuters in order for it to truly take off.  

Want to learn more about the Hyperloop One test? Check out the video below.

 

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Video: Space Tourism Gets Closer To Becoming A Reality

Zero 2 Infinity, a space tourism company headquartered in Spain, just unveiled the final design of its Bloon pod, which will launch people to the edge of the Earth's atmosphere.  

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Investments To Prepare Your Shop Floor For Growth

The American manufacturing industry is on the rise, with businesses expanding and hiring activity picking up. Now, shop owners must do all they can to manage, and maximize, their growth.  

CMTC suggested four investments manufacturers should consider when expanding their businesses. According to CMTC, two of the most important investments are equipment and warehousing:

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Researchers 3D Print A Human Heart

3D printing is expected to revolutionize the medical industry. Not only are 3D printers creating medical devices, they are also creating organs for patients. Just recently, researchers expanded their 3D printing prototypes to include hearts that have the potential to work inside human beings. 

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Video: Fruit And Animals Will Pave The Way For Safer Industrial Equipment

Safety on the shop floor is about to get better, and you can thank fruits and animals for their help. Groundbreaking research from BMW's Bio-Inspired-Safety Systems (BISS) Consortium is leading the way to create new safety prototypes based off of natural models. 

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MIT's Drones Pave The Way For Flying Cars

For years, movies about the future have featured flying cars, and today we're closer to seeing them become reality. However, while the concept of flying cars is tremendously exciting, it could become a nightmare.

That's because, without the safety mechanisms we take for granted on the road today – traffic lights, stop signs, speed limits, etc. – the risk of crashes and collisions is very high. 

Fortunately, researchers from MIT are already working on ways to solve this futuristic safety problem.

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Video: The Best Metro Areas For Manufacturing Jobs

Think it's tough to get a job in the manufacturing industry? While that may be the common perception, the truth is that the manufacturing job market offers more opportunities than you think. 

In fact, Forbes recently looked at the state of the hiring within the industry and found that all but 18 of the country’s 70 largest metropolitan regions have seen an uptick in industrial employment since 2011. They also ranked all 357 metropolitan areas to determine the locations with the best, most thriving manufacturing employment situations.

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This Robot Uses AI To Write And Play Its Own Music

The next star hitting the Billboard charts might not be who or what you expect. It might just be an AI-powered robot.

According to WIRED, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology created a marimba-playing robot with four arms and eight sticks with the ability to write and play its own composition through artificial intelligence.

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