The Surprisingly Complicated Physics of Carrying a Cup of Coffee — Without Spilling
A significant technological advance could be achieved if robots could be enabled to handle a cup of coffee with the same dexterity humans can. Whenever we take our coffee from one place to another without spilling it, we are accomplishing a feat of physics that is not common to other creatures and machines like robots. Work on advances in robotics to make that possible is being done by researchers, including Fulton Schools Professor Ying-Cheng Lai and doctoral student Brent Wallace. The endeavor involves some very precise and advanced electrical, mechanical and computer engineering. Lai and Wallace are hopeful about finding ways to make robot movements more predictable, reliable and adaptable. They say success in their work could lead to better prosthetics and ways to more effectively synchronize the operations of technologies in general.