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Kinect powered robot using lasers could help earthquake victims
A Kinect-powered robot could soon be helping locate earthquake victims, thanks to the engineering ingenuity of a group of UK students. The rescue-robot, developed at the University of Warwick could help significantly reduce the costs involved in earthquake rescue attempts. Current technology is pricey and sees robots making use of lasers in order to scan rooms. WMR’s solution could be a cost-effective (and safer) way of searching unstable buildings and, thanks to the Kinect, looking around for any potential survivors. PC World

Tainted water from US coal seam gas wells hits rivers
In the US, wastewater from hydrofracking is sometimes hauled to sewage plants not designed to treat it and then discharged into rivers that supply drinking water, contains radioactivity at levels higher than previously known, and far higher than the level that US federal regulators say is safe for these treatment plants to handle. The New York Times also found that radioactivity in drilling waste cannot be fully diluted in rivers and other waterways. New York Times

Automation enables grid-aware buildings
"We now have the secret sauce to make large buildings or groups of smaller building interact with the smart grid. “The Energy Internet” is able to rapidly interact with the supply grid. For the first time supply and demand can talk and cooperate. Action and reaction in real time without manual intervention can be achieved. When this is coupled with real time pricing and first wave approaches such as Automated Demand Response “ADR requests”, great changes can be achieved within our existing electrical infrastructure. “The Energy Internet” is an important solution since grid and distribution can no longer substantiality grow in major cities." Ken Sinclair, Publisher of

Control software improves cement quality
Cement production is one of the most energy intensive production processes. New control software predicts how cement mills will operate and continually optimises the milling process. The results are improved cement quality and increased mill throughput. The expert system consists of a neural soft sensor incorporating components of the Advanced Process Control library from the Simatic PCS 7 and a multivariable controller integrated in PCS 7.

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