250Mpix sensor

Canon develops 250 Mpixel CMOS image sensor

I came across this article on EE-times. A quarter gigapixels on a chip smaller than an old 35mm negative is a fantastic accomplishment—but what does it really mean?

The array of 19,580 by 12,600 pixels measures 29.2mm by 20.2mm—a fraction over APS-H format; that gives it a pixel pitch of about 1.5µm. Those pixels are somewhat larger than for commodity mobile phone 8-16 Mpixel imager chips (1.2µm) but a lot smaller than for your typical consumer DSLR (about 3µm), let alone professional DSLR (over 5µm).

Cubli self-balancing cube

Cubli: one cool cube

Swiss researchers have created Cubli, a cube that can jump up, balance on its corner, and walk about.

Cubli is a small robotic cube with 15cm sides, incorporating flywheels rotating around 3 perpendicular axes. By spinning a flywheel at high speed and suddenly braking Cubli can jump up, and by tightly controlling the speed of the three wheels can balance on a side or on a corner.


Smart fork clocks meals

The HAPIfork—equipped with sensors to measure how much and how fast you eat—is set to go on sale in April for $99.

If it finds you eat too fast it will vibrate and flash to urge you to take it slow.

Sniffer bees in “The Engineer”

“Trained sniffer bees are the key components of new technology that could stop terrorists in their tracks”

The Engineer of this week has devoted a two-page spread to the sniffer-bee project we’ve been working on with Inscentinel for some time. It’s a very interesting and unusual project to work on…

Inscentinel VASOR

Sniffer bees on page 3

A prototype explosives detector I designed and built for Inscentinel was featured in an article by Richard Savill on page 3 of the Daily Telegraph—the full text follows:

Bees, latest weapon in the war on terrorism

Honeybees trained to sniff out explosives could soon be used at airports in the fight against terrorism.

Researchers have trained bees to extend their proboscis when smelling a particular explosive and have also developed a “sniffer box” to indicate when the bees show signs of detecting explosives. A spokesman for Inscentinel, of Harpenden, Herts, said teams of sniffer bees could one day be part of the screening process at airports and other venues, including museums and major sporting events.