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OCTOBER 2018 I FLEX007 MAGAZINE 11 whose experience will help you with many "pointers," such as impedance considerations, material layup considerations, rigid-to-flex transition areas, and more. In their final installment of the three-part series of excerpts from their eBook on flex and rigid-flex fundamentals, ASC's Dave Lackey and Anaya Vardya discuss a number of spe- cial types of flex and rigid-flex circuits. Read about bookbinder construction, anchoring pads, thick copper, and high-layer-count flex and rigid-flex. Are you feeling confident now with all this great advice? The big news at All Flex this fall is their new president and CEO, Matt Keithly. In an inter- view, he tells us about himself, the great cul- ture of both All Flex and their parent company, Granite Equity, and his plans for All Flex as the Minnesota-based company moves deeper into rigid-flex. With some additional guidelines for rigid- flex, let's turn to Tuan Tran with Green Cir- cuits. He provides details and tips on design, manufacturing and assembly focusing espe- cially on the intricacies of rigid-flex designs, handling issues, and the importance of baking prior to assembly. Wrapping up this issue is a great article to help expand your thinking with the possibili- ties of printed electronics as applied to flex and rigid-flex. Corné Rentrop with the Holst Centre in the Netherlands helps to stretch our minds with his article on curved, flexible, stretchable, and 3D electronics. Time to think out of the (rigid) box! And there you have it. Those of you famil- iar with my columns from PCB007 Magazine know that I usually end with an exhortation to subscribe—in this case to our newest maga- zine—for delivery direct to your e-mailbox as soon as the next issue is published in January when our topic will be "thinking and designing in three dimensions." See you then! FLEX007 Patricia Goldman is managing editor of Flex007 Magazine. To contact Goldman, click here. 'Robotic Skins' Turn Everyday Objects Into Robots When you think of robotics, you likely think of something rigid, heavy, and built for a specific purpose. New "robotic skins" technology developed by Yale researchers flips that notion on its head, allowing users to animate the inanimate and turn everyday objects into robots. Developed in the lab of Rebecca Kramer-Bottiglio, assistant professor of mechanical engineering and materials science, robotic skins enable users to design their own robotic systems. Although the skins are designed with no specific task in mind, Kramer- Bottiglio said they could be used for everything from search-and-rescue robots to wearable technologies. The skins are made from elastic sheets embedded with sensors and actuators developed in Kramer- Bottiglio's lab. Placed on a deformable object—a stuffed animal or a foam tube, for instance—the skins animate these objects from their surfaces. The makeshift robots can perform different tasks depending on the properties of the soft objects and how the skins are applied. The robotic skinsallow users to create multi- functional robots on the fly. That means they can be used in settings that hadn't even been considered when they were designed, said Kramer-Bottiglio. To demonstrate the robotic skins in action, the researchers created a handful of prototypes. These include foam cylinders that move like an inchworm, a shirt-like wearable device designed to correct poor posture, and a device with a gripper that can grasp and move objects. (Source: Yale University)

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