Reap The Wild Wind

A fresh breeze is blowing at Horns Rev, where the Danes are building the world's biggest offshore wind farm

14 min read

On a beautiful sunny Saturday morning, unseasonably warm for spring, the MS Ocean Adys is getting ready to leave Esbjerg, on Denmark's west coast. Our cargo is stowed safely on board, and now the crew is making final adjustments before taking in the docking lines and pulling up anchor.

Commissioned just days before, the Ocean Adys has the outlines of a small cargo vessel. But unlike the other ships that leave this busy port city for points the world over, piled high with giant sky-blue corrugated Maersk Sealand containers, the Ocean Adys isn't going very far—our trip will last just four hours. Our destination: Horns Rev (Reef), a wind farm now being developed 14 km off shore by Elsam A/S (Fredericia), Denmark's biggest power producer. The ship, too, carries an unusual payload: two boxy white nacelles, 13 meters long and 4 meters high, stacked one atop the other, each housing the generator and other machinery that turn wind energy into electricity. Two rotor blades are attached to each, forming a wide-angled V at one end.

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Video Friday: Turkey Sandwich

Your weekly selection of awesome robot videos

4 min read
A teleoperated humanoid robot torso stands in a kitchen assembling a turkey sandwich from ingredients on a tray

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your friends at IEEE Spectrum robotics. We also post a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months. Please send us your events for inclusion.

CoRL 2022: 14–18 December 2022, AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND

Enjoy today's videos!

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New AI Speeds Computer Graphics by Up to 5x

Neural rendering harnesses machine learning to paint pixels

5 min read
Four examples of Nvidia's Instant NeRF 2D-to-3D machine learning model placed side-by-side.

Nvidia Instant NeRF uses neural rendering to generate 3D visuals from 2D images.


On 20 September, Nvidia’s Vice President of Applied Deep Learning, Bryan Cantanzaro, went to Twitter with a bold claim: In certain GPU-heavy games, like the classic first-person platformer Portal, seven out of eight pixels on the screen are generated by a new machine-learning algorithm. That’s enough, he said, to accelerate rendering by up to 5x.

This impressive feat is currently limited to a few dozen 3D games, but it’s a hint at the gains neural rendering will soon deliver. The technique will unlock new potential in everyday consumer electronics.

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Designing Fuel Cell Systems Using System-Level Design

Modeling and simulation in Simulink and Simscape

1 min read
Designing Fuel Cell Systems Using System-Level Design

Design and simulate a fuel cell system for electric mobility. See by example how Simulink® and Simscape™ support multidomain physical modeling and simulation of fuel cell systems including thermal, gas, and liquid systems. Learn how to select levels of modeling fidelities to meet your needs at different development stages.