Robot, heal thyself: scientists develop self-repairing machines

EU project creates robotic hands that can sense and fix damage without human intervention From picking fruit to carrying out minor surgery, soft robotic hands made from jelly-like plastic are thought by scientists to be the future solution to many human needs. But being robots prone to damage and left them largely impractical for use in the real world until now. A European commission-funded project, led by scientists at the Free University of Brussels and the University of Cambridge, aims to create self-healing robots that can feel pain, or sense damage, before swiftly patching themselves up without human intervention. The researchers have already successfully developed polymers that can heal themselves by creating new bonds after about 40 minutes. The next …

Women to head top EU institutions for first time

Ursula von der Leyen to head European commission and Christine Lagarde to lead ECB Two women have won the backing of the EUs leaders to head the European commission and European Central Bank, breaking with more than 60 years of male dominance at the top of the blocs institutions. After three days of tortuous negotiations, Germanys defence minister, improved maternity and paternity benefits as Germanys family affairs minister and drove forward boardroom gender quotas. She has been working to increase funding for the countrys armed forces in her most recent government role although she has been mired in controversy over the awarding of contracts and has faced criticism about gaps in military readiness. On Brexit, she has fully supported the …