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Helping hands: Library, robotics team partner to produce limbs for kids


There’s giving a hand – and there’s giving 200 hands.

That’s one of this year’s goals for the Novi Public Library. Partnering with the Novi High School robotics team, the library is working to establish itself as an official chapter of e-NABLE, joining the group’s grassroots effort to create free 3D-printed limbs for kids overseas who’ve lost a hand, arm or fingers due to war, disease or natural disaster.

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Cranbrook Educational Community launches free mobile app for campus visitors

The Cranbrook Educational Community has introduced a new mobile app to help guests navigate and explore its 319-acre campus. Accessible on mobile devices, the app can be downloaded for free on the App Store or Google Play. A web version of the app is also available at http://cranbrook.oncell.com
"Cranbrook is one of the world's leading centers of education, science, and art. We have an Academy of Art and Art Museum, Center for Collections and Research, House & Gardens, Institute of Science, and Pre-K through 12th grade private Schools, all on one campus," said Dominic DiMarco, President of Cranbrook Educational Community. "Now we have one collective app to share the offerings of each of these program areas and enhance the visitor experience."  
Visitors can use the app to learn about Cranbrook on self-guided tours of approximately 100 public sites, navigate its campus with interactive maps, and find upcoming public events. If GPS location services are enabled, the app will alert users when they are nearby points of interest. A 'Favorites' function allows users to easily bookmark pages for quick access.
The Cranbrook app expands on and replaces former apps offered by Cranbrook House & Gardens and Cranbrook Institute of Science. The app was developed using OnCell's do-it-yourself app builder, a popular platform among cultural destinations. 

LTU event to show how Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Immersive Reality affect business

From immersive virtual reality (VR) caves to head-mounted devices (HMDs) to augmented reality (AR) headsets and more, a program at Lawrence Technological University will give attendees a chance to learn about these new tools in a relaxed environment and discover the positive impact they may have on the way business gets done.
Join the LTU Collaboratory on Thursday, Sept. 7 for a symposium from 8 a.m. to noon in the UTLC Gallery on the LTU campus, 21000 W. 10 Mile Road, Southfield, for a hands-on demonstrations of the DAQRI Smart Helmet, the Microsoft Hololens, the HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift, and a demonstration of immersive cave technology.
Expert presenters will include:
  • Jeff Brum from Mechdyne, on applications of virtual reality from training firefighters to developing a virtual aquarium for a research institute
  • Simon Wealans from DAQRI on how the smart helmet they developed can use augmented reality to save lives on the battlefield, help first responders in cities, and train new workers
  • Steve Couchman from LivePicture on how virtual reality headsets can be used in a design or marketing workflow
Registration is $15 if booked online at www.ltucollaboratory.com/events/ar-vr-ir-oh-my, or $20 at the door. A continental breakfast is included.
The event is sponsored by the LTU Collaboratory in partnership with the City of Southfield Centrepolis SmartZone and the Michigan Economic Development Corp.
For more information on how the LTU Collaboratory can help your company innovate and grow, visit www.ltucollaboratory.com.
Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Management. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 100 universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.

LTU students demonstrate museum docent robot

A team of Lawrence Technological University robotics engineering students conducted a flawless test of a robot designed to give the world a chance to virtually visit a historic Detroit auto plant.
The students demonstrated the robot at the annual meeting of the Model T Automotive Heritage Complex, the nonprofit that runs the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant as a museum.
The robot is designed to follow a strip of magnetic tape around the museum, following a docent. Cameras and microphones on the robot will allow people who log into a museum website to see and hear about the automotive displays at the Piquette plant. A screen on the robot will also allow those taking the virtual tour to type in questions they’d like to ask the docent.
Jerry Mitchell, a retired Wayne State University anatomy professor who chairs the Piquette plant’s board, called the LTU students “wonderful young people, an inspiration to all of us” who make him “more optimistic about the future of our country.”

The students built a custom-made steel chassis for the robot, which is powered by rechargeable batteries and uses wheelchair motors and wheels to get around. They named the robot H.E.N.R.Y., for “Historical Engineering Narrated Remotely for You.”

The nine students who worked on the project are Zachary Cowan of Rochester Hills, Matt DiMilla of Brownstown Township, Patrick Feliksa of Rochester Hills, Christopher Leclerc of Canton Township, Ryan Martin of Redford Township, Charles Morton of Muskegon, Luis Rodriguez of Valencia, Venezuela, Nicole Turkus of Grosse Pointe Woods, and Joey Yudasz, team captain, of Waterford Township. They started building the robot in November under the supervision of LTU robotics lab instructor James M. Kerns.

The Piquette plant was home to Model T production from 1904 to 1910. On Jan. 1, 1910, Henry Ford’s more famous Highland Park plant opened, home of the first moving assembly line. At Piquette, automotive assembly was still done the old-fashioned way – workers put an automotive frame up on sawhorses and bolted and welded the rest of the parts onto it, rolling it out the door when it was done.

While no model of efficiency compared to the moving assembly line, the Piquette plant did set records for its time, at one point churning out 110 Model Ts a day.  

The museum last year attracted 18,000 visitors from more than 50 countries. Sunday’s visitors, according to museum director Nancy Darga, included people from Cuba, Ecuador, Germany and Sweden. The museum is listed as an automotive heritage site with the Automotive National Heritage Area, part of the National Park Service system.
Since taking over the building in 2000, museum volunteers have been worked to restore its 355 windows, shored up its brickwork, and have created display cases of important automotive history objects. Henry Ford’s original office has been restored. Dozens of historic vehicles from the early 20th century are now on display in the museum. Volunteers also spent the past year and a half improving and standardizing the informational signs that stand in front of each vehicle on display.
Most recently, volunteers have worked on restoring the secret third-floor laboratory where Henry Ford and a small group of close associates designed and first built the Model T, Ford’s first car that truly met his vision of a practical automobile the average American could afford and properly maintain. The restored room will officially open on the Model T’s birthday in September.
Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Management. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 100 universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.

Beaumont first in Michigan to offer new breast cancer treatment


Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak is the first health system in the state to offer the Intrabeam intraoperative radiotherapy system, a new partial radiotherapy treatment option for breast cancer patients.

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Bloomfield Hills-based firm creates robotic dining solution for the disabled


Desin, a technology company founded by a group of investors from Michigan and Ohio, has released its first product, a robotic device that helps individuals with physical disabilities feed themselves.    

“(Obi) represents our belief that living with physical challenges can be fulfilling and inspiring,” says Jon Dekar, president and co-founder of Desin. “Technology, and specifically robotics, combined with modern design, should facilitate that.”

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FCA U.S. launches public cybersecurity program


FCA U.S. in Auburn Hills has launched a public bug bounty program, which gives customers the opportunity to receive between $150 and $1,500 for reporting potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities in the auto manufacturer’s vehicles and connected services.

“There are a lot of people that like to tinker with their vehicles or tinker with IT systems,” says Titus Melnyk, senior manager of security architecture at FCA. “We want to encourage independent security researchers to reach out to us and share what they've found so that we can fix potential vulnerabilities before they're an issue for our consumers.” 

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DTE Energy and Vectorform expand Powerley energy saving app in Royal Oak


Powerley, a partnership formed by DTE Energy and Royal Oak-based Vectorform to pioneer the way homeowners manage their energy through a smartphone app, has grown its operation in the last year and is now employing nearly 20 employees. Powerley also moved into new office space in downtown Royal Oak.

The company’s technology platform connects a homeowner's smart meter to Powerley's Energy Bridge and smartphone mobile application to provide real-time, energy consumption information, which allows consumers to more efficiently use energy and see immediate cost savings.

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Valeo Innovative Electric Supercharger and Water-cooled Condenser win 2016 Automotive News PACE Awar

Valeo has won 2016 Automotive News PACE (Premier Automotive Suppliers' Contribution to Excellence) Awards for its Electric Supercharger and its Water-cooled Condenser. 
The Electric Supercharger is driven by an electric motor that allows faster response time and eliminates the lag effect associated with turbocharging. It is the first electric-driven compressor that will be in mass production and it is designed for 12-volt and 48-volt systems.
The Valeo Water-cooled Condenser uses water instead of air to condensate the conditioning refrigerant vapor. In comparison with conventional condensers, it reduces pressure fluctuations of the refrigerant in the air conditioning system thanks to the inertia of the liquid. Ultra compact, it does not need to be located in front of the radiator allowing free space for additional components, and reducing fan system electrical consumption, while minimizing refrigerant quantity in the air conditioning loop.
Additionally, Ichikoh, a lighting provider based in Japan, in which Valeo Group holds a stake, won a PACE Award for its innovative LED Light Source Module, which fits into a standardized socket, lowering cost and allowing the replacement of the LED alone.
Valeo accepted the honors at the 2016 Automotive News PACE Awards ceremony on April 11, at the Max M. Fisher Music Center in Detroit. For more than 20 years, the Automotive News PACE Awards have honored superior innovation, technological advancement and business performance among automotive suppliers. This prestigious award is recognized around the world as the industry benchmark for innovation.
In the past, Valeo has won PACE Awards in 2015 for its EG Efficiency Alternator, 2014 for its Back-Over Protection System, 2013 for its Air Intake Module, 2012 for its VisioBlade® wiper system, 2008 for its Park4U® park assist system, 2007 for its Multi-Beam Radar (MBR) blind spot detection system, 2006 for its StARS micro-hybrid system and 2005 for its LaneVue™ lane departure warning system.

Valeo is an automotive supplier, partner to all automakers worldwide. As a technology company, Valeo proposes innovative products and systems that contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions and to the development of intuitive driving.
In 2015, the Group generated sales of 14.5 billion euros and invested over 10% of its original equipment sales in research and development. Valeo has 134 plants, 17 research centers, 35 development centers and 15 distribution platforms, and employs 82,800 people in 30 countries worldwide. Valeo is listed on Euronext Paris and is a member of the CAC 40 index. For more information about the Valeo Group and its activities, please visit our website, www.valeo.com.

Lenawee County agencies join CLEMIS

Ten law enforcement agencies from Lenawee County will become members of the Courts Law Enforcement Management Information System (CLEMIS), one of the largest public safety information sharing systems in the United States, Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson announced today.

The addition of the Lenawee County Sheriff and nine other police agencies expands CLEMIS’ footprint by 761 square miles impacting about 100,000 Lenawee County residents.

“CLEMIS is one of our greatest regional collaboration achievements in Southeast Michigan,” Patterson said. “More than 100 public safety agencies across eight counties are making our communities safer by sharing critical information to help solve crimes.”

CLEMIS, a division of Oakland County's Department of Information Technology, uses innovative computer technology for criminal justice and public safety applications. By serving as a technical link among multiple agencies, CLEMIS promotes communication and sharing of criminal justice information.

The other Lenawee County law enforcement agencies that are joining CLEMIS include the City of Adrian, Adrian Township, Blissfield Village, Cambridge Township, Clinton Village, Hudson, Madison Township, Morenci, and Tecumseh. They will share information with agencies from Oakland, Genesee, Lapeer, Macomb, St. Clair, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties. 

CLEMIS is more than just one system. CLEMIS provides enhanced 911, computer aided dispatch, mobile data computers, access to the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN), Consolidated Law Enforcement Advanced Records (CLEAR) Records Management System electronic citations, crash reports, Evidence & Property Management System, Auto-Impound Management System, biometric facial images (Mugshot ), biometric fingerprints (Livescan), crime mapping, and more.

“CLEMIS has proven itself time and again helping to solve criminal investigations and enabling agencies to work with each other to get the bad guys,” said Novi Public Safety Director David Molloy, who chairs the CLEMIS Advisory Board. “CLEMIS truly is a force multiplier – meaning one officer on the road today can do what several officers used to do.”

Oakland County's cloud collaboration nets national award

Oakland County, Mich. captured Workforce magazine's gold 2015 Optimas Award for Innovation for making leading-edge human resources software available in the cloud to other governments, County Executive L. Brooks Patterson announced today. The Optimas Awards recognize human resources and workforce management initiatives that achieve business results for an organization.  

Oakland County created G2G Marketplace to bring innovative technologies to small and midsize governments by simplifying the purchasing and licensing process so government agencies are able to access technologies and services more quickly. Oakland County qualified for the Optimas Awards because it offers Kronos Workforce Ready® to local governments through G2G Marketplace.

“This award recognizes that Oakland County is driven to do it better at lower cost and share what we know with others," Patterson said. "Kudos to our IT staff and G2G Marketplace for a job well done helping other governments."

Kronos Workforce Ready is a cloud-based workforce management solution that automates time and attendance records, HR records, payroll, and more. It cuts down on the amount of time that goes into collecting and analyzing employee data. 

"Becoming more efficient in a labor-intensive area of government such as human resources is a win-win for everyone,” said Phil Bertolini, deputy Oakland County executive and CIO. “Kronos has enabled Oakland County and other governments to spend more time making effective, well-informed personnel decisions and less time gathering and analyzing employee data."

For more information about G2G Marketplace, go to G2GMarket.com.

Community partnership helps get 'clean diesels' on the roads of Michigan

As part of a collaboration to help address air pollution from diesel engines, the State of Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), a member of Michigan Clean Diesel Initiative (MiCDI), recently awarded “Clean Diesel” grant financial assistance to Southwest Detroit Environmental Vision (SDEV). This grant will partially fund improvements to three private vehicle fleets, including partial funding to help replace two older refrigerated box trucks in Forgotten Harvest’s fleet.
For Forgotten Harvest’s improvements, MDEQ’s financial support required at least a 75 percent funding match, leading to a broader collaboration to meet the program’s clean air goals. Southfield-based Real Estate One donated the majority of the matching funds to replace one of Forgotten Harvest’s refrigerated box trucks. Troy, Michigan-based Meritor, Inc., a leading global supplier of drivetrain, mobility, braking and aftermarket solutions for commercial vehicle and industrial markets, also contributed matching funds to acquire this new truck. 
The truck dedication will take place at Real Estate One, 25800 Northwestern Highway, Southfield, Michigan, on Friday, September 11 at 3:00 p.m.
MDEQ administers MiCDI funds, which are authorized by the federal Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) and released by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). MDEQ awarded funds to SDEV’s Clean Diesel Program for the purpose of improving air quality by reducing diesel emissions. The diesel equipment on the new replacement trucks will meet or exceed the current highest EPA emissions standards, reducing harmful diesel air pollutants. The new replacement trucks for Forgotten Harvest’s fleet will replace trucks operating primarily in Detroit and in Western Wayne County.
“We are honored for the ‘Clean Diesel’ collaboration with MDEQ and SDEV, which reinforces the environmental benefits of Forgotten Harvest’s mission: rescuing surplus healthy food for distribution to people in need and, thereby, reducing food waste and its associated environmental harm,” said Kirk Mayes, CEO, Forgotten Harvest. “We are humbled and grateful for our involvement with MDEQ, SDEV, Real Estate One and Meritor – for our first new replacement truck under this Clean Diesel Program.”  
Real Estate One is a long-time generous supporter of Forgotten Harvest’s work. “Helping feed people in need while also improving Michigan’s air quality is a double honor for us,” said Stuart Elsea, president, Financial Services. “We regularly have teams volunteer at Forgotten Harvest’s warehouse, and we raise funds along with awareness in support of giving back as part of our corporate social responsibility.  Contributing a major share of the matching funds to purchase this new, replacement truck with ‘clean diesel’ equipment enhances our commitment to the thousands of people Forgotten Harvest serves while providing environmental benefits to our community.”
“We are proud that a Meritor rear axle is the backbone of this new clean diesel truck that will make a difference in so many people’s lives,” said Krista Sohm, vice president, Marketing & Communications for Meritor.
SDEV is one of Detroit’s longest running environmental non-profit organizations, serving the community for over 25 years. “Our Clean Diesel Program began in 2009 and is focused on reducing negative public health and environmental impacts from the significant diesel vehicle traffic in and around Southwest Detroit,” said Kathy Stott, executive director, SDEV. “Our truly collaborative program eliminates over 4,500 tons of diesel pollutants annually. We are proud that this project with Forgotten Harvest, and by extension their supporters, has allowed us to benefit another nonprofit organization, ensuring that their important operation to eliminate food waste and feed people in need can do so while also reducing air pollution from their fleet.”
About Forgotten Harvest 
Oak Park, Michigan-based Forgotten Harvest was formed in 1990 to fight two problems: hunger and waste.  Forgotten Harvest “rescued” nearly 41 million pounds of food last year by collecting surplus prepared and perishable food from over 800 locations, including grocery stores, fruit and vegetable markets, restaurants, caterers, dairies, farmers, wholesale food distributors and other Health Department-approved sources. This donated food, which would otherwise go to waste, is delivered free-of-charge to 280 emergency food providers in the metro Detroit area.  Forgotten Harvest has been ranked as a four-star charity by Charity Navigator for nine consecutive years.  Learn more about Forgotten Harvest and how to help drive hunger from our community at www.forgottenharvest.org.

ICE Gives CLEMIS National Award

Oakland County, Michigan’s Courts and Law Enforcement Management Information System (CLEMIS) has drawn national recognition from a federal law enforcement agency. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) gave CLEMIS its prestigious Exemplary Law Enforcement Partnership Award last week in Washington, D.C.

“Thank you to ICE for bringing national attention to the outstanding work of our CLEMIS staff led by Jamie Hess,” Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson said. “CLEMIS’ innovations in computer technology enhance criminal justice and public safety for our local, state and federal partners and the communities they serve.”

CLEMIS connects more than 120 public safety agencies in six counties in southeast Michigan. Sharing data among these agencies enables law enforcement to be more effective at solving and preventing crime. The Exemplary Law Enforcement Partnership Award “recognizes the federal, state, or local member, task force, group, or organization of the law enforcement community whose efforts… have enhanced public safety or have otherwise significantly contributed to the ERO (Enforcement & Removal Operations) mission or its values.”

ICE said that in Fiscal Year 2014, its Non-Custodial Arrest Teams in Detroit made an impressive 835 priority criminal alien field arrests, 96 percent of which were a result of, or significantly benefitted from, use of the CLEMIS system.

“This recognition is a reflection of the great relationship we have with our law enforcement partners in Oakland County,” said Rebecca Adducci, field office director for ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations in Detroit. “The critical exchange of information fostered through CLEMIS better equips ICE and our partners in our efforts to protect the community.”

CLEMIS Chairperson and City of Novi Public Safety Director David Molloy said CLEMIS’ mission is to empower criminal justice and public safety agencies to maximize the use of collected data so they may enhance their daily operations and perform comprehensive planning.

“Helping an organization like ICE which serves on the front lines of our nation’s homeland security every day demonstrates just how vital a link CLEMIS is to law enforcement,” Molloy said. “We are grateful that ICE acknowledged how effective CLEMIS and its staff are.”

CLEMIS, a division of Oakland County, Michigan’s Department of Information Technology, is a multi-faceted, regional law enforcement management information system. The key principle of CLEMIS is the sharing of data between law enforcement agencies in a county-operated and maintained regional database. Data is extracted from CLEMIS by law enforcement agencies for required federal and State crime reporting, analyzing criminal activity, resource allocation, incident reporting, and more. CLEMIS serves local, state and federal agencies in Genesee, Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties. CLEMIS provides the following services: Enhanced 911, Computer Aided Dispatch, Mobile Data Computers, access to Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN), Consolidated Law Enforcement Advanced Records (CLEAR) Records Management System, Electronic Citations, Crash Reports, Evidence & Property Management System, Auto-Impound Management System, Biometric Facial Images (Mugshot), Biometric Fingerprints (Livescan), Video Conferencing (OakVideo for court arraignments and more), Crime Mapping, Online Citizens Police Report System, Inmate Management & Cost Recovery (Jail) System, Radio (Voice) Communication System (OakWIN), and Fire Records Management System (FRMS). For more information, go to www.CLEMIS.org.

City of Southfield offers new app featuring dining, hotel, and turn-by-turn navigation


The city of Southfield has launched a new app for residents and visitors that highlights the city’s amenities and services when traveling to or throughout the city.

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Royal Oak gets web-savvy parking meters

You know the future is now when even the dreaded parking meter has an app and happily accepts internet transactions.


The sticker represents Royal Oak’s partnership with Parkmobile, a parking payment provider that allows visitors to conduct parking transactions via their smart phones. Users can pay for parking through the internet, a mobile application or a toll-free number.

There also are options for users to receive alerts to notify them when the time on the meter is set to expire.

Read the rest here.
60 Research + Innovation Articles | Page: | Show All
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