NC State perfects robotic gripper | Ford & Google partner on research hub

CA company comes back to Ohio

COLUMBUS, OH—Hyperion Cos., currently located in California, plans to move its headquarters back to Columbus in an operation that will employ nearly 700 workers developing hydrogen fuel cells. The 65-acre Far West Side plant will be the largest new factory in Columbus in a decade.

NCU researchers create more precise robotic grippers

RALEIGH, NC—Researchers at North Carolina State University have created new robotic grippers that they say areable to lift delicate egg yolks without breaking them, and that are precise enough to lift a human hair.” The work has applications for both soft robotics and biomedical technologies.

Ford partners with Google on new research hub

DETROIT, MI—Google will be joining Ford Motor Co. to transform a once-dilapidated Detroit train station into a research hub focused on electric and self-driving vehicles. Detroit and the state of Michigan have agreed to provide infrastructure and other support for the Michigan Central Innovation District.

Smart phone app connects people with lawyers

MINNEAPOLIS, MN—Zeb Anderson, a former compliance and analytics specialist at Medtronic, has founded LegalQ, which makes a free smartphone app that connects people with lawyers. Through the app, users can submit details of their legal situations and why they need an attorney. They then choose a lawyer in their jurisdiction to schedule a free 15-minute consultation or choose to have one instantly.

Techstar’s new accelerator

KNOXVILLE, TN—Techstars announced the inaugural class of the Industries of the Future Accelerator run in partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the Tennessee Valley Authority and the University of Tennessee System. The accelerator will focus on startups in the areas of AI, advanced manufacturing, biotech, and 5G cellular.