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A Better Artificial Skin

January 12, 2007

University of Cincinnati scientists have grown artificial skin cells, using collagen scaffolds. They could ultimately produce a type of artificial skin that can sweat, tan, and fight off infection more effectively.

A better brain implant: listening to single neurons

November 12, 2012

SEM image of a fully assembled, functional microthread electrode (credit: Takashi Kozai)

A thin, flexible electrode developed at the University of Michigan is 10 times smaller than the nearest competition and could make long-term measurements of neural activity practical.

This kind of technology could also be used eventually to send brain-computer-interface (BCI) signals to prosthetic limbs, overcoming inflammation caused by larger electrodes, resulting in damage to both the brain and the electrodes.

Existing electrodes are stiff and enormous… read more

A Better Brain Scanner

July 20, 2007

New brain scanners promise to deliver images of higher resolution than any now available from a commercial instrument.

By using multiple sensors placed close to the head, the device can generate accurate images in less time, which could ultimately aid in the diagnosis of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and epilepsy.

MRI machines in medical centers typically have up to 12 coils, but the new devices under development have… read more

A Better Bug for Biofuels

September 25, 2009

Researchers are developing genetically engineered microbial sources of biofuels that do not rely on food sources or agricultural land, unlike ethanol made from corn or sugarcane.

A better insulator for miniaturized integrated circuits

July 24, 2001

Highly insulating new honeycomb material may allow microelectronic integrated circuits to be made even smaller, increasing the power of microchip and computer technology.
When electronic devices get very small, insulating silica films must be shrunk to the same proportions. Too thin, they become leaky and electrical currents seep out, creating problems such as crosstalk between different parts of the circuit.

Leakage could become a problem once the dimensions of… read more

A Better Network for Outer Space

October 27, 2008

Having designed the networking protocols that launched the Internet, Vint Cerf now wants to put the same kind of robust communications network in outer space.

A Better Recommendation Engine

November 8, 2007

Cleverset thinks it has the secret to the next-generation recommendation system.

It weighs the importance of the relationship among individual shoppers, their behavior on the site, the behavior of similar shoppers, and external factors. Using these ever-changing relationships, Cleverset’s system serves up products that are statistically likely to match what the customer will find interesting.

A better way to grow stem cells

August 23, 2010

humanembryonicstemcells

MIT scientists have devised a synthetic surface that includes no foreign animal material and allows stem cells to stay alive and continue reproducing themselves for at least three months. It’s also the first synthetic material that allows single cells to form colonies of identical cells, which is necessary to identify cells with desired traits and has been difficult to achieve with existing materials.

The research team, led by Professors… read more

A better way to make muscle cells from human stem cells

No required genetic modifications, which would prohibit future clinical applications
March 26, 2014

suzuki_muscle_cellESC

University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have discovered a new way to make large concentrations of skeletal muscle cells and muscle progenitors from human stem cells.

The new method, described in the journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine, could be used to generate large numbers of muscle cells and muscle progenitors directly from human pluripotent stem cells. (Pluripotent stem cells, such as embryonic (ES) or induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells,… read more

A Better Way to Make Nano Stuff

February 16, 2009

Yale University researchers have demonstrated that nanoimprint lithography molds can be created from more durable materials — an advance that could make the technique commercially viable for creating denser data storage and faster microprocessors.

A Better Way to Make Nanotubes

January 6, 2009

The newly synthesized cycloparaphenylene “nanohoop” molecule, the shortest segment of a carbon nanotube, could help grow much longer carbon nanotubes in a controlled way and in large batches, with each nanotube identical to the next.

This combination of precision and high yield will be needed if carbon nanotubes are to make the jump from the lab to the commercial sector. To replace silicon wafers in electronics, for example, they’ll… read more

A Better Way to Spot Disease

September 5, 2008

Nanjing University scientists have found that microRNAs circulating in blood can serve as a molecular “fingerprint” for cancers and diabetes, raising the possibility that a simple blood test could help clinicians tailor treatments to individual patients.

A big leap toward lowering the power consumption of microprocessors

January 22, 2012

The Intel Atom processor allows for low-power designs

The first systematic power profiles of microprocessors could help lower the energy consumption of both small cell phones and giant data centers, say computer science professors from the University of Texas at Austin and the Australian National University in a study to systematically measure and analyze application power, performance, and energy on a wide variety of hardware.

Their results may point the way to making… read more

A big test for new Internet addresses

June 8, 2011

As of 8 p.m. EST on Tuesday, more than 300 organizations, including Google, Facebook, and Yahoo, are testing a new way of routing information around the Internet: Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6). Though the test run will only last 24 hours, participants may learn valuable lessons about how transitioning to IPv6 could affect their sites and their users.

The Internet has simply outgrown IPv4 — the last few addresses… read more

A billion-pixel view of Mars from Curiosity Rover

June 20, 2013

nasa_mars_image

A 1.3-billion-pixel image of the surface of Mars, from NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity, offers armchair explorers a way to examine one part of the Red Planet in great detail. It stitches together nearly 900 exposures taken by cameras onboard Curiosity and shows details of the landscape along the rover’s route.

The full image is available with pan and zoom tools at http://mars.nasa.gov/bp1/.

The… read more

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