August 22, 2006
By mixing and matching pairs of semiconducting, metallic, and magnetic nanoparticles, researchers have made many versions of what they call “binary nanoparticle superlattices.”
Their theoretical analyses, modeling work, and experimental data indicate that the factors that determine exactly what binary superlattice will form include relatively long-range electrostatic forces between the nanoparticles, close-proximity effects such as dipole interactions and van der Waals forces, size effects, and the relative concentrations of… read more
August 20, 2013
A consortium of European researchers has developed a customizable robot companion for people with memory or mobility problems.
The robot, a mobile wheeled semi-humanoid figure equipped with cameras, sensors, audio and a touch screen interface, can remind users to take their medicine, suggest they have their favorite drink or prompt them to go for a walk or visit friends if they haven’t been out for a while,… read more
July 8, 2008
University of Michigan have made a processor (the Phoenix) that measures just one millimeter square with a power consumption so low (2.8 picojoules of energy per computing cycle) that emerging thin-film batteries of the same size could power it for 10 years or more.
At this scale, it could be feasible to build the chip into a thick contact lens and use it to monitor pressure in the eye,… read more
August 29, 2011
The researchers first detected a pulsar using the Parkes radio telescope of the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).
The newly discovered pulsar, known as PSR J1719–1438, produced pulses that were systematically modulated. The astronomers concluded that this… read more
March 15, 2010
What if there was a central place for all of humanity to text, tweet, email, blog and click in the essence of their mood in the moment — a gigantic feelings aggregator that would provide an emotional pulse check on the planet?
November 8, 2007
Astronomers reported Tuesday that there were at least five planets circling a star 41 light-years from here in the constellation Cancer, known as 55 Cancri, where only four had been known before.
This makes it the most extensive planetary system yet found outside our own. It is also the one that most resembles our solar system, with a giant planet orbiting far out from the star and four smaller… read more
August 12, 2008
Thin films of a new polymer developed at Penn State change temperature in response to changing electric fields (the electrocaloric effect).
This could lead to new technologies for cooling computer chips and environmentally friendly refrigerators.
April 9, 2007
A “fuel-latent plastic,” designed for conversion, can be used like ordinary plastic, but when it is waste, the “bioplastic” can easily be turned into a substitute diesel fuel.
September 24, 2008
University of California, Berkeley researchers have developed a portable DNA analyzer that performs real-time analysis of blood samples left at the scene of a crime in six hours or less, packing microfluidics, electronics, optics, and chemical detection technology into a single briefcase-sized unit.
February 14, 2007
Researchers at Purdue University have led development of a portable “tactical” biorefinery for the U.S. Army that turns a variety of waste streams into a mixture of ethanol and methane gas, which are burned in a modified diesel engine to produce electricity.
Princeton physicists have discovered a possible solution to a mystery that has long baffled researchers working to harness fusion as a source of power.
If confirmed by experiment, the finding could help scientists eliminate a major impediment to the development of fusion as a clean and abundant source of energy for producing electric power.
An in-depth analysis by scientists from the U.S. Department of… read more
November 15, 2012
Drawing heavily upon nature for inspiration, a team of researchers has created a new artificial lens made up of thousands of nanoscale polymer layers that is nearly identical to the natural lens of the human eye.
The lens may one day provide more natural performance in implantable lenses to replace damaged or diseased human eye lenses, as well as consumer vision products; it also may lead to… read more
December 18, 2012
A powerful new microscale actuator that can flex like a miniature beckoning finger has been developed by researchers with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of California, Berkeley.
It is based on a material that expands and contracts dramatically in response to a small (15 degrees C) temperature variation. It is smaller than the width of a human hair and… read more
November 1, 2006
GE’s advance allows for a solid-oxide fuel cell to use coal-based fuels at costs approaching that of conventional power plants.
The final product can be built for about $800 a kilowatt, which starts to approach the $500-to-$550-per-kilowatt cost of building a conventional gas-fired power plant.