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Accelerator on a chip

Could spawn new generations of smaller, less expensive devices for science and medicine say Stanford, SLAC researchers
September 28, 2013

The nanostructured glass chip is smaller than a grain of rice (credit: Stanford University)

In an advance that could dramatically shrink particle accelerators for science and medicine, researchers used a laser to accelerate electrons at a rate 10 times higher than conventional technology in a nanostructured glass chip just .5 millimeters long.

The achievement was reported in the journal Nature by a team including scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University.… read more

Access to next-gen Internet may be uneven

May 23, 2008

Graham Finnie, chief analyst for the telecom research firm Heavy Reading, believes 13 percent of U.S. households will be connected to fiber by 2012. Since Verizon is the major builder, the vast majority of those will be in Verizon territory on the East Coast, Texas and California.

“A quarter of the U.S. is going to get one of the best networks in the world,” said Dave Burstein, editor of… read more

Acclaimed science series ‘Cosmos’ to be revamped with Neil deGrasse Tyson

August 9, 2011

Carl Sagan’s classic television series Cosmos, considered by many to be one of the greatest science series of all-time, is returning to television on Fox, reports Deadline.

Standing in for Sagan as host will be famed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. The show’s producers tell Deadline that the new Cosmos will tell “the story of how human beings began to comprehend the laws of nature and find our place in… read more

Achieving fault-tolerant quantum computing

September 20, 2013

This schematic of a bismuth selenide/BSCCO cuprate (Bi2212) heterostructure shows a proximity-induced high-temperature superconducting gap on the surface states of the bismuth selenide topological insulator (credit: Berkeley Lab)

Reliable quantum computing would make it possible to solve certain types of extremely complex technological problems millions of times faster than today’s most powerful supercomputers, or things not even feasible with today’s computers.

But first, we need “fault-tolerant” quantum computers. A small but important step toward this goal has been achieved by an international collaboration of researchers from China’s Tsinghua University and the U.S. Department of Energy… read more

Achieving Fiber-Optic Speeds over Copper Lines

April 26, 2010

Alcatel-Lucent has developed a prototype technology that could dramatically increase the speed of data communications, using two copper phone lines: 100 megabits per second at one kilometer.

Achieving quantum-based secure communication

A solution for intrusive government spying?
September 6, 2013

MDI-QKD featured

University of Calgary scientists say they have overcome the “Achilles’ heel” of quantum-based secure communication systems, using a new approach that safeguards secrets.

The team’s research — published in the journal Physical Review Letters back-to-back with similar work by a group from Hefei, China — also removes a big obstacle to realizing future applications of quantum communication, including a fully functional quantum network.

“I hope… read more

Acid Blockers Linked to Pneumonia Risk

May 27, 2009

Use of proton pump inhibitors and other acid-suppressing drugs was associated with a 30% increased risk of hospital-acquired pneumonia in a study by researcher Shoshana J. Herzig, MD, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard School of Medicine.

Herzig and colleagues estimate that 180,000 cases of hospital-acquired pneumonia and 33,000 deaths each year may be due to their use.

Acoustic Black Hole Created in Bose-Einstein Condensate

June 11, 2009

The sonic equivalent of a black hole in a Bose-Einstein Condensate has been created by Israel Institute of Technology researchers using a deep potential well to generate an event horizon between subsonic and supersonic flow of atoms.

Sonic black holes ought to produce Hawking radiation, since quantum mechanics predicts that pairs of “virtual” phonons with equal and opposite momentum ought to be constantly springing in and out of existence… read more

Acoustic cell-sorting chip may lead to cell-phone-sized medical labs

October 3, 2012


A technique that uses acoustic waves to sort cells on a chip may create miniature medical analytic devices.

The device uses two beams of standing surface acoustic waves (SSAW) to act as acoustic tweezers to sort a continuous flow of cells on a dime-sized chip, said Tony Jun Huang, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics, Penn State.

By changing the frequency of the acoustic… read more

Acoustic Cloak Designed

June 17, 2008

Engineers at Polytechnic University of Valencia have designed a metamaterial that redirects sounds and could be used in buildings to shield them from noises.

The sound-shielding material comprises arrays of sonic crystals, which, if made, would be the first acoustic cloaking device. It could also be useful in hiding military ships and other vessels from sonar.

Acoustic ‘cloaking device’ shields objects from sound

June 28, 2011

Acoustic Cloak

Scientists at Duke University have developed a cloaking device using metamaterials that makes objects invisible to sound waves.

The device uses stacked sheets of plastic with regular arrays of holes through them. The exact size and placement of the holes on each sheet, and the spacing between the sheets, has a predictable effect on incoming sound waves.

When placed on a flat surface, the stack redirects the waves such… read more

Acoustic sensors make surfaces interactive

November 29, 2006

Tai-Chi (Tangible Acoustic Interfaces for Computer-Human Interaction), a series of acoustic sensors that turn any surface into a touch-sensitive computer interface, has been developed by European researchers.

Two or more sensors are attached around the edges of the surface. These pinpoint the position of a finger, or another touching object, by tracking minute vibrations. This allows them to create a virtual touchpad, or keyboard, on any table or wall.

Acoustic tweezers manipulate cellular-scale objects with ultrasound

July 2, 2012

A miniaturized ultrasonic device capable of capturing and moving single cells and tiny living creatures (credit: Xiaoyun Ding, Sz-Chin Steven Lin, Stephen J. Benkovic, and Tony Jun Huang - Penn State)

A team of bioengineers and biochemists from Penn State University has demonstrated a device about the size of a dime that is capable of manipulating objects, including living materials such as blood cells and entire small organisms, using sound waves.

The device, called acoustic tweezers, is the first technology capable of touchlessly trapping and manipulating Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), a one millimeter long roundworm that… read more

Acrobatic space rovers to explore moons and asteroids

An autonomous system for exploring the solar system's smaller members, such as moons and asteroids, could bring us closer to a human mission to Mars
January 2, 2013

probos surveyer2

Stanford researchers in collaboration with NASA JPL and MIT have designed a robotic platform that involves a mother spacecraft deploying one or several spiked, roughly spherical rovers to the Martian moon Phobos.

Measuring about half a meter wide, each rover would hop, tumble and bound across the cratered, lopsided moon, relaying information about its origins, as well as its soil and other surface materials.

Developed by… read more

Across the Megaverse

January 15, 2006

In Leonard Susskind’s new book, “The Cosmic Landscape,” he says the latest version of string theory (now rechristened M-theory) yields a gargantuan number of models: about 10 to the 500th power — the “megaverse.”

Each potential model, he suggests, corresponds to an actual place –another universe as real as our own.

Susskind eagerly embraces the megaverse interpretation because it offers a way to blow right through the intelligent… read more

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