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An affordable point-and-shoot 3D scanner

Combines high-resolution 3D modeling and accurate color capture for 3D printing
August 9, 2013

fuel3d

Fuel3D Inc. has announced a Kickstarter campaign to fund the Fuel3D scanner,  an affordable handheld 3D scanner that delivers high resolution shape and color capture for a range of 3D modeling applications, such as 3D printing, 3D art, and 3D game development.

Pledgers will be able to access the first production units for less than $1,000. Today, a buyer could expect to pay… read more

Robot uses steerable needles to treat brain clots

August 9, 2013

steerable_needle_robot

Vanderbilt University researchers are developing an image-guided robotic surgical system to remove blood clots in the brain.

It uses steerable needles about the size of those used for biopsies to penetrate the brain with minimal damage and suction away the blood clot that has formed.

The odds of a person getting an intracerebral hemorrhage are one in 50 over his or her lifetime. When… read more

Self-healing solar cells mimic leaves

August 9, 2013

Prototype biomimetic electronic-leaf photovoltaic device. Scale bar: 1 cm.

Solar cells based on organic systems have the potential to become less expensive and more environmentally friendly than silicon-based solar cells, the current industry standard. But the sun’s ultraviolet rays deteriorate  their performance.

Now North Carolina State University researchers Orlin Velev and Hyung-Jun Koo have designed solar-cell devices with channels that were inspired by the branching vascular channels that circulate life-sustaining nutrients in leaves and… read more

IBM Research creates new foundation to program SyNAPSE chips

Could enable a new generation of intelligent sensor networks that mimic the brain’s abilities for perception, action, and cognition
August 8, 2013

ibm_synaptic_corelets

Scientists from IBM unveiled on Aug. 8 a breakthrough software ecosystem designed for programming silicon chips that have an architecture inspired by the function, low power, and compact volume of the brain.

The technology could enable a new generation of intelligent sensor networks that mimic the brain’s abilities for perception, action, and cognition.

Dramatically different from traditional software, IBM’s new programming modelread more

Chocolate may help keep brain healthy

August 8, 2013

(Credit: iStockphoto)

Drinking two cups of hot chocolate a day may help older people keep their brains healthy and their thinking skills sharp, according to a study published in the August 7, 2013, issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

The study involved 60 people with an average age of 73 who did not have dementia. The participants drank two cups of… read more

Mapping the connections among 950 neurons in the retina

Wiring diagram of retinal neurons is first step toward mapping the human brain
August 8, 2013

neural_connections_eye

MIT neuroscientist Sebastian Seung wants to map the networks connecting the 100 billion neurons in the human brain,those networks, creating a wiring diagram of the brain that could help scientists learn how we each become our unique selves.

In a paper appearing in the Aug. 7 edition of Nature, Seung and collaborators at MIT and the Max Planck Institute for Medical Research in Germany have… read more

Real-time MRI-guided gene therapy for brain cancer

Phase 1 trial being developed
August 8, 2013

Dr. Chen can see the brain tumor light up with the therapeutic virus (credit: Chen et al./UC San Diego)

Neurosurgeons at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center are among the first in the world to use real-time magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) guidance for delivery of gene therapy as a potential treatment for brain tumors.

Using MRI navigational technology, neurosurgeons can inject Toca 511 (vocimagene amiretrorepvec), a novel investigational gene therapy, directly into… read more

Software upgrades to bionic eye enable color recognition, improve resolution, image focus, zooming

August 7, 2013

argus_implant

The first bionic eye to be approved for patients in the U.S. is getting software upgrades.

As KurzweilAI has reported, the FDA-approved Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System from Second Sight Medical Products transmits images from a small, eye-glass-mounted camera wirelessly to a microelectrode array implanted on a patient’s damaged retina.

The array sends electrical signals via the optic nerve, and the brain interprets a visual image.… read more

How to measure and control the temperature inside living cells

August 7, 2013

Artist’s concept of researchers heating gold nanoparticles inside of a cell with a laser and monitoring diamond sensors to measure temperature. This image is not to scale. Credit: Steven H. Lee (graphiko.com)

A team of researchers working on DARPA’s Quantum-Assisted Sensing and Readout (QuASAR) program recently demonstrated sub-degree temperature measurement and control at the nanometer scale inside living cells. The QuASAR team is led by researchers from Harvard University.

The technology might open the door to a number of defense and medical applications: better thermal management of electronics, monitoring the structural integrity of high-performance materials, cell-specific treatment… read more

An infallible quantum measurement?

August 7, 2013

certified_entangled_en_400x306

Physicists in Innsbruck and Geneva have developed a new reliable method to verify entanglement in the laboratory, using a minimal number of assumptions about the system and measuring devices.

Many quantum technologies require entanglement, so experimental physicists often need to verify entanglement in their systems. “

Two years ago, we managed to verify entanglement between up to 14 ions,” explains Thomas Monz, who works in the… read more

3D IR images now in full color

August 7, 2013

Spectro-microtomographic images of a human hair show absorptions of protein (red) and phospholipid (blue-green). Center, the medulla is observed to have little protein. Bottom, the medulla has higher concentrations of phospholipids.

Researchers have created a non-destructive 3D imaging technique that provides molecular-level chemical information of unprecedented detail on biological and other specimens with no need to stain or alter the specimen.

Developed by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM), the technique combines Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy with computed tomography (CT-scans).

“The… read more

Depth perception through a single lens

Mathematical image processing creates a 3D movie of any scene, using just two frames from a stationary camera or microscope
August 7, 2013

Schematic of the light field parameterization used. θX and θY are defined by the projections of a ray onto the xz and yz planes, respectively. (Credit: Antony Orth/Optics Letters)

Researchers at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have developed a way for photographers and microscopists to create a 3D image through a single lens, without moving the camera.

Published in the journal Optics Letters, this improbable-sounding technology relies only on computation and mathematics — no unusual hardware or fancy lenses. The effect is the equivalent of attempting to see a stereo image with one eye… read more

A ‘molecule scanner’ — world’s smallest teraHertz detector

August 7, 2013

Experimental setup to demonstrate the feasibility of generating THz field at nanoscale. A nanojunction, consisting of a ∼10 nm wide nanowire with a<br />
∼10 nm insulating barrier, is fabricated a<br />
interface with c-AFM lithography. Ultrafast (∼30 fs) optical pulses from a Ti:Sapphire laser are divided into “pump” and “probe” beams by a Mach−Zehnder interferometer.

Molecules could soon be “scanned” in a fashion similar to imaging screenings at airports, thanks to a detector developed by University of Pittsburgh physicists.

The detector may have the ability to chemically identify single molecules using terahertz radiation — a range of light far lower in frequency (0.1 to 30 THz) than visible light but higher than microwaves.

Terahertz radiation is commonly used in airport scanners.… read more

World’s first lab-grown burger is eaten in London

August 6, 2013

World's first lab-grown burger (credit: BBC)

The world’s first lab-grown burger was cooked and eaten at a news conference in London, BBC News reports.

Scientists took stem cells from a cow and, at an institute in the Netherlands, turned them into strips of muscle that they combined to make a patty.

One food expert said it was “close to meat, but not that juicy” and another said it tasted like a real… read more

Hive-mind solves tasks using Google Glass ant game

August 6, 2013

swarmgoogleglassgame

Daniel Estrada of the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and Jonathan Lawhead of Columbia University in New York are seeking to bring crowdsourcing to Google Glass, New Scientist reports.

The pair have designed a game called Swarm! that puts a Glass wearer in the role of an ant in a colony.

Similar to the pheromone trails laid down by ants,… read more

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