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‘Unzipped’ carbon nanotubes could help energize fuel cells and batteries, Stanford scientists say

May 29, 2012

damaged_outer_wall_nanotube

Multi-walled carbon nanotubes riddled with defects and impurities on the outside could replace some of the expensive platinum catalysts used in fuel cells and metal-air batteries, according to scientists at Stanford University.

“Platinum is very expensive and thus impractical for large-scale commercialization,” said Hongjie Dai, a professor of chemistry at Stanford and co-author of the study. “Developing a low-cost alternative has been a… read more

Universe’s dark matter mix is ‘just right’ for life

December 5, 2008

University of California, Berkeley scientist Ben Freivogel combined the cosmological models of large-scale structure formation with the physics of dark-matter axions to predict the most likely value for the ratio of dark matter to normal matter that would allow observers like us to emerge, assuming that the number of observers in a universe is proportional to the number of galaxies within it.

Supporting the antropic principle, his calculations show… read more

Bendable Memory Made from Nanowire Transistors

October 20, 2010

Nanowire transistors ( Junginn Sohn, Cambridge Nanoscience Center)

University of Cambridge researchers have made a new kind of flexible, nonvolatile nanoscale memory component that could someday be used to pack more data into gadgets.

The device stores bits of information using the conductance of nanoscale transistors made from zinc oxide. The new memory cannot hold data for as long as flash, and it is slower and has fewer rewrite cycles, but it could potentially be made smaller and… read more

‘Junk’ DNA now looks like powerful regulator

April 25, 2007

Large swaths of garbled human DNA once dismissed as junk appear to contain some valuable sections, according to a new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and the University of California-Santa Cruz.

The scientists propose that this redeemed DNA plays a role in controlling when genes turn on and off.

It turns out that most of the segments described in the research paper cluster… read more

More-Accurate Video Search

June 13, 2007

EveryZing has launched a search engine that it hopes will change the way that people search for audio and video online. Formerly known as PodZinger, a podcast search engine, EveryZing is leveraging speech systems developed by technology company BBN that can convert spoken words into searchable text with about 80 percent accuracy.

Study: Chip-Tools Spending To Double

July 13, 2004

The semiconductor-tools industry is poised for dramatic growth in 2004, according to a new report from research firm Gartner. Demand is being driven by a seemingly insatiable consumer appetite for electronics devices, such as cell phones.

Worldwide semiconductor capital spending is on pace to reach US$44.8 billion this year, growing 50.9 percent from 2003, according to Gartner. Capital equipment spending is forecast to grow 63.5 percent in 2004.… read more

Inventor builds She-3PO robo

December 11, 2008

Inventor Le Trung from Ontario, Canada, has built his dream girl, Aiko, who reads headlines, recognizes faces and speaks 13,000 sentences.

Once perfected, he hopes to sell Aiko clones for use as home helpers.

The Next Human Genome Project: Our Microbes

May 2, 2007

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is now considering a project, dubbed the human microbiome, to sequence the microorganisms that inhabit our bodies.

The project could reveal whether different organisms are correlated with different health states, and could ultimately become a routine part of medical exams, perhaps used to diagnose different diseases.

Nanospheres leave cancer no place to hide

June 21, 2007

Gold-coated silica nanospheres can reveal the location of tumors and then destroy them minutes later in a burst of heat.

Using these particles to detect and destroy tumors could speed up cancer treatment, reduce the use of potentially toxic drugs, and make treatment cheaper.

MRI technique reveals genes’ roles in learning and memory

Viewing brain activity at the molecule level
March 26, 2014

mri_contrast_protein

MIT bioengineers have adapted MRI to visualize gene activity inside the brains of living animals.

Tracking these genes with MRI would enable scientists to learn more about how the genes control processes such as forming memories and learning new skills, says Alan Jasanoff, an MIT associate professor of biological engineering and leader of the research team.

“The dream of molecular imaging is to provide… read more

Handheld Computer-Phone Is Here

July 27, 2004

T-Mobile USA and Hewlett-Packard will introduce the first-ever handheld computer that also works as a cell phone and can tap into the Internet using high-speed wireless hot spots next month.

British Scientist Warns We Must Protect The Vulnerable From Robots

December 22, 2008

Professor Noel Sharkey of the University of Sheffield has called for international guidelines to be set for the ethical and safe application of robots.

For example, “because of the physical safety that robot minders provide, children could be left without human contact for many hours a day or perhaps for several days, and the possible psychological impact of the varying degrees of social isolation on development is unknown,” he… read more

Color Comes to E Ink Screens

November 8, 2010

hanvon

On Tuesday at the FPD International 2010 trade show in Tokyo, Hanvon, a Chinese company, will announce that it will be the first to sell a color display using technology from E Ink, whose black-and-white displays are used in 90 percent of the world’s e-readers.

The new color E Ink display  is not as sharp and colorful as LCD, and cannot handle full-motion video.

Hanvon’s first product… read more

Scientists look high in the sky for power

May 10, 2007

Scientists are eyeing the jet stream, an energy source that rages night and day, 365 days a year, just a few miles above our heads. If they can tap into its fierce winds, the world’s entire electrical needs could be met, they say.

Dozens of researchers in California and around the world believe huge kite-like wind-power generators could be the solution.

Micro-generator feeds on good vibrations

July 5, 2007

A sugar-cube-sized electric generator that feeds on environmental vibrations has been developed.

It could power swarms of wireless sensors, devices attached to bridges and buildings, or even medical implants.

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