science + technology news

3-D scaffold provides clean, biodegradable structure for stem cell growth

February 2, 2010

University of Washington researchers have built a three-dimensional scaffold out of a natural material, chitosan, that mimics the binding sites for stem cells and allowing the cells to reproduce on a clean, biodegradable structure.

Growing the cells in three dimensions better resembles conditions in the human body. It also allows for mass production, which will be needed for any clinical applications.

3-D Software Gives Doctors, Students a View Inside the Body

November 30, 2009

Software that converts 2-D data from CT and MRI scans into detailed 3-D images that can be used to plan a surgery or teach a lesson in anatomy has been developed by Iowa State University engineers.

3-D Space as New Frontier

October 4, 2000

Steve Kash is living in his own little world, but guests are welcome to drop in for a chat. Flyby’s Hangar is the three-dimensional structure Mr. Kash calls home on the World Wide Web. Visitors can circle the music room, then scoot up a set of stairs and take an elevator to the roof garden, where a brook burbles loudly.

Mr. Kash’s walls are bare. A Guggenheim curator, Matthew Drutt, on the other hand, has nothing but art in the Guggenheim Virtual Museum, a three-dimensional gallery that is expected to open to the Webgoing public before the year ends. Mr. Drutt declined to describe the museum’s vertical surfaces as walls, though. “I think more in terms of skins,” he said, “because the art is visible from the outside as… read more

3-D Viewing without Goofy Glasses

June 12, 2008
Artist rendition of WOWvx 3-D screens (Phillips)

Philips’ WOWvx displays–which allow viewers to perceive high-quality 3-D images without the need for special glasses–are now beginning to appear in shopping malls, movie-theater lobbies, and theme parks worldwide.

The technology uses image-processing software, plus display hardware that includes sheets of tiny lenses atop LCD screens. The lenses project slightly different images to viewers’ left and right eyes, which the brain translates into a perception of depth.

3-D Without the Glasses

June 11, 2010


A new type of lens developed by Microsoft researchers makes it possible to to show different images to different viewers, or to create a stereoscopic (3-D) effect by presenting different images to a person’s left and right eye.

3-D, and Ditch the Glasses

April 19, 2002

A number of 3-D displays currently being developed “open up a whole new world for medicine, science and other professions that rely on complex visualizations” as well as video games.

For example, the autostereoscopic display currently under development at NYU eliminates the need for glasses, can be seen from a variety of viewing angles, and allows users to see a unique picture depending on where they sit.

3-D-printed robot is hard inside, soft outside, and capable of jumping without hurting itself

July 10, 2015

Robot nine layers rigid to flexible-ft

Engineers at Harvard University and the University of California, San Diego, have created the first robot with a 3D-printed body that transitions from a rigid core to a soft exterior. The robot is capable of more than 30 untethered jumps at a time and is powered by a mix of butane and oxygen.

The researchers describe the robot’s design, manufacturing and testing in the July… read more

3-D-printed ‘soft’ robotic tentacle with new level of octopus agility

October 19, 2015


Cornell University engineers have developed a process for 3D-printing a soft robotic tentacle that mimics the complex movements and degree of freedom of an octopus tentacle.

The tentacle achieves its dexterity through a 3-dimensional arrangement of muscles in three mutually perpendicular directions (longitudinal, transverse and helical). The process uses an elastomeric (both elastic and flows) material combined with a low-cost, reliable, and simple method for… read more

3-D-printed structures that ‘remember’ their shapes

Heat-responsive shape-memory materials may aid in controlled drug delivery and solar panel tracking, for example
August 29, 2016

In this series, a 3-D printed multimaterial shape-memory minigripper, consisting of shape-memory hinges and adaptive touching tips, grasps a cap screw. (credit: Photo courtesy of Qi (Kevin) Ge)

Engineers from MIT and Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) are 3D-printing structures based on shape-memory polymers that “remember” and spring back to their original shapes when heated to a certain temperature “sweet spot” — even after being stretched, twisted, and bent at extreme angles.

That makes them useful for applications ranging from soft actuators that turn solar panels toward the sun to tiny drug capsules… read more

3-telescope interferometry allows astrophysicists to observe how black holes are fueled

May 18, 2012

This is an artist's view of a dust torus surrounding the accretion disk and the central black hole in active galactic nuclei (credit: NASA E/PO - Sonoma State University, Aurore Simonnet (

By combining the light of three powerful infrared telescopes, an international research team has observed the active accretion phase of a supermassive black hole in the center of a galaxy tens of millions of light years away, yielding an unprecedented amount of data for such observations.

The resolution at which they were able to observe this highly luminescent active galactic nucleus (AGN) has given them direct confirmation of how… read more

30-year robot project pitched

August 21, 2003

Japanese researchers in robot technology are advocating a grand project, under which the government would spend 50 billion yen a year over three decades to develop a humanoid robot with the mental, physical and emotional capacity of a 5-year-old human.

33 blood-cancer patients have dramatic clinical remission with new T-cell therapy

June 7, 2017

Killer T-cells surround a cancer cell (credit: NIH)

Chinese doctors have reported success with a new type of immunotherapy for multiple myeloma*, a blood cancer: 33 out of 35 patients in a clinical trial had clinical remission within two months.

The researchers used a type of T cell called “chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T.”** In a phase I clinical trial in China, the patient’s own T cells were collected, genetically reprogrammed in a lab, and injected back into the patient. The reprogramming involved inserting an artificially designed gene… read more

35 hours of video per minute uploaded to YouTube

November 12, 2010

(YouTube blog)

More than 35 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube per minute, or 50,400 hours uploaded every day — the equivalent of more than 176,000 full-length Hollywood releases every week.

Here are some of the factors contributing to the growth:

  • The time limit for videos uploaded by users increased by 50% from 10 to 15 minutes.
  • The upload file size increased over the last few

read more

3D acoustic cloaking device makes objects undetectable with sound

March 13, 2014

A close up view of the 3D acoustic cloak. The geometry of the plastic sheets and placement of the holes interacts with sound waves to make it appear as if it isn’t there. (Credit: Duke University)

Using a few perforated sheets of plastic and extensive computation, Duke University engineers have demonstrated the world’s first three-dimensional acoustic cloak.

The new device reroutes sound waves to create the impression that both the cloak and anything beneath it are not there.

The acoustic cloaking device works in three dimensions, no matter which direction the sound is coming from or where the observer is located, and holds potential… read more

3D art for all: Ready to print

May 16, 2011

Makerbot, a leading company in the field of 3D printing that has sold over 4,500 machines, has been putting the ability to manufacture custom plastic “prints” in the hands of anyone with $1,300 to buy one of their machines. The technology, called “3D printing” or “rapid prototyping,” has existed for years, but is only recently gaining a foothold among everyday tinkerers.

3rd Ward, an arts and design collective in… read more

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