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May 1, 2013 — Scientists at Princeton University used off-the-shelf printing tools to create a functional ear that can "hear" radio frequencies far beyond the range of normal human capability. The researchers' primary purpose was to explore an efficient and versatile means to merge electronics with tissue. The scientists used 3D printing of cells and nanoparticles followed by cell culture to combine a small coil antenna with cartilage, creating what they term a bionic ear.
Die photo of self-healing PA system showing RF blocks, sensors, actuators and self-healing digital core, and close up photos of output stage transistor before and after laser cutting. Credit: Steven M.Bowers et al. Imagine that the chips in your smart phone or computer could repair and defend themselves on the fly, recovering in microseconds from problems ranging from less-than-ideal battery power to total transistor failure.
Printing three dimensional objects with incredibly fine details is now possible using "two-photon lithography". With this technology, tiny structures on a nanometer scale can be fabricated. Researchers at the Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna) have now made a major breakthrough in speeding up this printing technique: The high-precision-3D-printer at TU Vienna is orders of magnitude faster than similar devices (see video). This opens up completely new areas of application, such as in medicine. The 3D printer uses a liquid resin, which is hardened at precisely the correct spots by a focused laser beam. The focal point of the laser beam is guided through the resin by movable mirrors and leaves behind a polymerized line of solid polymer , just a few hundred nanometers wide.
CONTACT: Caroline Perry , (617) 496-1351 Cambridge, Mass. - September 5, 2012 - A team of experts in mechanics, materials science, and tissue engineering at Harvard have created an extremely stretchy and tough gel that may pave the way to replacing damaged cartilage in human joints. Called a hydrogel, because its main ingredient is water, the new material is a hybrid of two weak gels that combine to create something much stronger.
Nov. 23, 2012 — EU-funded researchers have squeezed radar technology into a low-cost fingernail-sized chip package that promises to lead to a new range of distance and motion sensing applications. The novel device could have important uses in the automotive industry, as well as mobile devices, robotics and other applications. Developed in the 'Silicon-based ultra-compact cost-efficient system design for mm-wave sensors' (Success) project, the device is the most complete silicon-based 'system-on-chip' (SoC) package for radar operating at high frequencies beyond 100 GHz. 'As far as I know, this is the smallest complete radar system in the world,' says Prof.
For the first time, MIT researchers have shown they can genetically engineer viruses to build both the positively and negatively charged ends of a lithium-ion battery. The new virus-produced batteries have the same energy capacity and power performance as state-of-the-art rechargeable batteries being considered to power plug-in hybrid cars, and they could also be used to power a range of personal electronic devices, said Angela Belcher, the MIT materials scientist who led the research team. Angela Belcher holds a display of the virus-built battery she helped engineer. The battery -- the silver-colored disc -- is being used to power an LED.
Mind & Brain :: Features :: August 29, 2012 :: :: Email :: Print The idea that paralyzed people might one day control their limbs just by thinking is no longer a Hollywood-style fantasy By Miguel A. L. Nicolelis Image: Kemp Remillard
15 August 2012 Last updated at 09:21 ET Prof Michael Hoffman shows off his winning design - a solar-powered toilet Bill Gates is, in a manner of speaking, flushing his money down the toilet. His charitable organisation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is looking for future loos that can improve sanitation around the world. At the Reinvent the Toilet fair, hosted at its Seattle campus this week, designs included a lavatory that used microwave energy to turn poo into electricity.
Less than a month after Apple first shipped the iPhone in June 2007, a group called Independent Security Evaluators documented deep security design flaws in the device. Apple’s most embarrassing flub: every iPhone application that Apple had written ran with so-called root privileges, giving each one complete control over the entire phone. Hackers found bugs in those apps that could be used to take over the phone from the inside. Apple didn’t fix the design flaw until January 2008.
14 June 2012 Last updated at 23:01 GMT By Prof Alan Woodward Department of Computing, University of Surrey Many people may be unaware that the US Department of Commerce has the power to decide how the internet works Governance is the establishment and enforcement of norms, rules and decision-making procedures. It is not the "law" as such, but rather a structure by which everyone agrees to abide, which can be captured locally by specific laws.
July 26, 2012 — Researchers trying to herd tiny particles into useful ordered formations have found an unlikely ally: entropy, a tendency generally described as "disorder." Computer simulations by University of Michigan scientists and engineers show that the property can nudge particles to form organized structures. By analyzing the shapes of the particles beforehand, they can even predict what kinds of structures will form. The findings, published in this week's edition of Science, help lay the ground rules for making designer materials with wild capabilities such as shape-shifting skins to camouflage a vehicle or optimize its aerodynamics. Physicist and chemical engineering professor Sharon Glotzer proposes that such materials could be designed by working backward from the desired properties to generate a blueprint.
Where the Metal Meets the Mind A new report from the UK's Royal Society suggest several ways neuroscience can be leveraged to enhance defense technologies--including via weapons that meld with the mind. JanneM via Flickr Soldiers scanning the battlefield for threats may soon get a new tool: a brain-scanning set of binoculars that can pick up on a soldier’s unconscious recognition of a potential threat and bring it to his conscious attention. It’s just one of many ways DARPA and other military research groups are looking to have soldiers mind-meld with their machines and materiel, and as the BBC reports , it demonstrates how remarkably close we are to deploying mind-control on the battlefield.
Did you know that you smile when you’re frustrated? Starting at 1:20 in the video below, witness a behavior that you may find novel – and doubly so because you’re a human being who is exquisitely tuned to reading the emotional expressions of others. By training a feature-detecting algorithm to decompose subjects’ facial expressions into individual “action units,” M. Ehsan Hoque of the MIT Media Lab discovered not only that smiling is quite common when test subjects are frustrated, but also that software is better than humans at differentiating frustration smiles from happiness smiles.
News in Science Monday, 16 April 2012 Darren Osborne ABC Counting on nothing Quantum fluctuations within a vacuum are helping Australian researchers create billions of random numbers. The random number generator, created by Professor Ping Koy Lam, Dr Thomas Symul and Dr Syed Assad from the Australian National University (ANU), uses highly sensitive light detectors to 'listen' to an empty space. Until recently a vacuum was thought to be completely empty. But modern quantum theory now suggests that it is filled with virtual sub-atomic particles spontaneously appearing and disappearing, creating random noise.
Magnetic hard disks will soon be able to store one terabit (a trillion bits) per square inch. Seagate has demonstrated that landmark storage density using a new magnetic recording method that can cram 10 terabits, and perhaps even more, onto every inch of a standard 3.5-inch disk. Disks made with current technology can hold about 3 terabytes. The technology, called heat-assisted magnetic recording, involves heating the magnetic regions on a disk that hold individual data bits, allowing those regions to be made tinier. Seagate says the method promises to keep increasing storage density, and it could lead to 60-terabyte hard drives.