Other Tech 

NEW SOLID OXIDE FUEL CELL TECHNOLOGY

Scientists are tirelessly working on sources of alternative energy so that we can have a better substitute for fossil fuels in near future. We know that sunlight, wind and geothermal sources of energy are better for everyone. But they also need efficient fuel cells for better utilization of power. Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) seem promising enough for both stationary and mobile applications. Stationary use can cover residential applications to power plants. Mobile applications contain energy for ships at sea and in space, as well as for automobiles. Another advantage of the…

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Other Tech 

3 Implications of Memory-Boosting Devices

In fall, DARPA announced a major success in its Restoring Active Memory (RAM) program. Researchers implanted targeted electrical arrays in the brains of a few dozen volunteers — specifically in brain areas involved in memory. The researchers found a way to read out neural “key codes” associated with specific memories, and then fed those codes back into the volunteers’ brains as they tried to recall lists of items or directions to places. While the results are still preliminary, DARPA claims that the RAM technique has already achieved “promising results” in improving memory…

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IT 

Tiny ‘Atomic Memory’ Device Could Store All Books Ever Written

A new “atomic memory” device that encodes data atom by atom can store hundreds of times more data than current hard disks can, a new study finds. “You would need just the area of a postage stamp to write out all books ever written,” said study senior author Sander Otte, a physicist at the Delft University of Technology’s Kavli Institute of Nanoscience in the Netherlands. In fact, the researchers estimated that if they created a cube 100 microns wide — about the same diameter as the average human hair —…

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IT 

SOCIETY’S TOUGHEST REALITIES GO VIRTUAL: EXPLORING ACTIVISM THROUGH VR AT TRIBECA 2016

Virtual reality is creating new opportunities across the media landscape, not only for film directors but also journalists, activists, and multimedia artists. Its creators are often all three—they’re ambitious storytellers who aren’t afraid to cross media borders and test the possibilities of the latest technologies. For its Storyscapes competition and Virtual Arcade, the Tribeca Film Festival will return to the Tribeca Festival Hub, a multimedia destination where the public can experience the newest experiments in digital creation and the vast potential for immersive media experiences. Four of the projects included in this year’s innovative…

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Other Tech 

Miniature fuel cell to keep drones aloft for over an hour and phones charged for a week

Drones are being utilized in everything from parcel delivery to search and rescue, but their limited flight times are restricting their ability to travel great distances or stay for extended periods of time in the field. Simply adding more batteries, however, affects flight characteristics and reduces the load the drone can carry. To help solve this problem, researchers at the Pohang University of Science and Technology (Postech) have created a miniature fuel cell they claim not only provides enough energy to keep a drone in the sky for over an hour, but may…

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Medical Tech 

New nanoscale technologies could revolutionize microscopes, study of disease

Research completed through a collaboration with University of Missouri engineers, biologists, and chemists could transform how scientists study molecules and cells at sub-microscopic (nanoscale) levels. Shubra Gangopadhyay, an electrical and computer engineer and her team at MU recently published studies outlining a new, relatively inexpensive imaging platform that enables single molecule imaging. This patented method highlights Gangopadhyay’s more than 30 years of nanoscale research that has proven invaluable in biological research and battling diseases. “Usually, scientists have to use very expensive microscopes to image at the sub-microscopic level,” said Gangopadhyay,…

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Other Tech 

How Trucks Can Make Delivery Drones a Reality

Delivery drones may still seem a ways off because of new U.S. commercial drone regulations requiring drones to stay within sight of their human operators on the ground. But such rules pose no problem for a U.S. startup that developed a drone capable of launching from delivery trucks and dropping off packages within the driver’s line of sight. The HorseFly drone developed by Workhorse Group, an electric vehicle company in Cincinnati, Ohio, is an octocopter designed to ride aboard a delivery truck. Once it gets a delivery mission, the drone can take off through the truck’s roof with a…

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Medical Tech 

Nanorobots wade through blood to deliver drugs

Nanorobots hold great potential in the field of medicine. This is largely due to the possibility of highly-targeted delivery of medical payloads, an outcome that could lessen side effects and negate the need for invasive procedures. But how these microscopic particles can best navigate the body’s fluids is a huge area of focus for scientists. Researchers are now reporting a new technique whereby nanorobots are made to swim swiftly through the fluids like blood to reach their destination. Though still an emerging field of science, nanoparticles are gaining something of…

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Medical Tech 

New metamaterial manipulates sound to improve acoustic imaging

Researchers from North Carolina State University and Duke University have developed a metamaterial made of paper and aluminum that can manipulate acoustic waves to more than double the resolution of acoustic imaging, focus acoustic waves, and control the angles at which sound passes through the metamaterial. Acoustic imaging tools are used in both medical diagnostics and in testing the structural integrity of everything from airplanes to bridges.   “This metamaterial is something that we’ve known is theoretically possible, but no one had actually made it before,” says Yun Jing, an…

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IT 

Nvidia’s eye-tracking system blurs the lines for more immersive VR environments

The human eye can only focus on one surprisingly small area at a time, while our peripheral vision gives us the general gist of what else is nearby. That means a lot of processing power that goes into fully rendering virtual reality environments in focus is wasted when you’re only really taking in a small area of the screen at any given time. Nvidia has developed a rendering technique that allows that wasted processing power to be redirected to allow developers to create more immersive VR environments. The technique, called…

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