Medical Tech 

Nanoparticle lung vaccine protects against HIV, herpes

Scientists have created a type of nanoparticle that they say can effectively deliver vaccines to the lungs, protecting against numerous infectious diseases. This is according to a study published in Science Translational Medicine. Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) say the nanoparticle vaccine could help protect againstinfluenza and other respiratory diseases, as well as prevent sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV, human papilloma virus and herpes simplex virus. The scientists note that many viruses and bacteria infect humans through mucosal surfaces, such as those in the lungs. Therefore, they wanted to develop vaccines that are…

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Transport Tech 

Japan’s Seven Stars cruise train offers luxury on the rails

The Japanese regional railway JR Kyushu has become the first company in Japan to build a luxury sleeper cruise train, spending close to 3 billion yen (US$29.9 million). The Seven Stars cruise train comes equipped with the latest motion control technology, 14 luxury guest rooms, two deluxe suites, three presidential suites, a lounge car, dining car and bar. “The idea for a cruise train came from our company president, Mr. Koji Karaike,” Simon Metcalfe from JR Kyushu tells Gizmag. “It was something that he had dreamed of doing since he…

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Transport Tech 

New Vehicle Technology Reinvents Our Wheels

Take a summer road trip into the future of driving: You can hop on an electric scooter designed for the modern urban jungle or get behind the wheel of a car that’s more connected than your LinkedIn profile. Want more? How about a super-posh hybrid and zero-emission fuel that’s a real waste. Young urbanites are clamoring for a greener transportation option. India-based company Mahindra has heard their cries. The GenZe utility cycle’s zero-emissions electric motor doesn’t need tune-ups or oil changes, and its larger, 16-inch front tire offers extra stability…

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Medical Tech 

Designing ultrasound tools with Lego-like proteins

Ultrasound imaging is used around the world to help visualize developing babies and diagnose diseases. Sound waves bounce off the tissues, revealing their different densities and shapes. The next step in ultrasound technology is to image not just anatomy, but specific cells and molecules deeper in the body, such as those associated with tumors or bacteria in our gut.   A new study from Caltech outlines how protein engineering techniques might help achieve this milestone. The researchers engineered protein-shelled nanostructures called gas vesicles — which reflect sound waves — to…

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Other Tech 

Insect-Inspired Eyes Give Sight to Mini Drones

Buzzing may not be the only thing drones have in common with insects. Tiny drones of the future might “see” their world with tiny, artificial sensors inspired by flying insects’ compound eyes. The experimental sensors are small and light enough to fit on the tiniest drones, which could give them the ability to sense and avoid collisions in cluttered spaces. Smaller and Smaller Like most other gadgets, scientists are looking to make drones smaller and smaller for a number of reasons. For one, a tiny drone is far stealthier and…

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Other Tech 

Blink controlled camera provides recipe for awkward moments

As we move to document every single waking minute of our lives, there’s a real risk of missing the perfect shot of that dog/latte/kid/sunset in the time it takes to reach our phones. Blincam is designed to remove that awkward fumbling from mobile photography, instead allowing users to capture photos by winking or blinking. Based in Tokyo, the company behind Blincam say it’s designed to help capture images when you otherwise might have missed them because your hands were full, or didn’t have your smartphone camera at the ready. Having…

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Transport Tech 

USDOT reports to US Congress on DSRC for connected vehicles

The US Department of Transportation (USDOT) has released its report to the United States Congress assessing the status of dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) for connected vehicle technologies. The findings are that they are ready for deployment. DSRC is a Wi-Fi derivative developed to meet the specialized needs for secure and low-latency wireless connections in data communications. It is poised to be the standard for communicating between operating vehicles (moving or not), infrastructure, and mobile devices. The USDOT has been assessing the feasibility of the 5.9 Gigahertz broadcast frequency for short-range communications between…

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Other Tech 

New Gorilla Glass Smartphone Screens Promise To Be Stronger Than Ever

Imagine this: It’s late, you’re tired. You reach for your phone in your pocket. You go to grab it and before you realize it, your grip has loosened and your precious cargo is on the ground ― facedown. That next moment, before you turn it over to assess the damage, is terrifying. Is it shattered? Have I broken it? Have I just ruined everything? Well, the glassmaker behind Gorilla Glass is about to make those moments a lot less scary. Corning, the company behind the chemically strengthened glass known as Gorilla Glass that’s…

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Other Tech 

Boeing unveils game-changing autonomous submarine

When you hear the name “Boeing,” chances are you think of aircraft. The fact is, however, the company has also been developing underwater vehicles since the 1960s. Its latest such creation, the Echo Voyager, is designed to operate autonomously for months at a time. The 51-foot (15.5-m)-long Voyager joins two other Boeing unmanned undersea vehicles, or UUVs: the 32-ft (9.8-m) Echo Seeker and the 18-ft (5.5-m) Echo Ranger. Like them, it’s designed to autonomously gather data underwater for scientific, military or other purposes. Unlike them, though, it’s not limited to missions lasting no…

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IT 

Computer scientists find way to make all that glitters more realistic in computer graphics

Iron Man’s suit. Captain America’s shield. The Batmobile. These all could look a lot more realistic thanks to a new algorithm developed by a team of U.S. computer graphics experts. The researchers, led by Professor Ravi Ramamoorthi at the University of California San Diego, have created a method to improve how computer graphics software reproduces the way light interacts with extremely small details, called glints, on the surface of a wide range of materials, including metallic car paints, metal finishes for electronics and injection-molded plastic finishes. The method developed by…

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