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Jan 18, 2017

A big nano boost for solar cells

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

Solar cells convert light into electricity. While the sun is one source of light, the burning of natural resources like oil and natural gas can also be harnessed.

However, solar cells do not convert all light to power equally, which has inspired a joint industry-academia effort to develop a potentially game-changing solution.

“Current solar cells are not good at converting visible light to electrical power. The best efficiency is only around 20%,” explains Kyoto University’s Takashi Asano, who uses optical technologies to improve energy production.

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Jan 18, 2017

Explaining how 2-D materials break at the atomic level

Posted by in categories: nanotechnology, physics

Cracks sank the ‘unsinkable’ Titanic; decrease the performance of touchscreens and erode teeth. We are familiar with cracks in big or small three-dimensional (3D) objects, but how do thin two-dimensional (2D) materials crack? 2D materials, like molybdenum disulfide (MoS2), have emerged as an important asset for future electronic and photoelectric devices.

However, the mechanical properties of 2D materials are expected to differ greatly from 3D materials.

Scientists at the Center for Integrated Nanostructure Physics (CINAP), within the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) published, on Nature Communications (“Dynamical observations on the crack tip zone and stress corrosion of two-dimensional MoS2”), the first observation of 2D MoS2 cracking at the atomic level. This study is expected to contribute to the applications of new 2D materials.

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Jan 18, 2017

A toolkit for transformable materials

Posted by in categories: engineering, nanotechnology, robotics/AI

Scientists have now made metamaterials scalable in their purpose and usage.


Metamaterials — materials whose function is determined by structure, not composition — have been designed to bend light and sound, transform from soft to stiff, and even dampen seismic waves from earthquakes. But each of these functions requires a unique mechanical structure, making these materials great for specific tasks, but difficult to implement broadly.

But what if a material could contain within its structure, multiple functions and easily and autonomously switch between them?

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Jan 18, 2017

Toward a ‘smart’ patch that automatically delivers insulin when needed

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health

Treatment for certain diabetes cases involves constant monitoring of blood-glucose levels and daily insulin shots. But scientists are now developing a painless “smart” patch that monitors blood glucose and releases insulin when levels climb too high. The report on the device, which has been tested on mice, appears in the journal ACS Nano.

People with Type 1 diabetes don’t make insulin—a hormone that regulates , or sugar. Those with Type 2 diabetes can’t use insulin effectively. Either way, glucose builds up in the blood, which can lead to a host of health problems, including heart disease, stroke, blindness and amputation of toes, feet or legs. To avoid these outcomes, people with Type 1 or advanced Type 2 diabetes regularly prick their fingers to measure blood-sugar levels, and some patients must inject themselves with insulin when needed. But sometimes, despite a person’s vigilance, can still get out of whack. Zhen Gu and colleagues wanted to come up with a simpler, more effective, shot-free way to manage diabetes.

The researchers developed a skin patch covered in painless microneedles that are loaded with tiny insulin-carrying pouches. The pouches are engineered to break apart rapidly and release the insulin in response to rising glucose levels. Diabetic mice wearing the patch maintained consistent concentrations of insulin in their blood. When these mice received a shot of glucose, their spiked initially, but then fell to normal levels within two hours.

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Jan 18, 2017

DARPA wants to build “Vampire Drones” that turn into gas at sunrise

Posted by in categories: drones, military

Never ceases to amaze me what DARPA is up to these days.


Drones are everywhere these days – from using them to take elaborate selfies to launching missiles at military targets, delivering aid to war torn areas to imaging the deadly environment around lava lakes, they appear to be the multipurpose tool of the moment. Perhaps slightly strangely, then, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) wants drones to vanish into thin air. Specifically, they want drones that are biodegradable, able to fade away after completing their mission.

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Jan 18, 2017

Scanner that can detect brain bleeds to be introduced in New Zealand

Posted by in categories: electronics, neuroscience

Nice.


Rugby teams and ambulance staff are the target for portable brain scanner.

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Jan 18, 2017

Mapping brain in preemies may predict later disability

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

MINNEAPOLIS — Scanning a premature infant’s brain shortly after birth to map the location and volume of lesions, small areas of injury in the brain’s white matter, may help doctors better predict whether the baby will have disabilities later, according to a new study published in the January 18, 2017, online issue of Neurology ®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 10 babies is born prematurely in the United States.

Lack of oxygen to the brain is the most common form of brain injury in premature infants, resulting in damage to the white matter. White matter contains nerve fibers that maintain contact between various parts of the brain. Damage to white matter can interfere with communication in the brain and the signals it sends to other parts of the body.

Continue reading “Mapping brain in preemies may predict later disability” »

Jan 18, 2017

China’s Quantum Communication Satellite Delivered for Use

Posted by in categories: quantum physics, satellites

QC communications (includes networking) is now available in China.

Nice job China; now if the rest of us can catch up.


China’s quantum communication satellite, launched last August, is officially operational after four months of in-orbit testing, the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) said Wednesday.

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Jan 18, 2017

China’s quantum science satellite begins ‘spooky’ and ‘unhackable’ experiments

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, quantum physics, satellites, science

Hope folks are realizing this is happening and now real. Not sure what experiments their doing as they have already been experimenting already on hacking.


The world’s first quantum science and communications satellite has been handed over to Chinese scientists for the official start of experiments to test the phenomena of quantum entanglement and ‘unhackable’ quantum communication.

The Quantum Experiments at Space Scale (QUESS) satellite was launched on August 15 last year and soon after began testing its payloads and space-to-ground links.

Continue reading “China’s quantum science satellite begins ‘spooky’ and ‘unhackable’ experiments” »

Jan 18, 2017

Biological Computing is Getting Closer to Reality

Posted by in categories: biological, computing

My dream is coming true — Biocomputing with QC technology.


University of Maryland exploits redox molecules in E. coli to instruct the bacteria to swim or fluoresce based on electronic stimuli.

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