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Archive for the ‘food’ category

Apr 24, 2019

The Aero-X

Posted by in categories: food, transportation

Is our take on the next-generation tandem-duct platform. Flying up to 10 feet off the ground at 45 miles per hour, the Aero-X is a surface-effect craft that rides like a motorcycle — an off road vehicle that gets you off the ground.

The Aero-X can be adapted for a variety of uses: surveying, search and rescue, border patrol, disaster relief, agricultural, ranching, rural transportation and…

Because it responds to your movements just as a motorcycle would, the Aero-X is intuitive to fly. And as it is built with very few moving parts, its cost of ownership is a fraction of even the most basic airplane or helicopter.

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Apr 24, 2019

Researchers dramatically clean up ammonia production and cut costs

Posted by in categories: energy, food

Ammonia—a colorless gas essential for things like fertilizer—can be made by a new process which is far cleaner, easier and cheaper than the current leading method. UTokyo researchers use readily available lab equipment, recyclable chemicals and a minimum of energy to produce ammonia. Their Samarium-Water Ammonia Production (SWAP) process promises to scale down ammonia production and improve access to ammonia fertilizer to farmers everywhere.

In 1900, the was under 2 billion, whereas in 2019, it is over 7 billion. This was fueled in part by rapid advancements in food production, in particular the widespread use of ammonia-based fertilizers. The source of this ammonia was the Haber-Bosch , and though some say it’s one of the most significant achievements of all time, it comes with a heavy price.

The Haber-Bosch process only converts 10 percent of its source material per cycle so needs to run multiple times to use it all up. One of these source materials is hydrogen (H2) produced using fossil fuels. This is chemically combined with nitrogen (N2) at temperatures of about 400–600 degrees Celsius and pressures of about 100–200 atmospheres, also at great energy cost. Professor Yoshiaki Nishibayashi and his team from the University of Tokyo’s Department of Systems Innovation hope to improve the situation with their SWAP process.

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Apr 24, 2019

Creating sustainable bioplastics from electricity-eating microbes

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food, sustainability

Electricity harvested from the sun or wind can be used interchangeably with power from coal or petroleum sources. Or sustainably produced electricity can be turned into something physical and useful. Researchers in Arts & Sciences at Washington University in St. Louis have figured out how to feed electricity to microbes to grow truly green, biodegradable plastic, as reported in the Journal of Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology.

“As our planet grapples with rampant, petroleum-based plastic use and plastic waste, finding sustainable ways to make bioplastics is becoming more and more important. We have to find new solutions,” said Arpita Bose, assistant professor of biology in Arts & Sciences.

Renewable energy currently accounts for about 11% of total U.S. energy consumption and about 17% of electricity generation.

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Apr 23, 2019

Canadian researchers warn of ‘cascading impacts’ as bumblebee species decline

Posted by in categories: existential risks, food

A team of researchers at York University has warned that the American bumblebee is facing imminent extinction from Canada, and this could lead to “cascading impacts” throughout the country.

The imminent extinction classification is considered the highest and most at-risk classification before extinction.

About 42 of the more than 850 species of bees in Canada are bumblebees — important pollinators needed to grow crops, including apples, tomatoes, blueberries and legumes, as well as trees, shrubs and wildflowers.

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Apr 21, 2019

Scientists advance Creation of ‘Artificial Lymph node’ to fight Cancer, other diseases

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, education, engineering, food, genetics

In a proof-of-principle study in mice, scientists at Johns Hopkins Medicine report the creation of a specialized gel that acts like a lymph node to successfully activate and multiply cancer-fighting immune system T-cells. The work puts scientists a step closer, they say, to injecting such artificial lymph nodes into people and sparking T-cells to fight disease.

In the past few years, a wave of discoveries has advanced new techniques to use T-cells – a type of white blood cell – in cancer treatment. To be successful, the cells must be primed, or taught, to spot and react to molecular flags that dot the surfaces of cancer cells. The job of educating T-cells this way typically happens in lymph nodes, small, bean-shaped glands found all over the body that house T-cells. But in patients with cancer and immune system disorders, that learning process is faulty, or doesn’t happen.

To address such defects, current T-cell booster therapy requires physicians to remove T-cells from the blood of a patient with cancer and inject the cells back into the patient after either genetically engineering or activating the cells in a laboratory so they recognize cancer-linked molecular flags.

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Apr 21, 2019

We’ll be eating the first Crispr’d foods within 5 years, according to a geneticist who helped invent the blockbuster gene-editing tool

Posted by in categories: food, genetics

A UC Berkeley geneticist who helped invent the gene-editing tool Crispr told Business Insider its most profound impacts will be on agriculture.

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Apr 20, 2019

Self-balancing strainer prevents food from spilling into the sink

Posted by in category: food

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Apr 18, 2019

This Common Yard Weed is an Anti-Cancer Powerhouse

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, food

Dandelion root is a super nutritious food that fights cancer. You’ll never look at this weed the same way again!

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Apr 18, 2019

Scientists Freeze Atoms to Near Absolute Zero

Posted by in categories: food, particle physics, quantum physics

:oo.


We usually think of microwaves as waves that heat things up, usually leftover food, but did you know that they can also cool things down? For example, physicists recently decided to use them to freeze atoms, and attempts have been very successful: They managed to cool them down to within a millionth of a degree of absolute zero (–273.15°C or −459.67°F).

The University of Sussex team, led by Winifried Hensinger, had their results published in Physical Review Letters.

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Apr 17, 2019

Rega air rescue drone can autonomously search for missing persons

Posted by in categories: drones, food, robotics/AI

We’ve seen autonomous aircraft doing everything from spraying crops to surveying wildlife, and now the Swiss air rescue organization Rega has announced a drone that’s capable of searching for and finding missing people all on its own.

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