Archive for the ‘innovation’ category

Feb 18, 2019

‘Killer’ cells raise hope of universal flu vaccine

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, innovation

Scientists said Monday they had discovered immune cells that can fight all known flu viruses in what was hailed as an “extraordinary breakthrough” that could lead to a universal, one-shot vaccine against the killer disease.

Influenza epidemics, largely seasonal, kill hundreds of thousands of people each year, according to the World Health Organization.

Due to its mutating strains, vaccine formulas must be regularly updated and only offer limited protection currently.

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Feb 15, 2019

Combine AI With Crowdsourcing and What Do You Get? Turbocharged Innovation

Posted by in categories: innovation, robotics/AI

A great analogy can often be the key to innovation, making it possible to transfer knowledge from one domain to another. Now researchers have shown that rather than relying on eureka moments, crowdsourcing and AI can dramatically speed up the search for these parallels.

Examples of analogies leading to major breakthroughs range from Edison’s early work in motion pictures to Kepler’s elucidation of the laws of planetary motion. But being able to strip away superficial differences and understand the underlying similarities between solutions to diverse problems has so far largely relied on individual genius.

That doesn’t need to be the case, though, according to the authors of a recent paper in PNAS. By splitting the task up and leveraging the strengths of both crowdsourcing and AI, they were able to find novel analogies that could help solve a variety of problems in creative ways.

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Feb 13, 2019

The “Impossible” Tech Behind SpaceX’s New Engine

Posted by in categories: innovation, space travel

The recent SpaceX Raptor engine was actually a real breakthrough. It was a holy grail desired by NASA and the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union almost had it, but when we landed on the Moon they stopped development. The engine is a “full-flow staged combustion” engine.

“Full-flow staged combustion (FFSC) is a twin-shaft staged combustion cycle that uses both oxidizer-rich and fuel-rich preburners. The cycle allows full flow of both propellants through the turbines; hence the name The fuel turbopump is driven by the fuel-rich preburner, and the oxidizer turbopump is driven by the oxidizer-rich preburner”

Followers of the Church of Elon will no doubt already be aware of SpaceX’s latest technical triumph: the test firing of the first full-scale Raptor engine. Of course, it was hardly a secret. As he often does, Elon has been “leaking” behind the scenes information, pictures, and even video of the event on his Twitter account. Combined with the relative transparency of SpaceX to begin with, this gives us an exceptionally clear look at how literal rocket science is performed at the Hawthorne, California based company.

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Feb 7, 2019

‘The breakthrough of the 21st century as far as I’m concerned’

Posted by in categories: innovation, robotics/AI

For most of us, receiving junk mail is an annoyance. For Sydney woman Lisa Hayes, it’s a thrill.

She was born completely blind and has never known what it’s like to scan through the items in unsolicited catalogues that get stuffed into her letter box. That was until last September when she received a small device that clips onto a pair of glasses and uses sophisticated artificial intelligence technology to recognise faces and read text for her.

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Feb 6, 2019

Scientists have discovered a way to destroy cancer tumors using nothing but sound waves

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, innovation

(Natural News) A recent breakthrough in high-intensity focused ultrasound therapy (HIFU) technology has proven its use as an effective cancer treatment. A multi-institutional research team from China developed a semi-enclosed, spherical cavity transducer that can produce a focused, standing-wave field with a subwavelength-scale focal region and extremely high ultrasound intensity. The spherical cavity transducer appeared to generate tighter focal regions and greater pressure amplitude compared with the traditional concave spherical transducer. Researchers said the level of intensity generated by the new transducer design may lead to significant improvements in HIFU therapy. The findings were published in the Journal of Applied Physics.

HIFU is a non-invasive, targeted treatment that makes use of sound waves to eradicate cancer cells. HIFU uses an ultrasonic transducer to convert electrical signals into sound waves, then concentrates ultrasound into a small focal region to raise the temperature to more than 65 decrees Celsius, thereby killing cancer cells in the process without inducing damage to surrounding tissues. The technique works in the same manner as focusing sunlight through a lens, which helps eliminate the disease-causing cells.

HIFU can be used as an alternative to traditional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and surgery.

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Feb 6, 2019

Laser that COOLS water is invented for the first time

Posted by in categories: entertainment, innovation

Circa 2015

Researchers have used an infrared laser to cool water by about 2°C (36°F) — a major breakthrough in the field. As they are cooled by the laser, the nanocrystals developed by the University of Washington team emit a reddish-green ‘glow’ (shown) that can be seen by the naked eye.

‘Typically, when you go to the movies and see Star Wars laser blasters, they heat things up’, senior author and assistant professor of materials science and engineering at the University of Washington Peter Pauzauskie explained.

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Feb 6, 2019

New malaria vaccine may be more effective

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, innovation

New York: Researchers say they have developed an innovative new system for delivering a malaria vaccine that shows promise in its effectiveness. By developing a vaccine that targets specific cells in the immune system, researchers from the University of Chicago in the US saw a much greater immune and antibody response to the vaccine.

Though a vaccine for malaria exists, it is only effective in 30 to 50 per cent of patients, and malaria is still responsible for nearly 500,000 deaths annually, according to the US Centers for Disease Control. “When compared to the current malaria vaccine option, our results are extremely exciting,” said Jeffrey Hubbell, a professor at the University of Chicago.

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Feb 5, 2019

From medical breakthroughs to clinical research to awards and achievements, our Annual Report showcases a selection of our most inspirational stories and accomplishments!

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, innovation

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Feb 3, 2019

Stem cell breakthrough could help cure type 1 diabetes

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, innovation

Scientists have edged closer to treating type 1 diabetes by turning human stem cells into insulin-generating mature cells.

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Feb 3, 2019

Laser Scientists Just Tripled Their Fusion Power Yield

Posted by in categories: innovation, robotics/AI

Fusion power — the process that keeps stars like the Sun burning — holds the promise of nearly unlimited clean power. But scientists have struggled for decades to make it a practical energy source.

Now, laser scientists say a machine learning breakthrough has smashed the standing record for a fusion power yield. It doesn’t mean fusion power is practical yet, but the prestigious journal Nature called the result “remarkable” and wrote that it has “major implications” — so, at the very least, it’s another hint that the long-deferred technology is starting to come into focus.

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