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Aug 10, 2022

Graphene synapses advance brain-like computers

Posted by in categories: computing, neuroscience

Computers that think more like human brains are inching closer to mainstream adoption. But many unanswered questions remain. Among the most pressing, what types of materials can serve as the best building blocks to unlock the potential of this new style of computing.

For most traditional computing devices, silicon remains the gold standard. However, there is a movement to use more flexible, efficient and environmentally friendly materials for these brain-like devices.

In a new paper, researchers from The University of Texas at Austin developed synaptic transistors for brain-like computers using the thin, flexible material graphene. These transistors are similar to synapses in the brain, that connect neurons to each other.

Aug 10, 2022

How to spot the 2022 Perseid meteor shower that will peak on Saturday

Posted by in category: space

The Perseid meteor shower will peak this year in the early hours of 13 August. A full moon will make it trickier to see than usual but it is still worth a try — here’s how.

Aug 10, 2022

Amping up battery performance with black glasses grafted on micron silicon

Posted by in categories: energy, nanotechnology

Silicon is the second most abundant element on earth, making up a hefty 27.7% percent of the earth’s crust. Apart from its ability to create sandy beaches and clear glasses, silicon also holds the potential to make highly efficient metal ion batteries.

In a world where alternative energy storage devices like are gaining momentum, there is a need to harness the excellent specific energy capacity of silicon as an electrode material. The commercial application of silicon-based is often hindered due to two major reasons: 1) lack of mechanical stability arising from uncontrolled volume expansion upon lithiation, the process of combining with a , and 2) rapid energy fading caused by the formation of unstable solid-electrode interface (SEI) formation.

Over the years scientists have developed various advanced silicon-based negative electrodes or to overcome the aforementioned problems. The most prominent among them are silicon nanomaterials. However, silicon nanomaterials come with certain demerits, such as a large demand and supply gap, difficult and expensive synthesis process, and, most importantly, a threat of fast battery dry-up.

Aug 10, 2022

Could Hydrogen Help Save Nuclear?

Posted by in categories: economics, nuclear energy

A lack of market value and historically low natural gas prices are just some of the reasons making it hard for nuclear to compete in certain markets.

And with the rise of more renewables coming onto the grid, many utilities are considering a hybrid or integrated systems approach to improve the economics for baseload energy sources like nuclear reactors.

One opportunity is to utilize nuclear’s thermal heat and electricity to produce hydrogen.

Aug 10, 2022

Flying Sub Deluxe Edition

Posted by in categories: electronics, transportation

Steven PostrelIrwin Allen called…


When producer Irwin Allen’s popular television series Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea debuted its second season on ABC in September, 1965, viewers would note some exciting changes and additions to the show. Voyage was now broadcast in color, the nuclear submarine Seaview had been modified into a sleeker, four-windowed look, and the show would feature an important new star: the Flying Sub, a vehicle that flies through the air at incredible speeds and submerges to travel underwater at great depths.

The Flying Sub (also referred to as the FS-1) quickly became a signature element of the show, featured in almost every episode not only as a quick transport from the Seaview to land, but as an underwater exploration and defense vehicle that could dock at underwater research laboratories or on other submarines, and do battle with the menagerie of undersea monsters that threatened the Seaview. With its upswept, manta ray-like shape, vivid yellow-and-blue paint scheme, twin stabilizer fins, upper and lower hatches, gleaming headlights and the large forward windows that allowed viewers to actually see Admiral Nelson and Captain Crane (or at least miniature figures of them) at the controls of the craft, the Flying Sub became one of the most familiar and unique sights on ABC television in the 1960s, adding action and excitement to a TV show already overflowing with visual wonders.

Continue reading “Flying Sub Deluxe Edition” »

Aug 10, 2022

Robot Confined to “Curved Space” Defies Known Laws of Physics

Posted by in categories: physics, robotics/AI, space

Using a robot confined to a sphere, scientists have proven bodies can move freely in curved spaces without pushing against anything.

Aug 10, 2022

Secrets of sustainable distributed-generation strategies

Posted by in categories: energy, policy, sustainability

The sad truth is that our electricity markets currently lack the ability to accept the vast amounts of renewable energy capacity to meet state targets and corporate commitments to procure clean energy. A study by Princeton University found that high-voltage transmission capacity would need to expand by 60% to meet clean energy targets, representing billions of dollars in needed utility upgrades.

However, we can avoid much of this need by siting renewable resources closer to where they are needed – at the distribution level of the grid. In order to do so, we will need to take several key steps to solve major system barriers to expanding renewable energy on the grid. The good news is that with some policy improvements – some major and some minor – renewable energy capacity at the distribution level can meet needs without the long lead time required for larger, utility-scale resources.

Aug 10, 2022

‘Cosmic butterfly’ wings shimmer in image of violently colliding galaxies

Posted by in category: space

The two spiral galaxies are about 60 million light-years from Earth.


Astronomers at the Gemini North telescope in Hawai’i have released a stunning image that shows two spiral galaxies in the process of colliding and merging.

The clashing galaxies NGC 4,568 and NGC 4,567 — also known as the Butterfly galaxies due to the dual-lobed shape their interaction causes — are located 60 million light-years away from Earth in the Virgo Cluster and will form a brand new elliptical galaxy in around 500 million years, according to a statement from NOIRLab, which operates the Gemini North telescope.

Continue reading “‘Cosmic butterfly’ wings shimmer in image of violently colliding galaxies” »

Aug 10, 2022

Scientists Are Investigating Gigantic Energy ‘Jets’ That Shoot Up to Space

Posted by in categories: energy, space

A recent “gigantic jet” of lighting shot up 50 miles into space, a phenomenon that scientists are just beginning to understand.

Aug 9, 2022

First of its kind “black widow” pulsar discovered

Posted by in categories: food, space

A new black widow pulsar has been discovered eating its companion star while a third star circles the binary system.

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