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Apr 5, 2016

Focus: Space Wave Gives Electrons a Shove

Posted by in category: space

A new satellite mission has observed electron acceleration by electric field waves moving along the magnetic boundary between the Earth and the solar wind.

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Apr 5, 2016

Want to know why Uber and automation really matter? Here’s your answer

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

Reports of the death of car-buying among millennials turn out to have been greatly exaggerated. But there’s one big reason ride-hailing services like Uber, and eventually autonomous vehicles, are still a threat to private car ownership.

Put simply, we just don’t use our cars very much.

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Apr 5, 2016

Technicolor stores Hollywood history in a bottle

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, media & arts, virtual reality

A Technicolor scientist surrounded by the latest virtual reality technology inspects a vial containing a few droplets of water—and one million copies of an old movie encoded into DNA.

The company has come a long way since the Hollywood golden age, when the world gazed in awe at the lush palette of “The Wizard of Oz” and “Gone with the Wind” provided by its three-strip cameras.

Now celebrating its centenary year, Technicolor’s laboratories are at the cutting edge of the science of filmmaking, leading a worldwide revolution in immersive entertainment.

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Apr 5, 2016

Will this breakthrough see an electric car in every driveway?

Posted by in categories: innovation, transportation

Electric car batteries are getting cheaper.

Will we all drive electric cars one day?

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Apr 5, 2016

New laser technique promises super-fast and super-secure quantum cryptography

Posted by in categories: encryption, quantum physics


A new method of implementing an ‘unbreakable’ quantum cryptographic system is able to transmit information at rates more than ten times faster than previous attempts.

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Apr 5, 2016

Changing the color of single photons in a diamond quantum memory

Posted by in categories: computing, electronics, quantum physics

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing at the University of Waterloo and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) have, for the first time, converted the colour and bandwidth of ultrafast single photons using a room-temperature quantum memory in diamond.

Shifting the colour of a photon, or changing its frequency, is necessary to optimally link components in a quantum network. For example, in optical quantum communication, the best transmission through an optical fibre is near infrared, but many of the sensors that measure them work much better for visible light, which is a higher frequency. Being able to shift the colour of the photon between the fibre and the sensor enables higher performance operation, including bigger data rates.

Changing the Color of Single Photons

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Apr 5, 2016

Federal agency making waves in battery storage, energy tech innovation

Posted by in categories: energy, military

Whenever the military sets up operations in isolated and hostile locations like Iraq or Afghanistan, one of the biggest challenges is ensuring troops get reliable power.

Until now, that often has meant trucking in vast amounts of diesel to power generators, a strategy that isn’t all that environmentally friendly and is vulnerable to attack or other problems like a driver strike or mechanical breakdown.

But what if military bases could produce their own power?

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Apr 5, 2016

How expandable astronaut habitats could pave the way for private space hotels

Posted by in categories: habitats, satellites

Next week, astronauts on the International Space Station are getting a brand new room. Called the BEAM, short for Bigelow Expandable Activity Module, the room is launching on top of one of SpaceX’s rockets on Friday; it will then be attached to the ISS sometime within the next four months. The BEAM, which is created by private company Bigelow Aerospace, will remain deflated during launch, but once in orbit, it will inflate up to four times its size, providing more overall volume for the interior of the ISS.

The BEAM isn’t a permanent addition to the space station, though. It will only stay attached to the ISS for two years, and the astronauts will go inside the habitat very rarely. That’s because the main goal of the BEAM is to test out if this expandable habitat technology actually works. A successful mission could be the first step to something bigger: an era when expandable space habitats orbit the Earth, allowing for scientists and tourists to visit these “space hotels.”

The concept of expandable spacecraft isn’t new. In the 1960s, NASA launched a series of expandable communication probes called the Echo satellites, which looked like big metallic balloons. The satellites inflated in space and turned into mirror-like reflectors that bounced signals from one spot on Earth to another. Since then, NASA and other private companies have toyed with the idea of scaling up expandable spacecraft so that they could house humans in space.

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Apr 5, 2016

Facebook’s first blind engineer is revolutionizing social media as we know it

Posted by in category: futurism

Matt King is helping Facebook change for the better.

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Apr 5, 2016

Scientists have figured out how to program living cells

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

A new programming language allows researchers to quickly design a DNA sequence with specific functions for living cells.

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