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Nov 10, 2016

Two paths at once: Watching the buildup of quantum superpositions

Posted by in categories: particle physics, quantum physics

Scientists have observed how quantum superpositions build up in a helium atom within femtoseconds. Just like in the famous double-slit experiment, there are two ways to reach the final outcome.

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Nov 10, 2016

Stable quantum bits can be made from complex molecules

Posted by in categories: chemistry, computing, information science, quantum physics

Quantum computing is about to get more complex. Researchers have evidence that large molecules made of nickel and chromium can store and process information in the same way bytes do for digital computers. The researchers present algorithms proving it’s possible to use supramolecular chemistry to connect “qubits,” the basic units for quantum information processing, in Chem on November 10. This approach would generate several kinds of stable qubits that could be connected together into structures called “two-qubit gates.”

“We have shown that the chemistry is achievable for bringing together two-qubit gates,” says senior author Richard Winpenny, Head of the University of Manchester School of Chemistry. “The molecules can be made and the two-qubit gates assembled. The next step is to show that these two-qubit gates work.”

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Nov 10, 2016

DARPA Making Good Progress in Developing ‘Robotic Co-Pilots’ for US Warplanes

Posted by in categories: military, robotics/AI

ALIAS envisions a custom, drop-in, removable kit that will promote the addition of high levels of automation into existing aircraft, enabling operation with reduced onboard crew.

The program intends to exploit the considerable advances made in aircraft automation systems over the past 50 years, and similar advances in remotely piloted aircraft automation, to help reduce pilot workload, augment mission performance and improve aircraft safety.

As an automation system, ALIAS aims to support execution of an entire mission from takeoff to landing, even in the face of contingency events such as aircraft system failures.

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Nov 10, 2016

Scientists develop new type of HIV test on a USB stick

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing

HIV diagnotistic on a USB stick smile

LONDON – Scientists in Britain have developed a type of HIV test using a USB stick that can give a fast and highly accurate reading of how much virus is in a patient’s blood.

The device, created by scientists at Imperial College London and the privately-held U.S. firm DNA Electronics, uses a drop of blood to detect HIV, then creates an electrical signal that can be read by a computer, laptop or handheld device.

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Nov 10, 2016

Lifespans Are (Not) Long Enough

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, ethics, life extension, neuroscience

Aubrey de Grey and Brian Kennedy debate the motion that “Lifespans are long enough” at Intelligence2. This was a great show and the results speak for themselves as do the convincing arguments presented by Brian and Aubrey. If you missed it first time around earlier this year you should watch it now.

“What if we didn’t have to grow old and die? The average American can expect to live for 78.8 years, an improvement over the days before clean water and vaccines, when life expectancy was closer to 50, but still not long enough for most of us. So researchers around the world have been working on arresting the process of aging through biotechnology and finding cures to diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer. What are the ethical and social consequences of radically increasing lifespans? Should we accept a “natural” end, or should we find a cure to aging?”

On February 3rd, 2016, SRF’s Chief Science Officer Aubrey de Grey joined forces with Buck Institute for Research on Aging President/CEO Brian Kennedy to oppose the motion that “Lifespans Are Long Enough”, in a debate hosted at New York’s Kaufman Center by Intelligence2 Debates. The team proposing the motion comprised Paul Root Wolpe, Director of the Emory Center for Ethics, and Ian Ground of the UK’s Newcastle University.

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Nov 10, 2016

Computers made of genetic material? Researchers conduct electricity using DNA-based nanowires

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing, genetics, nanotechnology, particle physics

Tinier than the AIDS virus—that is currently the circumference of the smallest transistors. The industry has shrunk the central elements of their computer chips to fourteen nanometers in the last sixty years. Conventional methods, however, are hitting physical boundaries. Researchers around the world are looking for alternatives. One method could be the self-organization of complex components from molecules and atoms. Scientists at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) and Paderborn University have now made an important advance: the physicists conducted a current through gold-plated nanowires, which independently assembled themselves from single DNA strands. Their results have been published in the scientific journal Langmuir.

At first glance, it resembles wormy lines in front of a black background. But what the electron microscope shows up close is that the nanometer-sized structures connect two electrical contacts. Dr. Artur Erbe from the Institute of Ion Beam Physics and Materials Research is pleased about what he sees. “Our measurements have shown that an electrical current is conducted through these tiny wires.” This is not necessarily self-evident, the physicist stresses. We are, after all, dealing with components made of modified DNA. In order to produce the , the researchers combined a long single strand of genetic material with shorter DNA segments through the base pairs to form a stable double strand. Using this method, the structures independently take on the desired form.

“With the help of this approach, which resembles the Japanese paper folding technique origami and is therefore referred to as DNA-origami, we can create tiny patterns,” explains the HZDR researcher. “Extremely small circuits made of molecules and atoms are also conceivable here.” This strategy, which scientists call the “bottom-up” method, aims to turn conventional production of electronic components on its head. “The industry has thus far been using what is known as the ‘top-down’ method. Large portions are cut away from the base material until the desired structure is achieved. Soon this will no longer be possible due to continual miniaturization.” The new approach is instead oriented on nature: molecules that develop complex structures through self-assembling processes.

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Nov 10, 2016

NASA’s HoloLens Demo Puts Researchers on Mars, Space Station and Workbench

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, space travel

Representatives of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab demonstrated the capability of Microsoft’s HoloLens headset for space exploration and research at New York University Nov. 7.

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Nov 10, 2016

Shailesh Prasad Photo 3

Posted by in category: futurism

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Nov 10, 2016

The Hyperloop Won’t Just Be Station-to-Station, but Door-to-Door

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, robotics/AI, transportation

I figured that if Elon Musk’s Hyperloop system ever became reality, it would essentially be a super-fast train system. Meaning we’d enter at a Hyperloop station in L.A. and exit at a Hyperloop station in San Francisco. But the forthcoming Hyperloop One system in Dubai, designed by Bjarke Ingels Group, will actually get riders from door to door.

To explain: Hyperloop One, which signed a deal with the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority, has BIG providing the design muscle. The collaboration has yielded the idea that self-driving Hyperpods could pick passengers up anywhere in the city, like an Uber. These six-person-capacity Hyperpods would then drive to the Hyperportal and load itself onto a Transport Capsule, the actual thing that shoots through the Hyperloop tube. At the other end, the ‘pod exits the Transport Capsule and drives the passengers to their destination.

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Nov 10, 2016

First Artificial Gravity to Appear at ISS Thanks to Russian Scientists

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Russian scientists have developed a small-radius centrifuge for creating artificial gravity at the International Space Station.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — A centrifuge to create artificial gravity will be installed aboard an inflatable module developed by Russia at the International Space Station (ISS), the head of Russia’s Institute for Biomedical Problems (RIBP) said Thursday.

“We have created a small-radius centrifuge. This method has been demonstrated to be viable to simulate artificial gravity,” the Russian Academy of Sciences’ RIBP Director Oleg Orlov told reporters.

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