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Robotic Exoskeleton Helps Paralyzed Voluntarily Control Movements

A “robotic exoskeleton” device developed by UCLA scientists allowed a paralyzed man to voluntarily control his leg muscles and take thousands of steps. In addition to the robotic device, the man was aided by a novel noninvasive spinal stimulation technique that does not require surgery.

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New Technology Can Expand LED Lighting

Highly efficient, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) could slash the world’s electricity consumption. They are already sold in stores, but more widespread adoption of the technology has been hindered by high costs due to limited availability of raw materials and difficulties in achieving acceptable light quality. But researchers recently reported at a meeting of the American Chemical Society that they have overcome these obstacles and have developed a less expensive, more sustainable white LED.

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What Makes Quantum Dots Blink?

Quantum dots are nanoparticles of semiconductor that can be tuned to glow in a rainbow of colors. Since their discovery in the 1980s, these remarkable nanoparticles have held out tantalizing prospects for all kinds of new technologies, ranging from paint-on lighting materials and solar cells to quantum computer chips, biological markers, and even lasers and communications technologies. But there’s a problem – quantum dots often blink.

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Blue LEDs Could Provide Chemical-Free Food Preservation Technology

A team of scientists from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has found that blue light emitting diodes (LEDs) have strong antibacterial effects on major foodborne pathogens, and are most effective when in cold temperatures (between 4°C and 15°C) and mildly acidic conditions of around pH 4.5. This opens up novel possibilities of using blue LEDs as a chemical-free food preservation method. Acidic foods such as fresh-cut fruits and ready-to- eat meat can be preserved under blue LEDs in combination with chilling temperatures without requiring further chemical treatments that are commonly needed for food preservation.

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Wireless Occupancy Sensors

Dialight (Farmingdale, NJ) has unveiled its new wireless occupancy sensor, a battery-powered plug-and-play sensor designed to integrate seamlessly with any Dialight smart lighting system. Using Pyroelectric InfraRed (PIR) technology, each sensor can instantly switch a single light or a group of lights from off to on or from a dimmed state to on when motion is detected for full visibility and brightness only when needed. Each low-profile sensor is just under 2 ½ inches in height and 5 inches in diameter, weighs only 10 oz. and has an operating range of -40°F to +149°F.

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Networked Lighting Controls

Hubbell Building Automation (Austin, TX) NXTM networked lighting controls now have added daylighting capability. The NXDS daylight sensor auto-configures with the NX Room Controller. The NXDS daylight sensor is designed for open loop operation, measuring natural light coming in through a window. It communicates with the recently-launched NXRC series Room Controller, which directs switching or dimming of the lighting. The NX system advantage includes controlling multiple zones of lighting within a space. The devices connect via standard CAT5 cables. Both indoor and outdoor versions of the NXDS sensor are available.

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LED Driver

Innovations in Optics, Inc. (Woburn, MA) has introduced the Model 5000A-100 LED Driver/Controller for powering its patented and patent-pending High Power LED Light Engines. The 5000A-100 LED Driver provides constant current in continuous, pulsed or pulsed width modulation (PWM) modes. An embedded system adds network control with 10/100Mbps Ethernet connectivity. The Model 5000A- 100 is intended for OEM applications. Drive current in continuous mode is selectable from 7.5 to 75A at 0.6 to 5.5VDC output. The output current setting is adjustable either locally or remotely from 100% down to 10% using analog adjustment and as low as 1% with PWM.

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