News

Researchers Use Rust to Improve 3D-Printing Process

A team of Northwestern researchers has created a new way to print three-dimensional metallic objects using rust and metal powders.

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New Solar Material Releases Heat on Demand

A layer-by-layer film developed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology could harvest sunlight and release heat on demand hours or days later.

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Nissan Tests NASA Technology in Driverless Car

For the past year, NASA’s Ames Research Center and Nissan have been collaborating on the development of autonomous driving technologies that could one day be used in future consumer vehicles, robotic rovers on Mars, and other space exploration missions. The partnership allows researchers to develop and test autonomy algorithms, concepts, and integrated prototypes for a variety of vehicular transport applications.

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Rapid Test Identifies Tumors Using Antibodies

Antibodies combat viruses and bacteria. They also attach themselves to cancer cells. Scientists are using this property to detect cancer cells in tissue samples. This polymer-based rapid test visually differentiates tumor cells from healthy cells in a tissue section through the use of a simple microscope.

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Remote-Controlled Robot Inspects Suspicious Packages

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques (FHR) have created a sensor suite that will help emergency services more effectively detect improvised explosive devices. The system records the shape of suspicious packages and creates 3D images of their contents.

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Researchers Test New Mars Spacesuits

To support Mars exploration, new spacesuits must protect astronauts, supply air and water, and be flexible enough to allow for small required tasks like the digging of samples. Engineers from the University of North Dakota are evaluating new spacesuit design at Kennedy Space Center.

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NASA Takes First Steps Toward Drone Traffic Management

NASA recently successfully demonstrated rural operations of its unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) traffic management (UTM) concept, integrating operator platforms, vehicle performance, and ground infrastructure. The next steps involve further validation through Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) test sites.

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New Methods Detect and Predict Fatigue-Related Aircraft Cracks

Researchers are developing tools and technology to detect the formation of cracks in aircraft components and monitor their progression. The team is conducting comprehensive testing and characterization studies to understand and monitor how tiny cracks are initiated and grow in metal components as they are subjected to repetitive strains and stresses similar to those that wings, fuselages, and other aircraft components experience in service.

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Precision NASA Thruster Keeps Spacecraft Still

The European Space Agency’s LISA Pathfinder spacecraft is on its way to space with the Disturbance Reduction System (DRS), a thruster technology developed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The DRS uses colloid micronewton thrusters, the first of their kind, to keep the spacecraft as still as possible and compensate for solar pressure. These thrusters electrically charge small liquid droplets and accelerate them through an electric field in order to generate thrust.

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Nano-Submarine Motors Powered by Light

Each of the single-molecule, 244-atom submersibles built at Rice University has a motor powered by ultraviolet light. With each full revolution, the motor’s tail-like propeller moves the sub forward 18 nanometers. And with the motors running at more than a million RPM, that translates into speed. Though the sub’s top speed amounts to less than 1 inch per second, that’s a breakneck pace on the molecular scale.

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