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Haptic Interface

Carnegie Mellon University researchers have developed a touch-based, or haptic, interface that could allow people to realistically feel textures and shapes of 3-D designs created on computers. The system involves a single lightweight moving part that floats on magnetic fields. Magnetic levitation eliminates the need for...

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Alleviating Arthritis

About 46 million people suffer from arthritis in the United States alone. The worst cases require painful surgeries to drill holes in and reinforce joints. Now, researchers working at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) are studying an unusually pliant, yet strong, synthetic cartilage replacement in...

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Plant Toxin

A powerful plant toxin widely feared for its bioterrorism potential may one day be tamed using findings about how the toxin attacks cells. The findings may also help scientists combat food poisoning episodes.

According to biotechnology researchers at Rutgers University, ricin, extracted from castor beans, tricks a cell into...

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Anti-Piracy Chip

Computer engineers at the University of Michigan and Rice University hope to solve the growing problem of chip patent infringement through a cryptography scheme that assigns each chip a unique lock and key. Called EPIC for Ending Piracy of Integrated Circuits, the technique relies on established cryptography methods, adding...

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Tech Briefs

Integrated microbatteries have been proposed to satisfy an anticipated need for long-life, low-rate primary batteries, having volumes less than 1 cubic millimeter, to power electronic circuitry in implantable medical devices. In one contemplated application, such a battery would be incorporated into a tubular hearing-aid device to be...

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Cell Phones and Driving

If there was any doubt that cell phones distract drivers, one needs to look no further than a study by Carnegie Mellon University scientists that concludes that drivers engaged in cell phone use commit some of the same driving errors that can occur under the influence of alcohol.

The study examined 29 volunteers...

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Current Attractions

According to Edward Austin, Science and Mission Operation Project Manager for the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), there are a lot of things that are obscured in the galaxy that we would want to see. We can use infrared technology, but a lot of the infrared spectrum is actually blocked by water vapor...

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"Two-Faced" Particles

Researchers at North Carolina State University have demonstrated that Janus particles - microscopic "two-faced" spheres whose halves are physically or chemically different - will move like little submarines when an alternating electrical field is applied to the liquid surrounding them. The micrometer-sized particles convert...

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Earthquake

Three-hundred years ago, the Juan de Fuca plate under the ocean in America's Pacific Northwest suddenly slipped beneath the North American plate and forced its way about 60 feet eastward, triggering a massive earthquake that scientists estimate was roughly magnitude 9.0. The quake was so large that the tsunamis it created traveled all...

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Student LED Innovation

Martin Schubert - a Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute doctoral student in electrical, computer, and systems engineering - has developed the first polarized light emitting diode (LED), an innovation that could vastly improve LCD screens, conserve energy, and usher in the next generation of ultra-efficient LEDs. Schubert's...

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NASA Briefs

An optical filter consisting of a multilayer spectral coating on a flexible membrane has been designed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to be placed in front of the 200-inch Hale telescope on Mt. Palomar. The filter is intended to protect the telescope against solar radiant flux and limit solar heating of the interior of the...

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SIDECAR Miniaturization

The detector controls and data conversion electronics components on the James Webb Space Telescope - collectively called a "SIDECAR" - have been miniaturized from a volume of about one cubic meter to a small integrated circuit. SIDECAR ASIC (System for Image Digitization, Enhancement, Control, And Retrieval Application...

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Live Cancer Gene

Researchers at Stony Brook University Medical Center have identified a family of genes linked to the development of liver cancer. Led by Wadie F. Bahou, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Genetics, the team discovered in a mouse model that the loss of one specific gene (Iqgap2) in this family causes Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC),...

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Overtaking Assistant

Overtaking on two-lane roads is easier if drivers use what is known as an overtaking assistant, a system which indicates when it is safe to overtake. This system prevents reckless drivers overtaking when it is not safe, and can also aid cautious drivers in overtaking slower vehicles.

Researcher Geertje Hegeman from...

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Helpful Hair

"You are what you eat and drink - and that is recorded in your hair," says geochemist Thure Cerling, who led University of Utah research with ecologist Jim Ehleringer. The scientists developed a new crime-fighting tool by showing that human hair reveals the general location where a person drank water, helping police track past...

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Producing Organic Transistors

A simple surface treatment technique developed by researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Penn State, and the University of Kentucky promises a low-cost method to produce arrays of organic electronic transistors on polymer sheets, paving the way for flexible displays and large...

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Oxidative Stress Genetic Pathway

Scientists at the University of Wisconsin at Madison have discovered a genetic pathway that may hold the key to understanding oxidative stress, the process that contributes to diseases such as Alzheimer's, heart disease, stroke, cancer, as well as aging. The finding could one day enable the manipulation of genes...

Although it may not be obvious to the untrained eye, a number of technical innovations developed for aerospace and defense applications have found their way into the...

Instrument unit avionics
The Boeing Company
Chicago, IL
312-544-2000
www.boeing.com

The Boeing Company has been awarded a NASA contract...

IS-1200 inertial-optical motion tracker InterSense
Bedford, MA
781-541-6330
www.intersense.com

NASA’s Langley Research Center has awarded...

National Instruments, Austin, TX, has introduced the 6-GHz NI USB-5680 USB-controlled RMS RF power meter for automated test, measurement, and monitoring in a small footprint. Powered solely from the USB cable, the meter...

SOFIA (Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy) is a joint venture between NASA and the German space agency, DLR, involving the use of a modified Boeing 747SP aircraft as an...

Techs for License
Detecting Your Level of Hydration

HydroSmart is a new way to determine if you are adequately hydrated at any given time. It is a handheld, portable, simple- to-use device that requires a stream of urine, and the results are given almost instantaneously via a color-changing reagent. A color change corresponds to the specific gravity of the urine...

Techs for License
High-Production Suction Head for Mud, Sludge, and Sewerage Dredging

This technology features a uniquely designed suction head that eliminates problems typically experienced in alluvial diamond mining, mud, sewerage pumping, or dredging operations. This patented system offers a proven solution where no divers are required, and which can be...

Tech Needs
Topical Delivery for Analgesic Medications

A company seeks new non-oral delivery mechanisms for analgesics. Non-oral methods avoid the stomach and the intestine. These new mechanisms might be topical; that is, in contact with the outer layer of the skin. However, other nonoral mechanisms are open for consideration. Non-oral administration...

Tech Needs
Heating Different Zones of Food in a Microwave Oven

An organization seeks technology to enable foods to become crispy when heated in a home microwave oven. The outer surface should heat and become (or remain) crispy, while the interior body of the food should heat only as appropriate. The organization seeks materials, ingredients, or other...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
WRATS Integrated Data Acquisition System

The Wing and Rotor Aeroelastic Test System (WRATS) data acquisition system (DAS) is a 64-channel data acquisition display and analysis system specifically designed for use with the WRATS 1/5-scale...

A recently developed breadboard version of an advanced signal processor for arraying many antennas in NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN) can accept inputs in a 500-MHz-wide frequency band...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Digital Receiver Phase Meter

The software of a commercially available digital radio receiver has been modified to make the receiver function as a two-channel low-noise phase meter. This phase meter is a prototype in the continuing...

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