After a disaster like the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf coast, what if a giant sponge could clean up the area and the wildlife around it?

What if a bunch of tiny sponges could quickly save gunshot victims?

In this episode of Tech Briefs' podcast series, Here's an Idea, we look at how researchers are doing just that, and expanding the sponge concept to entire cities. You can listen to the episode below.

Subscribe here

Episode highlights include:

  • John Steinbaugh, a former Special Operations medic who served over 20 years in the Army, talks about creating XSTAT, a device that injects rapidly-expanding sponges into an injury like a gunshot wound to stop bleeding almost instantly.
  • Researcher Ed Barry of Argonne National Laboratory shares his team's process of chemically engineering a sponge that can grab oil molecules from water after an oil spill. The "Oleo" material can be wrung out and used again and again.
  • Michael Berkowitz, President of 100 Resilient Cities, a non-profit dedicated to strengthening cities around the world, discusses how some cities are absorbing a new concept the Sponge City to prepare for flooding.

Access the full-length interviews below.


Get the Here's an Idea newsletter sent direct to your inbox each month.