Question of the Week : Aerospace
Will Urban Air Mobility ‘Take Off?'

A Tech Briefs TV video demonstrates NASA’s rotary-wing “air taxi” concept. The vehicles, in theory, have the capacity for vertical take-off and landing, eliminating the need for long runways.

NASA hopes the air taxi will support Urban Air Mobility, a system that combines onboard/ground-piloted...

Blog : Transportation
Q&A: Catching Up with Automotive Cybersecurity Researcher (and Jeep Hacker) Chris Valasek
In 2015, Chris Valasek and Charlie Miller demonstrated a hack of the Jeep Cherokee. Valasek tells Tech Briefs what has changed since then.
Blog : Energy
Answering Your Questions: Will Solar Panel Efficiency Improve?
Don’t hold your breath, says Jeff Crystal from Voltaic Systems.
INSIDER : Electronics & Computers
Faster-Charging, Safer Batteries

Imagine a world where cell phones and laptops can be charged in a matter of minutes instead of hours, rolled up and stored in your pocket, or dropped without sustaining any damage. It is possible, but the...

INSIDER : Energy
New fuel cell concept brings biological design to better electricity generation

Fuel cells generate electricity directly from hydrogen and oxygen and produce only water vapor as emissions. But most fuel cells are too expensive, inefficient,...

Question of the Week : Aerospace
How Strong is the ‘Ionic Wind?’

MIT has built the first-ever plane with no moving parts. Instead of turbine blades, propellers, and fans, the aircraft relies on an “ionic wind” — a silent but strong flow of ions, produced onboard, which generates enough thrust to propel the plane over a sustained, steady flight.

“This has...

Who's Who : Medical
Q&A: Professor Rouzbeh Shahsavari, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University, Houston, TX

Professor Shahsavari and graduate student Sung Hoon have demonstrated a process for producing a cement that is stronger, lighter, and more durable than the traditional Portland cement.

Articles : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
5 Ws of Spray-On Antennas

Who

Manufacturers and users of wearables, functional fabrics, mobile devices, wireless routers, and Internet of Things devices.

Blog : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Answering Your Questions: How Long Should a Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) Take?
An FMEA provides a step-by-step way of identifying product failures. Carl Carlson explains just how long the process takes.
INSIDER : Aerospace
Plane Flies with No Moving Parts

Since the first airplane took flight, virtually every aircraft has flown with the help of moving parts such as propellers, turbine blades, or fans that produce a persistent, whining buzz. MIT has built the...

Blog : Test & Measurement
Q&A: After a Successful Landing, What’s Next for the InSight Mission?
InSight project manager Tom Hoffman spoke with Tech Briefs about the importance of digging deep in our knowledge of Mars.
Blog : Materials
New Metal-Air Battery Design Offers a Potential Boost to Electric Vehicles
Professor Hart spoke with Tech Briefs about why his team's new battery may someday find its way beyond niche applications and into electric vehicles.
Question of the Week : Test & Measurement
Can ‘The Ocean Cleanup’ Clean Up the Ocean?

The Ocean Cleanup, a nonprofit effort begun by Dutch inventor Boyan Slat, wants to clean up 50% of “The Great Pacific Garbage Patch” in five years, with the aim of a 90% reduction by 2040.

Using a 600-meter long floater, or collection platform, called System 001, the Cleanup technology...

Blog : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Answering Your Questions: How Good are Automotive Sensor Simulation Models?
A reader asks our industry experts: "How good are the simulation models for automotive ADAS sensors?"
Question of the Week : Electronics & Computers
Will Stretchable, Printable Solar Cells Catch On?

A Rice University lab is making solar cells that are stretchable, printable, and paintable. Watch the demo on Tech Briefs TV.

This week's Question: Will Stretchable, Printable Solar Cells Catch On?

Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Blog : Materials
Researchers Convert Plastic Bottles into Aerogels that Insulate and Absorb
Researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) are trying to solve the problem of plastic waste by converting it into something useful: Aerogels.
INSIDER : Internet of Things
Light it up: Purdue NSF-funded Technology Flips the Switch on the Future for Sustainable Smart Homes and $1.3 Trillion Market

IoT devices need a wireless means of communications to be truly seamless so they can be easily integrated in...

INSIDER : Internet of Things
A Step Toward Personalized, Automated Smart Homes

Developing automated systems that track occupants and self-adapt to their preferences is a major next step for the future of smart homes. When you walk into a room, for instance, a system...

INSIDER : Internet of Things
Enabling “Internet of Photonic Things” with Miniature Sensors

A team of researchers at Washington University in St. Louis was the first to successfully record environmental data using a wireless photonic sensor resonator with a...

INSIDER : Materials
Laser-Activated Silk Sealants Outperform Sutures for Tissue Repair

Tissue repair following injury or during surgery is conventionally performed with sutures and staples, which can cause tissue damage and complications, including infection....

INSIDER : Materials
Invention Opens Door to Safer, Less Expensive X-Ray Imaging

New lead halide perovskite nanocrystals developed by researchers from NUS Chemistry could soon mean cheaper X-rays and computerized tomography (CT) scans involving lower levels of...

INSIDER : Energy
Solar Cell Does Double Duty for Renewable Energy

In the quest for abundant, renewable alternatives to fossil fuels, scientists have sought to harvest the sun’s energy through “water splitting,” an artificial photosynthesis technique...

Blog : Data Acquisition
Modular Robots Change Shape – Depending on the Task
Professor Hadas Kress-Gazit tells Tech Briefs about the "great promise" of autonomous modular robots.
Question of the Week : Imaging
Will AR and VR Help Automotive Manufacturers?

A reader recently asked our automotive expert: “How will the use of augmented reality and virtual parts impact the role of automotive parts manufacturers, such as PCB manufacturers, in prototyping and production?”

“AR and VR really will impact all manufacturers up and...

News : Medical
3D Imaging Opens Door to Fascinating Leaf Complexity

The field of plant science is in the process of being profoundly transformed by new imaging and modeling technologies. These tools are allowing scientists to peer inside the leaf with a clarity and resolution inconceivable a generation ago.

News : Medical
CT Expands Possibilities of Imaging Ancient Remains

Researchers in Sweden using computed tomography (CT) have successfully imaged the soft tissue of an ancient Egyptian mummy's hand down to a microscopic level. Non-destructive imaging of human and animal mummies with X-rays and CT is a boon to the fields of archaeology and paleopathology. They...

News : Medical
Chemists Create Circular Fluorescent Dyes for Imaging

University of Oregon chemists have created a new class of fluorescent dyes that function in water and emit colors based solely on the diameter of circular nanotubes made of carbon and hydrogen. The six-member team is now exploring their potential use in biological imaging.

News : Medical
Enhanced 3D Imaging Advances Brain Treatments

Researchers have developed a combination of commercially available hardware and open-source software, named PySight, to improve rapid 2D and 3D imaging of neuronal activity in the living brain and other tissues. PySight serves as an add-on for laser scanning microscopes. Such an advancement in...

Blog : Aerospace
Answering Your Questions: For an Electric-Aircraft Future, Do We Need to Rethink Design?
For an electric-aircraft future, it's not enough to just change components. You have to rethink design, our expert tells one reader.
Articles : Materials
5 Ws of the SAFIRE Lithium-Ion Battery

Who

The Safe Impact Resistant Electrolyte (SAFIRE) fire-resistant battery can be used in consumer electronics such as cellphones, in drones and cars, and in soldiers’ packs.