Question of the Week
Should Electronic Devices Be Used During Takeoffs and Landings?

A government advisory panel urged the Federal Aviation Administration to ease the long-standing ban on using the devices during takeoffs and landings. Since the curbs were put in place, airliners have been made more resistant to electronic interference, and many have their own...

Good News and Bad News

The bad news: the U.S. Government is shut down.

The good news: the deadline has been extended to enter the Speed2Design Exploration & Discovery contest for a visit to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.

In August, I was able to attend the Speed2Design event at NASA’s Ames Research Center in California, and...

News: Medical
Breakthrough in Low-Cost, Automated Chemotherapy Treatment Wins $20,000 Global Design Competition

New York, NY – ChemoPatch, a low-cost, disposable, electronic patch-based cancer chemotherapy device designed to be simple, automated, and easy-to-use by cancer patients outside of the hospital, has been awarded the grand prize of $20,000 in the...

Manufacturing Improvements Yield Lighter Body Armor

Soldiers facing rugged terrain and extreme temperatures are continually searching for ways to reduce the weight of their gear. In a search for solutions to this persistent issue, U.S. Army scientists and engineers have preliminarily demonstrated body armor that is 10 percent lighter through new...

Engineers 'Program' DNA Molecules

Similar to using Python or Java to write code for a computer, chemists soon could be able to use a structured set of instructions to “program” how DNA molecules interact in a test tube or cell.

Army Works To Develop New Combat Headgear

In their quest for better helmet technologies to keep soldiers and marines safe on the battlefield, researchers at Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center are making a "HEaDS-UP" play.

Dr. Leslie Bebout works as a microbial ecologist in the Exobiology Branch at NASA’s Moffett Field, CA-based Ames Research Center. She and her colleagues study...

Question of the Week
Will 3D Printing Be a Feasible Way to Build Beyond Earth?

In an attempt to build dwellings on Mars, Russian architects, ZA, have proposed a series of robots that would identify weak areas in the Martian soil, carve them out, and then, using a process similar to that of structural 3D printing, create interior structures using the leftover soil...

Researchers Build the World’s Smallest Autopilot for Micro-Aircraft

Researcher Bart Remes and his team at the Micro Aerial Vehicle Laboratory at the Delft University of Technology have designed, built, and tested the world’s smallest open source autopilot for small unmanned aircraft. A smaller – and lighter – autopilot allows these small...

NASA Tests Thermal Dynamics of Dream Chaser Spacecraft

When Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Dream Chaser spacecraft flies through the atmosphere, it will encounter a wide variety of environmental conditions. Any spacecraft traveling at hypersonic velocities must have a robust thermal protection system (TPS) to protect astronauts and cargo...

Mini-Camera Gives Users Big-Picture View

A new type of miniature camera system promises to give users a big picture view without sacrificing high-resolution.

The new imager achieves the optical performance of a full-size wide-angle lens in a device less than one-tenth of the volume. The technology has a 100x range of focus, meaning it can...

Engineers Build Carbon-Nanotube Computer

A team of Stanford engineers has built a basic computer using carbon nanotubes, a semiconductor material that has the potential to launch a new generation of electronic devices that run faster, while using less energy, than those made from silicon chips.

Particle Receiver Converts Sun's Energy to Electricity

Engineers at Sandia National Laboratories, along with partner institutions Georgia Tech, Bucknell University, King Saud University and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), are using a falling particle receiver to more efficiently convert the sun’s energy to electricity in large-scale,...

Researchers Propose Password in a Heartbeat

Researchers at Rice University have come up with a secure way to dramatically cut the risk that an implanted medical device (IMD) could be altered remotely without authorization.

Their technology would use the patient’s own heartbeat as a kind of password that could only be accessed through...

'Wired Microbes' Generate Electricity from Sewage

Engineers at Stanford University have devised a new way to generate electricity from sewage using naturally-occurring “wired microbes” as mini power plants, producing electricity as they digest plant and animal waste.

Question of the Week
Will 'Bodies on a Chip' Improve Drug Testing in the near Future?

A new bioprinting project, backed by $24 million from the U.S. Department of Defense, will attempt to 3D-print miniature human organs. The 2-inch "body on a chip" will test how the human body reacts to diseases, chemical warfare agents, and new drugs intended to defend against...

Technology Enables Depth Perception Through a Single Lens

Researchers at Harvard have developed a way for photographers and microscopists to create a 3D image through a single lens, without moving the camera. The technology relies only on computation and mathematics — no unusual hardware or fancy lenses. The effect is the equivalent of seeing...

Rover Camera Upgrade Could Improve Discovery on Distant Worlds

As smart as the Curiosity rover has been about landing and finding its own way on a distant world, the rover is pretty brainless when it comes to doing the science that it was sent 567 million kilometers to carry out. That has to change if future rover missions are to make...

INSIDER: Electronics & Computers
Stretchable Gold Conductor Grows Its Own Wires

Networks of spherical nanoparticles embedded in elastic materials may make the best stretchy conductors yet, engineering researchers at the University of Michigan have discovered. Flexible...

A team at the University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering has developed a novel way to build what many see as the next generation memory storage devices...

Researchers Assess Snake Robot for Mars Exploration

SINTEF, an independent research organization in Scandinavia, will work to combine a rover and snake robot for Mars exploration. The researchers envision using the rover to navigate over large distances, after which the snake robot can detach itself and crawl into tight, inaccessible areas.

Photonic Band Gap Material Steers Light in New Ways

A team of San Francisco State University researchers is the first to build and demonstrate the ability of two-dimensional disordered photonic band gap material, designed to be a platform to control light in unprecedented ways.

Voyager 1 Ventures into Interstellar Space

NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft officially is the first human-made object to venture into interstellar space. The 36-year-old probe is about 12 billion miles (19 billion kilometers) from the sun.

Question of the Week
Will Biometrics Become a Must-have for Consumers?

Apple Inc. added a fingerprint scanner to its latest version of the iPhone, offering biometric security possibilities for workplaces or mobile commerce. Some analysts say that Apple's embrace of fingerprint scanning could lead to wider adoption and mainstream usage. Many laptops, external...

Software Helps Stabilize Aircraft During Takeoff and Landing

One of the concerns about commercial aircraft is their stability on the ground during taxiing, takeoff, and landing. During these processes, planes must maintain stability under various operating conditions. However, in some situations, the aircraft landing gear displays unwanted...

3D Earth Analysis Pinpoints Source of Earthquakes and Explosions

Under the sponsorship of the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation R&D, Sandia National Laboratories and Los Alamos National have partnered to develop a 3D model of the Earth’s mantle and crust called SALSA3D, or Sandia-Los...

Robot Moves Along Power Lines to Search for Damage

Mechanical engineers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) invented a robot designed to scoot along utility lines, searching for damage and other problems that require repairs. Made of off-the-shelf electronics and plastic parts printed on an inexpensive 3D printer, the SkySweeper...

Electric Bus Uses Novel Battery Management and Drive Control Systems

Electric mobility may be economically efficient today. Battery-based electric drives can be applied efficiently in urban buses, for instance. Frequent acceleration and slow-down processes as well as a high utilization rate in short-distance traffic make their use profitable...

Researchers 3D-Print Interlocking Building Blocks

Purdue researchers are working with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory to develop a technology for creating parts out of interlocking segments.

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