Researchers at the University of Southampton’s Optical Research Center announced on Tuesday that they’ve perfected a technique that can record data in 5 dimensions and keep it safe for billions of years. The method etches data into a thermally stable disc using femtosecond laser bursts. The storage medium itself holds up to 360 TB per disc, can withstand temperatures up to 1000 degrees C and are estimated to last up to 13.8 billion years at room temperature without degrading.
Made from steel and brass, this unusual prosthetic arm articulates in a number of ways. The elbow joint can be moved by releasing a spring, whereas the top joint of the wrist allows a degree of rotation and an up-and-down motion. The fingers can also curl up and straighten out. The leather upper arm piece is used to fix the prosthesis to the remaining upper arm.
Link to gallery.
Via Wall Street Journal:
AeroFarms Inc. has raised $20 million in a Series B round of venture funding to build more of its “aeroponic vertical farms.” The high-tech indoor farms use 95% less water than conventional, commercial field farms, according to founder and Chief Executive David Rosenberg.
Via IEEE Spectrum:
[James] Tour and his team have designed and fabricated a molecule consisting of 244 atoms that can move within a liquid environment using a tail-like propeller powered by ultraviolet light.
What is really impressive about the nanoscale submarines is their speed. One wag of its tail can move it 18 nanometers. Not impressed? Consider that the tail can wag a million revolutions per minute (RPM), which translates to propelling the molecule about 2.5 centimeters per second. In nano-scale terms that’s really fast.
In research published in the journal ACS Nano, the speed of the 10-nanometer scale submersibles are fast enough that they can work their way through a solution containing molecules of the same size without being slowed down.
“This is akin to a person walking across a basketball court with 1,000 people throwing basketballs at him,” Tour said in a press release.
Via IEEE Spectrum:
The past few months have proved that hope for nuclear fusion as the ultimate clean and nonpolluting energy source springs eternal. One reactor plan projects a tantalizing gigawatts-per-year net energy out of its still-on-the-drawing-board idea. Another scheme uses the same reaction as the first but seeks smaller-scale reactors. A third uses the familiar “heavy hydrogen” reactions of decades past—deuterium and tritium hydrogen isotopes combining to create helium, neutrons, and energy—but relies on possibly transformative design changes enabled by using the latest superconducting magnets.
To be clear, unexpected errors or oversights could still ground one or all of these efforts. But when so much of the research world is depending on the overdue and overbudget US $20 billion ITER project, each of these efforts counteracts the monoculture mind-set in fusion research that has been the subject of some industry questioning and criticism.
“There’s inertia in having the established magnetic [fusion reactors], and it’s a mature technology that’s being used,” says Dennis Whyte, director of MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center. “But the new superconducting technology has improved over even the last three to four years. Even since we started the project, the capability of the technology has improved.”
Cardiovascular disease kills more people on Earth than anything else—over 17 million a year, and the number keeps going up. Of those deaths, more than 40 percent is due to coronary heart disease. Medicine has drugs that can treat it and practices that can help prevent it, but nobody really knows what causes it or how to cure it. Now, Google and the American Heart Association aim to change that by dropping a $50 million funding bomb on the problem. And as you might expect from a Silicon Valley giant that believes in moving fast and breaking things—an approach that hasn’t always transferred well to basic scientific research—the company isn’t spreading the money around.
In an announcement this month at the American Heart Association meeting in Orlando, Florida, Google Life Sciences and the AHA said the money would go to one team over five years. This isn’t covering the bases. This is, to mix a lot of metaphors, a Manhattan Project. Or as Google likes to call such things: a moonshot.
HRL Laboratories, a research institute that does R&D for Boeing, has developed what they’re calling “the world’s lightest material.” And despite it being 100 times lighter than Styrofoam, it’s actually made out of metal.
The researchers achieved this by creating “a lattice of interconnected hollow tubes with a wall thickness of 100 nanometers, 1,000 times thinner than a human hair,” resulting in a piece of metal (nickel, at least in the prototypes) that is 99.99% air.
A brain prosthesis designed to help individuals suffering from memory loss has been developed by researchers at USC and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.
The prosthesis, which uses a small array of electrodes implanted into the brain, has performed well in laboratory testing in animals and is currently being evaluated in human patients.