Solar Panels

Breakthrough tech could double the amount of energy generated by solar cells

Breakthrough tech could double the amount of energy generated by solar cells

By on May 25, 2016 at 8:10 AM.

Solar power has always seemed on its surface to be the perfect solution to the world’s reliance on fossil fuels. After all, sunlight is free and abundantly available. The problem has always been efficiency, since solar panels generate power far less efficiently than other options. In fact, it takes about 40 square meters of solar panels to generate enough energy to power just one American home for a day, based on average use.

Progress is slowly being made in labs around the world, though you might not know it by looking at the recent performance of solar stocks. But now, a breakthrough in the way solar energy is collected could double the amount of power generated by solar panels without dramatically increasing cost. More →

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Airport Security Scanners

Revolutionary new laser system could detect bombs at airports in microseconds

Revolutionary new laser system could detect bombs at airports in microseconds

By on May 24, 2016 at 9:24 AM.

There’s no evidence that the TSA has ever actually prevented a terrorist attack. In fact the head of the TSA was just forced to step down on Tuesday after an investigation conducted by Homeland Security revealed that 95% of weapons and explosives went undetected as they passed through airport security check points. Ineffective though it may be, everyone can still recognize the importance of airport security. Of course, that doesn’t make it any less painful to endure, especially when you’re running late for your flight and you arrive at a security line that stretches as far as the eye can see.

The good news is that progress is being made that could speed up the security screening process in the future, while also making air travel far more secure. More →

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End of permanent tattoos? Startup develops new high-tech ink

By on May 23, 2016 at 10:00 PM.

End of permanent tattoos? Startup develops new high-tech ink

Tattoos, like diamonds, are usually thought of as acquisitions that last forever. But a startup company called Ephemeral wants to change that.

The five-person firm is developing two products, intended to work together for commitment-phobic tattoo recipients. The first is a new kind of tattoo ink that is designed to break down and disappear after roughly a year. The second is a removal solution, which a tattoo artist can use to trace over the tattoo and make it go away even sooner.

The company’s CEO and co-founder, Seung Shin, explained that the company had its genesis in a tattoo he got on his arm that didn’t sit well with his family. More →

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India Space Shuttle

India’s tiny space shuttle is adorably cute

By on May 23, 2016 at 5:30 PM.

India’s tiny space shuttle is adorably cute

The pinnacle of the space race was the shuttle battle: America’s flew repeatedly, and Russia’s…didn’t. India is the latest country to enter the space shuttle contest, as its Reusable Launch Vehicle blasted off into space early this morning.

As these images of the 22-foot craft show, size isn’t everything when it comes to space.

More →

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Hubble takes stunning Mars close-up pic

By on May 20, 2016 at 10:00 PM.

Hubble takes stunning Mars close-up pic

A new image taken by the Hubble space telescope shows Mars in incredible detail as astronomers prepare for a close-up with the red planet.

Operated by NASA and the European Space Agency, Hubble took the Mars image on May 12. “During May 2016 the Earth and Mars get closer to each other than at any time in the last ten years,” explained the ESA, in a statement.

On Sunday, Mars will “come into opposition,” which refers to the point at which the planet is located directly opposite the Sun in the sky. “This means that the Sun, Earth and Mars line up, with Earth sitting in between the Sun and the Red Planet,” explained the ESA. More →

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Harvard MIT RoboBee Perching

This robotic bee uses static electricity to stick to surfaces

By on May 20, 2016 at 6:50 PM.

This robotic bee uses static electricity to stick to surfaces

Remember the MIT’s RoboBee? The initiative kicked off a couple of years ago, aiming to fix a major problem that we currently have: the bee population is slowly dying, and without bees, we’re pretty much doomed. Last fall we learned that researchers from Harvard created an insect-size robot that can both fly and swim. And now we hear that MIT and Harvard researchers have partnered up to create a RoboBee that can perch. More →

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Flexible Battery Solar Panel

Researchers have created flexible batteries that never need to be recharged

By on May 19, 2016 at 8:49 AM.

Researchers have created flexible batteries that never need to be recharged

One of my biggest gripes with today’s smartwatches is charging — specifically, that I have to plug in my wristputer every night, or it becomes a useless and expensive hunk of metal. But if this flexible solar-powered battery becomes a reality, we could finally have wearables that live up to the hype.

A team from the University of Illinois, Northwest University, South Korea and China developed the battery, which they say is capable of changing its shape to fit in various devices. The various components of the battery and solar cells are integrated into a silicone shell and connected by flexible copper-polymer joints. The result is a charging and storage solution that can stretch and bend by 30 percent without losing its ability to generate solar charge.

More →

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Bionic Eye Implant

Bionic eye restores man’s vision after being blind for 40 years

Bionic eye restores man’s vision after being blind for 40 years

By on May 18, 2016 at 10:12 AM.

John Jameson might not have believed in miracles a year ago, but breakthroughs in modern science have made certain that he does now. The Tatum, Texas man had been blind for more than 40 years after an aggressive infection ended up taking his vision. Jameson would eventually come to terms with his disability and make the best of his situation, but he now has a new outlook on life — literally — after a revolutionary surgery involving a bionic eye implant restored his vision earlier this year. More →

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IBM Drug Zika Ebola Herpes

IBM helped develop a ‘magic bullet’ that might kill Zika, Ebola and other viruses

By on May 12, 2016 at 4:52 PM.

IBM helped develop a ‘magic bullet’ that might kill Zika, Ebola and other viruses

IBM isn’t just a computer company anymore. The IBM Research arm partnered up with the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) in Singapore to create a chemical macromolecule that acts as a “magic bullet” capable of killing all sorts of viral infections. The substance could be used in the future to stave off a wide range of diseases, including Ebola, Zika, herpes, influenza and other viral threats. More →

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