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Tiny ‘stingray’ robot swims on light-activated rat cells

By on July 20, 2016 at 7:30 PM.

Tiny ‘stingray’ robot swims on light-activated rat cells

Harvard researchers have created a penny–sized stingray robot that can swim using genetically-modified rat heart cells activated by LED light.

It’s the latest in a new line of robotics that combines silicone with living cells. Prior to the stingray, the team, led by Kit Parker, professor of bioengineering and applied physics at Harvard University, built a robot jellyfish out of similar material back in 2012. When the robot’s heart cells were electrically stimulated, the jellyfish swam around… aimlessly. There was no way to steer it.

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Biohybrid Robot Living Tissue

Scientists built a biohybrid robot out of living tissue and 3D printed parts

By on July 19, 2016 at 9:16 AM.

Scientists built a biohybrid robot out of living tissue and 3D printed parts

If you’re already scared of the emergence of robots and powerful artificial intelligence, then you’re not going to like the thought of building machines out of living tissue. Scientists have built a functioning biohybrid robot made of living tissue and 3D printed parts, which is an incredible accomplishment. However, the robot prototype can only move at speeds of 0.04cm per minute right now, and it doesn’t yet have the wits that might put us in peril. More →

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Mars 2020: NASA

NASA’s new Mars rover doesn’t look finished

By on July 15, 2016 at 8:00 PM.

NASA’s new Mars rover doesn’t look finished

This is the final design for NASA’s newest Mars rover, which should be romping around the surface of our red neighbor. It’s packed full of technology, with bigger wheels to get around, and better cameras to look at things.

But in my highly uneducated, non-rocket-scientist opinion, it also looks like the engineers got 90% of the way there and said fuck it.

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Hyperloop One Lawsuit

Hyperloop One is turning into a hot mess of legal drama

By on July 12, 2016 at 5:50 PM.

Hyperloop One is turning into a hot mess of legal drama

Hyperloop One is supposed to be one of the pioneering companies on the cutting edge of disrupting the transportation industry for greater efficiency, etc. But if the no-holds-barred lawsuit filed by a co-founder today is anything to go by, the company is not in good shape.

In the suit, former co-founder Brogan BamBrogan alleges that top execs engaged in threats, physical abuse, bullying, and even financial misconduct. In turn, the defendants have called the lawsuit “delusional,” “nonsense,” and “a measure of Hyperloop’s success.” Not to mention a total PR disaster.

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Battery Technology Advancements

Revolutionary new battery runs on gravity

By on July 8, 2016 at 11:23 PM.

Revolutionary new battery runs on gravity

It’s the same old story: batteries are holding us back. Technology is advancing so quickly across so many industries, but the next-generation batteries needed to power all of these advancements more efficiently are nowhere to be found. Researchers are hard at work on improving existing battery tech though, and they’re also developing exciting new kinds of batteries that could someday proliferate. Now, scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology think they may be on an exciting path toward building a new type of liquid battery that uses gravity to generate energy. More →

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Chemical Drones UK Scientists

UK scientists are trying to grow military drones in a lab with advanced chemistry and 3D printing

By on July 8, 2016 at 9:47 PM.

UK scientists are trying to grow military drones in a lab with advanced chemistry and 3D printing

More often than not, some of the most cutting edge technology comes not from Silicon Valley, but from military companies and various branches of the armed forces. With generous budgets at their disposal, it’s hardly a surprise that grandiose research projects involving items like stealth motorcycles and drones that can both fly and swim are often rooted in military research.

That said, the following research initiative is a bit outlandish even for military standards. Over the past few days, word emerged that two military-backed defense companies based out of Scotland and England are currently working on technology that appears to be a wacky, futuristic and intriguing marriage between advanced chemistry and 3D printing.

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World's Largest Solar Roof

The world’s largest solar roof now sits atop a casino in Las Vegas

By on July 8, 2016 at 6:15 PM.

The world’s largest solar roof now sits atop a casino in Las Vegas

People like to say that Everything is bigger in Texas, but the adage might apply more appropriately to Las Vegas. Vegas is that uniquely American city where over the top extravagance is the norm and arguably unrivaled by any other city across the globe. In short, Las Vegas is a city that can aptly summed up with a singular adjective: Big.

Big hotels, big fights, big money, big stars, larger than life shows — that’s Vegas. Which is why it’s not all too surprising that Las Vegas is now home to the largest solar roof in the entire world.

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694940094001_5022930621001_070616-storyful-fish-1280

‘Ghost fish’ seen for first time deep under the Pacific

By on July 6, 2016 at 9:45 PM.

‘Ghost fish’ seen for first time deep under the Pacific

Deep beneath the ocean’s surface, scientists have spotted for the first time a living “ghost fish,” an eel-like creature in the family of Aphyonidae.

The roughly four-inch long fish has eerie white skin and a tadpole-like tail, and was captured on camera on a ridge about 8200 feet underwater in the Pacific.

“I am sure that this is the first time a fish in this family has ever been seen alive,” Bruce Mundy, a fisheries biologist with NOAA, said in the video. “This is really an unusual sighting.” More →

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Root Canal Cavity Treatment

Scientists figured out how to regenerate teeth and eliminate root canals

By on July 4, 2016 at 6:13 PM.

Scientists figured out how to regenerate teeth and eliminate root canals

Root canals are always fun, right? In reality, word that you need a root canal is some of the worst news most people get at the dentist. Whenever your dentist tells you that’s the next procedure you’re going have to go through, two things are clear beyond the pain you’re about to endure: One, that your throbbing will finally soon go away, and the second is that the tooth that’s getting the root canal is dead.

However, researchers have come up with a new kind of biomaterial that not only encourages the natural regeneration of teeth, but also might eliminate root canal procedures for good. More →

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Cloned Cattle

Researchers in Texas are cloning cattle to make better tasting steaks

Researchers in Texas are cloning cattle to make better tasting steaks

By on July 1, 2016 at 7:10 AM.

Think back to the best steak you’ve ever eaten. The texture was tender and buttery, juices seeped out with each slice, the marbling was ideal, and the flavor was life-changing. Now imagine that each and every steak you eat is just as incredible as that one perfect steak. It might sound far-fetched, but researchers in Texas have begun to use cloning to improve beef yield and quality from cattle ranches, and it could lead to a sea change for the beef industry. More →

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