During the Archean era, roughly 2.5 billion years ago, the Earth was unrecognizable. Rather than being the blue marble it is today, it was, as Univ. of Washington doctoral student Giada Arney put it, a “pale orange dot.” According to the Univ. of California Museum of Paleontology, the planet’s atmosphere likely consisted of methane, ammonia and other toxic gases. A highly unsuitable environment for most Earth life today.
New technologies have the potential to shed light on old discoveries. Stephen Gatesy, a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Brown Univ., knows that firsthand. Back in 1995, Gatesy and colleagues were digging in Greenland when they found a pair of jaw bones inside a small limestone slab.
The editors of R&D Magazine have announced the Winners of the 53rd annual R&D 100 Awards, an international competition that recognizes the 100 most technologically significant products introduced into the marketplace over the past year. The R&D 100 Awards recognize excellence across a wide range of industries, including telecommunications, optics, high-energy physics, materials science, chemistry and biotechnology.
“In space no one can hear you scream.” So goes the tagline for Ridley Scott’s 1979 film “Alien.” While today’s astronauts are unlikely to encounter Xenomorphs on spacefaring expeditions throughout the solar system, NASA’s nose is to the grindstone regarding other dangers the oxygen-less environment presents.
Terra Universal has introduced new cleanroom control systems. Users can use Terra’s control systems to automatically control fan/filter units in modular cleanrooms to achieve desired air change rates and room pressure. Multiple Tier levels with increasing feature availability and sophistication are available to match cleanroom size, floor-plan complexity and budget.
Researchers at Bringham Young Univ. have devised a system to speed up the process of making life-saving vaccines for new viruses. Their concept is to create the biological machinery for vaccine production en masse, put it in a freeze-dried state and stockpile it around the country. Then, when a new virus hits, labs can simply add water to a “kit” to rapidly produce vaccines.
Scientists are taking the temperature of ancient seas to discover how they’ve shaped global climate. In a study published in Nature Geoscience, a Yale Univ.-led research team explored differences in ocean temperatures over the last 5 million years. The team created a historical record for sea temperature gradients and compared it with state-of-the-art climate model simulations.
The recent boom in 3-D printing has driven innovations in fields as disparate as haute couture and medical implants. But little is known about the safety of the materials used. In a new study scientists showed that some 3-D printed parts are highly toxic to zebrafish embryos. Their findings could have implications not only for aquatic life but also for hobbyists, manufacturers and patients.
The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) will no longer support biomedical research on chimpanzees. The organization’s director, Francis S. Collins, released a statement on the subject Wednesday.
An insulin pill being developed by researchers at the Univ. of California, Santa Barbara may in the near future give another blood sugar management option to those who suffer from diabetes. The novel drug delivery technology may also apply to a wide spectrum of other therapies.
In certain nanomaterials, electrons are able to race through custom-built roadways just one atom wide. To achieve excellent efficiency, these 1-D paths must be paved with absolute perfection—a single errant atom can stop racing electrons in their tracks or even launch it backwards. Unfortunately, such imperfections are inevitable.
Dark matter is called "dark" for a good reason. Although they outnumber particles of regular matter by more than a factor of 10, particles of dark matter are elusive. Their existence is inferred by their gravitational influence in galaxies, but no one has ever directly observed signals from dark matter.
Using technology invented at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, doctors may one day be able to monitor patients’ vital signs by having them swallow an ingestible electronic device that measures heart rate and breathing rate from within the gastrointestinal tract.
An astronomical milestone has been reached. Australian and American scientists have captured the first-ever image of a planet still forming. The research was published in Nature. Located 450 light-years from Earth, the star LkCa 15 is surrounded by a sprawling disk of dust and gas, perfect ingredients for a developing planet.
The first annual R&D 100 Awards & Technology Conference was held at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada, November 12-13, 2015. Industry leaders were in attendance at this thought-provoking science and technology educational program, the first of its kind for Advantage Business Media, the parent company of R&D Magazine.