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Robot 'shadow hand'

December 12, 2014 10:57 am | by ESA | Comments

ESA is developing technologies for advanced human–machine interaction to transfer the human sense of touch to space.                                       

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Neutron CT helps solve battery fire puzzle

December 12, 2014 10:43 am | by Daniel Hussey, NIST | Comments

Earlier this month, the NTSB released its Aircraft Incident Report on a fire aboard a Japan Airlines Boeing 787, concluding that the fire was probably caused by an internal short circuit within a cell of the lithium-ion battery.       

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Seed grants awarded for innovative energy research

December 12, 2014 10:37 am | by Mark Shwartz and Mark Golden, Stanford University | Comments

Stanford University's Precourt Institute for Energy, Precourt Energy Efficiency Center and TomKat Center for Sustainable Energy have awarded eight seed grants totaling about $1.5 million for promising new research in clean technology and energy efficiency.

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New theory could yield more reliable communication protocols

December 12, 2014 7:54 am | Comments

Researchers have begun to describe theoretical limits on the degree of imprecision that communicating computers can tolerate, with very real implications for the design of communication protocols.                                   

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Physics World names top 10 physics breakthroughs of 2014

December 12, 2014 7:47 am | Comments

The first ever landing of a man-made probe onto a comet has been named Physics World Breakthrough of the Year for 2014. From a shortlist of 10 highly commended breakthroughs, the historic achievement by scientists working on the Rosetta mission was singled out by the Physics World editorial team for its significance and fundamental importance to space science.

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RoboSimian beats out Surrogate for spot at DARPA finals

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

RoboSimian was created for the DARPA Robotics Challenge, a competition consisting of several disaster-related tasks for robots to perform. Using extra limbs from RoboSimian, researchers constructed Surrogate. Over the past six months, they have been testing both robots to see which one should compete in the finals.

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Cause of malaria drug resistance in SE Asia identified

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

Growing resistance to malaria drugs in Southeast Asia is caused by a single mutated gene inside the disease-causing Plasmodium falciparum parasite. This finding provides public health officials around the world with a way to look for pockets of emerging resistance and potentially eliminate them before they spread.

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Nanoshaping method points to future manufacturing technology

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

A new method that creates large-area patterns of three-dimensional nanoshapes from metal sheets represents a potential manufacturing system to inexpensively mass produce innovations such as "plasmonic metamaterials" for advanced technologies.

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Scientists measure speedy electrons in silicon

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

An international team of physicists and chemists based at UC Berkeley has, for the first time, taken snapshots of this ephemeral event using attosecond pulses of soft X-ray light lasting only a few billionths of a billionth of a second.                             

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Theory details how ‘hot’ monomers affect thin-film formation

December 11, 2014 2:43 pm | by Mike Williams, Rice University | Comments

Researchers at Rice and the University of Maryland led by Rice theoretical physicist Alberto Pimpinelli devised the first detailed model to quantify what they believe was the last unknown characteristic of film formation through deposition by vacuum sublimation and chemical vapor deposition.

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Stacking 2-D materials may lower cost of semiconductor devices

December 11, 2014 2:34 pm | by North Caroline State University | Comments

A team of researchers led by North Carolina State University has found that  stacking materials that are only one atom thick can create semiconductor junctions that transfer charge efficiently, regardless of whether the crystalline structure of the materials is mismatched.

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New technology tracks carcinogens as they move through the body

December 11, 2014 12:17 pm | by Oregon State University | Comments

Researchers for the first time have developed a method to track through the human body the movement of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, as extraordinarily tiny amounts of these potential carcinogens are biologically processed and eliminated.

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Baby steps toward molecular robots

December 11, 2014 8:32 am | Comments

A walking molecule, so small that it cannot be observed directly with a microscope, has been recorded taking its first nanometer-sized steps. It's the first time that anyone has shown in real time that such a tiny object – termed a "small molecule walker" – has taken a series of steps.

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Meniscus regenerated with 3-D-printed implant

December 11, 2014 8:25 am | Comments

Researchers have devised a way to replace the knee’s protective lining, called the meniscus, using a personalized 3D-printed implant, or scaffold, infused with human growth factors that prompt the body to regenerate the lining on its own. The therapy, successfully tested in sheep, could provide the first effective and long-lasting repair of damaged menisci.

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Physicists explain puzzling particle collisions

December 11, 2014 8:21 am | Comments

An anomaly spotted at the Large Hadron Collider has prompted scientists to reconsider a mathematical description of the underlying physics. By considering two forces that are distinct in everyday life but unified under extreme conditions like those within the collider and just after the birth of the universe, they have simplified one description of the interactions of elementary particles. 

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