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Transparent solar cells for windows generate electricity

July 20, 2012 9:00 am | by Jennifer Marcus | News | Comments

Researchers in California have recently described a new kind of polymer solar cell that produces energy by absorbing mainly infrared light, not visible light, making the cells nearly 70% transparent to the human eye. The device was made from a photoactive plastic that converts infrared light into an electrical current.

Bioengineers find objects moving in a stream create constructive wakes

July 18, 2012 5:57 am | News | Comments

From driftwood traveling down a river to a blood cell flowing through your artery, objects moving in a stream of fluid are mostly thought to passively go with the flow but not disturb it in controllable ways. Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles have recently found that objects within a confined stream create controllable disturbances that can be used to move mass or heat at high rates, potentially providing simple solutions to performing chemical reactions on particles or cooling microelectronic chips.

World’s fastest camera use to detect rogue cancer cells

July 6, 2012 8:37 am | News | Comments

The ability to distinguish and isolate rare cells from among a large population of assorted cells has become increasingly important for the early detection of disease and for monitoring disease treatments. A new optical microscope could make the tough task a whole lot easier. It uses photonic time-stretch camera technology and is the world's fastest continuous-running camera.

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Team develops world's most powerful nanoscale microwave oscillators

June 26, 2012 4:02 am | News | Comments

A team of University of California, Los Angeles researchers has created the most powerful high-performance nanoscale microwave oscillators in the world, a development that could lead to cheaper, more energy-efficient mobile communication devices that deliver much better signal quality.

Mercury rising

June 22, 2012 10:58 am | News | Comments

A groundbreaking new study led by University of California, Los Angeles climate expert Alex Hall shows that climate change will cause temperatures in the Los Angeles region to rise by an average of 4 to 5 F by the middle of this century, tripling the number of extremely hot days in the downtown area and quadrupling the number in the valleys and at high elevations.

How key enzyme involved in aging, cancer assembles

June 19, 2012 6:02 am | News | Comments

University of California, Los Angeles biochemists have mapped the structure of a key protein–RNA complex that is required for the assembly of telomerase, an enzyme important in both cancer and aging. The researchers found that a region at the end of the p65 protein that includes a flexible tail is responsible for bending telomerase's RNA backbone in order to create a scaffold for the assembly of other protein building blocks.

Rice, UCLA slash energy needs for next-generation memory

June 7, 2012 7:56 am | News | Comments

Researchers from Rice University and the University of California, Los Angeles unveiled a new data-encoding scheme that slashes more than 30% of the energy needed to write data onto new memory cards that use phase-change memory—a competitor to flash memory that has big backing from industry heavyweights.

Optical tweezers help researchers uncover mechanics in cellular communication

June 1, 2012 8:42 am | News | Comments

By using a laser microbeam technology called optical tweezers, University of California, Irvine and University of California, Los Angeles researchers have uncovered fundamental properties of a key molecular signaling system involved with development, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.

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Researchers develop way to strengthen proteins with polymers

May 22, 2012 4:37 am | News | Comments

In a new study, investigators from the University of California, Los Angeles describe how they synthesized polymers to attach to proteins in order to stabilize them during shipping, storage, and other activities. The study findings suggest that these polymers could be useful in stabilizing protein formulations.

Scientists unlock mystery of “handedness”

May 9, 2012 5:37 am | by Melody Pupols | News | Comments

The overwhelming majority of proteins and other functional molecules in our bodies display chirality: They can exist in two distinct forms that are mirror images of each other. Seeking out a reason for why biological systems express chiral preferences, researchers used lithography to make achiral triangles with no handedness. Then physical entropic forces took over and scientists were completely surprised.

Researchers use online crowd-sourcing to diagnose malaria

May 3, 2012 6:28 am | News | Comments

Online crowd-sourcing—in which a task is presented to the public, who respond, for free, with various solutions and suggestions—has been used to evaluate potential consumer products, develop software algorithms, and solve vexing research and development challenges. But diagnosing infectious diseases?

New method IDs nanomaterials that can cause oxidative damage to cells

May 2, 2012 5:39 am | News | Comments

University of California, Los Angeles researchers and their colleagues have developed a novel screening technology that allows large batches of metal-oxide nanomaterials to be assessed quickly, based on their ability to trigger certain biological responses in cells as a result of their semiconductor properties.

Engineers put the squeeze on cells to diagnose disease

May 2, 2012 3:34 am | by Wileen Wong Kromhout and Matthew Chin | News | Comments

Researchers have taken advantage of cells' physical properties to develop a new instrument that slams cells against a wall of fluid and quickly analyzes the physical response, allowing for the identification of cancer and other cell states without expensive chemical tags.

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Fighting disease with a cell phone

April 27, 2012 12:38 pm | News | Comments

A newly developed cell phone-based platform lets health workers accurately read diagnostic tests in the field and chart the spread of diseases worldwide.

Which plants will survive droughts, climate change?

April 9, 2012 11:04 am | News | Comments

New research by University of California, Los Angeles biologists could lead to predictions of which plant species will escape extinction from climate change. Droughts are worsening around the world, which poses a great challenge to plants in gardens and forests. Scientists have debated for more than a century how to predict which species are most vulnerable.

Researchers create molecular Braille to identify DNA molecules

March 28, 2012 4:50 am | News | Comments

Researchers at New York University and the University of California, Los Angeles, developed a method to detect sequence difference in individual DNA molecules by taking nanoscopic pictures of molecules themselves. Using direct molecular recognition, the researchers used nanoparticles to turn DNA molecules into a form of molecular Braille that can be read in the scale of nanometers using an atomic force microscope.

New technique lets scientist peer within nanoparticles

March 22, 2012 5:28 am | News | Comments

University of California, Los Angeles researchers are now able to peer deep within the world's tiniest structures to create 3D images of individual atoms and their positions. Their research presents a new method for directly measuring the atomic structure of nanomaterials.

Graphene supercapacitor holds promise for portable electronics

March 15, 2012 11:28 am | News | Comments

Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles have used a standard LightScribe DVD optical drive to produce electrodes composed of an expanded network of graphene that shows excellent mechanical and electrical properties as well as exceptionally high surface area. These LSG supercapacitors demonstrate high-performance graphene-based electrochemical capacitors that maintain excellent electrochemical attributes under high mechanical stress.

Cell phone-based sensor for detection of E. coli

February 23, 2012 3:46 am | News | Comments

Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles have developed a new cell phone-based fluorescent imaging and sensing platform that can detect the presence of the bacterium Escherichia coli in food and water.

Engineers create record-setting tandem polymer solar cells

February 13, 2012 8:21 am | News | Comments

Researchers at University of California, Los Angeles report a unique way to enhance polymer solar cell performance by building a tandem structure device. The device's architecture has also proven to be widely applicable after the researchers adopted a new material provided by Sumitomo Chemical of Japan, increasing the power conversion efficiency from 8.62% to a new world record of 10.6%.

Study: Electric boost helps brain to learn better

February 10, 2012 6:25 am | by Malcolm Ritter, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

In a recent study, participants played a video game in which they learned the locations of stores in a virtual city. The study showed that they recalled the locations better also received a painless boost from tiny electrodes buried deep inside their brains. The finding may have uses in treating Alzheimer’s disease.

Astronomy team discovers nearby dwarf galaxy

February 8, 2012 9:53 am | News | Comments

A team led by University of California, Los Angeles research astronomer Michael Rich has used a unique telescope to discover a previously unknown companion to the nearby galaxy NGC 4449, which is some 12.5 million light years from Earth. The newly discovered dwarf galaxy had escaped even the prying eyes of the Hubble Space Telescope.

Astronomers solve mystery of vanishing electrons

January 30, 2012 3:08 am | News | Comments

University of California, Los Angeles researchers have explained the puzzling disappearing act of energetic electrons in Earth's outer radiation belt, using data collected from a fleet of orbiting spacecraft. In a paper, the team shows that the missing electrons are swept away from the planet by a tide of solar wind particles during periods of heightened solar activity.

Study: Stem cells may aid vision in blind people

January 24, 2012 7:06 am | by Alicia Chang, Associated Press | News | Comments

Two women who are legally blind from two different incurable conditions appeared to gain some vision after receiving an experimental treatment using embryonic stem cells. Experts caution that discussion of clinical treatment is premature at this stage.

Tiny amounts of alcohol extend a worm's life, but why?

January 23, 2012 6:08 am | News | Comments

Minuscule amounts of ethanol, the type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages, can more than double the life span of a tiny worm known as Caenorhabditis elegans , which is used frequently as a model in aging studies, University of California, Los Angeles biochemists report. The scientists said they find their discovery difficult to explain.

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