Science and engineering research space at the nation's research-performing colleges and universities increased 3.5% from fiscal year (FY) 2009 to FY 2011, growing to 202.9 million net assignable square feet (NASF), according to recent data from the National Science Foundation's Survey of Science and Engineering Research Facilities. Biomedical fields account for the majority of the growth.
A team from the University of Cambridge has developed a mechanical amplifier to convert ambient vibrations into electricity more effectively, which could be used to power wireless sensors for monitoring the structural health of roads, bridges, and tunnels.
According to a report this week from the National Science Foundation, university spending on research and development rose 6.3% between fiscal years 2010 and 2011, reaching $65 billion. The figure includes $4.2 billion in expenditures associated with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
With a laboratory breakthrough once thought impossible, an Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis assistant professor has invented a new class of power inverter that could put cheaper and more efficient renewable energy products on the market.
A thread of research pursued in a pan-European collaboration lead by Aalto University scientists has yielded prominent results for the electron microscopy of nitrogen-doped graphene and carbon nanotubes. A recent paper provides a detailed atomistic description of the electron-beam-induced damage in these important structures by combining advanced computational methods with electron microscopy.
A center based at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory has won a highly competitive $12.25 million grant to develop computer codes to simulate a key component of the plasma that fuels fusion energy. The five-year U.S. Department of Energy award could produce software that helps researchers design and operate facilities to create fusion as a clean and abundant source of energy for generating electricity.
Exactly what goes inside advanced lithium-air batteries as they charge and discharge has always been impossible to observe directly. Now, a new technique developed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers promises to change that, allowing study of this electrochemical activity as it happens.
Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new technique that allows users to better determine the amount of charge remaining in a battery in real time. Using the researchers' new technique, models are able to estimate remaining charge within 5%.
A team from Massachusetts Institute of Technology has developed biological circuit components that don't interfere with one another, allowing them to produce the most complex synthetic circuit ever built. The circuit integrates four sensors for different molecules.
Today's life scientists are producing genomes galore. But there's a problem: The latest DNA sequencing instruments are burying researchers in trillions of bytes of data and overwhelming existing tools in biological computing. It doesn't help that there's a variety of sequencing instruments feeding a diverse set of applications. Researchers from Iowa State University are developing a set of solutions using high-performance computing.
Researchers at Rice University are designing transparent, two-terminal, 3D computer memories on flexible sheets that show promise for electronics and sophisticated heads-up displays. The technique is based on the switching properties of silicon oxide.
Eating an apple a day may keep the doctor away, but eating watermelon may just keep the cardiologist at bay. A study from Purdue University and the University of Kentucky showed that mice fed a diet including watermelon juice had lower weight, cholesterol, and arterial plaque than a control group.
The results of scientific tests using replicas of two ancient Egyptian artificial toes, including one that was found on the foot of a mummy, suggest that they're likely to be the world's first prosthetic body parts.
Engineers at the University of Texas at Dallas have used advanced techniques to make the material graphene small enough to read DNA. Shrinking the size of a graphene pore to less than one nanometer, small enough to thread a DNA strand, opens the possibility of using graphene as a low-cost tool to sequence DNA.
At a time when the value of gold has reached an all-time high, Michigan State University researchers have discovered a bacterium's ability to withstand incredible amounts of toxicity is key to creating 24-karat gold.
Our greenhouse gas emissions up to now have triggered an irreversible warming of the Earth that will cause sea levels to rise for thousands of years to come, new research has show. The results come from a study which sought to model sea-level changes over millennial timescales, taking into account all of the Earth's land ice and the warming of the oceans.
The Georgia Institute of Technology has won a $6 million federal grant to design improvements that strengthen the performance and safety of nuclear systems beyond today's capabilities. The three-year project will engage universities, industry partners, and international organizations to develop a novel concept of a light water reactor with inherent safety features.
As researchers have uncovered more and more epigenetic tags, they have begun to wonder how they are all connected. Now, research from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine has established the first link between the two most fundamental epigenetic tags—histone modification and DNA methylation—in humans.
Research by scientists at the University of Bath is challenging claims that nanoparticles in medicated and cosmetic creams are able to transport and deliver active ingredients deep inside the skin. The study discovered that even the tiniest of nanoparticles did not penetrate the skin's surface.
University of Illinois researchers have a new, low-cost method to carve delicate features onto semiconductor wafers using light—and watch as it happens. The researchers' new technique can monitor a semiconductor's surface as it is etched, in real time, with nanometer resolution, using a special type of microscope that uses two beams of light to precisely measure topography.
By mimicking nature's own sensing mechanisms, bioengineers have designed inexpensive medical diagnostic tests that take only a few minutes to perform. The rapid and easy-to-use diagnostic test consists of a nanometer-scale DNA "switch" that can quickly detect antibodies specific to a wide range of diseases.
Diving into a pool from a few feet up allows you to enter the water smoothly and painlessly, but jumping from a bridge can lead to a fatal impact. The water is the same in each case, so why is the effect of hitting its surface so different? This seemingly basic question is at the heart of complex research by a team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology that studied how materials react to stresses, including impacts. The findings could help explain phenomena as varied as the breakdown of concrete under sudden stress and the effects of corrosion on various metal surfaces.
The point of no return: In astronomy, it's known as a black hole. Black holes that can be billions of times more massive than our sun may reside at the heart of most galaxies. Such supermassive black holes are so powerful that activity at their boundaries can ripple throughout their host galaxies. Now, an international team, has, for the first time, measured the radius of a black hole at the center of a distant galaxy.
If you were a bacterium, the virus M13 might seem innocuous enough. It insinuates more than it invades, setting up shop like a freeloading house guest, not a killer. Once inside it makes itself at home, eating your food, texting indiscriminately. Recently, however, bioengineers at Stanford University have given M13 a bit of a makeover; they have parasitized the parasite and harnessed M13's key attributes to create what might be termed as the biological Internet, or "Bi-Fi."
Tiny, fully biocompatible electronic devices that are able to dissolve harmlessly into their surroundings after functioning for a precise amount of time have been created by a research team led by biomedical engineers. Dubbed "transient electronics," the new class of silk-silicon devices promises a generation of medical implants that never need surgical removal, as well as environmental monitors and consumer electronics that can become compost rather than trash.