NASA often gets criticized for not living up to the hype when it comes to generating everyday technologies. Tang, to take the oft-cited example, was used by NASA, but not invented by the Apollo program. But defenders point to evidence that Space Shuttle program has prompted innovation that could have occurred in no other way.
In a broad new cybersecurity strategy released Thursday, the Defense Department formally declared cyberspace a new warfare domain. As part of the plan, the Pentagon is developing more resilient computer networks so the military can continue to operate if critical systems are breached or taken down.
A consortium that includes a veritable who’s-who of telecommunications and software giants have successfully placed their $4.5 billion cash bid for thousands of patents held by bankrupt telecom-equipment maker Nortel Networks Corp. The patents cover technologies that include data networking, semiconductors and 4G wireless systems. Nortel won three R&D 100 Awards for its products in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
While the United States is still working out its next move as the space shuttle program winds down, China is forging ahead. This year, a rocket will carry a boxcar-sized module into orbit, the first building block for a Chinese space station. Around 2013, China plans to launch a lunar probe and place a rover on the moon, followed by a manned mission sometimes after 2020.
Even as the space shuttle Atlantis has lifted off without a back-up shuttle available for a rescue mission, NASA itself lacks an independent option for reaching space. Designs from private developers may take years to perfect, leaving Soyuz as the only way to reach the International Space Station. Some experts and even former astronauts say that’s a violation of NASA’s own design criteria.
Although more than 100 elements are known to exist to date, only 60–70 of them are available for practical materials. Of those, an increasingly narrow window of useful materials remain abundant. Researchers in Japan are proposing a development scheme called the “ubiquitous element strategy that could focus materials research on those elements that are best able to meet global demand.
In the early days of the shuttle program, it was promoted as a cheap, safe and reliable alternative to conventional rockets. But the United States spent more on the space shuttle than the combined cost of soaring to the moon, creating the atom bomb, and digging the Panama Canal. The benefits of the program, however, and what it did to further science and diplomacy, may be incalculable.
Since 1930, electric clocks have kept time based on the rate of the electrical current that powers them. Power companies make this happen by keeping current frequency as precise as possible, but a new experiment that would allow more frequency variation in the interest of reliability and money savings could throw off clocks in appliances by up to 20 minutes over time.
The U.S. International Trade Commission in Washington is expected to issue a ruling Thursday on Kodak's complaint that its 2001 image-preview patent was infringed by iPhone behemoth Apple Inc., of Cupertino, California, and Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry. The embattled company is hoping to negotiate a licensing deal for the technology worth $1 billion.
According to an extensive investigation by the Associated Press, federal regulators have been working closely with the nuclear power industry to keep the nation's aging reactors operating within safety standards by repeatedly weakening those standards. The report claims that nuclear regulatory officials have often decided original regulations are too strict and has argued that safety margins could be eased without peril.
Groups able to pay the $185,000 application can petition ICANN, the keeper of URL standards, next year for new updates to ".com" and ".net" with website suffixes using nearly any word in any language, including in Arabic, Chinese and other scripts. The decision culminates six years of negotiations and is the biggest change to the system since ".com" made its debut in 1984.
At a global security conference in Paris Friday, Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn III outlined a pilot program in which the government helps the defense industry in safeguarding the information their computer systems hold. The program will share classified threat information and the know-how to employ it with participating defense companies or their Internet service providers.
The Naval Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) show held recently in Alexandria, Va., was the stage for the Office of Naval Research’s announcement of nine partnerships with organizations that focus on kindling student interest in STEM disciplines. They include such endeavors as Sally Ride Science and the Gulf Coast initiative.
The Defense Department famously devised a space-based missile defense system in the 1980s known as "Star Wars." Now its sourcing inspiration from Gene Roddenberry’s classic storyline. The new trademarked 100-year Starship Study concept, conceived by DARPA, is offering half a million dollars to whoever has the best idea for sending people to another star.
This week, conditional loan guarantee commitments were issued for two of the biggest capacity solar power projects in North America: the Mojave Solar Project and the Genesis Solar Project. At 250 MW each, the projects would double the United States’ currently installed concentrated solar power capacity.
Federal regulators are now laying the groundwork for monitoring a new generation of medical devices, drugs, cosmetics, and other nanoscale products. This week the Food and Drug Administration formerly invited industry leaders to weigh in on possible regulations and restrictions for the rapidly emerging industry.
Huawei Technologies Co., a leading Chinese telecommunications company, has flown under the radar on its way to becoming multi-billion dollar company with 110,000 employees (and an R&D 100 Award under its belt). Now, the company wants to become a globally recognized brand alongside the likes of Apple and Cisco Systems.
For some, the glow of lights along Broadway, the Las Vegas Strip or the Sunset Strip in Hollywood mean a fun night out. For an economist, these dazzling lights signify people's pockets are flush with cash; and in fact, a new study confirms it.
Two Rutgers energy and environment researchers recently completed work on a long-term study of consumers’ attitudes toward two high-profile energy sources: coal and nuclear energy. Their work finds that while global warming and safety do factor into Americans’ decisions on these two forms of energy, other factors are at play that figure into their choices.
From the ashes of industrial R&D, smaller technology labs fill in the gaps with a new discipline: industrial forensics.
Both small and large organizations struggle to bring new innovations to market. What can be accomplished if they work together?
Intended to be the most sophisticated rover sent to the Martian surface, NASA's next-generation rover, the Mars Science Laboratory, is already over budget and behind schedule. The price tag has ballooned to $2.5 billion, auditors have found, from $1.6 million. And the project may need still more money to meet its November launch date.
One of China’s biggest, state-owned rare earths miners and producers has been given a monopoly over rare earth mining, processing, and trading in the northern part of the country. The move is an effort by the country’s government to bring the rare earths industry, which provides 97% of global supply, under tighter control.
With Wednesday's landing of Endeavour, just one more space shuttle flight remains, putting an end to 30 years of Florida shuttle launches and more than 535 million miles of orbits controlled at Houston's Johnson Space Center. Now a sense of melancholy has permeated the community that calls itself "the space shuttle family."
The National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) has executed an exclusive licensing agreement with the newly formed Pyrochem Catalyst Corp. for two NETL-developed technologies related to a novel fuel-reforming catalyst. This agreement marks the first time that an NETL-licensed technology has been used as a basis for the creation of a start-up company.