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Imaging in 3D reveals never-before-seen defects in platinum nanoparticle

March 28, 2013 12:49 am | News | Comments

A team of scientists in the United States has combine three different imaging methods to produce 3D images and videos of a tiny platinum nanoparticle at atomic resolution that reveal new details of defects in nanomaterials that have not been seen before. Prior to this work, scientists only had flat, two-dimensional images with which to view the arrangement of atoms.

Stampede opens supercomputing gates to research teams

March 28, 2013 12:37 am | News | Comments

A world-class supercomputer called Stampede—which has already enabled research teams to predict where and when earthquakes may strike, how much sea levels could rise and how fast brain tumors grow—was officially dedicated this week at the University of Texas at Austin's Texas Advanced Computing Center. The new research tool will be utilized by thousands of research groups.

New type of solar structure cools buildings in full sunlight

March 27, 2013 2:45 pm | News | Comments

A team of researchers at Stanford has designed an entirely new form of cooling structure that cools even when the sun is shining. The new structure accomplishes two goals. It is an effective a broadband mirror for solar light—it reflects most of the sunlight. It also emits thermal radiation very efficiently within the crucial wavelength range needed to escape Earth's atmosphere.

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Simulations uncover obstacle to harnessing laser-driven fusion

March 27, 2013 7:50 am | News | Comments

A once-promising approach for using next-generation, ultra-intense lasers to help deliver commercially viable fusion energy has been brought into serious question by new experimental results and first-of-a-kind simulations of laser-plasma interaction. So-called fast ignition, this process involves a long-discussed possibility of using a hollow cone to help focus laser energy on the pellet core to induce fusion. Unfortunately, these cones appear to fail in that mission.

Meeting the computing challenges of next-generation climate models

March 27, 2013 7:47 am | News | Comments

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory recently hosted an international workshop that brought together top climatologists, computer scientists, and engineers from Japan and the United States to exchange ideas for the next generation of climate models as well as the hyper-performance computing environments that will be needed to process the data from those models. It was the 15th in a series of such workshops that have been taking place around the world since 1999.

Backpack-sized mini-mapper captures intel in tight spots

March 27, 2013 7:44 am | News | Comments

Engineers have recently developed a portable mapping system—carried in a backpack—that can be used to automatically create annotated physical maps of locations where GPS is not available, such as in underground areas and on ships. The system improves upon algorithms once developed for robots—which are not practical for all environments—and has a built-in allowance for normal human movement, like walking.

Knowing the unknown

March 27, 2013 7:34 am | by Helen Knight, MIT News correspondent | News | Comments

Robot butlers that tidy your house or cook you a meal have long been the dream of science-fiction writers and artificial intelligence researchers alike. But if robots are ever going to move effectively around our constantly changing homes or workspaces performing such complex tasks, they will need to be more aware of their own limitations, according to researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

New model accurately predicts 3D sand flow

March 26, 2013 7:52 am | by Jennifer Chu, MIT News Office | News | Comments

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology have devised a model of granular flow in three dimensions. The team found the model accurately predicts the results of granular flow experiments, including a flow configuration that has long puzzled scientists. The model may also be useful for improving the flow of drug powders, tablets, and capsules in pharmaceutical manufacturing.

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Scientists build a nanoscale glass blower

March 25, 2013 3:43 pm | News | Comments

Using a principle similar to the way plastic bags shrivel and crumple in a fire, researchers at EPFL in Switzerland are using the electrical properties of a scanning electron microscope to change the size of glass capillary tubes at the nanoscale. Their method has already been patented and it could pave the way to many novel applications.

Paint-on plastic electronics

March 25, 2013 7:51 am | News | Comments

Semiconducting polymers are an unruly bunch, but University of Michigan engineers have developed a new method for getting them in line that could pave the way for cheaper, greener, "paint-on" plastic electronics.

Dell board considers 2 new buyout offers

March 25, 2013 7:36 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Dell plans to negotiate with Blackstone Group and investor Carl Icahn over new acquisition bids for the computer maker that rival an offer of more than $24 billion from investors led by founder Michael Dell. Dell Inc. says a special committee of board members has determined the bids from buyout specialist Blackstone and Icahn could be superior to a proposal from Dell and Silver Lake Partners to buy the Texas company for $13.65 per share.

Experts: North Korea training teams of “cyber warriors”

March 24, 2013 4:55 pm | by Youkyung Lee, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Malware shut down 32,000 computers and servers at three major South Korean TV networks and three banks last Wednesday, disrupting communications and banking businesses, officials said. Investigators have yet to pinpoint the culprit, but the focus remains fixed on North Korea, where South Korean security experts say Pyongyang has been training a team of computer-savvy "cyber warriors" as cyberspace becomes a fertile battleground in the standoff between the two Koreas.

Computer simulations yields clues to cell interactions

March 22, 2013 2:20 pm | News | Comments

Cell interact with their surroundings using proteins called integrin, which reside in a cell’s outer plasma membrane. Despite their importance—good and bad—scientists don’t exactly know how integrins work. Scientists have yet to obtain the entire crystal structure of integrin within the plasma membrane, so a computer model of integrin that reveals its molecular dynamics has been developed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researchers.

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Robot meets world

March 22, 2013 7:54 am | by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office | News | Comments

When a robot is moving one of its limbs through free space, its behavior is well described by a few simple equations. But as soon as it strikes something solid, those equations break down. Roboticists typically use ad hoc control strategies to negotiate collisions and then revert to their rigorous mathematical models when the robot begins to move again. Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology are hoping to change that, with a new mathematical framework that unifies the analysis of both collisions and movement through free space.

Dell buyout intrigue heightens as deadline looms

March 21, 2013 5:52 pm | by MICHAEL LIEDTKE - AP Technology Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Michael Dell is about to find out if other bidders think his company is worth more than he does. The answer could come Friday. It marks the end of a 45-day period that Dell Inc.'s board of directors settled on to allow for offers that might top a Feb. 5 agreement to sell the PC maker to CEO Michael Dell and a group of investors for $24.4 billion.

Tessera to restructure DigitalOptics business

March 21, 2013 10:57 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Tessera Technologies Inc. said Thursday that it is restructuring its DigitalOptics business, which makes camera parts for smartphones, to cut costs. Tessera, which also provides chip technology for small electronic devices, said it expects the moves to reduce DigitalOptics' yearly costs by $78 million, or 45%, compared with 2012.

Computer models show how deep carbon could return to Earth's surface

March 21, 2013 9:17 am | News | Comments

Computer simulations of water under extreme pressure are helping geochemists understand how carbon might be recycled from hundreds of miles below the Earth's surface. Carbon compounds are the basis of life, provide most of our fuels and contribute to climate change. The cycling of carbon through the oceans, atmosphere, and shallow crust of the Earth has been intensively studied, but little is known about what happens to carbon deep in the Earth.

Universe ages 80M years; Big Bang gets clearer

March 21, 2013 9:09 am | by Lori Hinnant and Seth Borenstein, Associated Press | News | Comments

The Big Bang theory says the visible portion of the universe was smaller than an atom when, in a split second, it exploded, cooled and expanded rapidly, much faster than the speed of light. The European Space Agency's Planck space probe has looked back at the afterglow of the Big Bang, and results released today have now added about 80 million years to the universe's age, putting it 13.81 billion years old.

Computer system predicts NCAA basketball champion

March 21, 2013 8:03 am | News | Comments

When Georgia Tech opens the doors to the Georgia Dome next month as the host institution for the 2013 Final Four, expect third-seeded Florida to walk out as the national champion. That's the prediction from Georgia Tech's Logistic Regression/Markov Chain (LRMC) college basketball ranking system, a computerized model that has chosen the men's basketball national champ in three of the last five years.

HP develops glasses-free 3D for mobile devices

March 20, 2013 7:55 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Researchers at Hewlett-Packard Co. have developed a way to put glasses-free 3D video on mobile devices with a viewing angle so wide that viewers can see an object more fully just by tilting the screen. Glasses-free 3D is not unique. Nintendo Co. Ltd.'s 3DS handheld allows video game play in 3D without glasses, but it requires players to look straight into the screen with their noses centered.

Magnetic nano-droplet discovery presents telecom opportunity

March 20, 2013 5:06 pm | News | Comments

A team that includes researchers from Sweden has successfully created a magnetic soliton, a spin torque-generated nano-droplet that could lead to technological innovation in such areas as mobile telecommunications. This construct was first theorized 35 years ago and scientists have long believed that they exist in magnetic environments, but until now they had never been observed

Shimadzu, Integrated Analysis bring enterprise-level private-cloud services to laboratories

March 20, 2013 2:56 pm | News | Comments

In today's laboratories, experimental data sets are growing larger, and critical tasks such as data storage, processing, mining, and sharing have become cumbersome, error prone, and expensive. The i3D Enterprise Service, offered by Shimadzu Scientific Instruments and Integrated Analysis Inc., overcomes these challenges by integrating storage, processing, and data mining in an enterprise-level private cloud.

Genomic data is growing, but what does it tell us?

March 20, 2013 2:46 pm | by Susan Meikle and Iddo Friedberg, Miami University | News | Comments

We live in the post-genomic era, when DNA sequence data is growing exponentially. However, for most of the genes that we identify, we have no idea of their biological functions. They are like words in a foreign language, waiting to be deciphered. A new project called CAFA, for Critical Assessment of Function Annotation, is helping channel the flood of data from genome research to deduce the function of proteins.

Wireless sensor diagnoses “stressed” machines remotely

March 20, 2013 10:18 am | News | Comments

Singapore company Hoestar PD Technology is working with that country’s leading research organization, A*STAR, to deploy wireless piezoelectric sensors that will track vibrations and stresses that affect the health of machinery such as motors, pumps and generators. The size of a coin, the sensors increase productivity by saving time, reducing manual checking, and offering precision at detecting defects.

AB SCIEX enhances software to drive micro LC

March 20, 2013 10:10 am | News | Comments

New software and service offerings to simplify and accelerate the integration of micro liquid chromatography (LC) technology into regulated bioanalytical laboratories was introduced this week by AB SCIEX. The new software module supports 21CFR Part 11 and the new IQ/OQ/PQ service to the Eksigent line of LC solutions gives research organizations a new validated approach to micro LC

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