UBC breakthrough opens door to $100 ultrasound machine

Engineers at the University of British Columbia have developed a new ultrasound transducer, or probe, that could dramatically lower the cost of ultrasound scanners to as little as $100. Their patent-pending innovation—no bigger than a Band-Aid—is portable, wearable and can be powered by a smartphone. Conventional ultrasound scanners use piezoelectric crystals to create images of […]

DARPA Plans a Major Remake of U.S. Electronics

The U.S.Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is launching a huge expansion of its Electronics Resurgence Initiative, boosting the program to US $1.5 billion over five years. And while some of the research efforts will be just what you’ve come to expect from the agency that brought you disposable drones, self-driving cars, and cameras that can […]

MIT Discovers Way to Mass-Produce Graphene in Large Sheets

The team’s results are the first demonstration of an industrial, scalable method for manufacturing high-quality graphene that is tailored for use in membranes that filter a variety of molecules, including salts, larger ions, proteins, or nanoparticles. Such membranes should be useful for desalination, biological separation, and other applications. Source: mit

Porous silk fiber traps heat, hides a rabbit from IR camera

To mimic polar bear hair and to turn it into a weavable thread, the researchers turned to another natural fiber: silk. Instead of using the silk fiber directly, the silk was purified and dissolved in a liquid. The solution was then spun and extruded through a ring that was cooled. The idea is that the […]

New lithium-air battery survives hundreds of cycles

Batteries supply electrons by undergoing reversible chemical reactions. That has meant that all the reactants have to be inside the battery, which adds to its weight and volume. Lithium-air batteries could potentially change that situation. At one electrode, they have pure lithium metal rather than a lithium-containing chemical. At the other, the lithium reacts with […]

In field tests, device harvests water from desert air

You really can extract clean drinking water right from the air, even in the driest of deserts, MIT researchers have found. They’ve demonstrated a real-world version of a water-harvesting system based on metal organic frameworks, or MOFs, that they first described last year. Source: mit

New study tracks the evolution of stone tools

For at least 2.6 million years, humans and our ancestors have been making stone tools by chipping off flakes of material to produce sharp edges. We think of stone tools as very rudimentary technology, but producing a usable tool without wasting a lot of stone takes skill and knowledge. That’s why archaeologists tend to use […]

Is Google Going Underground with Hypersonic Tech?

Google is carrying out research on hypersonics, probably for new technologies to slash the cost of geothermal energy and tunneling. It could also be acquiring a Washington-based startup called HyperSciences that has already built prototype devices. Source: ieee

Technique to see objects hidden around corners

A driverless car is making its way through a winding neighborhood street, about to make a sharp turn onto a road where a child’s ball has just rolled. Although no person in the car can see that ball, the car stops to avoid it. This is because the car is outfitted with extremely sensitive laser […]