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Science/Technology / Non-flammable Graphene Membrane Developed For Safe Mass Production by Besmart2: 3:02pm On Apr 12, 2017
University of Arkansas researchers have discovered a simple and scalable method for turning graphene oxide into a non-flammable and paper-like graphene membrane that can be used in large-scale production.

"Due to their mechanical strength and excellent charge and heat conductivities, graphene-based materials have generated enormous excitement," said Ryan Tian, associate professor of inorganic chemistry in the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. "But high flammability jeopardizes the material's promise for large-scale manufacturing and wide applications."

Graphene's extremely high flammability has been an obstacle to further development and commercialization. However, this new discovery makes it possible to mass-produce graphene and graphene membranes to improve a host of products, from fuel cells to solar cells to supercapacitors and sensors. Tian has a provisional patent for this new discovery.

Using metal ions with three or more positive charges, researchers in Tian's laboratory bonded graphene-oxide flakes into a transparent membrane. This new form of carbon-polymer sheet is flexible, nontoxic and mechanically strong, in addition to being non-flammable.

Further testing of the material suggested that crosslinking, or bonding, using transition metals and rare-earth metals, caused the graphene oxide to possess new semiconducting, magnetic and optical properties.

For the past decade, scientists have focused on graphene, a two-dimensional material that is a single atom in thickness, because it is one of the strongest, lightest and most conductive materials known. For these reasons, graphene and similar two-dimensional materials hold great potential to substitute for traditional semiconductors. Graphene oxide is a common intermediate for graphene and graphene-derived materials made from graphite, which is a crystalline form of carbon.

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-04-non-flammable-graphene-membrane-safe-mass.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C8846330218

Science/Technology / Stanford Researchers Create Deep Learning That Could Aid Drug Development by Besmart2: 9:57am On Apr 09, 2017
Artificially intelligent algorithms can learn to identify amazingly subtle information, enabling them to distinguish between people in photos or to screen medical images as well as a doctor. But in most cases their ability to perform such feats relies on training that involves thousands to trillions of data points. This means artificial intelligence doesn’t work all that well in situations where there is very little data, such as drug development.

Vijay Pande, professor of chemistry at Stanford University, and his students thought that a fairly new kind of deep learning, called one-shot learning, that requires only a small number of data points might be a solution to that low-data problem.

“We’re trying to use machine learning, especially deep learning, for the early stage of drug design,” said Pande. “The issue is, once you have thousands of examples in drug design, you probably already have a successful drug.”

The group admitted the idea of applying one-shot learning to drug design problems was farfetched – the data was likely too limited. However, they’d had success in the past with machine learning methods requiring only hundreds of data points, and they had data available to test the one-shot approach. It seemed worth a try.

Much to their surprise, their results, published April 3 in ACS Central Science, show that one-shot learning methods have potential as a helpful tool for drug development and other areas of chemistry research.

Other researchers have successfully applied one-shot learning to image recognition and genomics, but applying it to problems relevant to drug development is a bit different. Whereas pixels and bases are fairly natural types of data to feed into an algorithm, properties of small molecules aren’t.

To make molecular information more digestible, the researchers first represented each molecule in terms of the connections between atoms (what a mathematician would call a graph). This step highlighted intrinsic properties of the chemical in a form that an algorithm could process.

With these graphical representations, the group trained an algorithm on two different datasets – one with information about the toxicity of different chemicals and another that detailed side effects of approved medicines. From the first dataset, they trained the algorithm on six chemicals and had it make predictions about the toxicity of the other three. Using the second dataset, they trained it to associate drugs with side effects in 21 tasks, testing it on six more.

In both cases, the algorithm was better able to predict toxicity or side effects than would have been possible by chance.

Beyond giving insight into drug design, this tool would be broadly applicable to molecular chemistry. Already, the Pande lab is testing these methods on different chemical compositions for solar cells. They have also made all of the code they used for the experiment open source, available as part of the DeepChem library.

“This paper is the first time that one-shot has been applied to this space and it’s exciting to see the field of machine learning move so quickly,” Pande said. “This is not the end of this journey – it’s the beginning.”

Source : http://news.stanford.edu/2017/04/03/deep-learning-algorithm-aid-drug-development/

Science/Technology / Researchers Make Major Breakthrough In Smart Printed Electronics by Besmart2: 2:52pm On Apr 07, 2017
Researchers in AMBER, the Science Foundation Ireland-funded materials science research centre hosted in Trinity College Dublin, have fabricated printed transistors consisting entirely of 2-dimensional nanomaterials for the first time. These 2D materials combine exciting electronic properties with the potential for low-cost production. This breakthrough could unlock the potential for applications such as food packaging that displays a digital countdown to warn you of spoiling, wine labels that alert you when your white wine is at its optimum temperature, or even a window pane that shows the day's forecast. The AMBER team's findings have been published today in the leading journal Science.

This discovery opens the path for industry, such as ICT and pharmaceutical, to cheaply print a host of electronic devices from solar cells to LEDs with applications from interactive smart food and drug labels to next-generation banknote security and e-passports.

Prof Jonathan Coleman, who is an investigator in AMBER and Trinity's School of Physics, said, "In the future, printed devices will be incorporated into even the most mundane objects such as labels, posters and packaging. Printed electronic circuitry (constructed from the devices we have created) will allow consumer products to gather, process, display and transmit information: for example, milk cartons could send messages to your phone warning that the milk is about to go out-of-date.

Led by Prof Coleman, in collaboration with the groups of Prof Georg Duesberg (AMBER) and Prof. Laurens Siebbeles (TU Delft, Netherlands), the team used standard printing techniques to combine graphene nanosheets as the electrodes with two other nanomaterials, tungsten diselenide and boron nitride as the channel and separator (two important parts of a transistor) to form an all-printed, all-nanosheet, working transistor.

Printable electronics have developed over the last thirty years based mainly on printable carbon-based molecules. While these molecules can easily be turned into printable inks, such materials are somewhat unstable and have well-known performance limitations. There have been many attempts to surpass these obstacles using alternative materials, such as carbon nanotubes or inorganic nanoparticles, but these materials have also shown limitations in either performance or in manufacturability. While the performance of printed 2D devices cannot yet compare with advanced transistors, the team believe there is a wide scope to improve performance beyond the current state-of-the-art for printed transistors.
Prof. Coleman's publication provides the potential to print circuitry at extremely low cost which will facilitate a range of applications from animated posters to smart labels.

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-04-major-breakthrough-smart-electronics.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C4406020049

Science/Technology / Inventor Of World Wide Web Snags Computer Science's Top Prize by Besmart2: 7:36am On Apr 06, 2017
Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, has snagged one of the most prestigious prizes in computer science: the A.M. Turing Award.

The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), the organization that awards the $1 million prize, announced the Turing Award winner earlier this week. The computer science rockstar has picked up more than a dozen major prizes and honorific titles over the years; for instance, he's earned a place in the Internet Hall of Fame and has been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.

"The first-ever World Wide Web site went online in 1991," ACM President Vicki Hanson said in a statement. "Although this doesn't seem that long ago, it is hard to imagine the world before Sir Tim Berners-Lee's invention."

That invention not only transformed the world in unimaginable ways but was also a technically and conceptually challenging feat, ACM noted. Berners-Lee invented the unique system for locating data on the web (such as the now-ubiquitous URLs that help users navigate to a specific page). He also created early versions of web browsers and envisioned the way all of these conceptual pieces would fit together.
Berners-Lee began his work on the invention of the World Wide Web in response to a practical problem: Back in 1989, physicists at CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research), home of the largest atom smasher in the world, were having trouble sharing their data. Scientists were using a decade-old system called Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), but they couldn't share many types of data in that way. To get around the problem, Berners-Lee invented a whole new system, which included ways to identify any unique object on the web (a uniform resource identifier), a way to send or exchange data (a hypertext transfer protocol, or HTTP), a web browser and hypertext markup language (HTML), which allows a web browser to display a web page complete with links and other web formatting.

The first website (http://info.cern.ch) went live on Aug. 6, 1991. Berners-Lee also pioneered the concept of making the web free and open, by releasing software that anyone could change or update — the seeds of open-source software. Since the humble beginnings of the web, the number of websites has grown to over 1 billion, according to the ACM.

Berners-Lee earned a physics degree from the University of Oxford in 1976 and spent some of his time there using a soldering iron to build a homemade computer, according to a biography from the World Wide Web Consortium, where he is director. He worked at a series of companies before winding up at CERN and, in 1994, founded the World Wide Web Consortium, which is dedicated to making common guidelines and standards for all things internet-related.

For most of his life, Berners-Lee has worked to make information on the web open for everyone to use, and he has continued to be vocal about the evolution of the internet. In 2014, he told Der Spiegel magazine that the amazing collaborative spirit behind the web's invention can't be taken for granted.

Source : http://www.livescience.com/58559-berners-lee-earns-turing-prize.html

Science/Technology / How To Hack A Cell : New Platform Makes It Easier To Program Living Cells by Besmart2: 7:07am On Apr 05, 2017
The human body is made up of trillions of cells, microscopic computers that carry out complex behaviors according to the signals they receive from each other and their environment. Synthetic biologists engineer living cells to control how they behave by converting their genes into programmable circuits. A new study published by Assistant Professor Wilson Wong (BME) in Nature Biotechnology outlines a new simplified platform to target and program mammalian cells as genetic circuits, even complex ones, more quickly and efficiently.

"The problem synthetic biologists are trying to solve is how we ask cells to make decisions and try to design a strategy to make the decision we want it to," said Wong. "With these circuits, we took a completely different design approach and have created a framework for researchers to target specific cell types and make them perform different types of computations, which will be useful for developing new methods for tissue engineering, stem cell research and diagnostic applications, just to name a few."

Wong's approach uses DNA recombinases, enzymes that cut and paste pieces of DNA sequences, allowing for more targeted manipulation of cells and their behavior. The result is a platform named "BLADE," or "Boolean logic and arithmetic through DNA excision," referring to the computer language the cells are programmed with and the computations they can be programmed to carry out. BLADE will allow researchers to use different signals, or inputs, in one streamlined device to control the outputs, or behaviors, of the cells they target.

"The idea was to build a system simple and flexible enough that it can be customized in the field to get any desired outcome using one simple design, instead of having to rebuild and retry a new design every time," said Benjamin Weinberg, graduate student in Wong's laboratory and first author on the paper. "Essentially, with BLADE, you can implement any combination of computations you want in mammalian cells. For this particular paper, we might not have built the particular behavior you need, but we wanted to illustrate that using BLADE, you should be able to build the circuit you need to fulfill the behavior you are looking for."

"Before BLADE, any one of these circuits would have taken several years to build and make functional and then you would have to use trial-and-error to make it work the way you want it to," said Wong. "I have been doing synthetic biology research for 15 years and I've never seen such a complex circuits work on the first try like with this platform. We're excited to get it out there so people can start using it, and we're excited to see what they come up with."

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-04-hack-cell-platform-easier-cells.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C4055996667

Science/Technology / Australian Scientists Can Now Purify Water With Sunlight In 20 Minutes by Besmart2: 6:22am On Apr 03, 2017
Australian chemists have found a way to use sunlight to purify wastewater faster, cheaper, 15 times more efficient than anything currently on the market - all without the need for ultraviolet light.
Using modified titanium dioxide as a photocatalyst that works with sunlight, the technology is different to other major water purification products on the market - since it doesn't need any UV light.

Research group leader Professor Yun Liu from The Australian National University (ANU) said the team's invention was 15 times more efficient than leading commercialised products.

"With innovative chemistry design, we can use our photocatalyst to purify water with natural sunlight instead of UV light and dramatically reduce costs for operators," said Professor Liu from the ANU Research School of Chemistry.

"Our photocatalyst can completely decompose organic pollutants in wastewater in 20 minutes, compared with the leading commercilised products which take one hour to decompose only 26 per cent of the same pollutants."

The new technology could be useful for treating water for human consumption and has potential applications in making self-cleaning building materials, including glass, and splitting water to make hydrogen fuel.

Photocatalysts can also be used to speed up chemical reactions used in industrial processes in automotive, construction, environmental, medical and other sectors. The team added nitrogen and niobium ions in pairs into the titanium dioxide to improve its performance as a photocatalyst.

"It's an important breakthrough for science and industry," Professor Yun Liu said. "With four years of work done in this area, we now understand the science and can rationally design catalysts."

ANU conducted the research in collaboration with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the University of New South Wales, Western Sydney University, and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation. ANU has filed a provisional patent covering the discovery, which involved the design strategy, chemical composition and manufacturing approach.

Source : https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/03/australian-scientists-can-now-purify-water-with-sunlight-in-20-minutes/?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C7952794985

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Science/Technology / World's First Deep-sea Mining Venture Set To Launch In 2019 by Besmart2: 7:04am On Apr 01, 2017
The world's first deep-sea mining operation will kick off in early 2019 when a Canadian firm, Nautilus Minerals Inc., lowers a trio of massive remote-controlled mining robots to the floor of the Bismarck Sea off the coast of Papua New Guinea in pursuit of rich copper and gold reserves.

The machines, each the size of a small house, are equipped with rock-crushing teeth resembling the large incisors of a dinosaur. The robots will lumber across the ocean floor on mammoth treads, grinding and chewing the encrusted seabed, sending plumes of sediment into the surrounding waters and killing marine life that gets in their way. The smallest of the robots weighs 200 tons.

"A lot of people don't realize that there are more mineral resources on the seafloor than on land," said Michael Johnston, CEO of Nautilus, by phone from the company's field office in Brisbane, Australia. "Technology has allowed us to go there."

If Nautilus succeeds, an undersea gold rush could be at hand.

Over two-dozen contracts have already been granted to explore hundreds of thousands of square miles of ocean floor by a United Nations body called the International Seabed Authority (ISA), which regulates areas of the seafloor that lie outside of any national jurisdiction.

"In the seabed, resources are incredibly rich," said Michael Lodge, Secretary-General of the ISA. "These are virgin resources. They're extremely high-grade. And they are super-abundant."

Analysts warn that population growth and a transition to low-carbon economies will test global supply constraints for minerals. Indeed, current levels of mining exploration are not keeping pace with future demand, according to a peer-reviewed paper published in March by a team of researchers led by the University of Delaware's Saleem Ali.

The prospect of mineral demand outstripping supply has led an increasing number of firms to consider operations at the bottom of the ocean, where reserves of copper, nickel, and cobalt are thought to be plentiful, along with lesser amounts of gold and platinum.

"It's no exaggeration to say that there are thousands of years' supply of minerals in the seabed," Secretary-General Lodge said. "There is just absolutely no shortage."

"The planet has been extensively explored on land," he said by phone from New Haven. "I think industry will continue to want to explore for new potential deposits of minerals."

Indeed, mining the ocean floor has been under consideration for decades, but seen as a remote possibility.

In one famous case in 1974, the CIA used a fake ocean floor mining expedition, ostensibly backed by the eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes, as cover for an attempt to hoist a sunken Soviet submarine off the coast of Hawaii.

Source : http://www.livescience.com/58405-worlds-first-deep-sea-mining-venture-set-to-launch-in-2019.html

Science/Technology / Space X Poised To Launch First Recycled Rocket by Besmart2: 8:43am On Mar 30, 2017
SpaceX is poised to launch its first recycled rocket on Thursday, using a booster that sent food and supplies to the astronauts living at the International Space Station in April.

The goal of the launch, scheduled for 6:27 pm (2227 GMT) from Cape Canaveral, Florida, is to send a communications satellite for Luxembourg-based company SES into a distant orbit.

Standing tall at the NASA launchpad, the white Falcon 9 rocket contains a tall, column-like portion known as the first stage, or booster, that propelled the unmanned Dragon cargo ship to space last year, then returned to an upright landing on an ocean platform.

SpaceX, the California-based company headed by internet entrepreneur Elon Musk, has for years been honing the technology of powering its boosters back to careful Earth landings on solid ground and in the water.

So far it has successfully landed eight—five on so-called "drone ships" floating in the ocean, and three on land.

The goal, Musk has said, is to make rocket parts just as reusable as cars, planes or bicycles.

Currently, millions of dollars worth of rocket parts are jettisoned after each launch.

SpaceX officials have said that reusing hardware could slash costs—with each Falcon 9 launch costing over $61 million—by about 30 percent.

While generating plenty of buzz, the novel process still raises concerns for both customers and SpaceX.

They include "worries about it failing, insurance implications, retrofitting turnaround, building up a critical mass of reused first stages in the warehouse," said the global investment banking firm Jefferies International in an April report.

"But the direction of travel is clear."

SpaceX competitor Blue Origin, run by Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, has also successfully landed its New Shepard booster after launch, by powering its engines to guide it down for a controlled, upright landing.

"Reusability allows us to fly the system again and again," said a statement on Blue Origin's website.

"With each flight, we'll continuously improve the affordability of space exploration and research, opening space for all."

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-03-spacex-poised-recycled-rocket.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C1201442363

Science/Technology / How A.I. Is About To Make Your Car Really Smart by Besmart2: 7:44am On Mar 28, 2017
The number of intelligence (A.I.) systems used in infotainment and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) systems will jump from 7 million in 2015 to 122 million by 2025, according to a new IHS Technology report.

IHS's Automotive Electronics Roadmap Report found the install rate of A.I.-based systems in new vehicles was just 8% in 2015, and the vast majority were focused on speech recognition, according to IHS. However, that number is forecast to rise to 109% in 2025, as there will be multiple A.I. systems of various types installed in many cars.

"An artificial-intelligence system continuously learns from experience and by its ability to discern and recognize its surroundings," Luca De Ambroggi, IHS Technology's principal analyst for automotive semiconductors, said in a statement. "It learns, as human beings do, from real sounds, images and other sensory inputs. The system recognizes the car's environment and evaluates the contextual implications for the moving car."

A.I.-based systems will grow to become standard in new vehicles over the next five years -- especially in these two categories:

1. Infotainment human-machine interface, including speech recognition, gesture recognition (such as handwriting recognition), eye tracking and driver monitoring, virtual assistance and natural language interfaces.

2. ADAS and autonomous vehicles, including camera-based machine vision systems, radar-based detection units, driver condition evaluation and sensor fusion engine control units (ECU).

As in-vehicle infotainment systems and ADAS increase in complexity, Ambroggi said, there is a growing need for hardware and software that support artificial intelligence and can emulate the functions of the human brain.

In ADAS, deep learning -- which mimics human neural networks -- presents several advantages over traditional algorithms; it is also a key milestone on the road to fully autonomous vehicles, IHS stated in its report.

"For example, deep learning allows detection and recognition of multiple objects, improves perception, reduces power consumption, supports object classification, enables recognition and prediction of actions, and will reduce development time of ADAS systems," IHS's report stated.

By 2020, Gartner predicts, there will be 250 million cars connected to each other and to the infrastructure around them via Wi-Fi systems that will allow vehicles to communicate with each other and the roadways.

As the amount of information being fed into IVI units or telematics systems grows, vehicles will be able to capture and share not only internal systems status and location data, but also changes in surroundings in real time, according to Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski.

As in-vehicle infotainment systems and ADAS increase in complexity, Ambroggi said, there is a growing need for hardware and software that support artificial intelligence and can emulate the functions of the human brain.

In ADAS, deep learning -- which mimics human neural networks -- presents several advantages over traditional algorithms; it is also a key milestone on the road to fully autonomous vehicles, IHS stated in its report.

"For example, deep learning allows detection and recognition of multiple objects, improves perception, reduces power consumption, supports object classification, enables recognition and prediction of actions, and will reduce development time of ADAS systems," IHS's report stated.

By 2020, Gartner predicts, there will be 250 million cars connected to each other and to the infrastructure around them via Wi-Fi systems that will allow vehicles to communicate with each other and the roadways.

As the amount of information being fed into IVI units or telematics systems grows, vehicles will be able to capture and share not only internal systems status and location data, but also changes in surroundings in real time, according to Gartner analyst Thilo Koslowski.

Source : http://www.computerworld.com/article/3083426/car-tech/heres-how-ai-is-about-to-make-your-car-really-smart.html

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Science/Technology / BMW Is Developing Augmented Reality Powered Vehicles by Besmart2: 7:15am On Mar 27, 2017
Remember the film ‘Minority Report'? Remember how the vehicles in that movie would feed the passenger insane amounts of information while processing its surroundings. Well, it seems like BMW are one of those carmakers that are working on absolutely bat-shit crazy concept vehicles, which will have AI pilots and augmented reality features that look straight out of a science-fiction movie.

Unsurprisingly, BMW has been making some of the wildest versions of their concept cars and making them a reality for car enthusiasts. This time around they decided to amalgamate all their concept cars, flaunting augmented reality technology and how innovation in car technology might look like. And of course, it does look insane as you might expect it to be.

If you pay close attention to the technology that is being shown off, it is worth pointing out that much of this technology already exists out there. Having said that, there are a lot of other features that do not exist yet and it looks like BMW is not going to give up before they make this a reality. It is interesting to foresee a future where all these concept cars might actually dominate our roads and it is a coherent vision for the future BMW is trying to achieve.

Source : http://m.mensxp.com/technology/latest/35789-bmw-is-developing-augmented-reality-powered-vehicles-the-future-looks-absolutely-insane.html

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Science/Technology / Re: Lab Made 'metallic Hydrogen' Could Revolutionize Rocket Fuel by Besmart2: 8:15am On Mar 24, 2017
so hydrogen now exist as an isotope element.science advances simultaneously.
Hydrogen always had an isotope called deutrium and titrium but this is a metallic form quite different from the natural isotope
Science/Technology / Hidrate Spark: The First Smart Water Bottle by Besmart2: 8:13am On Mar 24, 2017
Hidrate Spark is a revolutionary new BPA-Free water bottle that syncs with an app on your phone. It will even integrate with fit bit and apple watch. The website declares that it “Also sync[s] with Apple Health Kit, Google Fit, Jawbone Up, and Under Armour which includes my fitness pal & map my fitness.”This truly smart bottle also glows throughout the day to remind you to drink water. No more unnecessary apps, like iHydrate, that constantly produce alerts to drink more water. A slight glow from the bottle and you’ll know it’s time to take a sip. This can be especially useful during workouts.

Worried about charging a bottle that comes in contact with water? Don’t be! It also comes with a replaceable battery. When it gets low just replace the coin cell battery, and you’re good to go! Hidrate Spark doesn’t just focus on the technology, however. It features a sleek, futuristic design, with a diamond shaped bottle that grips your hand to prevent slippage and spillage. It also comes with a carrying strap and fits in cup holders so you can drive hands free. Let’s not forget those backpack pockets and
bike bottle cages. Hidrate Spark is truly versatile.

Hidrate Spark started as a project for Google Startup weekend in Minneapolis, Minnesota. A girl named Nadya put together a team of University of Minnesota students to build the first smart water bottle prototype. After 54 hours of hard work, they had built what we’ve come to know as Hidrate Spark. They came in third place. It immediately garnered attention as people started asking where they could purchase the bottle. This team of U of M students started producing the product and are now selling them like hotcakes.

If you are looking for a new water bottle, perhaps something innovative and unique, or have just been waiting for a smart water bottle to finally hit the shelves then look no further. Visitwww.hidratespark.comto order yours today. But don’t wait too long as they are quickly selling out!

Source : http://www.uloop.com/news/view.php/231634/Hidrate-Spark-The-First-Smart-Water-Bottle

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Science/Technology / Lab Made 'metallic Hydrogen' Could Revolutionize Rocket Fuel by Besmart2: 7:36am On Mar 22, 2017
Metallic hydrogen, a bizarre form of the element that conducts electricity even at low temperatures, has finally been made in the lab, 80 years after physicists predicted its existence. Scientists managed to create the elusive, electrically conductive hydrogen by squeezing it to incredibly high pressures between two ultra pure diamonds, the researchers reported in a new study.

"No one has ever encountered metallic hydrogen because it's never existed on Earth before," Isaac Silvera, a condensed matter physicist at Harvard University, told Live Science. "Probably the conditions in the universe are such that it has never existed in the universe." In theory, it's possible that metallic hydrogen could be used as an ultralight, extremely powerful rocket fuel, Silvera added.

In 1935, physicists Eugene Wigner and Hillard Bell Huntington predicted that high pressures of around 25 giga pascals (about 246,000 times atmospheric pressure) could force the normal bonds between solid hydrogen atoms to break down, freeing electrons to move around. In simple terms, the normally transparent material would become shiny and reflective, and have other properties associated with metals. (Technically, the definition of a metal is that it conducts a finite amount of electricity even as you cool it toward the lowest possible temperature, absolute zero, Silvera said.)

If the metallic hydrogen maintains its properties even after the high pressure is removed, it's possible it could be used to make a room-temperature superconductor, Silvera said. This could be helpful in producing magnetic-levitating trains or MRI machines that do not require the material to be cooled to liquid helium temperature atures."It's also predicted to be the most powerful rocket propellant that man knows, So, if one could somehow scale it up and make large quantities of it, it could revolutionize rocketry," Silvera said. Basically, because it takes so much energy to squish hydrogen into its metallic state, when they recombine into their molecular form (two hydrogen atoms bonded together), they release huge amounts of heat. And because hydrogen is the lightest element, it would be tens of times lighter than existing rocket propellants. The team wants to follow up on these results by testing whether metallic hydrogen is stable and superconducting at normal temperatures and pressures.

Source : http://www.livescience.com/57645-elusive-metallic-hydrogen-created.html

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Science/Technology / Samsung Voice-assistant Bixby To Debut With New Phone : by Besmart2: 11:00am On Mar 21, 2017
Samsung announced Monday that a voice-powered digital assistant named "Bixby" will debut with a flagship Galaxy S8 smartphone set to be unveiled by the South Korean consumer electronics giant. Bixby enters a crowded field of digital assistants powered by artificial intelligence that includes Apple's Siri, Google Assistant, Microsoft Cortana and Amazon's Alexa. Samsung said Bixby will focus on letting people control mobile apps with spoken directives.

"Bixby will be our first step on a journey to completely open up new ways of interacting with your phone," Samsung Electronics head of research and development Injong Rhee said in a release."Bixby will be a new intelligent interface on our devices."A Galaxy S8 smartphone expected to be unveiled next week will have a set of pre-installed applications that will work with Bixby, according to Samsung.

Samsung late last year bought Viv, an artificial intelligence startup with co-founders who were part of the team that built virtual assistant Siri, which Apple bought some seven years ago. Bixby will differ from digital aides already on the market in ways that include controlling nearly all tasks in applications instead of limited sets, and being flexible when it comes to understanding what users are saying, according to Samsung.

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-03-samsung-voice-assistant-bixby-debut.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C4661224719

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Science/Technology / Wi-fi On Rays Of Light —100 Times Faster, And Never Overloaded by Besmart2: 8:41am On Mar 19, 2017
Slow wi-fi is a source of irritation that nearly everyone experiences. Wireless devices in the home consume ever more data, and it's only growing, and congesting the wi-fi network. Researchers at Eindhoven University of Technology have come up with a surprising solution: a wireless network based on harmless infrared rays. The capacity is not only huge (more than 40Gbit/s per ray) but also there is no need to share since every device gets its own ray of light. This was the subject for which TU/e researcher Joanne Oh received her PhD degree with the 'cum laude' distinction last week.

The system conceived in Eindhoven is simple and, in principle, cheap to set up. The wireless data comes from a few central 'light antennas', for instance mounted on the ceiling, which are able to very precisely direct the rays of light supplied by an optical fiber. Since there are no moving parts, it is maintenance-free and needs no power: the antennas contain a pair of gratings that radiate light rays of different wavelengths at different angles ('passive diffraction gratings'). Changing the light wavelengths also changes the direction of the ray of light. Since a safe infrared wavelength is used that does not reach the vulnerable retina in your eye, this technique is harmless.

If you walk around as a user and your smartphone or tablet moves out of the light antenna's line of sight, then another light antenna takes over. The network tracks the precise location of every wireless device using its radio signal transmitted in the return direction. It is a simple matter to add devices: they are assigned different wavelengths by the same light antenna and so do not have to share capacity. Moreover, there is no longer any interference from a neighboring wi-fi network.

Current wi-fi uses radio signals with a frequency of 2.5 or 5 gigahertz. The system conceived at TU Eindhoven uses infrared light with wavelengths of 1500 nanometers and higher; this light has frequencies that are thousands of times higher, some 200 term hertz, which makes the data capacity of the light rays much larger.

A few other groups are investigating network concepts in which infrared light rays are directed using movable mirrors. The disadvantage here is that this requires active control of the mirrors and therefore energy, and each mirror is only capable of handling one ray of light at a time. The grating used by Koonen and Oh can cope with many rays of light and, therefore, devices at the same time.

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-03-wi-fi-rays-light100-faster-overloaded.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C7548356992

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Science/Technology / Treating Sickle Cell Disease With Gene Therapy by Besmart2: 11:26am On Mar 18, 2017
A gene is a unit of heredity that is passed down from parent to child, and which carries characteristics that become apparent in the child. Each cell of the human body has around 25,000 genes, and each of those genes carry information that determines the individual traits or features of the person. So there is a gene for eye colour, hair colour, skin colour, and so on. However, when some genes are defective or they undergo changes or mutation, illnesses can occur. Illnesses may also occur when there are missing genes which should have played a particular role. Some of the problems with genes may also be inherited from a parent.

One such illness well known to us is sickle cell disease. This is a severe hereditary disease in which the haemoglobin protein that is present in red blood cells to carry oxygen around the body is mutated and abnormal. Red blood cells are customarily round and circular in shape to flow smoothly through our blood vessels, but when oxygen levels are low in the bloodstream, the abnormal haemoglobin that is present in people with sickle cell disease cause the red blood cells to bend into a sickle crescent shape, making it difficult for them to flow through the tiny blood vessels of the body, and consequently may cause severe joint pains and other complications.

The concept behind gene therapy is to use the technology of genetic engineering to replace abnormal genes with healthy ones. Whilst this concept has been around for 30 years, the process became much more accessible with the development of the inexpensive CASPR-Cas9 gene editing technology around two years ago.

In April 2015, scientists in China were able to use the technology to splice out ‘bad’ genes that were present in human embryonic stem cells and replace them with healthy ones. The stem cells, however, were never implanted into women at the time for their development into humans. In December 2015, a speaker at the annual symposium of the American Society of Hematology described possible work in which an infant with sickle cell disease would have his or her stem cells edited to repair the haemoglobin gene, thereby preventing the formation of blood cells that would have caused sickling. The specific work would involve harvesting the blood stem cells of the diseased infant, editing them outside the body with a normal DNA sequence, then returning them to the infant in a bone marrow transplant.

A report in the most recent edition of the new England Journal of Medicine informed that a teenage boy with sickle cell disease appeared to have been cured using the gene therapy technique. The treatment had stopped the painful symptoms of the disease, and the teenager was doing well.
Until preliminary results are verified, however, scepticism will exist regarding whether the positive results obtained in one person will be translated to many more people. Time will tell.

Source : http://m.jamaicaobserver.com/mobile/news/Treating-sickle-cell-disease-with-gene-therapy_92160

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Science/Technology / Utilis Takes Top Water Innovation Prize At Imagine H2o by Besmart2: 12:56pm On Mar 17, 2017
An Israeli tech startup called Utilis has taken top honors at Imagine H2O this year, for technology that can detect underground leaks in underground, potable water supply systems through analysis of satellite imagery. Americans waste 1 trillion gallons of water every year thanks to leaky faucets, faulty sprinkler systems and other small systems. Utilis’ tech can find leaks to systems that are much bigger, serving urban markets, and help utilities to repair them before the waste has a detrimental effect on people living nearby.

Each year, IH2O rallies tech startups to develop solutions for particular problems around our global water supply. This year’s theme was simply, “data.” IH2O President Scott Bryan said, “Data is a building block you must have in water. Communities cannot make big decisions around a desalination plant if they don’t have data about leaks, or how much energy it may takes to move water from point a to point b, for example. Without data you can’t plan, and you can’t do things, big things, in water.”Judges at the IH2O annual event ranged from Silicon Valley venture investors to technologists from water utilities and large industrials, to sustainability experts and policy makers. All 12 companies invited to be finalists in this competition were accepted into the IH2O accelerator. But Utilis also scored a cash prize of$25,000 and will have the option of free business services and mentorship provided by partners of IH2O.

The announcement of the winning water tech innovators fell on a date when President Donald Trump sent an aggressive budget to Congress seeking to dramatically cut funding for the E.P.A., and the United Nations both of which are running multiple initiatives to study and conserve the world’s clean water supply. For example, the E.P.A. runs regional projects like the great Lakes Restoration Initiative. And the United Nations recognizes access to safe and clean drinking water and water for sanitation are human rights. That budget is getting push back. But no matter the outcome me, it’s at least heartening to know that if the U.S. government stops supporting such initiatives financially, and otherwise, some (if too few) private sector organizations are banding together to find technological approaches to water conservation, and protection.

Source : https://techcrunch.com/2017/03/16/utilis-takes-top-water-innovation-prize-at-imagine-h2o/amp/?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C5355986797

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Science/Technology / Cancer Detecting Glasses by Besmart2: 7:31am On Mar 16, 2017
Some people need them to see, others just to read, but a new pair of high-tech glasses could save your life."This is what we call cancer glasses," said Suman Mondal, a graduate student of biomedical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. During surgical procedures to remove cancerous cells, surgeons often have to rely on the naked eye to spot and remove cancerous tumors or other masses. Unfortunately, cancerous tissue can sometimes look an awful lot like healthy tissue."Right now surgeons often miss cancer cells so these left behind tumors, they grow over time," said Mondal.

According to a report from the journal of the American Medical Association, one in four breast cancer patients who have lumps removed need to have a second surgery to remove missed tumor cells. The new glasses, developed by biomedical engineers at Washington University, use virtual reality to light up tiny tumor cells that may go undetected by the naked eye."It basically shows surgeons where exactly the tumor is. It allows them to directly visualize tumors while they're doing the surgery," said Mondal.

As Mondal explains, "We start by injecting the patient with this dye that goes in and accumulates in the tumor."Then the surgeon puts on the glasses."I cannot see through them. What I'm seeing is what the camera on the side is looking at and then sending that information to my eyes," he said. A white LED light allows the surgeon to see a normal image. A near-infrared light makes the dye in the cancer cells glow."Both these signals are captured by the camera here that sends the information to the waist pouch, which does the processing," said Mondal. The two images are superimposed."You'll see the tumor as glowing and everything else is normal," he said. The glasses have been tested on people with breast and skin cancer and in animal studies with pancreatic and brain cancers.

Source : https://www.insidescience.org/video/cancer-glasses-detect-tiny-tumors?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C7126711030

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Science/Technology / New Laser Beam Tech Could Help Sniff Out Weapons Grade Uranium : by Besmart2: 7:49am On Mar 15, 2017
Researchers at the University of Michigan have announced a new technique that detects enriched uranium from a long distance with the help of lasers.

The technology could prove useful in the search for illicit nuclear activity. According to the scientists, the technique uses a process known as laser filamentation, which uses very short, intense laser pulses. The pulses run through the air and create a plasma channel along the beam line that serves as a sort of “optical fiber.”

The technique keeps the pulses in a small, focused space. The plasma is created using uranium and the air and provides an opportunity for the uranium to bond with oxygen. Energy stored in the bond between the oxygen and uranium then makes it detectable, according to the University of Michigan, which added that the technique can sniff out whether the uranium is ordinary uranium-238 or fission-prone uranium-235. "These molecules radiate just slightly different colors, depending on whether we are looking at uranium-235 or uranium-238," said Igor Jovanovic, professor of nuclear engineering and radiological sciences at the University of Michigan in a press release.

Current technology detects uranium-235 through its spontaneous fissions and can also cause fissions by shooting neutrons into suspect items. It also has the capability to “see through” packaging and detect uranium-235 when it is deliberately shielded or disguised. The new technology requires the uranium to be exposed, but can detect it from a couple miles away from the back of a truck, a backpack kit, or even a drone, according to Jovanovic, who added that the technology could useful for nuclear forensics.

Source: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2017/03/14/new-long-distance-laser-beam-tech-could-help-inspectors-sniff-out-weapons-grade-uranium.amp.html
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Science/Technology / All In The Wrist: Smart Jacket Houses Touch-screen Tech by Besmart2: 7:24am On Mar 14, 2017
The jean jacket is getting a 21st-century upgrade: Levi's and Google are planning to launch a new"smart" jacket later this year, according to news reports. The companies' so-called Project Jacquard was first announced in June 2015 as a line of"connected" clothing that would interact with wearers' smart phones,reported Tech Times. The so-called Commuter Jacket was unveiled in May 2016, and Levi's and Google revealed more details about the smart jacket project this weekend at the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, Tech Times said. The companies said the jacket will cost $350and will be available this fall.

The garment can interact with a person's smartphone via Bluetooth technology. Conductive fabric on the connected jacket's wrist acts as a control panel for the wearer's smartphone.

In a video about Project Jacquard, Ivan Poupyrev, technical program lead at Google's Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) group, explained how the jacket works. Conductive threads have replaced some of a textile's original threads, so the woven-in technology can recognize simple touch gestures — similar to what a touch screen does, Poupyrev said."The tech is becoming a design element like a zipper, so it can be used in many normal ways," Poupyrev said during the SXSW presentation,reported Ars Technica. "I believe this is going to be the first commercial product which takes the touch interaction of the screen and puts it on an actual product."

Wearers can use the smart jacket to answer incoming calls, change music or get directions, said a promotional video made by Levi's. The Bluetooth device is attached to the garment as a cuff and connects the 15 conductive threads to the wearer's smartphone; batteries for the device are designed to last about two days,reported Engadget. Other than the conductive fabric and Bluetooth cuff, the jacket looks like a standard denim Levi's piece. It's even washable, Engadget said, as long as the Bluetooth cuff isn't attached.

Source : http://amp.livescience.com/58239-google-levis-to-release-smart-jean-jacket.html

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Science/Technology / This House Was 3D Printed In Less Than 24 Hours by Besmart2: 6:55am On Mar 12, 2017
A new house has been erected in a town outside Moscow, but this home was not built in the traditional sense — it was constructed with 3D printing.

The first 3D-printed residential home, engineered by the tech startup Apis Cor, took less than a day to construct and cost under $11,000 to complete. A mobile 3D printer created the building's concrete walls and partitions as a fully connected structure, rather than printing the building in panels at an off-site facility as is usually done, the company said. The portable machine was then removed from the building, and a group of contractors completed the home — adding the roofing and windows, and finishing the interior. undefinedBy shifting the construction of the building's shell to 3D printing, Apis Cor aims to prove that this type of construction can be "fast, eco-friendly, efficient and reliable."

"We want to help people around the world to improve their living conditions," Nikita Chen-yun-tai, Apis Cor's founder and inventor of the mobile printer,said on the company's website. "That's why the construction process needs to become fast, efficient and high-quality as well. For this to happen, we need to delegate all the hard work to smart machines."The first example of this work is a cozy, 400-square-foot (37 square meters) home with an unusual, curved shape. The curved design of the home was chosen to demonstrate the 3D printer's ability to print the construction material in any shape, according to Apis Cor.

Inside, the 3D-printed home has all of the standard features of a traditionally built house. The studio-style dwelling has a hall, bathroom, living room and compact kitchen. Apis Cor partnered with Samsung on the demonstration house; the electronics giant provided the home's appliances, including a TV with the same curvature as the living-room wall. Apis Cor estimated that the total cost of the demonstration house's construction was about $25 per square foot, or $275 per square meter. Of the total$10,134 it cost to build the home, the windows and doors were the most expensive components, the company said.

Source :

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Science/Technology / New Nanofiber Marks Important Step In Next Generation Battery Development by Besmart2: 7:50am On Mar 11, 2017
One of the keys to building electric cars that can
travel longer distances and to powering more homes with renewable energy is developing efficient and highly capable energy storage systems. Materials researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology have created a nanofiber that could help enable the next generation of rechargeable batteries and increase the efficiency of hydrogen production from water electrolysis.

In a study that was published February 27 in Nature Communicationsand was sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the researchers describe the development of double perovskite nanofiber that can be used as a highly efficient catalyst in ultrafast oxygen evolution reactions - one of the underlying electrochemical processes in hydrogen-based energy and the newer metal-air batteries.

"Metal-air batteries, such as those that could power electric vehicles in the future, are able to store a lot of energy in a much smaller space than current batteries," said Meilin Liu, a Regents Professor in the Georgia Tech School of Materials Science and Engineering. "The problem is that the batteries lack a cost-efficient catalyst to improve their efficiency. This new catalyst will improve that process."

Perovskite refers to the crystal structure of the catalyst the researchers used to form the nanofibers."This unique crystal structure and the composition are vital to enabling better activity and durability for the application," Liu said.

That increase in catalytic activity comes in part from the larger surface area achieved with nanofibers, the researchers said. Synthesizing the perovskite structure into a nanofiber also boosted its intrinsic activity, which also improved how efficiently it worked as a catalyst for oxygen evolution reactions (OER).

Beyond its applicability in the development of rechargeable metal air batteries, the new catalyst could also represent the next step in creating more efficient fuel cell technologies that could aid in the creation of renewable energy systems."Solar, wind, geothermal - those are becoming very inexpensive today. But the trouble is those renewable energies are intermittent in nature," Liu said. "When there is no wind, you have no power. But what if we could store the energy from the sun or the wind when there's an excess supply. We can use that extra electricity to produce hydrogen and store that energy for use when we need it."That's where the new nanofiber catalysts could make a difference, he said.

"To store that energy, batteries are still very expensive," Liu said. "We need a good catalyst in order for the water electrolysis to be efficient. This catalyst can speed up electrochemical reactions in water splitting or metal air batteries."

Source : https://m.phys.org/news/2017-03-nanofiber-important-battery.html?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C3360061498

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Science/Technology / MIT Shows Off A Smart Tattoo That Can Turn Your Skin Into A Touchpad by Besmart2: 7:54am On Mar 09, 2017
The MIT Media Lab and Microsoft Research set out to create on-skin user interfaces using gold leaf, which is commonly found in craft stores, as a conductor. Piggybacking on the trend in body-art and metallic jewelry-like temporary tattoos, the team decided to repurpose gold leaf because it is “robust to movements and skin deformations during motion…[and] both workable and aesthetic in appearance.” Looks like fashion statements? but they include other materials and electrical components that make the tattoos interactive.

The tattoos can turn into an interface that can be used, for example, as a trackpad or a button to remotely control your phone. Alternatively, they can track and show you information about yourself. For example, by including thermochromic displays that change color in reaction to heat, the tattoos can show you your body temperature.

A third possible function is wireless communication. The tattoo could include an NFC (near field communications) tag, an electrical component that includes small microchips to store data that can be read by phones or other NFC devices nearby. In the near future, the technology could serve as a substitute for identification, subway cards, and even movie tickets, DuoSkin’s lead researcher Cindy Hsin-Liu Kao said in an interview with Quartz.

Kao calls DuoSkin a “project” and not, as you might expect, a product or prototype. The team hopes that others will read their research and use the information as a basis to create their own personalized on-skin wearables.

Although this isn’t the first time researchers have tried to use the skin as a touchscreen, previous iterations have proved to be expensive and required a device to project an interface onto the skin. Other innovations that have attempted to bring electronics to temporary tattoo-style applications includes UV detectors and blood alcohol measurements but no technology has been as simple and affordable as DuoSkin.

Source : https://qz.com/759572/smart-tattoo-turns-your-skin-into-a-touchpad-and-stores-data-on-microchips/?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C6394325848

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Science/Technology / Facial Recognition Software Is Going To The Next Level by Besmart2: 7:56am On Mar 08, 2017
Facial recognition systems — computers that can verify a person’s identity from a digital image or video still — have been around for a few years now. Following a recent explosion in big data analytics and artificial intelligence, facial recognition software is about to spread well beyond security cameras and criminal databases. Computers are becoming so good at recognizing faces that soon enough consumers will be able to use them to make purchases, book tickets and unlock doors simply by looking into a camera lens and letting the software make rapid simultaneous measurements of the face that’s as distinct as a fingerprint. This far more secure, AI-powered facial recognition software would be more convenient and create new exciting apps and hardware, but it could also let security forces track and identify people with far more precision.

Brian Bergstein, an editor at large for MIT Technology Review, said the publication decided to designate facial recognition as one of the 10 new technologies to watch this year because of the boost it’s received from artificial intelligence.“It’s not so much facial recognition itself as a technology; it’s the new applications that facial recognition is making possible,” Bergstein told Salon. “What we’ve really highlighted here is the fact that when you combine facial recognition technology with deep learning, the AI technique that’s emerged over the last few years, what you get is facial recognition that’s good enough to identify people even when video of them is grainy or even if the video is shot at an odd angle.”

Indeed, this may be one of the profound advancements and possibly the most disturbing. With extreme accuracy, the new technology can take a blurry image and identify what parts of the image should be used to create the fingerprint-like facial profile. The results have been extremely accurate, according to Knight. Deep learning is a relatively new form of artificial intelligence involving a network of complex algorithms that are loosely based on the neural networks of a human brain. It’s basically a very potent pattern recognizer that draws from an immense amount of data that enables computers to do things like automatically add accurate colors to black-and-white photos or visually translate the text of a restaurant menu snapped by a smartphone camera.

Indeed, as facial recognition technology grows more powerful, it may also heighten privacy concerns. Like many emerging technologies that rely on collecting massive amounts of data, it will be up to the public and lawmakers to decide how far they want to compromise privacy in exchange for convenience.

Source : http://www.salon.com/2017/02/23/creepy-but-impressive-facial-recognition-software-is-going-to-the-next-level/

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Science/Technology / The World's First Photonic Neural Network Has Arrived by Besmart2: 7:19am On Mar 07, 2017
As developments are made in neural computing, we can continue to push artificial intelligence further. A fairly recent technology, neural networks have been taking over the world of data processing, giving machines advanced capabilities such as object recognition, face recognition, natural language processing, and machine translation.

These sound like simple things, but they were way out of reach for processors until scientists began to find way to make machines behave more like human brains in the way they learned and handled data. To do this, scientists have been focusing on building neuromorphic chips, circuits that operate in a similar fashion to neurons. Now, a team at Princeton University has found a way to build a neuromorphic chip that uses light to mimic neurons in the brain, and their study has been detailed in Cornell University Library.

The researchers proved that the chip is capable of super-fast computing by demonstrating that it could crunch a mathematical differential equation 1,960 times more quickly than a typical central processing unit, which uses electrons.

Optical computing and the ultrafast processing speeds it is capable of could be the driving force behind tomorrow's machine learning tools. Algorithms that predict trends in the stock market, wearable tech that can detect diseases or mitigate conditions like visual impairment, super-smart drone's that can improve agriculture…these could just be some of the many applications for optical computing.

Source : https://futurism.com/computing-at-light-speed-the-worlds-first-photonic-neural-network-has-arrived/?_e_pi_=7%2CPAGE_ID10%2C4042451666

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Science/Technology / New Cancer-hunting ‘nano-robots’ To Seek And Destroy Tumors by Besmart2: 6:34am On Mar 06, 2017
It sounds like a scene from a science fiction novel – an army of tiny weaponised robots travelling around a human body, hunting down malignant tumours and destroying them from within. But research in nature Communications today from the University of California Davis Cancer Centre shows the prospect of that being a realistic scenario may not be far off. Promising progress is being made in the development of a multi-purpose anti-tumour nanoparticle called “nanoporphyrin” that can help diagnose and treat cancers.

Cancer is the world's biggest killer. In 2012, an estimated 14.1 million new cancer cases were diagnosed and around 8.2 million people died from cancer worldwide. This year, cancer surpassed cardiovascular diseases to become the leading cause of death in Australia; 40,000 Australians died as a result of cancer last year. It’s no wonder that scientists explore every possible technology to efficiently and safely diagnose and treat the disease.

A nanometre is a very small unit of length, just one billionth of a metre. Nanotechnology looks at building up incredibly tiny, nano-level structures for different functions and applications.

One such nanoparticle-based application is the development of precise cancer diagnostic technology and safe, efficient tumour treatment. The only problem is nanoparticles must be tailored to specific jobs. They can be time-consuming and expensive to research and build.

If a tumour-recognition module is installed in a probe nano-robot (inorganic particle), the armed nano-robot particles can get into tumour tissue and activate a measurable signal to help doctors better diagnose tumours. It has been a huge challenge to integrate these functions on the one nanoparticle. It’s difficult to combine the imaging functions and light-absorbing ability for phototherapy in organic nanoparticles as drug carriers. This has, until now, hampered development of smart and versatile “all-in one” organic nanoparticles for tumour diagnosis and treatment.

Source : http://www.iflscience.com/technology/new-cancer-hunting-nano-robots-seek-and-destroy-tumours/

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Science/Technology / DNA Computer Enables Controlled Drug Delivery by Besmart2: 8:20am On Mar 04, 2017
A team of researchers has developed an intelligent DNA computer that can enable controlled drug delivery into the bloodstream. The team, from Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, believes this new method will lead to the development of smart drugs that more effectively treat autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and Crohn's disease. The team, led by Professor of Biochemical Chemistry Maarten Merkx, published their findings in the nature Communications journal.

DNA computing is a largely experimental field of scientific study. Using a combination of DNA, biochemistry, and molecular biology hardware, researchers seek to use DNA sequencing for data storage and to perform complex calculations. The goal of this new field is to create nano-computers using DNA instead of mechanical parts. The resulting machines would be able to store immense amounts of data and make complex calculations faster than inorganic equipment. Some scientists believe DNA computers may one day replace silicon-based hardware.

DNA computing methods, due to their organic nature, allow medicines to work more effectively with the body’s natural defenses. Researchers compare the body to a security system with facial recognition. Previous research has focused on creating a machine that is recognized by the body, similar to the way a security system would recognize an authorized person. Professor Merkx’s method adds the ability to recognize the presence of antibodies. The identification and measurement of antibodies is a crucial step in diagnosing and treating disease. Antibody levels are also a factor when calculating the dosage of therapeutic drugs. With DNA nano-computers able to detect and measure antibodies while performing complex analyses, researchers are hopeful machines can be programmed to carry out actions in response to certain measurements. Merkx’s team successfully used DNA computing to control the activity of enzymes. The professor believes it is possible to apply this technique to therapeutic antibodies. This should result in better absorption of therapeutic substances. When used as a delivery system, these computers will be able to decide how much medicine to release into the bloodstream, based on the antibodies in the bloodstream.

Researchers are working on ways to use the technology in the fight against chronic diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and Crohn’s Disease. These conditions are often treated with the same drugs. The dosage is dependent on the condition it is meant to treat. Smart drugs would be able to deliver the most accurately therapeutic dose of medication. This would allow for more effective treatment. It would also reduce the overall cost of treatment and reduce side effects.

Source: http://www.worldhealth.net/news/dna-computer-controlled-drug-delivery/

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Science/Technology / New Technology May Make Interplanetary Travel On Electromagnetic Propulsion by Besmart2: 8:26am On Mar 01, 2017
One of the biggest hurdles to interplanetary space travel has always been fuel: how can you possibly carry enough to get you to the outer reaches of the solar system? Well, the fuel-conscious scientists at NASA may have cause to celebrate. Their colleagues at the Johnson Space Center recently tested an electromagnetic (EM) propulsion drive, which could replace traditional propellant during space travel. Although EM Drives have been tested in the past, the folks at Johnson were the first to conduct such trials under similar conditions found in space-in a vacuum.

It was long-believed that EM Drives worked great in theory, but could not overcome certain fundamental principles of physics to be applied in the real world. That all changed last summer when a team of advanced propulsion researchers from NASA eagle works, led by Harold "Sonny" White, presented their findings at a conference in Cleveland, Ohio. And the key to their success lay in the Quantum Vacuum. The practical application of EM Drives to spaceflight (and more specifically, space stations) was brought one step closer to reality in 2010 by Professor Juan Yang in China, whose research showed that such drives may provide the necessary power to enable the International Space Station to function without the need for energy re-boosts from visiting vehicles. The only problem was overcoming the complex physics of propulsion in space. That's where White's team stepped in.

By performing the tests in a vacuum, White's team was able to show that the thrust produced by EM Drives elucidated by Professor Yang's research could actually work within the extraordinary environment of space,eliminating the need for propellant, thereby extending the boundaries of space travel. What's more, the technologies required for EM Drives are already in use on high-power communication satellites.

And how might EM Drives facilitate future space flight? If all goes as planned, EM Drives could revolutionize interplanetary travel. Craving adventure? How about a 9-month expedition to Saturn? Looking for something a little closer to home? How about a 70-day excursion to Mars? And for those who abhor a long flight, with EM Drive propulsion the moon is only four short hours away.

Source: http://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/6029/20150503/no-fuel-no-problem-new-technology-may-make-interplanetary-travel-on-electromagnetic-propulsion.htm

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Science/Technology / Table Tennis Gets 'first' Robotic Coach by Besmart2: 5:52pm On Feb 28, 2017
If you're interested in learning how to play table tennis, a robot in Japan is up for the coaching job, and the bot has even earned a Guinness World Record for its tutoring skills. The robot, called FORPHEUS, was named the "first robot table tennis tutor" for its ability to play and teach the sport. Guinness World Record officials said the robot's "unique technological intelligence and educational capabilities" earned it the title. The record-breaking robot uses vision and motion sensors to track a match, with cameras following the ball 80 times per second.

Beyond game play, the cameras also help FORPHEUS in its role as a teacher, according to its developers. The robot can project an image of where the ball will land to help a competitor or student. Algorithms and artificial intelligence also allow FORPHEUS to rate players, assessing their gameplay to better tailor the lessons.

However, Japanese electronics company Omron Corp. developed FORPHEUS not only to teach the game of table tennis, but to help "harmonize" the human-robot relationship, lead developer Taku Oya told the Guinness World Records."At the moment it is a human who teaches a robot how to behave or teach," Take said in a statement. "But in the next 20 years it may be possible that a robot teaches a robot or a robot develops a robot."

Source: http://www.livescience.com/57996-table-tennis-robot-guinness-world-record.html

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