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Archive for the ‘engineering’ category

May 23, 2022

New electronics cooling tech enables 740% increase in power per unit volume

Posted by in categories: engineering, materials

Tarek Gebrael, a UIUC Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering, explains that the existing solutions suffer from three shortcomings – first, they can be expensive and difficult to scale up. Second, conventional heat spreading approaches generally require that the heat spreader and a heat sink be attached on top of the electronics device. Unfortunately, in many cases, most of the heat is generated underneath the electronic devices, meaning that the cooling mechanism isn’t where it is needed the most.

And third, Gebrael explained, the heat spreaders can’t be installed directly on the surface of the electronics. They require a layer of “thermal interface material” sandwiched between them to ensure good contact. However, due to its poor heat transfer characteristics, that middle layer also introduces a negative impact on thermal performance.

Now, researchers have come up with a new solution to address all three of those problems. First, they used copper as a primary material, which is relatively inexpensive. They then made the copper coating that entirely “engulfs” the device, says Gebrael, “covering the top, the bottom, and the sides… a conformal coating that covers all the exposed surfaces” – so that no heat-producing regions are neglected. And finally, the new solution removes the need for a thermal interface material and a heat sink.

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May 20, 2022

Quantum engineering research makes waves at Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg and Northern Virginia campuses

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, quantum physics

Virginia Tech researchers are exploring quantum applications to improve communications systems, bring new methods for securing data, make devices more energy efficient, and make computers smaller.

May 18, 2022

DARPA, IBM Neurosynaptic Chip and Programming Language Mimic the Brain

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, neuroscience

Engineering is often inspired by nature—the hooks in velcro or dermal denticles in sharkskin swimsuits. Then there’s DARPA’s SyNAPSE, a collaboration of researchers at IBM, XX, and XX universities. Not content with current computer architecture, SyNAPSE takes its cues from the human brain.

May 18, 2022

Engineering 2D semiconductors with built-in memory functions

Posted by in categories: computing, engineering, transportation

A team of researchers at The University of Manchester’s National Graphene Institute (NGI) and the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) has demonstrated that slightly twisted 2D transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDs) display room-temperature ferroelectricity.

This characteristic, combined with TMDs’ outstanding optical properties, can be used to build multi-functional optoelectronic devices such as transistors and LEDs with built-in memory functions on nanometre length scale.

Ferroelectrics are materials with two or more electrically polarisable states that can be reversibly switched with the application of an external electric field. This material property is ideal for applications such as non-volatile memory, microwave devices, sensors and transistors. Until recently, out-of-plane switchable ferroelectricity at room temperature had been achieved only in films thicker than 3 nanometres.

May 18, 2022

Imperial students find innovative new use for lobster shell waste

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, sustainability

The four students are studying Innovation Design Engineering, a course delivered jointly by Imperial College London and the Royal College of Art. They have built a series of machines that extract, form and recycle the material, which they believe could be used as a replacement for various single-use plastics.

The project uses chitin, the world’s second most abundant biopolymer, (a naturally produced plastic). Chitin is found in crustaceans, insects and fungi, but needs to be chemically extracted from the source before it can be turned into the material.


The group of students have developed new manufacturing processes to transform lobster shell waste into biodegradable, recyclable bioplastic.

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May 18, 2022

Termination Shock: Trying To Cool the Earth

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering

A group of 60 scientists called for a moratorium on solar geoengineering last month, including technologies such as stratospheric aerosol injection (SAI). This involves a fleet of aeroplanes releasing aerosol particles – which reflect sunlight back to outer space – into the atmosphere, cooling down the Earth.

SAI might make the sky slightly whiter. But this is the least of our concerns. SAI could pose grave dangers, potentially worse than the warming it seeks to remedy. To understand the risks, we’ve undertaken a risk assessment of this controversial technology.

A cooler Earth means less water would be evaporating from its surfaces into the atmosphere, changing rainfall patterns. This could produce ripple effects across the world’s ecosystems – but the exact nature of these effects depends on how SAI is used. Poor coordination of aerosol release could lead to extreme rainfall in some places and blistering drought in others, further triggering the spread of diseases.

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May 17, 2022

Dams are engineering marvels that produce massive amounts of energy every day; but how do they really do it?

Posted by in categories: energy, engineering

🤔

#engineering

May 16, 2022

Eavesdroppers can hack 6G frequency with DIY metasurface

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, engineering, internet

Crafty hackers can make a tool to eavesdrop on some 6G wireless signals in as little as five minutes using office paper, an inkjet printer, a metallic foil transfer and a laminator.

The wireless security hack was discovered by engineering researchers from Rice University and Brown University, who will present their findings and demonstrate the attack this week in San Antonio at ACM WiSec 2022, the Association for Computing Machinery’s annual conference on security and privacy in wireless and mobile networks.

“Awareness of a future threat is the first step to counter that threat,” said study co-author Edward Knightly, Rice’s Sheafor-Lindsay Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. “The frequencies that are vulnerable to this attack aren’t in use yet, but they are coming and we need to be prepared.”

May 15, 2022

Making a Magnetosphere for Mars

Posted by in categories: engineering, environmental, space

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We believe Mars may once have had oceans and sky, but lost them from a lack of a magnetosphere. How does this happen, and how can we create a magnetosphere for Mars so we can terraform and live on it?

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Martian Magnetosphere paper by R.A. Bamford: https://arxiv.org/abs/2111.06887
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May 13, 2022

Revolutionary New Qubit Platform Could Transform Quantum Computing

Posted by in categories: engineering, quantum physics, supercomputing

The digital device you are using to view this article is no doubt using the bit, which can either be 0 or 1, as its basic unit of information. However, scientists around the world are racing to develop a new kind of computer based on the use of quantum bits, or qubits, which can simultaneously be 0 and 1 and could one day solve complex problems beyond any classical supercomputers.

A research team led by scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, in close collaboration with FAMU-FSU College of Engineering Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering Wei Guo, has announced the creation of a new qubit platform that shows great promise to be developed into future quantum computers. Their work is published in the journal Nature.

“Quantum computers could be a revolutionary tool for performing calculations that are practically impossible for classical computers, but there is still work to do to make them reality,” said Guo, a paper co-author. “With this research, we think we have a breakthrough that goes a long way toward making qubits that help realize this technology’s potential.”

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