Archive for the ‘engineering’ category

Jul 22, 2022

MIT Discovers Semiconductor That Can Perform Far Better Than Silicon

Posted by in categories: education, engineering

Researchers from MIT

MIT is an acronym for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. It is a prestigious private research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts that was founded in 1861. It is organized into five Schools: architecture and planning; engineering; humanities, arts, and social sciences; management; and science. MIT’s impact includes many scientific breakthroughs and technological advances. Their stated goal is to make a better world through education, research, and innovation.

Jul 22, 2022

Silk offers alternative to some microplastics

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, food

Microplastics, tiny particles of plastic that are now found worldwide in the air, water, and soil, are increasingly recognized as a serious pollution threat, and have been found in the bloodstream of animals and people around the world.

Some of these microplastics are intentionally added to a variety of products, including agricultural chemicals, paints, cosmetics, and detergents—amounting to an estimated 50,000 tons a year in the European Union alone, according to the European Chemicals Agency. The EU has already declared that these added, nonbiodegradable microplastics must be eliminated by 2025, so the search is on for suitable replacements, which do not currently exist.

Now, a team of scientists at MIT and elsewhere has developed a system based on silk that could provide an inexpensive and easily manufactured substitute. The new process is described in a paper in the journal Small, written by MIT postdoc Muchun Liu, MIT professor of civil and environmental engineering Benedetto Marelli, and five others at the chemical company BASF in Germany and the U.S.

Jul 20, 2022

Grandparents may hold a surprising evolutionary benefit — sparked

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering, evolution, genetics, neuroscience

It’s all about a mutation of genome. Researchers from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine have discovered a set of human gene mutations that prevent cognitive decline and dementia in older adults, according to a new study published on July 9, 2022, in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution. The scientists focused on one of the mutated genes and traced its evolution through its appearance in the human genome.

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Jul 20, 2022

One step closer to providing customized climate control in the office

Posted by in categories: climatology, economics, engineering, sustainability

EPFL researchers have shown that people’s perception of office temperature can vary considerably. Personalized climate control could therefore help enhance workers’ comfort—and save energy at the same time.

Global warming means that heatwaves are becoming ever-more frequent. At the same time, we’re in a global race against the clock to reduce buildings’ energy use and carbon footprint by 2050. This has shone the spotlight on the importance of making the thermal comfort of buildings a strategic and economic priority. And this is the focus of research conducted by Dolaana Khovalyg, a tenure track assistant professor at EPFL’s School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering (ENAC) and head of the Laboratory of Integrated Comfort Engineering (ICE), which is linked to the Smart Living Lab in Fribourg.

In her latest study, published as a brief, cutting-edge report in the journal Obesity, she highlights the benefits of providing personalized thermal conditioning and heating for each office desk, rather than maintaining a standard temperature throughout an open space. Khovalyg and her team came to this conclusion after the human thermo-physiological data they collected showed that individuals display very different levels of thermal comfort under normal office conditions.

Jul 20, 2022

Scientists Want to Make Mars Conducive to Life. With an Artificial Magnetosphere?

Posted by in categories: engineering, environmental, space

Circa 2021

A new study says that we could terraform Mars by creating an artificial magnetic field around it to prevent harmful solar radiation.

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Jul 19, 2022

Scientists hack fly brains to make them remote controlled

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, engineering, genetics, nanotechnology, neuroscience, particle physics

Researchers at Rice University have shown how they can hack the brains of fruit flies to make them remote controlled. The flies performed a specific action within a second of a command being sent to certain neurons in their brain.

The team started by genetically engineering the flies so that they expressed a certain heat-sensitive ion channel in some of their neurons. When this channel sensed heat, it would activate the neuron – in this case, that neuron caused the fly to spread its wings, which is a gesture they often use during mating.

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Jul 19, 2022

Asteroid impacts create diamond materials with exceptionally complex structures

Posted by in categories: asteroid/comet impacts, energy, engineering, existential risks

Shockwaves caused by asteroids colliding with Earth create materials with a range of complex carbon structures, which could be used for advancing future engineering applications, according to an international study led by UCL and Hungarian scientists.

Published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team of researchers has found that formed during a high-energy shock wave from an around 50,000 years ago have unique and exceptional properties, caused by the short-term high temperatures and extreme pressure.

The researchers say that these structures can be targeted for advanced mechanical and electronic applications, giving us the ability to design materials that are not only ultra-hard but also malleable with tunable electronic properties.

Jul 18, 2022

Chemists Just Rearranged Atomic Bonds in a Single Molecule For The First Time

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, particle physics, transportation

So precise.

If chemists built cars, they’d fill a factory with car parts, set it on fire, and sift from the ashes pieces that now looked vaguely car-like.

When you’re dealing with car-parts the size of atoms, this is a perfectly reasonable process. Yet chemists yearn for ways to reduce the waste and make reactions far more precise.

Continue reading “Chemists Just Rearranged Atomic Bonds in a Single Molecule For The First Time” »

Jul 17, 2022

Lockheed Martin gets $59 million order for Stryker cyber and electronic warfare suite

Posted by in categories: energy, engineering, military, space

Lockheed Martin has been busy this year. In April of 2022, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and its U.S. Air Force partner announced that they had completed a free flight test of the Lockheed Martin version of the Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC).

Then just last month, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) awarded the company a contract to construct the nation’s first megawatt-scale long-duration energy storage system. Under the direction of the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center’s (ERDC) Construction Engineering Research Laboratory (CERL), the new system, called “GridStar Flow,” will be set up at Fort Carson, Colorado.

In the same time frame, General Motors and the firm announced their plans to produce a series of electric moon rovers for future commercial space missions. The companies said they plan aim to test the batteries developed by GM, in space later this year. They also set the ambitious goal of testing a prototype vehicle on the moon by 2025.

Continue reading “Lockheed Martin gets $59 million order for Stryker cyber and electronic warfare suite” »

Jul 17, 2022

After Meta, Microsoft, now Google to slow hiring for rest of the year

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, economics, engineering

Tech major Google is reportedly slowing down its hiring processes for the rest of 2022. According to a memo by CEO Sundar Pichai to employees, obtained by The Verge, Google will still support its “most important opportunities”, and focus on hiring engineering, technical and other critical roles.

Until now, Google has remained relatively immune to economic uncertainties, and in fact, its sister brand YouTube did well in Q4 2020 — first year of the Covid-19 pandemic. It was reported that its ad revenue hit $6.9 billion — up by 46% quarter-on-quarter. Pichai, in his memo, also highlights that the company hired approximately 10,000 employees in the second quarter of this year, and has a “number of commitments for Q3”, Pichai said in the memo adding that “Google will pause the hiring process for the rest of the year”.

“For the balance of 2022 and 2023, we’ll focus our hiring on engineering, technical and other critical roles, and make sure the great talent we do hire is aligned with our long-term priorities,” he reportedly wrote in the memo.

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