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Archive for the ‘engineering’ category: Page 4

May 19, 2024

Coal fly ash helps cut cement content by half in low-carbon concrete

Posted by in categories: engineering, materials

Concrete beams made using fly ash and pond ash in low-carbon concrete mix met Australian standards for engineering.

May 17, 2024

Deep-sea sponge’s ‘zero-energy’ flow control could inspire new energy efficient designs

Posted by in categories: chemistry, computing, engineering, space

Now, new research reveals yet another engineering feat of this ancient animal’s structure: its ability to filter feed using only the faint ambient currents of the ocean depths, no pumping required.

This discovery of natural ‘“zero energy” control by an international research team co-led by University of Rome Tor Vergata and NYU Tandon School of Engineering could help engineers design more efficient chemical reactors, air purification systems, heat exchangers, hydraulic systems, and aerodynamic surfaces.

In a study published in Physical Review Letters, the team found through extremely high-resolution how the skeletal structure of the Venus flower basket sponge (Euplectella aspergillum) diverts very slow deep sea currents to flow upwards into its central body cavity, so it can feed on plankton and other marine detritus it filters out of the water.

May 17, 2024

The Transcension Hypothesis, John M. Smart, 2011

Posted by in categories: alien life, engineering

Keywords: With sufficiently advanced SETI, we might discover brief broadcasts or occasional episodes of minor galactic engineering occurring in small portions of a very few galaxies. But because of the acceleration of complexification and the vast distances between civilizations, it seems impossible that even an earliest-to-emerge civilization, however oligarchic, could prevent multi-local transcensions in any galaxy. In theory, one can imagine a contrarian civilization releasing interstellar probes, carefully designed not to increase their intelligence (and so, never be able to transcend) as they replicate. But what could such probes do besides extinguish primitive life? They certainly couldn’t prevent multilocal transcensions. There seems no game theoretic value to such a strategy, in a universe dominated by accelerating transcension. Finally, if constrained transcension is the overwhelming norm, we should have much greater success searching for the norm, not the rare exception. As Cirkovic (2008) and Shostak (2010) have recently argued, we need SETI strategies that focus on places where advanced postbiological civilizations are likely to live. In the transcension hypothesis, this injunction would include using optical SETI to discover the galactic transcension zone, and define its outward-growing edge. We should look for rapid and artificial processes of formation of planet-mass black holes, for leakage signals and early METI emanating from life-supporting planets, and for the regular cessation of these signals as or soon after these civilizations enter into their technological singularities.

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May 17, 2024

Scientists Test for Quantum Gravity

Posted by in categories: engineering, particle physics, quantum physics

The tension between quantum mechanics and relativity has long been a central split in modern-day physics. Developing a theory of quantum gravity remains one of the great outstanding challenges of the discipline. And yet, no one has yet been able to do it. But as we collect more data, it shines more light on the potential solution, even if some of that data happens to show negative results.

That happened recently with a review of data collected at IceCube, a neutrino detector located in the Antarctic ice sheet, and compiled by researchers at the University of Texas at Arlington. They looked for signs that gravity could vary even a minuscule amount based on quantum mechanical fluctuations. And, to put it bluntly, they didn’t find any evidence of that happening.

Continue reading “Scientists Test for Quantum Gravity” »

May 17, 2024

Rubber-like Stretchable Energy Storage Device Fabricated with Laser Precision

Posted by in categories: chemistry, energy, engineering, wearables

Scientists use laser ablation technology to develop a deformable micro-supercapacitor. Professor Jin Kon Kim and Dr. Keon-Woo Kim from the Department of Chemical Engineering at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH), in collaboration with Dr. Chanwoo Yang and Researcher Seong Ju Park from the Korea Institute of Industrial Technology (KITECH), have achieved a significant breakthrough in developing a small-scale energy storage device capable of stretching, twisting, folding, and wrinkling. Their research has been published in the electronic engineering journal, npj Flexible Electronics.

The advent of wearable technology has brought with it a pressing need for energy storage solutions that can keep pace with the flexibility and stretchability of soft electronic devices.

Micro supercapacitors (MSCs) have emerged as a promising candidate for deformable energy storage, due to high-power density, rapid charging, and long cycle life.

May 15, 2024

Repurposed beer yeast encapsulated in hydrogels may offer a cost-effective way to remove lead from water

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, particle physics

Every year, beer breweries generate and discard thousands of tons of surplus yeast. Researchers from MIT and Georgia Tech have now come up with a way to repurpose that yeast to absorb lead from contaminated water.

Through a process called biosorption, yeast can quickly absorb even trace amounts of lead and other heavy metals from water. The researchers showed that they could package the yeast inside hydrogel capsules to create a filter that removes lead from water. Because the yeast cells are encapsulated, they can be easily removed from the water once it’s ready to drink.

“We have the hydrogel surrounding the free yeast that exists in the center, and this is porous enough to let water come in, interact with yeast as if they were freely moving in water, and then come out clean,” says Patricia Stathatou, a former postdoc at the MIT Center for Bits and Atoms, who is now a research scientist at Georgia Tech and an incoming assistant professor at Georgia Tech’s School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.

May 11, 2024

Discovering optimal conditions for mass production of ultraviolet holograms

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, holograms

Professor Junsuk Rho from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, and Electrical Engineering, Hyunjung Kang and Nara Jeon, PhD candidates, from Department of Mechanical Engineering and Dongkyo Oh, a PhD student, from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) successfully conducted a thorough quantitative analysis. Their aim is to determine the ideal printing material for crafting ultraviolet metasurfaces.

Their findings featured in the journal Microsystems & Nanoengineering (“Tailoring high-refractive-index nanocomposites for manufacturing of ultraviolet metasurfaces”).

Diagram illustrating the composition of nanocomposites for ultraviolet metasurface fabrication. (Top) Diagram illustrating the ZrO 2 nanocomposite’s role in achieving high transfer fidelity ultraviolet metaholograms. (Bottom) Comparison of UV holograms under various solvent conditions. (Image: POSTECH)

May 8, 2024

‘Better than graphene’ material development may improve implantable technology

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering

The team, led by Dipanjan Pan, Dorothy Foehr Huck & J. Lloyd Huck Chair Professor in Nanomedicine and professor of materials science and engineering and of , published their work —the first of its kind, they said—in ACS Nano.

“Borophene is a very interesting material, as it resembles carbon very closely including its atomic weight and electron structure but with more remarkable properties. Researchers are only starting to explore its applications,” Pan said.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to understand the biological interactions of borophene and the first report of imparting chirality on borophene structures.”

May 8, 2024

New high-throughput device to unlock the potential of advanced materials

Posted by in categories: chemistry, engineering, nanotechnology, sustainability

A Birmingham researcher has developed a new high-throughput device that produces libraries of nanomaterials using sustainable mechanochemical approaches.

Dr. Jason Stafford from the University’s School of Engineering invented the platform to create highly controllable reaction conditions and reduce the substantial amount of time researchers spend generating materials in the laboratory.

The benchtop device is a fully automated unit that can be programmed for parallel synthesis to produce a series of novel materials made in subtly different ways, so creating a library of or product formulations for further testing and optimization.

May 8, 2024

“Better Than Graphene” Material May Improve Implantable Technology

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering

Move over, graphene. There’s a new, improved two-dimensional material in the lab. Borophene, the atomically thin version of boron first synthesized in 2015, is more conductive, thinner, lighter, stronger and more flexible than graphene, the 2D version of carbon. Now, researchers at Penn State have made the material potentially more useful by imparting chirality — or handedness — on it, which could make for advanced sensors and implantable medical devices. The chirality, induced via a method never before used on borophene, enables the material to interact in unique ways with different biological units such as cells and protein precursors.

The team, led by Dipanjan Pan, Dorothy Foehr Huck & J. Lloyd Huck Chair Professor in Nanomedicine and professor of materials science and engineering and of nuclear engineering, published their work — the first of its kind, they said — in ACS Nano.

“Borophene is a very interesting material, as it resembles carbon very closely including its atomic weight and electron structure but with more remarkable properties. Researchers are only starting to explore its applications,” Pan said. “To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to understand the biological interactions of borophene and the first report of imparting chirality on borophene structures.”

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