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Ben Coxworth

Ben Coxworth

An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.

Follow Ben:

— Outdoors

The Whip FR-II could be that "stealth snowboard" you've been seeking

To the casual observer, a snowboard is simply … well, an oblong board with boot bindings on it. Cheetah Ultra Sports' new carbon composite The Whip FR-II, however, looks decidedly more high-tech. Reportedly "inspired by fighter jets and exotic cars," it's claimed to offer several advantages over conventional boards – besides looking like something that Batman would take to the slopes.

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— Aircraft

A pinch of graphene could keep airplane wings ice-free

Both airplane wings and helicopter rotor blades are subject to one problem – they can both ice up. Although de-icing solutions can be applied when aircraft are on the ground, that doesn't stop ice from eventually forming once they're in the air. That's why scientists at Texas' Rice University have developed a new graphene-based coating that continuously melts ice by conducting an electrical current.

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— Health and Wellbeing

Smart socks keep watch over diabetics' feet

Many diabetics have limited feeling in their feet, and thus aren't aware when pressure is being exerted on one area of the foot for a prolonged period. As a result, they can develop chronic skin ulcers or other injuries, which can in turn sometimes lead to amputations. That's why a team from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is creating SenseGO – pressure-monitoring electronic socks.

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— Health and Wellbeing

New blood pressure tech says ciao to arm cuffs

Generally, if a doctor wants to know a patient's blood pressure, they have to place a cuff around the person's arm and inflate it. Not only can this be uncomfortable for the patient, but it also only indicates what their blood pressure is at the time that the test is performed. That's why scientists at Australia's Monash University are developing an alternative – a cuffless blood pressure estimation system that is worn for hours at a time, wirelessly transmitting real-time readings.

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— Drones

Loon Copter drone flies, floats and dives underwater

Along with the usual flying drones, there are also models that can move along the surface of the water like boats, that can explore underwater like submarines, or that can even both fly and float. As is the case with its feathered namesake, however, Oakland University's Loon Copter can fly, land on the water to see what's under the surface, and then dive down to check out what it sees.

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— Health and Wellbeing

A-Gear exoskeletons keep users' arms useful

Affecting approximately 1 in 5,000 boys, Duchenne muscular dystrophy causes the victim's muscles to shrink throughout their lifetime, often to the point that the arms and legs can't be used at all. That's why the european Stichting Flextension (Flextension Foundation) started up the A-Gear project four years ago. The multi-partner effort is designing two arm-worn exoskeletons, intended to help Duchenne patients retain the use of their arms.

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