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Darren Quick

The simplified process converting biomass to HMF

Biofuels continue to steal the spotlight when it comes to the search for a renewable, environmentally friendly replacement for crude oil. While that’s understandable when considering the transport industry, but crude oil is also used in the production of conventional plastics and chemical products such as fertilizers and solvents. Now chemists have learned how to convert plant biomass directly into a chemical building block that can not only be used to produce fuel, but also plastics, polyester and industrial chemicals cheaply and efficiently.  Read More

The electric Tesla Roadster comes out on top of the ethanol powered Saab 9-5 in the miles ...

Running vehicles on biofuels such as ethanol reduces CO2 emissions and offers a way to lessen the world's reliance on oil. While this sounds great from an environmental perspective, the energy required to produce the biofuel and the land clearing for crops that can result means biofuels aren’t necessarily the environmentally friendly solution they initially appear to be. Recognizing this, researchers have analyzed the best way to maximize the “miles per acre” from biomass and discovered that the far more efficient option is to convert the biomass to electricity, rather than ethanol. Another tick for the electric car.  Read More

The 11.6-inch Acer Aspire One AO751h netbook in Sapphire Blue

It seems too many netbooks are never enough, with Acer extending its line to include two new models - the 11.6-inch Acer Aspire One AO751h and the 10.1-inch Acer Aspire One AOD250. The 11.6-inch unit boasts an HD screen and full-sized keyboard, while the 10.1-inch model is thinner and lighter than its predecessor.  Read More

The pico projector is compatible with the iida G9 cell phone

If you’re looking to share some of the video or photos stored on your mobile phone with an audience, then the KDDI pico projector could be just the thing for you. Designed to work with the new KDDI iida G9 mobile phone and the upcoming iidda range, the Toshiba manufactured handset uses DLP display technology. It can project a 480x320 image of between six and 63 inches onto a flat surface or wall up to 8.2 feet (2.5m) away.  Read More

Wanted: the Akai ATT023U USB turntable – PCs need not apply

USB turntables provide an easy way to digitize your collection of vinyl. Usually, it requires a PC. However, a new range of USB turntables from Akai includes a model that lets you record from vinyl, directly to a USB hard drive – without the need of a PC.  Read More

Feed the bra a wedding ring to stop the countdown clock

“Concept” and “bra” aren’t two words you’d typically expect to go together too often. After all, a bra is the epitome of simplicity. As Seinfeld's George Costanza once remarked, “Two cups in the front, two loops in the back. How do they do it?” Well, Japanese lingerie maker Triumph International has complicated the humble undergarment with its concept “Konkatsu bra” – a bra that is designed to help Japanese women search for husbands by proudly declaring they're on the hunt.  Read More

Samsung Movies is compatible with the Samsung Tocco Ultra Edition

Online movie stores aren’t exactly a dying breed, but now European owners of Samsung phones, laptops and PCs have a movie store to call their own with the launch of Samsung Movies. Powered by European digital movie retailer Acetrax, the new store will allow users to download the latest Hollywood releases and TV shows for viewing on compatible Samsung devices.  Read More

The 5-mm implant, right, can monitor how a tumour responds to treatment
 Photo credit: Mic...

A new implantable device that monitors a tumor for weeks, or months, could offer a simpler, less intrusive alternative to taking biopsies, which are traditionally used to diagnose the presence of cancer – and one that potentially offers a greater chance of successful treatment.  Read More

The Demy digital recipe reader can store up to 2,300 recipes and is a great way to share y...

Looks like the Key Ingredient Corporation is looking to be to recipes what Apple is to music. Instead of iTunes, it has the keyingredient.com website that lets people either share recipes publicly or store them privately and, instead of an iPod, it has the Demy – a digital recipe reader – with 7-inch touchscreen and "kitchen safe" casing – that syncs with your online Key Ingredient account.  Read More

The new scaffold mimics bone and cartilage when implanted into a joint

Damage to knee cartilage is one of the more common types of sports injuries. Treatment often involves drilling a hole through the cartilage into the bone to stimulate the bone marrow to release stem cells, transplanting cartilage and the underlying bone from another part of the joint, or removing cartilage cells from the body, stimulating them to grow in the lab and re-implanting them. Now MIT engineers have built a new tissue scaffold that can stimulate bone and cartilage growth when transplanted into knees and other joints, potentially offering a more effective, less expensive – and painful – option to more conventional therapies.  Read More

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