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Noel McKeegan

Boeing Phantom Ray UAS takes off on its maiden flight (Photo: Boeing)

Boeing has successfully kicked-off its test flight program for the Phantom Ray unmanned airborne system (UAS). The fighter-sized technology demonstrator reached an altitude of 7,500 feet and a speed of 178 knots in its first flight on April 27 in the skies above NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base, California. A second successful test flight followed on May 5.  Read More

Intel's 3-D transistors to keep pace with Moore's Law

NASA, the double-helix model, Elvis ... there's a long list of things that emerged during the 1950s which still resonate strongly in 2011, but none more so than the humble silicon transistor. Transistors are the bricks with which the shiny house of modern consumer electronics has been built, but for more than 50 years these bricks have been limited to two dimensions. Now there's a third. Intel has announced that it is putting its revolutionary Tri-Gate 3-D transistor into mass production. The first 22nm microprocessor (codenamed Ivy Bridge) to use the transistors will be rolled-out later this year, delivering huge gains in performance and efficiency compared with chips that use current 2-D planar transistors and helping keep pace with Moore's Law.  Read More

Medigus has developed the world's smallest video camera at just 0.039-inches

Medigus has developed the world's smallest video camera at just 0.039-inches (0.99 mm) in diameter. The Israeli company's second-gen model (a 0.047-inch diameter camera was unveiled in 2009) has a dedicated 0.66x0.66 mm CMOS sensor that captures images at 45K resolution and no, it's not destined for use in tiny mobile phones or covert surveillance devices, instead the camera is designed for medical endoscopic procedures in hard to reach regions of the human anatomy.  Read More

G-form Extreme Sleeve for Laptop put to the test

G-Form has taken its expertise in protecting the bodies of cyclists and skaters and applied it to consumer electronics, first with a case for iPad that's tough enough to withstand a bowling ball attack and now with what's billed as "the world's most rugged case for laptops." Made from a flexible, lightweight material that hardens upon impact, the Extreme Sleeve for Laptop will ship at the end of May in 11”, 13” and 15" sizes. Could be just the thing if you're looking to drop your MacBook off a balcony ...  Read More

The new BlackBerry Bold 9900 and Bold 9300 smartphones will run on BlackBerry OS 7

RIM's BlackBerry Bold line is set for a major upgrade with the imminent arrival of the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 Smartphones. Combining the familiar full QWERTY keypad with a new "Liquid Graphics" touch screen, the new models are the first to run on the new BlackBerry 7 OS and pack 720p HD video, built-in NFC (Near Field Communications) technology, a 1.2 GHz processor and the thinnest BlackBerry form factor yet – 10.5 mm (0.41-inches).  Read More

HBSIA during flight testing in Switzerland (Photo: Solar Impulse)

Solar Impulse is on standby for its first international flight this week. Brussels has been chosen as the destination for the first venture outside Swiss borders, which follows the solar powered aircraft's maiden flight and first overnight flight last year and will mark another important step towards the goal of flying around the world in 2012.  Read More

Mercedes Benz E63 AMG

More power. Less fuel. That's the bare bones of the latest V8 equipped Mercedes AMG performance model – the E 63 AMG. The car's 5.5 liter biturbo V8 gives it a peak output of 386 kW (525 hp) and torque 
of 700 Nm – add on the optional AMG Performance package and it jumps to 410 kW (557 hp) and 800 Nm. Acceleration is specced at zero to 62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 4.2 seconds, top speed 
is 155 mph (250 km/h - electronically limited) and fuel consumption is down almost a quarter on its naturally aspirated predecessor at 24 mpg (9.8 liters per 100 kilometers). Needless to say, there's some impressive tech underlying these figures.  Read More

Caterpillars have inspired a soft-bodied robot that can move fast as well as wriggle into ...

The millions of years of natural selection that lies behind the immense biodiversity found on our planet is fertile ground for keeping robotics research rolling ... in this case, literally. Some caterpillars in the Crambidae family have the amazing ability to spring into a wheel shape and roll away when it's time to get out of Dodge fast, and it is this talent that has inspired the creation of GoQBot – a 3-inch cm long soft-bodied robot that could provide a blueprint for versatile search and rescue robots of the future.  Read More

Sony Tablet: the S1 and S2 devices will hit the market later this year

Sony has announced its intention to crash into the tablet PC market with two devices set for release later this year. Codenamed S1 and S2, both models will support WiFi and WAN (3G/4G) connections and run on the tablet-oriented Android 3.0 OS. There's little in the way of specifications available at this stage, but Sony is clearly looking to stand-out from the crowd in terms of form-factor. The S1 features a 9.4-inch display and looks pretty much like a "traditional" tablet aside from its wedge-shaped "off-center of gravity" design aimed at improving stability, grip and comfort. S2 gets a little more radical with its portable, horizontally hinged design and dual 5.5-inch displays which can be used separately or combined as a single large screen.  Read More

NOVITEC TRIDENTE's supercharged Maserati GranCabrio puts out 590 hp / 434 kW, peak torque ...

Looking to soup-up your supercar? The Maserati-dedicated arm of tuning specialists NOVITEC, a company best known for its Ferrari performance enhancements has turned its attention to the open-top Maserati GranCabrio. The result is a supercharged engine that puts out 590 hp / 434 kW, peak torque of 572 Nm and a top speed of 301 km/h (187 mph). Hold on to your hat!  Read More

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