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Richard Moss

Science

Fermi telescope helps close in on the origin of gravitational waves

Astrophysicists made history last year when they detected gravitational waves – the elusive ripples in space-time that were first theorized by Albert Einstein as part of his theory of general relativity in 1916. Early efforts failed to pinpoint the visible light component of the chaotic event that triggered the waves. But now data from NASA's Fermi telescope has reduced the search area by around two-thirds, which will help scientists understand more about the nature of the event and improve their systems for detecting future gravitational wave events. Read More

Quantum Computing

"Quantum data bus" can relocate quantum information

While quantum computing has made great gains in recent years in terms of transistors and logic gates and reprogrammable chips, the technology still lacks one vital component: data transfer. This is a fundamental part of normal microprocessor operation; it involves the routing of information from one location to another. An international team of researchers has successfully trialled a "quantum data bus" that does just that, however, thanks to a technique called perfect state transfer. Read More

Medical

Creation of insulin-releasing cells in a dish offers hope of diabetes therapy

A molecular switch could hold the key to a personalized cell replacement therapy for diabetes. Both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are characterized by an inability to produce (or process) insulin, which is required to regulate blood sugar levels. This has been linked to malfunctioning or failing beta cells in the pancreas, but so far scientists have struggled to produce effective replacement cells in the lab. Now a team at Salk Institute believes the problem has been solved.Read More

Games

Father.IO turns the world into a laser tag playground

The latest real-life take on laser tag uses augmented reality, a small infrared peripheral, and your smartphone's Internet capabilities to put you at war with people both in your area and around the world. Touted as a real-life, massively multiplayer first-person shooter game, Father.IO turns your phone into a virtual weapon.Read More

Robotics

Underwater robot can make its own snap decisions

Two marine scientists have shown that autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) can be programmed to make independent decisions and trigger new missions in real time based on data coming from multiple sensors. They believe this could reveal much about the life of squid and other marine creatures.Read More

Health & Wellbeing

Portable robotic glove enters clinical trials for hand rehabilitation

A new robotic glove for hand rehabilitation swaps conventional rigid electromechanical components for soft fabric with embedded actuators (motors). The glove, dubbed EsoGlove by its National University of Singapore creators, is meant to conform to natural hand movements and is lightweight, portable, and intuitive enough that patients should be able to easily carry out their rehabilitation exercises in their own homes.Read More

Drones

VTOL Kestrel drone morphs into fixed-wing aircraft after takeoff

Nearly all drones currently fall into one of two categories: they are either fixed wing, which means their wings are rigid like an airplane, or they use rotary wings like a helicopter. Fixed-wing drones tend to have longer range and greater carrying capacity than the rotary-wing variety, but they lack the ability to takeoff and land vertically. For humanitarian and agricultural use, the strengths of both types are crucial. It's no surprise, then, that drone maker Autel Robotics has developed a tiltrotor unmanned aircraft that can takeoff vertically and transition into a fixed-wing flight mode once it gets into the air.Read More

Energy

New flow battery projected to cost 60% less than existing standard

A new organic aqueous flow battery technology promises to drastically lower the cost and sustainability of running energy storage systems. The technology, which was developed at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, uses low-cost and sustainable synthesized molecules rather than the usual commodity metals, and could be retrofitted to existing batteries. Read More

Biology

Fluorescent molecules let neuroscientists peer into the mind of a fruit fly

By modifying genes to light up in one of three fluorescent colors during neural signaling, neuroscientists at Northwestern University have managed to (retrospectively) read the minds of fruit flies up to three hours after an event. This new technique could help in efforts to map the circuits within fruit fly brains, and that in turn might provide insights into the workings of the human brain.Read More

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