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Aluminum studs on top of a PV panel could boost the efficiency of any solar cell design (I...

A team of researchers at Imperial College London has found that attaching an array of cylindrical aluminum studs on top of a solar cell can dramatically improve the amount of light trapped inside its absorbing layer, leading to electrical current gains as high as 22 percent.  Read More

The TAZ 2 sees the addition of an LCD screen and SD card slot to enable the printing of ob...

Aleph Objects, Inc., maker of the TAZ 3D printer through its LulzBot brand, has released the latest addition to its line of Libre Hardware printers. While bearing a strong resemblance to its predecessor that Gizmag reviewed earlier this month, the TAZ 2 boasts some improvements designed to solidify the printer’s structure and give it standalone functionality.  Read More

The US Department of Defense is pushing for the development of cheap, wearable systems tha...

Innovation is all about putting on the proverbial thinking cap. Now engineers are vying to produce an actual thinking cap – at least one that can measure the most rudimentary signals of thought. The US Department of Defense is pushing for the development of cheap, wearable systems that can detect the brain waves of people and display the data on smartphones or tablets.  Read More

A Paper Generator is used to reveal an e-ink greeting

Disney Research, Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University have released details of another one of their collaborative projects, this one involving thin, flexible generators that can be built into paper items such as the pages of a book. By simply rubbing or tapping one of these pages, users can illuminate LEDs, prompt applications on linked computers, or even activate e-ink displays – no batteries or outlets required.  Read More

A new finding suggests that single graphene sheets retain their outstanding conductive pro...

Scientists at the Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin (HZB) have found that graphene retains its remarkable electrical conductive properties even when it is in close contact with materials like glass and silicon. It could be a key discovery for the development of better thin-film solar cells.  Read More

Using open-source software, TAZ can be adjusted to reach print speeds of up to 200 mm/sec

Boasting the largest print envelope available for less than US$5,000, the LulzBot TAZ is a RepRap-style 3D printer that presents an open, no-frills design. The TAZ 1.0 is LulzBot’s fourth generation printer, and it uses the company’s sixth generation hot-end (the nozzle and extrusion mechanism for 3D printing). This printer uses an open-source format for both its software and hardware, also known as Libre Hardware.  Read More

The tiny eCompass chip provides magnetometer and accelerometer capabilities (Image: STMicr...

STMicroelectronics has announced a new MEMS-based module that integrates a three-axis magnetometer, a three-axis accelerometer, A/D converters, and control logic on a 2 mm x 2 mm x 1 mm surface mount chip, reportedly making it the smallest electronic compass available today.  Read More

The Ultimaker 2 has the same footprint as the Ultimaker Original (338 x 358 x 389 mm) but ...

Ultimaker, which was born in 2011 as an outgrowth of the RepRap project, and which quickly grew to become an important player in the home consumer 3D printing market, has announced its second generation 3D printer. Boasting improved reliability, user-friendliness, and an increased print volume.  Read More

Battheads would allow any device using them to be controlled via a smartphone

There are already a wide variety of devices that can be turned on and off by your smartphone, although they typically need to be Wi-Fi- or Bluetooth-enabled. The makers of Batthead, however, have taken another approach. They're creating Bluetooth-controlled batteries, that will allow any ol' device using them to be powered up or down via your phone.  Read More

Hatem Zeine, the CEO of Ossia Incorporated and inventor of the Cota wireless charging syst...

In 2008, Gartner Research released a report in which it identified the number one IT grand challenge as "Never having to manually recharge devices." Physicist Hatem Zeine has invented what he believes to be the answer to this challenge. The Cota wireless power transmission system uses intelligently steered phased array antennas to focus a beam of microwaves on a receiver module – and only on that module. The inherently safe technology can deliver electrical power up to 30 feet from a central transmitter without any line-of-sight requirement and without interfering with other devices. The system is projected to hit the market in 2015.  Read More

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