Highlights from the 2015 Geneva Motor Show

Science

A new advance could lead to bigger, cheaper and high-fidelity holograms (Photo: D. Smalley...

Microsoft's recent HoloLens announcement has reignited interest in holographic displays, but the current state of affairs suggests that this technology may still be too expensive and limited to become truly widespread. Researchers at Brigham Young University (BYU) and MIT are bridging the gap with a new important step toward the next generation of high-bandwidth, color-accurate holographic video displays that could span the size of an entire room at one tenth the cost of state of the art devices.  Read More

An STFC study has revealed how a 200 year old Indian shamsheer was constructed (Image: STF...

A team from the UK's Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC) has used neutron diffraction techniques to study the composition of a 200 year old Indian shamsheer sword. The non-destructive study, which revealed details of how the weapon was constructed, would not have previously been possible due to the rarity of the object.  Read More

The GIFT development could lead to the new steel alloy replacing aluminum in lightweight, ...

By altering metal alloy at a nanoscale level, researchers at the Graduate Institute of Ferrous Technology (GIFT) at Pohang University of Science and Technology in South Korea have created a new material that has the strength of steel and the lightness of titanium alloy. Made from an amalgam of steel, aluminum, carbon, manganese, and nickel, the new alloy promises to be low-cost and readily available due to its mix of common minerals.  Read More

Is that really grouper? The QuadPyre RT-NASBA can tell you (Photo: Shutterstock)

According to a study conducted by international non-profit group Oceana, approximately 30 percent of seafood sold in the US is fraudulently mislabeled. That's why scientists at the University of South Florida have created a handheld sensor that can determine if what's being offered is in fact the real thing.  Read More

A research team led by Illinois professor Xiaodong Song has found that the Earth's inner c...

You may have been taught in school that the Earth is composed of layers, broadly separated into a rocky crust and mantle, outside of a liquid outer core and a small, solid iron inner core. It turns out, according to new research, that the inner core may itself have a distinct internal structure – an inner-inner core about half the diameter of the whole inner core. And this could reveal insights about our planet and its history.  Read More

The fishing boat, with its four chambers visible at the front

An old fishing trawler has been given new life in Norway, where it's now anchored offshore in the Stadthavet area and serving as a wave power plant. It's part of a project which ultimately calls for larger, purpose-built vessels to convert wave motion into electricity.  Read More

Because acoustic-gravity waves travel much faster than tsunamis, detection of them could s...

A new MIT study has examined the possibility of acoustic-gravity waves – high-speed sound waves often generated by underwater earthquakes and landslides – acting as an early warning of tsunamis and rogue waves.  Read More

The octopus-inspired device, inflated and ready to go

When you inflate a balloon and then release it without tying the valve shut, it certainly shoots away quickly. Octopi utilize the same basic principle, although they suck in and then rapidly expel water. An international team of scientists have now replicated that system in a soft-bodied miniature underwater vehicle, which could pave the way for very quickly-accelerating full-size submersibles.  Read More

A single human genome can now be analyzed in a matter of hours, opening the door to more p...

New software developed at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Ohio can take raw sequence data on a person's genome and search it for disease-causing variations in a matter of hours, which its creators claim puts it ahead of the pack as the fastest genome analysis software around. They believe that this makes it now feasible to do large-scale analysis across entire populations.  Read More

Fluid is ratcheted through a gap between the pump's teeth (Image: B. Thiria & J. Zhang)

In most pumps, either a spinning impeller pulls liquid in and then essentially "throws" it out via centrifugal force, or a rotor draws it through using peristaltic force. After studying how birds' flapping wings use fluid dynamics to push air back while moving the animals forward, however, two scientists from New York University have developed a pump that works in yet another fashion – and it has teeth.  Read More

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