Photokina 2014 highlights

Imaging

The business end of the probe, built around a single disc-like chip

Imagine if you were trying to clear rubble out of a tunnel, but you could only see that tunnel from the side, instead of looking straight into it. Well, that's currently what it's like for doctors who are trying to see inside patients' blocked coronary blood vessels using ultrasound. Soon, however, a tiny catheter-based probe may give them a 3D real-time forward view from inside those vessels – or from inside the heart itself – not unlike that seen by the microscopic submarine crew in the movie Fantastic Voyage.  Read More

MD Julie Margenthaler wears the eyepiece during cancer surgery

When doctors are operating on a patient to remove a cancer, they face a major challenge: telling healthy and cancerous cells apart. But a new device being developed by researchers at Washington University in St. Louis' School of Medicine could provide a safe, affordable and portable solution.  Read More

Russian cosmonauts laboured for six hours to install the cameras

On Jan. 27, two Russian Cosmonauts undertook a six hour spacewalk in order to install two new British-manufactured Earth imaging cameras to the Russian segment of the ISS. The initiative, announced in 2011, will allow anyone with an internet connection access to the near-live feed, which will provide higher quality results than the currently-installed standard definition cameras.  Read More

Helicobacter Pylori bacteria, fluorescing green

Research carried out by a team of scientists at the University of Southern Denmark literally sheds new light on how a non-invasive technique for the early diagnosis of stomach ulcers could be performed in the future. The findings of the researchers point to a fast, hassle-free method that does not require sample tissues, unlike current testing methods.  Read More

The team targeted the Beta Pictoris system and retrieved direct images of the planet Beta ...

Following almost 10 years of development, the Gemini Observatory has debuted an advanced planet imaging instrument and captured a direct image of exoplanet Beta Pictoris b, signifying a breakthrough in our ability to analyze extrasolar planets. Called the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI), the tool uses an advanced optics system with an infrared spectograph to retrieve direct images of young planets orbiting distant stars.  Read More

Is reading a book like living the story? (Image: Shutterstock)

Stories, whether fact or fiction, are at the heart of human culture. A strong narrative can resonate with your personality and experiences, and help set a framework for your future. "That book changed my life" is a cherished maxim. So can a book change your brain too? A recent study led by Emory University's Gregory Berns has demonstrated that reading a novel produces physical changes in the brain similar to those that would result from living as one or more of the characters.  Read More

Flock 1 will be the largest fleet of Earth imaging satellites in orbit

Space and analytics firm Planet Labs has secured US$52 million in new funding, bringing it to within touching distance of launching a fleet of Earth imaging satellites in early 2014. The new investment brings the company’s total raised to over $65 million, and will help in its aim to generate imagery of and data about Earth, which will be openly accessible for both commercial and humanitarian purposes.  Read More

An X-ray of a human wrist demonstrates the system's ability to reveal soft-tissue structur...

X-ray machines are all large devices that can only image hard structures such as bone, unless a contrast-enhancing solution such as barium is present in the patient ... right? Well, no, not all of them. A new system developed by researchers at MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital is small enough to be considered portable, doesn't expose patients to as much radiation, and can image soft tissues in minute detail.  Read More

MIT students (left to right) Ayush Bhandari, Refael Whyte and Achuta Kadambi pose next to ...

MIT researchers have developed a new time-of-flight (TOF) 3D "nano-camera" with the ability to work with translucent objects, motion, fog, rain, and other factors in the environment that totally confuse previous TOF cameras, such as Microsoft's second-gen Kinect. The MIT Media Lab team has added these new capabilities by introducing additional information into the illuminating light beam. The resulting camera costs less than US$500 in parts.  Read More

Eyes-On Glasses should be available as of next year

Despite what TV and the movies might have us believe, getting a needle into a vein isn't always a straightforward procedure. It can sometimes take multiple attempts, much to the discomfort of the patient. Now, however, Evena Medical's new Eyes-On Glasses reportedly let nurses see patients' veins in real time, right through their skin.  Read More

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