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Oregon State University

Science

Boiling water makes for cooler electronics

Boiling water seems a straightforward enough exercise, you flick on the gas and wait for the bubbles to start popping. But by manipulating how many of those bubbles appear as the temperature rises, scientists have discovered a new way to finely control how much heat and steam is released in the process, a technique they say could lead to advanced cooling systems for more efficient electronic devices. Read More

Energy

Energy storage advance readies concentrated solar power for the smart grid

The intermittent nature of renewable energy sources is a huge burden on the power grid, making flexible and economical energy storage an essential step to a greener future. Researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) and the University of Florida have now devised a way to conveniently store and release energy harvested through concentrated solar power (CSP) plants, improving on the cost and energy density of previous systems and preparing this technology for the smart grid.Read More

Biology

New strain of seaweed tastes like bacon

Seaweed is widely considered to be a health food. Bacon, on the other hand ... well, bacon isn't. There may yet be hope for pork belly lovers around the world, however. Scientists at Oregon State University (OSU) have patented a lab-bred strain of dulce seaweed, that they claim has "a strong bacon flavor" when fried.Read More

Robotics

ATRIAS robot now blindly takes platforms in its stride

As we count down to this weekend's DARPA Robotics Challenge, the competition is already heating up. Coming hot on the heels of MIT's leaping and bounding robotic cheetah is Oregon State University's ATRIAS bipedal robot. The team behind this ostrich-like machine has showcased its latest talent, the ability to blindly walk over the top of obstacles in its path.Read More

Electronics

New invention expands Wi-Fi bandwidth tenfold

The vast range of Wi-Fi-enabled devices available today means that anyone could have several personal electronic devices all trying to connect to a network simultaneously. Multiply this by many hundreds of people in a busy public place with Wi-Fi connectivity and this often means that available bandwidth is greatly reduced. To help address this problem, researchers at Oregon State University claim to have invented a new system called WiFO that incorporates infrared LEDs to boost the available Wi-Fi bandwidth by as much as ten times.Read More

Medical

Glowing compound could lead to more effective cancer surgery

Scientists from Oregon State University (OSU) have developed a new method that could make for better precision in the killing of cancer cells. The technique puts to use a unique compound with the ability to illuminate cancerous cells when exposed to near-infrared light, potentially acting as markers for surgeons taking on the intricate task of tumor removal.Read More

Robotics

Snake robot learns to climb sand hills better, by moving like a sidewinder

If a robot is looking for victims at a disaster site, or even exploring another planet, then it certainly better not get stuck in the sand. That may now be a little less likely to happen, as scientists recently studied one of the best sand-travelers in the animal kingdom – the sidewinder rattlesnake. After they analyzed its movement patterns and applied them to an existing snake-inspired robot, that robot was better able climb up sandy inclines. Read More

Medical

Pulley mechanism implant to better restore hand function

We've seen a number of robotic prosthetic hands intended for amputees, but what about those that still have their hands but have lost function through nerve damage? Researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) have tackled the problem and come up with an implant consisting of a simple pulley system that would more effectively transfer mechanical forces and allow more natural grasping function with less effort.Read More

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