A new type of nanoparticle has been created by that converts invisible near-infrared light to higher energy blue and UV light with record-high efficiency. The multi-layered layered nanoparticle has potential for use in solar energy harvesting, bio-imaging, and light-based
"Smart" bike locks may not quite be at the point where they're a dime a dozen, but there certainly are a number of them out there. That said, pretty much all of them require you to have your smartphone with you, and to make sure it's powered up when locking and unlocking. The Grasp Lock, however, is a little different. It utilizes a built-in fingerprint reader to recognize its user, so no phones, keys or combos are necessary.
If you've ever fancied securing your home with one of those cool invisible sensor webs that you see in movies, now's your chance. The new Xandem Home system detects motion through walls and furniture. It uses a number of nodes that plug into wall outlets and create a wireless web of sensor connections.
Chicago-based startup Salt has launched a crowdfunding campaign for a less-than-lethal weapon designed as an alternative to firearms for home and personal protection. The pneumatic pistol is designed to stop intruders using an incapacitating powder that temporarily blinds them while drastically lessening the possibility of family members being killed in an accident.
Most fingerprint scanners work the same way – the pad of the finger is pressed against the scanner’s glass surface, light is shone through the glass onto it, and the light that’s reflected back by the minuscule valleys between the print’s ridges is used to create an image of the print. It’s a system that’s usually effective, although it can fail to read prints that have been flattened by age or damaged, plus it can be fooled by gelatine casts of fingerprints. That’s why scientists from the Paris-based Langevin Institute have developed a more reliable scanner, that looks below the skin's surface.
Although we've seen a number of bikes with built-in locks lately, the Dutch-made BluLocks bike still manages to bring a fresh approach to the concept. It combines an external chain with a locking mechanism that's located inside the seat tube.
There's recently been a run of new anti-drone systems introduced to deal with potential threats from UAVs, but these have been on the large and expensive side. To provide an affordable alternatives to plug the gap between shotguns and truck-mounted systems, national security research and development firm Battelle is introducing DroneDefender. Billed as the first portable, accurate, rapid-to-use UAV counter-weapon, it's a rifle-like raygun device that uses a radio beam to jam drone control systems and stop them in midair.
Whether it's for peace of mind while on holiday or to keep an eye on an elderly relative, security cameras are finding their way into more and more homes. Part of the reason for this increased popularity is the drop in price and ease of use and installation offered by an increasing number of systems. Looking to join this increasingly crowded marketplace is the new Ezviz Mini cloud-based, Wi-Fi camera that we recently got hold of and put on patrol.
While civilian countermeasures to combat malicious drones is moving toward UAV-freezing radio beams, the US Army is taking a more permanent approach. Under development by the U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey, the Enhanced Area Protection and Survivability (EAPS) system used steerable 50 mm smart rounds to shoot down two drones in recent tests.
Sophisticated, easy to fly drones are everywhere these days and like most new technologies, they have the potential for mischievous or malicious applications as well as positive ones. It follows that there's an increasing demand for improved surveillance and countermeasures specifically tailored for this type of aircraft. Billed as the world's first fully integrated system designed to detect, track and disrupt small and large drones, the Anti-UAV Defence System (AUDS) from Blighter Surveillance Systems uses radio beams to freeze drones in midair by interfering with their control channels.