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Testing

Aircraft

World's largest commercial aircraft engine fired up for the first time

The world's largest commercial aircraft engine has been started up for the first time at GE Aviation's Peebles Test Operation in Ohio. According to GE, ground testing of the GE9X development engine will enable data to be gathered on the engine's overall and aerodynamic performance, mechanical verification, and aero-thermal system validation leading up to flight testing and certification before entering service at the end the decade.Read More

Medical

Fresh approach to "organ-on-a-chip" tech adds a third dimension, may eventually replace test animals

Finding a workable alternative to animal testing is one of the most important efforts currently under way in the medical world. Not only is the method not all that effective, with numerous drugs that look promising when testing on rodents falling short during subsequent clinical trials, but it's also considered to be unethical by many people. Now, researchers at the University of Toronto have made a breakthrough, creating a new platform called AngioChip, which provides a complex, three dimensional structure on which tissue can be grown that mimics functions of the human body.Read More

Medical

Cultured liver cell microreactor might replace animal testing

Finding alternatives to animal testing is an important endeavor. While the practice has been banned in the cosmetic products industry since 2013, it's still a central part of evaluating the effectiveness and dangers of new medication, with researchers usually using laboratory rodents to test out their latest drugs. Now, a team lead by scientists at Germany's Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology has created a microbioreactor that has the potential to provide medication testing using cultured liver cells rather than animals.Read More

Drones

Study successfully uses drones to transport blood samples

We’ve already heard about drones being used to deliver pharmaceuticals to patients in remote locations, but scientists from Johns Hopkins University and Uganda’s Makerere University are now looking at the other end of the picture – using them to deliver remotely-located patients’ blood samples to labs in larger centers. According to a proof-of-concept study conducted by the researchers, the little unmanned aircraft should be able to do the job just fine.Read More

Medical

Firefly enzyme inspires Swiss team to create portable disease test kit

Portable test kits represent an advance in disease diagnosis, as their ready availability increases chances of earlier detection and treatment. This type of technology is constantly evolving, and sometimes inspiration can come from surprising sources. Such is the case with research carried out by a Swiss team, which has borrowed from the mechanics behind the firefly's glow to develop a sensitive molecule detector.Read More

Space

NASA begins testing InSight Mars lander in anticipation of a 2016 launch

NASA has begun a comprehensive series of tests for its Mars Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) lander. Once on the Red Planet, the lander will operate as a stationary science platform, attempting to answer a plethora of questions regarding the interior structure of Mars, and hopefully granting us some of the information needed to make a manned mission to the Red Planet in the 2030s a reality.Read More

Space

Blue Origin's BE-3 engine cleared for flight

Blue Origin has taken a step closer to lifting into space by announcing that its BE‑3 rocket engine has completed acceptance testing, opening the door to its first flight. The first new hydrogen engine to be developed in the US in over a decade, the BE-3 is part of Blue Origin's program to develop a completely reusable launch system.Read More

Medical

MIT designs 10-minute ebola test

Researchers from MIT claim to have developed an easy-to-use blood test that can be applied in the field, allowing for the screening of multiple diseases at once. The test is said to provide results in around 10 minutes, and could be instrumental in stopping the epidemic spread of fatal diseases such as Ebola.Read More

Good Thinking

Putting the world's largest and most powerful gas turbine to the test

One of the problems with building the world's largest and most powerful gas turbine is that you need to build a test bed to match. Having invested US$1 billion in its 500,000 bhp 9HA Harriet gas turbine, GE had to fork over another US$185 million to build a full-load test bed at GE Power & Water in Greenville, South Carolina that can handle the grid-busting output of Harriet.Read More

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