This fascinating off-grid lamp is powered by photosynthesis

Dutch designer Ermi van Oers has created an off-grid lamp that uses a living plant to produce light. The device, dubbed “Living Light,” uses microorganisms of plant origin to convert the chemical energy that a plant naturally produces during photosynthesis into an electric current. The lamp is fully self-sufficient, meaning it doesn’t have to be plugged into … Continue reading This fascinating off-grid lamp is powered by photosynthesis

Ethical questions raised after Elon Musk’s Neuralink company implants chip in monkey’s brain

Scientists and ethicists have questioned the ethical implications of human and cyborg hybridization experiments after a recent demonstration involving a monkey with a brain chip controlling a video game with its mind. On April 8, Elon Musk’s neurotechnology start-up Neuralink announced that it had successfully created a cyborg monkey that can play Pong with its mind using … Continue reading Ethical questions raised after Elon Musk’s Neuralink company implants chip in monkey’s brain

Inspired by spiders and fire ants, researchers develop a new unsinkable metal

Researchers from the University of Rochester have developed an extremely buoyant metal that can be used to make unsinkable ships. The researchers have drawn inspiration from fire ants and diving bell spiders, which have the remarkable ability to remain afloat or survive underwater for long periods of time. These creepy-crawlies are able to do this by trapping air in an … Continue reading Inspired by spiders and fire ants, researchers develop a new unsinkable metal

Plant-based “vaccine” uses herbs to activate the immune system against the coronavirus, without the blood clot risk

Canadian company Medicago has developed a plant-based vaccine for the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19). The two-dose vaccine uses virus-like particles (VLP) grown in a tobacco shrub to confer immunity against COVID-19. VLPs are molecules that closely resemble a virus. They are not infectious since they do not contain genetic material. Vaccines that use VLPs train the immune system to recognize a virus and launch … Continue reading Plant-based “vaccine” uses herbs to activate the immune system against the coronavirus, without the blood clot risk

Breakthrough (and scary) technology allows scientists to collect DNA from the air

  A breakthrough technology allows scientists to obtain DNA samples from the air. The new technology collects environmental DNA (eDNA) shed by animals and humans for identification. Previously used to study fish, animals and invasive species, eDNA now shows promise in fields such as infectious disease epidemiology and forensics. Prior to the study, eDNA had been … Continue reading Breakthrough (and scary) technology allows scientists to collect DNA from the air

Modern bone healing: Scientists design device that helps accelerate bone regeneration

As many as 6.3 million cases of bone fracture are reported in the U.S. annually. While the body usually begins to repair itself within minutes of a fracture’s occurrence, that process can sometimes be impaired. This can result in debilitating injuries. As a way to address the latter, surgeons at the University of Michigan Medicine (U-M) are … Continue reading Modern bone healing: Scientists design device that helps accelerate bone regeneration

Researchers look to nanopores for new water treatment methods

For a while now, scientists have been looking into the use of nanomaterials as a way to clean water. The idea is that nanofilters made from these materials would be able to remove even the smallest impurities and contaminants in water. In a recent study published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry, a team led by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute … Continue reading Researchers look to nanopores for new water treatment methods

Scientists develop artificial muscles powered by glucose: Findings will be used to develop a system that’s “even closer to a biological muscle”

A recent breakthrough in engineering and robotics just might blur the line between man and machine. Researchers from Linköping University in Sweden have successfully developed and created artificial muscles that run on glucose and oxygen — just like their organic counterparts. According to the researchers, they wanted to develop artificial muscles, which, instead of using traditional actuators powered by … Continue reading Scientists develop artificial muscles powered by glucose: Findings will be used to develop a system that’s “even closer to a biological muscle”

Updating fluid-powered machines: Scientists design bizarre-looking lionfish powered by a blood-like compound

You’ve heard of robots that can run, lift, jump and crawl. Now, prepare to see one that can bleed. In a paper published in the scientific journal Nature, a joint team of researchers from Cornell University and the University of Pennsylvania detailed how they built a soft robotic lionfish, complete with a multi-functional circulatory system. At its core: a blood-like compound that not … Continue reading Updating fluid-powered machines: Scientists design bizarre-looking lionfish powered by a blood-like compound

Single-use no more: Plastic bottles can be upcycled to more durable materials

Single-use plastics cause plastic pollution, a problem that affects rivers, lakes, and oceans. To address this concern, researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) developed a recycling process that turns various materials made of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) into other useful products that will last longer. NREL’s research was published in the journal Joule. What is polyethylene terephthalate (PET)? Polyethylene terephthalate … Continue reading Single-use no more: Plastic bottles can be upcycled to more durable materials