research

Tiny single-chip Lidar sensor has no moving parts

Tiny single-chip Lidar sensor has no moving parts

Researchers at MIT and DARPA have created a tiny Lidar sensor that is packed onto a single chip. As you can see in the image, the Lidar sensor is so small that you could pack many of them onto the surface of a dime. Lidar, or light detection and ranging, sensors are a technology that uses laser light and is similar to radar. The big benefit of Lidar over radar is that Lidar can have a higher resolution.

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Hidden portrait under Degas painting identified using X-ray fluorescence

Hidden portrait under Degas painting identified using X-ray fluorescence

When it comes to French impressionists, Edward Degas is one of the giants in the field. Degas lived from 1834 to 1917 and painted some of the most beautiful works of art during his lifetime. As many painters were wont to do, Degas had a penchant for reusing old canvases to paint new works that had old works on them that he for some reason chose not to complete. Researchers have been increasingly studying old paintings from masters like Degas using X-ray fluorescence or XRF.

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Wireless sensors the size of dust could allow monitoring of organs and nerves

Wireless sensors the size of dust could allow monitoring of organs and nerves

Devices like the Fitbit are very popular today with their ability to monitor things about the wearer like their sleep habits, heart rate, and activity. In the future devices like the Fitbit might be able to do much more by using tiny wireless sensors that allow the monitoring of nerves and internal organs. These tiny wireless sensors are being developed by the University of California, Berkeley and are said to be the first dust-sized sensors that can be implanted into the body.

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Interactive Dynamic Video could improve AR and eliminate CGI green screen

Interactive Dynamic Video could improve AR and eliminate CGI green screen

MIT researchers from the Computer Science and AI Laboratory are performing research into a new imaging technique called Interactive Dynamic Video or IDV. IDV allows users to reach in and touch objects that they are seeing in a video and could hold great promise for improving augmented reality. IDV uses traditional cameras and algorithms and looks at the tiny, nearly invisible vibrations that an object produces to build video simulations that users can interact with in a virtual environment.

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Study review finds little evidence that flossing actually helps

Study review finds little evidence that flossing actually helps

One of the things that we have had to do most of our lives is floss our teeth. The dentist says that this is something you have to do to keep gums and teeth healthy. The federal government even pushes for people to floss their teeth along with the American Dental Association. The catch is that according to the AP after looking at 25 different studies comparing various oral care regimes, it found that there was very little evidence that flossing your teeth actually helps with gum and tooth health.

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The Earth is getting hotter: 2015 the new worst on record

The Earth is getting hotter: 2015 the new worst on record

This week the folks behind the "State of Climate" report (a yearly report) confirmed that 2015 was the hottest on record. Global heat level, greenhouse gases, and sea levels have all risen to record highs. According to the report, this year's findings are the result of both El Nino and global warming. The report also suggests that including carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, and nitrous oxide gasses rose to record high levels during the year 2015.

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Solar cell turns CO2 into hydrocarbon fuel

Solar cell turns CO2 into hydrocarbon fuel

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago have created a breakthrough solar cell that can be produced cheaply and is able to efficiently create a usable hydrocarbon fuel using carbon dioxide found in the air and sunlight. The new solar cell literally creates usable fuel from thin air and light. The scientists have reported their findings in the July 29 issues of Science.

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Apollo astronauts are dying from diseases caused by space radiation

Apollo astronauts are dying from diseases caused by space radiation

Florida State University Dean of the College of Human Sciences Michael Delp has detailed a sad reality affecting the Apollo astronauts: cardiovascular health issues caused by their exposure to space radiation. According to the study recently published in Scientific Reports, the astronauts who travelled into space as part of the lunar missions are largely suffering cardiovascular effects as a result, with 43-percent of the deceased individuals having died for reasons related to cardiovascular issues.

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Carcass leads scientists to new beaked whale species

Carcass leads scientists to new beaked whale species

A study newly published in Marine Mammal Science details evidence that a whale carcass discovered in 2014 is part of a species that has long gone undiscovered, at least in official capacities. Though new to science, fishermen have been aware of this particular variety of beaked whale for a while — Japanese fishermen, for example, call it karasu (raven) due to its somewhat dark color. However, living varieties of the critter have thus far evaded scientists.

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Motorized device helps infants at risk for cerebral palsy

Motorized device helps infants at risk for cerebral palsy

This may look like how Eleven started as an infant in Stranger Things, but it's actually a device that is designed to help infants who are at risk of developing cerebral palsy. This condition covers a range of early neurological disorders that affect movement and muscle coordination and can be caused from a number of factors. Those factors include brain damage during birth, infection, and trauma.

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17th century shipwreck turns up old cheese and gold coins

17th century shipwreck turns up old cheese and gold coins

A shipwreck dating back to 1676 has turned up (another) cache of goodies, the most notable among them being a tub of ripe, smelly cheese (or, perhaps, butter). The shipwreck was found off the coast of Sweden, and it included some other less-pungent goods, as well: some old pharmaceuticals, 14 gold coins, and a diamond ring. Unfortunately, most of the ship’s crew died when the ship sank.

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MIT lithium-oxygen battery lasts a long time and is more efficient

MIT lithium-oxygen battery lasts a long time and is more efficient

MIT has announced a breakthrough in battery technology that might one day mean EVs that can drive further on a charge and gadgets that last longer away from an outlet. For a long time MIT and other research organizations have been looking at lithium-air batteries, but those batteries have some significant drawbacks. While lithium-air promises high-energy output compared to weight, they waste much of the power introduced as heat and performance degrades quickly. The new MIT lithium-oxygen battery overcomes these big drawbacks.

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