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Seaweed Polymer May Improve Electrodes in Lithium-Ion Batteries
09/26/11 —   By looking to Mother Nature for solutions, researchers have identified a promising new binder material for lithium-ion battery electrodes that could not only boost energy storage, but also eliminate the use of toxic compounds now used in manufacturing the components. Known as alginate, the material is extracted from common,…

Physicists Demonstrate a Quantum Processor and Quantum Memory on a Chip
09/06/11 —   A new paradigm in quantum information processing has been demonstrated by physicists at UC Santa Barbara.  The researchers demonstrated a quantum integrated circuit that implements the quantum von Neumann architecture. In this architecture, a long-lived quantum random access memory can be programmed, using a quantum central processing unit, all…

Pathogen Research Inspires Robotics Design for Medicine and Military
09/01/11 — Mingjun Zhang, associate professor in mechanical, aerospace and biomedical engineering, at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and his team have made significant findings about the swimming and attachment of the microorganism Giardia. Giardia causes one of the most common gastrointestinal diseases in the world, giardiasis. For 250 years, scientists have…

Football Analysis Leads to Advance in Artificial Intelligence
08/25/11 —   Computer scientists in the field of artificial intelligence have made an important advance that blends computer vision, machine learning and automated planning, and created a new system that may improve everything from factory efficiency to airport operation or nursing care. And it’s based on watching the Oregon State University Beavers…

IBM Debuts Cognitive Computing Chips
08/19/11 — IBM researchers have unveiled a new generation of experimental computer chips designed to emulate the brain’s abilities for perception, action and cognition. The technology could yield many orders of magnitude less power consumption and space than used in today’s computers. In a sharp departure from traditional concepts in designing and…

UMass Amherst Researchers Discover New Properties of Bacteria-Produced Nanowires
08/13/11 — The discovery of a fundamental, previously unknown property of microbial nanowires in the bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens that allows electron transport across long distances could revolutionize nanotechnology and bioelectronics, says a team of physicists and microbiologists at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Their findings reported in the Aug. 7 advance online issue of Nature…

Argonne Scientists Design Self-Assembling “Micro-Robots”
08/13/11 — Alexey Snezhko and Igor Aronson, physicists at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, have coaxed "micro-robots" to do their bidding. The robots, just half a millimeter wide, are composed of microparticles. Confined between two liquids, they assemble themselves into star shapes when an alternating magnetic field is…

NASA’s Juno Spacecraft Heads to Jupiter
08/05/11 — NASA's solar-powered Juno spacecraft lifted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 9:25 a.m. PDT (12:25 p.m. EDT) Friday to begin a five-year journey to Jupiter. Juno's detailed study of the largest planet in our solar system will help reveal Jupiter's origin and evolution. As the archetype…

When Robots Look Too Much Like Us
07/18/11 —   Ever get the heebie-jeebies at a wax museum? Feel uneasy with an anthropomorphic robot? What about playing a video game or watching an animated movie, where the human characters are pretty realistic but just not quite right and maybe a bit creepy? If yes, then you’ve probably been a…

Computer Learns Language by Playing Games
07/12/11 —   Computers are great at treating words as data: Word-processing programs let you rearrange and format text however you like, and search engines can quickly find a word anywhere on the Web. But what would it mean for a computer to actually understand the meaning of a sentence written in…

Researchers Create Touch Sensitive Robotic Skin
07/06/11 — Robots will soon be able to feel heat or gentle touching on their surfaces, thanks to scientists at the Technical University Munich (Technische Universität München, TUM). The researchers are now developing small hexagonal plates that when joined together form a sensitive skin for “intelligent machines.” The work has the potential…

Brain-Like Computing Advances
06/30/11 —   The development of "brain-like" computers took a major step  forward recently with the publication of research led by the University of Exeter. The study, which was published in the journal Advanced Materials and funded by the UK's Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, involved the first ever demonstration of simultaneous information processing…

NASA Ends Efforts to Contact Mars Rover
05/25/11 — NASA is ending attempts to regain contact with the long-lived Mars Exploration Rover Spirit, which last communicated on March 22, 2010. A transmission that will end on Wednesday, May 25, will be the last in a series of attempts. Extensive communications activities during the past 10 months also have explored…

Applying Neuroscience to Robot Vision
05/19/11 — After three years of intense work, members of a European research effort called EYESHOTS have made progress in controlling the interaction between vision and movement, and as a result have designed an advanced three-dimensional visual system synchronized with robotic arms which could allow robots to observe and be aware of…

Seminar Probes Future of AI
04/29/11 — Artificial Intelligence offers many possibilities for developing data processing systems that are more precise and robust. That is one of the main conclusions drawn from an international encounter of experts in this scientific area, recently held at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M). In the course of the meeting, speakers…

Reconfigurable, Modular Robot Heads for Commercial Development
03/28/11 —   An intelligent, reconfigurable modular robot invented by a UC Davis alumnus and a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering is headed for commercial development with the help of a grant from the National Science Foundation. Graham Ryland and Professor Harry Cheng hope their “iMobot” will be a useful research…

Prosthetic Arms to Get More Real
03/04/11 —   The hand, wrist, and fingers are controlled through thousands of nerve channels. Current prosthetic arms have neural interfaces to only six or eight channels, enabling only simple movements without feeling or feedback to the brain. Mario Romero-Ortega, a bioengineer at the University of Texas Arlington, has received a $2.2…

Brain-Machine Interface Learns About Its User
02/24/11 —   You may have heard of virtual keyboards controlled by thought, brain-powered wheelchairs, and neuro-prosthetic limbs. Once the mind is trained to send the right kind of signals, operating the interface can be downright tiring for the mind—a fact that prevents the technology from being of much use to people…




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