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Cold plasma can kill 99.9% of airborne viruses

Civil and Environmental Engineering Professor Herek Clack (left) and members of his team set up a lab-scale non-thermal plasma device that has previously been proven to achieve greater than 99% inactivation of an airborne viral surrogate, MS2 phage, a virus that infects E.coli bacteria at the Barton Farms family pig farm in Homer, MI. Credit:…

Cold plasma can kill 99.9% of airborne viruses

Civil and Environmental Engineering Professor Herek Clack (left) and members of his team set up a lab-scale non-thermal plasma device that has previously been proven to achieve greater than 99% inactivation of an airborne viral surrogate, MS2 phage, a virus that infects E.coli bacteria at the Barton Farms family pig farm in Homer, MI. Credit:…

Biomedical engineers grow cardiac patches to help people recover from heart...

Zhao and her team have shown the potential of biomimicry to grow microvessels in tissues suitable for a cardiac patch. The next steps will be animal trials and refining medical technology for implants and devices. With the help of tiny, dense, neatly aligned blood vessels, engineered tissues could help hearts, skin, bones and muscles regenerate…

4D-printed materials can be stiff as wood or soft as sponge

4D-printed metamaterials can be temporarily transformed into any deformed shape and then returned to their original shape on demand when heated. The scale bar is 2 millimeters. Credit: Chen Yang/Rutgers University-New Brunswick Imagine smart materials that can morph from being stiff as wood to as soft as a sponge -- and also change shape. Rutgers…

True-meaning wearable displays: Self-powered, washable and wearable

Schematic and photo of a washable wearing display module. Credit: KAIST When we think about clothes, they are usually formed with textiles and have to be both wearable and washable for daily use; however, smart clothing has had a problem with its power sources and moisture permeability, which causes the devices to malfunction. This problem…

Engineers demonstrate metamaterials that can solve equations

University of Pennsylvania Engineers have designed a metamaterial device that can solve integral equations. The device works by encoding parameters into the properties of an incoming electromagnetic wave; once inside, the device's unique structure manipulates the wave in such a way that it exits encoded with the solution to a pre-set integral equation for that…

From foam to bone: Plant cellulose can pave the way for...

Researchers treated nanocrystals derived from plant cellulose so that they can link up and form a strong but lightweight sponge (an aerogel) that can compress or expand as needed to completely fill out a bone cavity. Credit: Clare Kiernan, UBC Researchers from the University of British Columbia and McMaster University have developed what could be…

Levitating objects with light

Conceptual illustration of a nano-patterned object reorienting itself to remain in a beam of light. Credit: Courtesy of the Atwater laboratory Researchers at Caltech have designed a way to levitate and propel objects using only light, by creating specific nanoscale patterning on the objects' surfaces. Though still theoretical, the work is a step toward developing…

Water-resistant electronic skin with self-healing abilities created

Asst Prof Tee (back row, right) and his team created a transparent electronic skin that repairs itself in both wet and dry conditions. Credit: Image courtesy of National University of Singapore A team of scientists from the National University of Singapore (NUS) have taken inspiration from underwater invertebrates like jellyfish to create an electronic skin…

The robots that dementia caregivers want: Robots for joy, robots for...

Example of one of the robots the caregivers designed. Credit: Healthcare Robotics Lab/University of California San Diego Building robots that can help people with dementia has been a longtime goal for roboticists. Yet until now, no one has sought to survey informal caregivers, such as family members, about what characteristics and roles these robots should…

At 3,836 mph, which way does the air flow?

The image above is a 3D computer simulation of air flowing over a hill creating turbulence at transonic speed. The ring-like features are eddies of air. Credit: James Chen/University at Buffalo If you've ever been to an air show, or lived near an air force base, you're familiar with sonic booms. These deafening noises are…

Movie technology inspires wearable liquid unit that aims to harvest energy

A Purdue University team created wearable technology to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. Credit: Wenzhuo Wu/Purdue University A fascination with movie technology that showed robots perform self-repair through a liquid formula inspired a Purdue University professor to make his own discoveries -- which are now helping to lead the way for advancements in self-powering…

A robotic leg, born without prior knowledge, learns to walk

A team of researchers at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering believe they have become the first to create an AI-controlled robotic limb driven by animal-like tendons that can even be tripped up and then recover within the time of the next footfall, a task for which the robot was never explicitly programmed to do.…

Controlling thermal conductivity of polymers with light

Under ambient conditions or visible light (left side), the polymer is crystalline and has a high thermal conductivity. Once exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light (right side) it transforms to a low thermal conductivity liquid. Imaging performed using polarized optical microscopy; crystals appear bright, and liquid dark. Inset images show schematic illustration of crystalline and liquid…

New cell-sized micro robots might make incredible journeys

Robots are built massively in parallel using nanofabrication technology: each wafer holds 1 million machines. Credit: Marc Mishkin Researchers have harnessed the latest nanofabrication techniques to create bug-shaped robots that are wirelessly powered, able to walk, able to survive harsh environments and tiny enough to be injected through an ordinary hypodermic needle. "When I was…

Design treatment of advanced metals producing better sculpting

A team from Purdue University discovered that the application of surface-active chemical agents enables metal cutting to be significantly improved with reduced forces and better surface quality. Credit: Srinivasan Chandrasekar/Purdue University Most people may not realize it but they encounter products made with exotic or advanced metals every day. The metals are used in aircraft,…

New ‘acoustic metamaterial’ cancels sound

The mathematically designed, 3D-printed acoustic metamaterial is shaped in such a way that it sends incoming sounds back to where they came from, Ghaffarivardavagh and Zhang say. Inside the outer ring, a helical pattern interferes with sounds, blocking them from transmitting through the open center while preserving air's ability to flow through. Credit: Photo by…

High-powered fuel cell boosts electric-powered submersibles, drones

This is an artistic representation of the pH-gradient enabled microscale bipolar interface (PMBI) created by Vijay Ramani and his lab. The two layers that make up the interface are covering the third bottom layer, which is the electrode with palladium particles on it. The submarine and drones are envisioned applications of the direct borohydride fuel…

Renewable energy generation with kites and drones

Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWES). Credit: UC3M Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWES) are a new kind of technology to harvest wind energy. The expensive and heavy tower and rotor of a conventional wind turbine are here substituted by a light tether and an aircraft (flexible giant kites or large drones), respectively. In the so-called ground…

New ways to harness wasted methane

This is a Schematic preparation of SiO2@V2O5@Al2O3 core@shell nanostructures. Credit: UNIST The primary component of natural gas, methane, is itself a potent greenhouse gas. A recent study, affiliated with UNIST has unveiled a high performance catalyst for methane conversion to formaldehyde. This breakthrough has been led by Professor Kwang-jin Ahn and his team in the…

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