Microchips’ optical future

February 15, 2012 | Anonymous | 0 comments

To keep energy consumption under control, future chips may need to move data using light instead of electricity — and the technical expertise to build them may reside in the United States.

As the United States seeks to reinvigorate its job market and move past economic recession, MIT Newsexamines manufacturing’s role in the country's economic future through this series on work at the Institute around manufacturing.

Computer chips are one area where the United States still enjoys a significant manufacturing lead over the rest of the world. In 2011, five of the top 10 chipmakers by revenue were U.S. companies, and Intel, the largest of them by a wide margin, has seven manufacturing facilities in the United States, versus only three overseas.The most


Airborne robot swarms are making complex moves (w/ video)

February 6, 2012 | Anonymous | 0 comments

The GRASP Lab at the University of Pennsylvania this week released a video that shows their new look in GRASP Lab robotic flying devices. They are now showing flying devices with more complex behavior than before, in a fleet of flying devices that move in packs, navigate spaces with obstacles, flip over and retain position, and carry out formation flying.

The researchers have cut down these robotic creature-like  to small size to what they call “nano-quadrotors.” The video shows them in action: not just engaged in formation flying, but also creating an impressive looking figure-eight pattern.



The video says as much about the GRASP Lab as the flying machines, in that the GRASP Labs seems intent on raising the bar on what 


Samsung shows transparent 46-inch LCD panel

January 22, 2012 | Anonymous | 0 comments

Samsung Electronics announced today that it is expanding the transparent display market with production of a 46-inch transparent LCD panel, beginning this month.

Younghwan Park, senior vice president of LCD marketing, Device Solutions,, said, “Transparent panels, an exciting application of next-generation  technology, have unlimited potential to change our viewing habits over the next several years. As a strong supporter of the transparent display market, Samsung plans to develop this technology into a new growth engine for our LCD business.”


Samsung’s 46-inch transparent  features a contrast ratio of 4,500:1 with HD (1,366x768) resolution and 70 percent color gamut.




A 2012 CES Innovations Award honoree, Samsung’s transparent LCD panel is being produced for a wide variety


NREL Scientists Report First Solar Cell Producing More Electrons In Photocurrent Than Solar Photons Entering Cell

December 17, 2011 | Anonymous | 0 comments

Researchers from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have reported the first solar cell that produces a photocurrent that has an external quantum efficiency greater than 100 percent when photoexcited with photons from the high energy region of the solar spectrum. 

The external quantum efficiency for photocurrent, usually expressed as a percentage, is the number of electrons flowing per second in the external circuit of a solar cell divided by the number of photons per second of a specific energy (or wavelength) that enter the solar cell. None of the solar cells to date exhibit external photocurrent quantum efficiencies above 100 percent at any wavelength in the solar spectrum.

The external quantum efficiency reached a peak value of


Here come the quantum dot TVs and wallpaper

December 14, 2011 | Anonymous | 1 comments

A British firm's quantum dot technology will be used for flat screen TVs and flexible screens, according to the company’s chief executive.

The quantum dots will be in use for ultra thin, light flat screen TVs by the end of next year, and, in another three years, will be used in flexible screens rolled up like paper or used as wall coverings.

The company, Nanoco Group, is reportedly working with Asian electronics companies to bring this technology to market.

“The first products we are expecting to come to market using quantum dots will be the next generation of flat-screen televisions,” Nanoco chief executive Michael Edelman has stated.

Nanoco describes itself as the “world leader in the development and manufacture of cadmium-free quantum dots.” While


Invisible computing comes to Asia tech expo

December 14, 2011 | Anonymous | 0 comments

A robotic cook, a colouring book that comes to virtual life and movies that read your mind are some of the innovations on show at a cutting-edge computer technology exhibition in Hong Kong this week.

The first Asian edition of the SIGGRAPH expo of computer graphics, and digital media brings together developers, distributors and resellers from around the world.

But while most of the conference is about business, some of the most interesting -- and just plain bizarre -- gadgets are not for sale.

The "emerging technologies" hall is where the real boffins from universities and research laboratories strut their stuff with prototypes fresh off the drawing board, in the name of science rather than profit.

Mark Billinghurst, director of the Human


A new 'lens' for looking at quantum behavior

December 14, 2011 | Anonymous | 0 comments

In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, researchers Daniel Terno (Macquarie University, Australia) and Radu Ionicioiu (Institute of Quantum Computing, Canada) provide a new perspective on fundamental notions of quantum physics.

Terno and Radu proposed taking a new approach to understanding wave-particle duality - a cornerstone phenomenon of .

At the heart of  is the idea that objects in the will sometimes behave like particles, and other times behave like waves. This ability to combine exclusive properties is called a  and is a fundamental principle of quantum mechanics.   

Duality has been the foundation of many ongoing debates in the physics community, the most famous of which was between Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr. Ultimately


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