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Stella – the first solar-powered family car

By Maja Bosanac
2 Comments7 July 2013

stella-solar-car-1Student team at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) presented the world’s first solar-powered family car. This is the first ‘energy-positive car’ with room for four people, a trunk, intuitive steering, and a range of 600 kilometers (372 miles). Named ‘Stella’ after the Latin word for “star”, the car is user friendly and comfortable, and… »

Architecture| Tech»

SIS solar cells allow creation of colorful solar facades

By Damir Beciri
3 Comments6 July 2013

fraunhofer-color-facade-sis-cells-1When you hear someone talking about solar panels, you imagine the black or bluish-gray colored panels. However, various groups of researchers are contributing to changes which help designers and architects in their goal for aesthetics. With the help of thin-film technologies, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute managed to contribute to this cause by turning solar… »

Robotics| Tech»

Using 3D printers to make octopi-inspired underwater propulsion

By Damir Beciri
4 July 2013

fraunhofer-ipa-octopod-propulsion-1Octopods, such as octopuses and squids, are considered to be the most intelligent invertebrates. Their ability to flee fast when in danger by swimming head first inspired researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute to develop a silent propulsion system for boats and water sport devices. The system can be produced at a low cost and in… »

Tech»

More energy efficient microscale method for the desalination of seawater

By Maja Bosanac
28 June 2013

austin-desalination-chip-1Collaboration between engineers at the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Marburg in Germany resulted in the development of a new method for the desalination of seawater. In comparison with conventional techniques, the new method is significantly simpler and requires less energy. Energy consumption is so little that it can work with… »

Tech»

Automated plant factory for the production of vaccines

By Damir Beciri
27 June 2013

fks-themaAlthough chicken-egg production presents a reliable method for vaccine production, in a global pandemic emergency, it takes too long and does not yield enough vaccine. A team of Fraunhofer Institute researchers from the USA has built up a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) compliant plant factory which relies on molecular farming. Molecular farming is an easy,… »

Tech»

Ultra-sensitive polymer able to detect explosives

By Damir Beciri
23 June 2013

dichtel-polymer-1A team of chemists at the Cornell University developed a polymer that could be used to detect a chemical that’s often the key ingredient in improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The polymer, which could find its use in low-cost, handheld explosive detectors and could be used to replace bomb-sniffing dogs, can be quickly and safely detected… »

Tech»

The first photodynamic drug with anti-metastatic activities

By Maja Bosanac
18 June 2013

melanomatreathiresResearchers at the University of Zurich have devised and successfully tested the first potential anticancer drug which has excellent properties as a photodynamic therapy (PDT) agent as well as potential anti-metastatic activities in vivo. Namely, this new agent destroys melanoma skin cancer cells and blocks the spread of the cancer to other sites in the… »

Tech»

New metamaterial allows negative refraction index

By Damir Beciri
One Comment16 June 2013

dionne-invisibleAlthough metamaterials managed to revolutionize optics in the past decade, their performance so far has been inhibited by their inability to function over broad bandwidths of light. Stanford engineers have designed a broadband metamaterial that more than doubles the range of wavelengths of light that can be manipulated. With adjustments, the researchers believe it could… »