Tech

Seamless fabric that can be sprayed on to skin and other surfaces to make clothes, medical bandages and even upholstery will be demonstrated this Thursday, in advance of the Science in Style spray-on fashion show next week at Imperial College London.

Washington, D.C. (September 14, 2010) -- Driven by rapid global industrialization, finite fossil fuel reserves, and the high cost of many alternative energy options, meeting the world's energy challenge may demand novel solutions. One potential solution has its roots in the ubiquitous industrial invention: the factory.

Farming practices have a significant impact on the diversity of beneficial microbial fungi known to play important roles in crop productivity, soil recovery and maintenance of healthy ecosystems, according to new research published today (14 September 2010) in the journal Environmental Microbiology. The conclusions could have important implications for the way humans manage the agricultural landscape and tackle food security issues.

Researchers funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council(BBSRC) have discovered key plant enzymes that normally make the energy stored in wood, straw, and other non-edible parts of plants difficult to extract. The findings, published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, can be used to improve the viability of sustainable biofuels that do not adversely affect the food chain.

EVANSTON, Ill. --- It seems the old nature versus nurture debate can't be won. But a new Northwestern University study of men in the Philippines makes a strong case for nurture's role in male to female differences -- suggesting that rapid weight gain in the first six months of life predicts earlier puberty for boys.

Earthy or musty odors, along with visual evidence of blue-green algae, also known as cyanobacteria, may serve as a warning that harmful cyanotoxins are present in lakes or reservoirs. In a newly published USGS study of cyanobacterial blooms in Midwest lakes, taste-and-odor compounds were found almost every time cyanotoxins were found, indicating odor may serve as a warning that harmful toxins are present.

Today sees the presentation of a study that, for the first time, shows the results of treatment using prostheses attached to titanium implants in the bones of patients with above-the-knee amputations. It reveals that the treatment improves function and quality of life in nine out of ten patients, and is the result of research carried out at the Sahlgrenska Academy and Sahlgrenska University Hospital that is being presented this week at the International Society of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology (SICOT) annual international conference in Gothenburg.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Using carbon nanotubes (hollow tubes of carbon atoms), MIT chemical engineers have found a way to concentrate solar energy 100 times more than a regular photovoltaic cell. Such nanotubes could form antennas that capture and focus light energy, potentially allowing much smaller and more powerful solar arrays.

Berkeley engineers create artificial skin out of nanowires

Berkeley – Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley, have developed a pressure-sensitive electronic material from semiconductor nanowires that could one day give new meaning to the term "thin-skinned."

A study by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists and cooperators provides new details about how fertilizing soils with biosolids also introduces triclosan—an antibacterial agent in soaps and other cleaning supplies—into the environment.

There may be no simple one-size-fits-all approach to improving end-of-life care in ICU settings, according to a recent study from some of the world's leading researchers in palliative care.

As the General Assembly of the UN resolved on July 28 of this year, clean drinking water and basic sanitary provision are human rights. Unfortunately, there are more than one billion people all over the world who do not have access to drinking water, while as many as 2.6 billion people live without any sanitary systems at all – that is well over one-third of the world's population.

A creative version of a classic engineering technique may improve decisions about building and using supplies of important pediatric vaccines, potentially leading to lower public health costs and healthier children.