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Category: Electrical Engineering

How to make ‘your own supernova’ — ScienceDaily

One of the most extreme astrophysical events, Supernova explosions are the violent deaths of certain stars that scatter elements heavier than hydrogen and helium into surrounding space. Our own solar system is thought to have formed when a nearby supernova exploded distributing these elements into a cloud of hydrogen that then condensed to form our sun and the planets. In fact, the very atoms that make up our bodies were formed in the remnants of such an explosion. Working in…

First battery-free cellphone makes calls by harvesting ambient power

UW engineers have designed the first battery-free cellphone that can send and receive calls using only a few microwatts of power. Credit: Mark Stone/University of Washington University of Washington researchers have invented a cellphone that requires no batteries—a major leap forward in moving beyond chargers, cords and dying phones. Instead, the phone harvests the few microwatts of power it requires from either ambient radio signals or light. The team also made Skype calls using its battery-free phone, demonstrating that the…

Team develops sprayable sensing network technology for structural health monitoring

The nanocomposite sensors developed Professor Su Zhongqing from PolyU Department of Mechanical Engineering can be sprayed directly on flat or curved engineering structures. Credit: The Hong Kong Polytechnic University The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) research team developed a novel breed of nanocomposites-inspired sensors which can be sprayed directly on flat or curved engineering structural surfaces, such as train tracks and aeroplane structures. The sprayed sensors can be networked, to render rich real-time information on the health status of the…

World’s smallest and most accurate 3-D-printed biopsy robot

S4 side wide annotated . Credit: University of Twente The world’s smallest and most accurate 3-D-printed biopsy robot was revealed last week. The Stormram 4, as the robot is named, is made from 3-D-printed plastic and is driven by air pressure. The advantage of plastic is that the robot can be used in an MRI scanner. Carrying out a biopsy (removing a piece of tissue) during a breast cancer scan in an MRI significantly increases accuracy. The robot won a…

Ahead of July 1 deadline, team makes its most precise measurement yet of Planck’s constant — ScienceDaily

Using a state-of-the-art device for measuring mass, researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have made their most precise determination yet of Planck’s constant, an important value in science that will help to redefine the kilogram, the official unit of mass in the SI, or international system of units. Accepted for publication (link is external) in the journal Metrologia, these new results come ahead of a July 1 international deadline for measurements that aim to redefine the…

Accelerating growth through Facebook’s Rotational Engineering Program | Engineering Blog | Facebook Code

One of the core tenets we value at Facebook is diversity of thought. We know that teams with people who bring a diverse set of experiences, backgrounds, identities, and perspectives build better products. As we grow as a company, we’re looking beyond our traditional recruiting channels and diversifying our efforts to find the best people from all backgrounds. Last year we launched the Rotational Engineering Program to provide opportunities to select programmers and engineers from non-traditional and underrepresented backgrounds to…

New method of measurement could lead to cheaper, more accurate sensors

A new method for measuring extremely tiny objects could lead to cheaper, more accurate sensors for use in fields including medical research and gas detection. Research at the University of Waterloo found that nanoscale devices using electromagnetism would be sensitive enough to determine the mass of viruses a hundred billion times lighter than a strand of human hair. “Medical researchers would finally have a more accurate tool for detecting viruses and bacteria, and that could lead to better clinical…

Prosthetic limbs made user-friendly with polymer based elastic sensors

Design of the PPy band. Credit: University of Electro Communications Prostheses are used to replace body parts damaged through trauma or congenital deficiencies. A wide range of prosthetic limbs exist including myoelectric prostheses that operate by so-called surface electromyography (sEMG), where pulses of electrical voltage from muscles are relayed to sensors when users want to initiate a movement. However, a major problem limit the application of such prosthetic devices is the instability of the electrical signals measured. Now, Yinlai Jiang…

‘Superhero’ 3D printed hands help kids dream in Argentina

In this June 12, 2017 photo, Kaori Misue breaks into a smile in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Misue has a brand new prosthetic hand thanks to the genius of 21-year-old inventor Gino Tubaro and his 3D printer. Today, more than 500 people, mostly children, have received similar prostheses and 4,500 more remain on a waiting list. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko) Being born without fingers can be tough for any child. Getting new ones—especially red and blue superhero themed digits—has made 8-year-old Kaori…

New method for 3-D through-wall imaging that utilizes drones and WiFi

Researchers at UC Santa Barbara professor Yasamin Mostofi’s lab have given the first demonstration of three-dimensional imaging of objects through walls using ordinary wireless signal. The technique, which involves two drones working in tandem, could have a variety of applications, such as emergency search-and-rescue, archaeological discovery and structural monitoring. “Our proposed approach has enabled unmanned aerial vehicles to image details through walls in 3D with only WiFi signals,” said Mostofi, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at UCSB. “This…