Anthony Hamilton

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National Ignition Facility Announces Record Amount Of Fusion Energy

Physicists had to compress the fuel to twice the density of the core of the sun.<p>U.S. physicists are reporting they've created more energy than ever before from a laser-triggered fusion reaction.<p>Fusion is the reaction that occurs in the interiors of stars, including Earth's own sun. Theoretically, …

Physics

Beyond The Boom

How one company’s business jet could usher in a new age of supersonic air travel.<p>On an October afternoon in 2003, a Concorde airliner descended from a cloud-dappled sky and touched down at London’s Heathrow Airport. The plane had taken off from New York’s JFK International Airport just three and a …

Aviation

Planning For A Future Of Robot Ships

The technology is getting there, but the law is the real obstacle.<p>When it comes to shipping, humans crews are inconvenient. They need places to sleep and to take care care of bodily functions, they probably require food and a place to prepare that food, and they can only work so many hours a day. …

United Nations

Thermal Wristband Keeps Your Body At The Perfect Temperature

Wristify delivers hot or cool thermal pulses to keep the body comfortable.<p>A group of MIT engineering students wants you to get nice and comfy. They've created a thermoelectric bracelet designed to keep its wearer at the optimal thermal level for personal comfort.<p>Called Wristify, the prototype …

Engineering

Space-Born Jellyfish Hate Life On Earth

Space babies get major vertigo on Earth after a microgravity childhood.<p>A warning for future space colonizers: Babies born in space might not ever figure out how to deal with gravity. Jellyfish babies, at least, have to deal with massive vertigo on Earth after spending their first few days in …

National Science Foundation

Street Smarts

How intelligent roads—not just cars—will change transportation.<p>Every year, cars become more sophisticated. They can adapt to the speed of traffic, generate power from braking, and even park themselves. But the roads are pretty much made of the same stuff that was under your grandparents' wheels, …

The Next Space Shuttle: Hybrid Engines Make Runway-To-Orbit Missions A Reality

A new type of engine could usher in an era of affordable spaceplanes<p>A disembodied jet engine, attached to a hulking air vent, sits in an outdoor test facility at the Culham Science Center in Oxfordshire, England. When the engine screams to life, columns of steam billow from the vent, giving the …

This Is Elon Musk's Hyperloop

Billionaire Elon Musk has announced details of Hyperloop, his mysterious high-speed transportation project. There was some of what we expected, and a few surprises, too.<p>SpaceX/Tesla Motors founder Elon Musk has unveiled details on the Hyperloop, his proposed (and until now mostly mysterious) plan …

The Future Of Flight: A Congestion-Killing Aircraft

Meet the 100-passenger plane that'll keep your flight running on time.<p>Aircraft design is often overlooked in discussions of the FAA's multibillion-dollar NextGen initiative, the elaborate mélange of satellite-based guidance, arrival, and departure technologies intended to modernize the outdated and …

Researchers Successfully Implant Mice With False Memories

So it is possible.<p>Call it cool or just plain creepy: Memory researchers from U.S. and Japan have, for the first time, implanted false memories into a lab animal.<p>The researchers made mice believe that they had once received electrical shocks in their feet while sitting in a certain little chamber, …

Will These Guys Kill The Computer Interface As We Know It?

How two grade-school friends created Leap Motion, a company that wants to turn mouse-clicks into waves of the hand.<p>David Holz took the main stage at this year's South by Southwest Interactive, the annual innovation conference in Austin, Texas, looking like a hobbit on casual Friday. He wore an …

New Nano Structure Is The Thinnest Light-Absorber Ever

Nanosize light-absorbers break records for size and efficiency and could lead to better solar cells.<p>Scientists at Stanford University have managed to build light-absorbers that are thousands of times thinner than a sheet of paper. The nanosize structures are capable of absorbing close to 100 …

What The X-47B Reveals About The Future Of Autonomous Flight

Five things you need to know about the X-47B, the U.S. military's first unmanned, autonomous combat jet.<p>When the Navy's X-47B drone screamed skyward off the aircraft carrier <i>USS George H.W. Bush</i> in May, those of us standing on the flight deck knew we were witnessing history: a robot flying …

World's First 3-D Printed Battery Is The Size Of A Grain Of Sand

A team of scientists have used a custom-made 3-D printer to create high-power microbatteries.<p>Scientists at Harvard University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have 3-D printed lithium-ion batteries as small as a grain of sand. The batteries could be used to power …

Physicists Build Super-Powerful Tabletop Particle Accelerator

Scientists at The University of Texas at Austin have shrunk a high-energy particle accelerator from the length of two football fields to just 1 inch.<p>The latest tabletop particle accelerator, built by physicists at The University of Texas at Austin, can generate energy and speeds hitherto reached …

Google unveils Project Loon, aims to use balloons to provide internet to the world

Internet giant Google has launched an ambitious plan to use a ring of huge balloons to provide internet to the two-thirds of the world currently …

The Energy Fix: Reinventing The Solar Array

Reinventing the array could usher in a new age for solar.<p>The solar market has been on fire. In the U.S., it's grown by 600 percent over the past five years, culminating in 3,313 installed megawatts in 2012. This past March, seven solar projects added the only new utility power of any kind to the …

Envisioning A Future Of Custom-Grown Meat

"Today's special meat is a chop of Grévy's zebra flank, fresh out of the exercise amplifier and seared in giant squid fat."<p>The era of exotic meats grown to order--with no animals killed in the process--could be on its way. This August in London, Dr. Mark Post's team from Maastricht University is at …

Researchers Turn Cement Into Metal Using Lasers

You might be getting a gadget made out of cement soon.<p>A team of<p>alchemistsscientists say they've just figured out a process that turns cement into a metal semi-conductor using lasers.<p><i>Metal sidewalks! Metal buildings! Metal everything!</i><p>Well, no. But it could have make its way into one of your …

This Bacterium-Sized Bunny Could Be The Future Of Bionic Brains

Scientists in Japan have created a new material that can be shaped into complex, conductive 3-D structures. Get ready for your custom brain electrodes.<p>The rabbit sculpture above is the size of a typical bacterium and is made of a new type of resin that has exciting implications for bionic implants. …

NASA Inspects Ion Engine Prototype For Asteroid-Hauling Rocket

A look at possible propulsion for NASA's plan to bring an asteroid home for study.<p>When NASA sends a rocket out to tow an asteroid into Earth orbit, it'll be ion propelled.<p>Ion propulsion engines harness magnetic fields to create thrust, instead of depending on chemical explosions the way chemically …

Metamaterial Can Squirt A Magnetic Field Through A Hose

Magnetic fields normally wane as distance increases, but a new hose changes things.<p>Electromagnetic waves can travel over long distances without interruption. But magnetism, the field that attracts or repels objects, only works at close range. Now a team of Spanish and German researchers proves …

Intelligent Headlights Make Raindrops Disappear

A camera finds individual drops, then a projector blacks them out of the driver's view.<p>Anyone who's ever driven through a heavy rain has hoped for something like this: a system that can make rain drops vanish--or at least look like they do.<p>Intel and Carnegie Mellon University have developed …

Scientists 3-D Print A Bionic Ear With Help From A High School Kid

Nanoparticle antennae are woven right into the organic tissue of the ear!<p>A team of scientists at Princeton University--along with one very savvy high school student--have managed to create a truly bionic ear. It's not just a replacement--it has sensors woven throughout the tissue that actually …

Replace Your Lights With These Genetically Engineered Glow-Plants

Now on Kickstarter.<p>Light bulbs are so 19th century. Why not genetically engineer yourself a glowing plant instead?<p>A team of scientists on Kickstarter is asking for donations to make it happen. The group has set up a DIY lab, where they're selecting the genes of bioluminescent bacteria, which turn a …

News Analysis: The 3-D Printing Of The Future Promises Far More Than Just Guns

What happens to anti-gun legislation when people can just make weapons in their homes?<p>The Liberator, the 3-D printed gun that we reported on earlier today, is proof-of-concept for an inevitable and dangerous idea: what happens to anti-gun legislation when people can just make weapons in their homes?<p>…

2013 Invention Awards: Family Flier

A homebuilt airplane designed with maximum efficiency in mind.<p>John McGinnis thinks ordinary families would rather skip the airport and fly themselves. So he is trying to reinvent the personal airplane with the help of his father, son, and a rotating crew of about two dozen volunteers. Unlike small …

Are Autonomous Helicopters The Next 18-Wheelers?

The K-MAX drone made a name for itself transporting supplies to troops in Afghanistan. Will the unmanned helicopter start delivering commercial cargo in the U.S.?<p>The K-MAX optionally-manned helicopter is a powerful battlefield work horse. Over the past 16 months, two (yes, just two) K-MAX drones …

2013 Invention Awards: Suborbital Safeguard

A sleek, comfortable space suit designed to protect high-flying tourists.<p>During NASA's 2007 Astronaut Glove Challenge, costume fabricator Ted Southern met fellow competitor Nikolay Moiseev, a Russian space-suit builder. Although each walked away from the competition empty-handed, they formed a …

Google And NASA Team Up In Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab

Why not use a crazy sci-fi technology (quantum computing) to solve a classic crazy sci-fi problem (artificial intelligence)?<p>Google announced today a partnership with NASA and D-Wave to launch a lab to solve artificial intelligence problems with the aid of quantum computing.<p>Quantum computing is in …