This Solar Hydropanel Can Pull 10 Liters of Drinking Water Per Day Out of the Air

By Derek Markham

By harvesting water vapor from the air and condensing it into liquid, atmospheric water generators can essentially pull water from the air, and these devices hold a lot of promise for providing an independent source of drinking water. And although drought-stricken regions and locations without safe or stable water sources are prime candidates for water production and purification devices such as those, residences and commercial buildings in the developed world could also benefit from their use, and they make a great fit for off-grid homes and emergency preparedness kits.

The statistics speak for themselves:

  • 40 percent of America’s 50,000 community water systems have had water quality violations, according to the EPA.
  • 15 percent of Americans still rely on wells as their main source of water. A full 50 percent of that water wouldn’t pass a quality test.
  • Over 450,000 California residents who are served by a Community Water System are subjected to water that is failing to meet the Safe Drinking Water Act.
  • Evidence shows that American households facing water insecurity and poor water quality are likely to have lower incomes and live in areas where infrastructure has been systemically underfunded.
  • 100 percent of California’s failing systems serve less than 100,000 people; 96.4 percent serve less than 10,000 people. Tulare County, where Allensworth is located, has largest number of systems without safe water. (Community Water Center’s Drinking Water Tool identifies exactly where communities have the environmental burden of no clean water and are also disadvantaged.)
  • The most common contaminants found in these water systems are arsenic, nitrate, lead, copper, Uranium, and E.Coli.
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Connecting the Dots | Drones in space: Satellites seen as key to giving full autonomy to uncrewed aerial vehicles

Danish startup QuadSAT uses specially equipped quadcopter drones as satellite stand-ins to help antenna makers and their customers test and calibrate antennas. Credit: QuadSAT 

by Jason Rainbow 

Advances in commercial drone technology are opening up new growth opportunities for the space industry, which has an often underappreciated synergistic relationship with uncrewed aerial vehicles.

The fast-evolving market for drones attracted $1.4 billion in venture capital investment in 2020, according to data from early-stage space technology investor Seraphim Capital.

That’s roughly double the amount of capital it recorded in 2019, a sign startups looking to provide services ranging from drone deliveries to building inspections are gaining traction.

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New Blood: Lab-Grown Stem Cells Bode Well for Transplants, Aging Research

Newswise — Hematopoietic stem cells — the precursors to blood cells — have been notoriously difficult to grow in a dish, a critical tool in basic research. Scientists at University of California San Diego School of Medicine have identified the underlying issue and developed a method to keep cultured cells healthy. These findings, they say, are positive news for patients seeking stem cell transplants — and may hint at a new way to ward off aging.

The findings will be published in the August 12, 2021 online issue of Cell Stem Cell.

In bone marrow transplants, hematopoietic stem cells are infused intravenously to reestablish blood production in patients whose bone marrow or immune system is damaged. The procedure is used to treat diseases such as leukemia, lymphoma, aplastic anemia and immune deficiency disorders. However, donor stem cells are not always available for patients who need them.

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Ecopia AI creates HD map of Toronto for Autonomous Vehicles

Ecopia AI (Ecopia) has announced that it is creating a high-definition (HD) map for the City of Toronto that will be leveraged to accelerate the deployment of Autonomous Vehicles (AVs). This initiative strives to lay the foundation for a digital twin of the city of Toronto and is being made possible with the support of Ontario’s Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN). This HD Map of Canada’s largest city will serve as a test-bed for AV applications and puts Ontario at the forefront of next-generation transportation systems.

There is a need for the creation of new underlying digital infrastructure. To serve this need, Ecopia is commercializing a centralized hub for the HD Map data needed in the enablement of AV and smart city applications.

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How AI, smart sensors, and lettuce-picking robots are transforming agriculture on this ‘hands-free’ farm

It cost $20 million to set up, according to ABC News.Getty Images

  • An Australian farm is now fully automated and “hands-free.”
  • On the farm, artificial intelligence, robots, and smart sensors do the farming.
  • The 1,900-hectare farm will demonstrate how tech can make the industry more productive and efficient.

Technological innovation isn’t just spreading to smart cities, intelligent buildings, or new hybrid work models; robots are also revolutionizing agriculture with artificial intelligence, autonomous tractors, sensors that monitor crops in real time, drones, or fruit and vegetable-harvesting robots.

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Tiny “Neurograins” Could Power Next Generation of Brain-Computer Interfaces

Tiny chips called neurograins are able to sense electrical activity in the brain and transmit that data wirelessly. Credit: Jihun Lee/ Brown University

Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are emerging assistive devices that may one day help people with brain or spinal injuries to move or communicate. BCI systems depend on implantable sensors that record electrical signals in the brain and use those signals to drive external devices like computers or robotic prosthetics.

Most current BCI systems use one or two sensors to sample up to a few hundred neurons, but neuroscientists are interested in systems that are able to gather data from much larger groups of brain cells.

Now, a team of researchers has taken a key step toward a new concept for a future BCI system — one that employs a coordinated network of independent, wireless microscale neural sensors, each about the size of a grain of salt, to record and stimulate brain activity. The sensors, dubbed “neurograins,” independently record the electrical pulses made by firing neurons and send the signals wirelessly to a central hub, which coordinates and processes the signals.

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The world’s data explained: how much we’re producing and where it’s all stored

Code written out.
Everyday we generate 500 million tweets, 294 billion emails and 4 million gigabytes of Facebook data. Image:
  • Humankind has been storing data for millions of years, as wall paintings, in books and more recently in super-sized data centers.
  • Technological advancements have increased our ability to create and store data.
  • Each day on Earth we generate 500 million tweets, 294 billion emails and 4 million gigabytes of Facebook data.
  • Around 150 years from now, the number of digital bits would reach an impossible value, exceeding the number of all atoms on Earth.
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Forget Flying Cars. The World’s First Flying Motorcycle Is Coming.

The Speeder’s design team said the sci-fi sky-bike recently passed flight tests. They expect it to be commercially available by 2023. 

By J. GEORGE GORANT

Flying cars and flying people with jet packs are on the way, so why not flying motorcycles?

Jetpack Aviation, which already makes vertical people propellers, just announced a successful test flight of its jet-driven flying motorcycle prototype. The projected performance is Easy Rider-worthy bad-ass, and best of all, the California company plans to produce two consumer versions for everyday users.

The Speeder is an engineering feat that required Jetpack Aviation to write its own flight-control software program to monitor and adjust the thrust. The benefit of that work, which took a year and a half, is an intuitive system that functions like a typical motorcycle and automatically stabilizes the machine in flight. It can take off and land vertically from most surfaces in roughly the space taken up by a car, and it can be programmed to fly autonomously.

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The Army’s first laser weapon is almost ready for a fight

A Northrop Grumman photo illustration of the defense contractor’s Stryker-mounted laser weapon in action.  (Northrop Grumman)

BY JARED KELLER 

Pew pew pew!

Slowly but surely, the Army is inching towards fielding its first true combat-capable, high-powered laser weapon mounted on a Stryker infantry carrier vehicle.

The service announced on Tuesday that it had successfully completed its first-ever Directed Energy-Maneuver Short-Range Air Defense (DE M-SHORAD) “combat shoot-off” between two unique laser systems at Fort Sill in Oklahoma earlier this summer. 

The shoot-off saw the two 50-kilowatt laser weapons — developed in a competition between defense contractors Northrop Grumman and Raytheon — participate in “a series of vignettes designed to emulate realistic threats and combat scenarios,” according to the service.

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Fecal Transplants Could Be New Tool in Fight Against Age-Related Decline

By Brandon May

Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) is an innovative procedure studied in several conditions, including inflammatory bowel disease. Recent animal research reportedin Nature Aging on Monday suggests fecal transplants may actually reverse the signs of brain aging.

The study transplanted gut microbes from the feces of young mice into older mice to reverse age-related declines of the brain. Intestinal bacteria have been shown to play a role in a variety physiological processes and also influence different dimensions of overall health.

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ROBOTIC GYNECOLOGIC SURGERY: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

Robotic gynecologic surgery provides surgeons a greater range of motion and precision

Robotic surgeries in healthcare are not new, especially in the field of gynecology. In 2005, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of robotic surgery for gynecological procedures. When both medication and non-invasive procedures fail to treat gynecological disorder symptoms, doctors recommend surgery. Robotic Gynecologic Surgery stays the acknowledged and best treatment for most gynecological conditions such as cervical cancer, excessive uterine bleeding, uterine fibroids, and more.

Before robotic surgery, surgeons sometimes used to held cameras in their hands, which means they could shake or gradually move. Now, the specialist can get a 3-D perspective on the activity site and the video is steady all through the process. Control has likewise improved with robotic technology. This allows surgeons to work normally and instinctively which can prompt better outcomes and speed up the process. It also helps to reduce the risk of blood loss and quicker recovery.

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Batteries made from trees could help transform the future of electric travel

Finnish sustainable material developers have opened a mill that turns powdered tree macromolecules into energy   



By Shannon McDonagh 

A material found in the wood of our plants is being trialled as a way to produce sustainable battery power.

Finnish designers Stora Enso have built a new production facility costing €10 million that will create renewable bio-based carbon by turning trees into batteries. This will be achieved by the use of a wood-based material called lignin.

The plant is based beside the company’s Sunila Mill in Kotka, southern Finland, which employs over 150 people and specialises in producing softwood pulp, and biofuels like tall oil and turpentine.

The company is responsible for developing a number of wood and biomaterial-based solutions for everyday problems that require eco-friendly solutions. Their innovative product offerings range from mouldable woods to formed fiber food packaging.

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