NASA reveals spacesuit of the future

space suit 1

Z-series spacesuit

Style in spacesuits tends to advance at a slow pace. The spacesuit that is being currently worn by astronauts has been in use since 1982. But NASA has designed the Z-series suit that is designed for walking on Mars, not just floating around in space as astronauts have in the past. And NASA wants you to help pick the final look. (pics)

 

 

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Gecko-inspired wall-crawling robot could someday be used in space

Abigaille, a robot inspired by the gecko.

Inspired by the gecko, a robot that crawls up walls has taken a small but important step towards a future in space, scientists said on Thursday. The tiny legged prototype could be the forerunner of automatons that crawl along the hulls of spacecraft, cleaning and maintaining them, the European Space Agency (ESA) said.

 

 

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Advances in Producing Hydrogen by Mimicry of Photosynthesis

hydrogen-difraction-spectru

Light makes might?

Last time we checked in on Thomas Mallouk’s work applying biomimicry to generate hydrogen, he was reporting about 0.3 percent efficiency. According to his projections, the proof-of-concept device for producing hydrogen using the same trick applied in plants for photosynthesis could eventually reach efficiencies of 10-15%, beating nature’s average of 1 to 3 percent. Mallouk is back at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). So what’s the news on one promising option for generating large quantities of clean fuel for combustion engines or fuel cells?

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‘Mussel Gel’ Can Repair Tissue and Bond Medical Implants

mussel

Mussel byssus enables mussel to surfaces even in water.

A new gel that the inventors say you can play with like Silly Putty, can repair torn skin, bond implants, or act as an adhesive for underwater machinery.  The invention, under development for several years, is now patent pending, and it’s all thanks to the biomimicry of a mussel’s byssus, the hair-size filaments that form a sticky foam enabling the mussel’s fierce attachment to rocks, substrates, and beds on the sea walls and floors.

 

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Plug-And-Play Solar Panels By Veranda Solar

Plug-And-Play Solar Panels

Veranda Solar Panels 

Solar start-up Veranda Solar wants to change the world of solar power the way Apple changed computers. Veranda got a big head-start on financing the start-up when the company was awarded 100,000€ as runner-up in the PICNIC Green Challenge, funded by the Dutch postcode lottery. The solar panels Veranda uses are nothing special. The prototypes were developed in cooperation with Stanford University and SunPower Corp. No new photovoltaic advances, no biomimicry.

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