Filtered by tag: New Materials

Big time for metal printing
Posted: 16 November 2017

GE's new metal printer can print parts over a metre in diameter and, in the future, even larger. Another example of how this technology is advancing exponentially!

"General Electric’s beta version of its newest metal 3-D printer (pictured) was unveiled Tuesday at Formnext, the largest trade fair for additive manufacturers. Like most metal printers, it uses lasers to transform powder into a ...

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Metal 3-D Printing Is, Finally, Overcoming Its Limitations
16 November 2017
Techniques for 3-D-printing metal have long been too expensive and slow, and the parts produced too weak, to compete with traditional manufacturing—but ...
3-D printing creates unusual alliances
Dateline: 26 August 2016
Five years ago, it would have seemed an unlikely partnership. But the alliance announced today between BHP Billiton, the world's largest mining group, and ...


Published on: 2 November 2017

Food, shelter and clothing - they're all IT

Dateline: 3 November 2022

We're all familiar with Maslow's hierarchy, and we know that basic needs like food, shelter and personal comfort come first. But it seems information technology, that enabling force for modern civilization, was focused far up the scale, at education, entertainment and research, and of course, finance. Now the world of smart robotics and nanotech production has turned basic businesses into digital technologies. Energy is solid state solar and batteries, and traded like information on the internet. ...

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3D printing managed by robots
Posted: 20 October 2017

Just as we suggested might become the case, a small manufacturing plant using 3D printers has scaled up by adding a robot to do the work at night. See the attached MindBullet for further scenario options!

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This robot-run 3D printing farm is the future of light manufacturing
20 October 2017
Even small businesses are now running lights-out facilities using robots and automation
Free energy spawns hordes of wetbots and kills off big brands
Dateline: 13 July 2033
"We're closing up shop. Wetbots made us broke." The production chief of iRobot consumer products grins ruefully. "Luckily we've still got our military ...


Published on: 12 October 2017

Plants that tweet and pets that ping

Dateline: 13 October 2023

Does your prize rose bush send you an email when it needs specific nutrients, or tweet incessantly when it's thirsty? Does your Labrador retriever ping you on your smartphone, when he's restless and wants a walk? Only if you've got smart soil sensors, for the rose, and a smart dog-collar for the Lab. But all these things we've connected to the 'net, they all need power - battery power, and even enhanced with tiny solar cells, like all electronics, they eventually wear out and have to be replaced, or ...

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Bionic eyes being tested
Posted: 4 September 2017

A decade ago we wrote about bionic eyes giving people 'better than human' eyesight. We've also published MindBullets about upgrading humans - because we can! Now it seems these future scenarios are becoming reality, as so often happens. A new bionic lens for cataract patients will not only restore their sight - it promises to improve on the best natural eyesight. What if someone who can ...

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A Bionic Lens Undergoing Clinical Trials Could Give You Superhuman Abilities In Two Years
4 September 2017
We're talking 'Ghost in the Shell' type of stuff.
Wanted man picked out of crowd with bionic vision
Dateline: 3 November 2019
The notorious 'Celebrity Stalker' was apprehended last night after being spotted in a street crowd - with the help of cyborg eyes. The latest ...
Making it in Space
Posted: 15 August 2017

Made In Space just took another step toward its goal of building telescopes and other large structures off Earth.
A 3D printer built by the California-based company churned out multiple polymer-alloy objects — the largest of which was a 33.5-inch-long (85 centimeters) beam — during a 24-day test inside a thermal vacuum chamber (TVAC) here in Silicon Valley at NASA's Ames Research Center in ...

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Space-Based 3-D Printing Reaches Milestone
15 August 2017
Successful test suggests “Archinaut” system could soon assemble huge structures in orbit
3D printing in space solves problem of launching huge rockets
Dateline: 3 November 2025
A decade ago the first 3D printer to go to space was sent to the International Space Station. It proved to be so useful, more, bigger printers soon ...
Never charge your phone
Posted: 4 July 2017 2 Comments

A dozen years ago, we wrote a MindBullet about developments with nano materials that would make charging your phone unnecessary. Well, here's a story about new material that could require your phone to be charged only every three months. And with wireless charging also improving - in the lab at least - you might never have to consciously 'charge' your phone in the future.

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New Material Could Lead to Devices That You Only Need to Charge Once Every Three Months
4 July 2017
Researchers developed a new magnetoelectric multiferroic material which allowed processors to work with 100 times less energy.
New nanotechnologies set to scramble battery makers
Dateline: 15 August 2011
From a consumer point of view Motorola's new technology announcements may just mean more convenience. For battery manufacturers this could be the ...
Fibre reinforced hydrogel
Posted: 21 July 2017

From Japan comes this discovery of a new soft, flexible but extremely strong material. It's made from hydrogel and glass fibres, and could be useful for repairing damaged joints and for protective gear like bullet-proof vests. I wonder if they could try reinforcing hydrogel with carbon fibres - that should be even stronger, but might be too stiff.

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Revolutionary gel is five times stronger than steel
21 July 2017
Researchers have developed a new gel they say is as durable as metal, has the flexibility of jello, and could revolutionize how our bodies heal and age.
Windows that harvest solar power
Posted: 17 July 2017

Windows that harvest solar energy to create electricity? What an obvious idea! Yet it has taken until now for the first installation, in a bank building in the Netherlands...not exactly a country known for copious sunshine!
Imagine the impact in high-sunshine countries.
Then there are Elon Musk's solar-generating roof tiles - and the advent of solar paint is not far off, as our MindBullet ...

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These Transparent, Solar Power-Generating Windows Are the World's First
17 July 2017
Trying to make large buildings energy-neutral, companies are taking advantage of building windows' surface area to harvest solar energy.
Just paint that wall for instant solar fuel
Dateline: 23 June 2022
It's taken five years to come to fruition, but the magic of solar paint is finally something every building owner can benefit from. Why pay for costly 3D ...
The end of fake goods?
Posted: 10 July 2017

A world without counterfeit goods? Yes, it is possible thanks to this graphene breakthrough.

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A future without fakes thanks to quantum technology
10 July 2017
Counterfeit products are a huge problem - from medicines to car parts, fake technology costs lives.
New forms of carbon are grabbing the technology spotlight
Dateline: 27 March 2017
Once, the center of hi-tech development was called Silicon Valley. But silicon is rapidly becoming a thing of the past as carbon emerges as the new ...
The demise of oil
Posted: 23 June 2017

Will demand for oil continue to rise indefinitely, or will exponential technologies hasten a peak in demand, and a shift to alternative fuel and energy sources? Bloomberg gives us a view of what the demise of oil could look like.

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This Is What The Demise of Oil Looks Like
23 June 2017
Seismic shifts in technology and policy could slow demand growth
The stone age didn't end because we ran out of stones
Dateline: 20 January 2021
Back in the day, when horse drawn carriages and buggies were the preferred mode of transport for anyone, there was a big fear in Paris, London and New York ...


Published on: 22 June 2017 1 Comment

Just paint that wall for instant solar fuel

Dateline: 23 June 2022

It's taken five years to come to fruition, but the magic of solar paint is finally something every building owner can benefit from. Why pay for costly 3D printed solar panels and film, when you can just slap it on like paint - literally. Discovered back in 2017, solar paint is a special mixture of synthetic molecules and titanium oxide, which has been used in paint for decades. It turns out the oxide helps the paint absorb the sun's energy, while the molybdenum molecules act as a catalyst, splitting ...

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Solar ready to surpass coal
Posted: 19 June 2017 1 Comment

The combination of increasingly cheap solar power and new-age batteries is rewriting the rules of energy worldwide. And this means that the days of coal's decades-long supremacy are numbered. That's what we wrote in our MindBullet back in April 2008. And now it is happening.

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As Cost Plunges, Solar Power is Ready to Surpass Coal
19 June 2017
Within the next four years, solar power will finally be cheaper than coal nearly everywhere, aligning economic and environmental interests.
Nano solar films bring cheap energy to sunshine states
Dateline: 5 May 2018
It's hard to believe that a mere decade ago fossil fuels were at a premium, and everyone talked of 'peak oil' and the high prices of natural gas and coal. ...
Politics cannot save coal in the future
Posted: 22 May 2017 1 Comment

Whether you believe in climate change or not, it's abundantly apparent that coal as a primary energy source has a limited future. Globally, it will still take many years for alternative technologies to supplant coal, but as we can see happening in the United States, the economics of cleaner alternatives will make coal-fired power simply obsolete. In 2017 alone, 8 coal power stations have ...

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In 2017 alone, enough US coal-fired plants have announced closures to power all of Qatar
22 May 2017
Trump's coal magic has worked—but not in the way his voters had hoped.
Nano solar films bring cheap energy to sunshine states
Dateline: 5 May 2018
It's hard to believe that a mere decade ago fossil fuels were at a premium, and everyone talked of 'peak oil' and the high prices of natural gas and coal. ...
Fake blood means no donors required
Posted: 19 May 2017

Well, it's not really fake - it's blood cultured in a lab from your own stem cells. Why go to all the trouble and expense of getting blood safely donated when you can "grow your own"? Biotech advances will revolutionise healthcare and extend human longevity. The future potential is amazing.

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Stem-cell research a step closer to making blood donation redundant
19 May 2017
Two different teams have managed to train stem cells to replenish a mouse’s blood supply.
Artificial blood saves earthquake victims
Dateline: 17 April 2021
"We're out of blood," was the chilling statement released by Sichuan University School of Medicine in Chengdu. 4,700 people were left homeless following ...
Solar fuel and clean air
Posted: 26 April 2017

Solar power works, but it's not very efficient, mainly because it only uses a small part of the sun's light spectrum, mainly UV. What if we could make a photo-reactor that used visible light to generate chemicals? That's what a chemistry professor in Florida has developed. A metal organic framework (MOF) that uses blue light to convert CO2 into usable carbon-based fuels. The idea is to ...

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Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air
26 April 2017
A chemistry professor in Florida has just found a way to trigger the process of photosynthesis in a synthetic material, turning greenhouse gases into clean ...
New process integrates solar power into the hydrocarbon economy
Dateline: 26 February 2026
A new process for capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and turning it into usable liquid fuel has been commercialized and scaled up. Originally ...
Hacking the planet
Posted: 28 March 2017

One of the possible 'solutions' to climate change is called geoengineering; re-engineering the planet (or at least its atmosphere) to cool it down, or reduce carbon dioxide concentrations. Now personally I don't think we can control the climate, certainly not with taxes and agreements; but it's interesting to note that as far back as 2009, we published a MindBullet suggesting that ...

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Harvard scientists are gearing up for some of the first outdoor geoengineering experiments
28 March 2017
The climate researchers intend to launch a high-altitude balloon that would spray a small quantity of reflective particles into the stratosphere.
MindBullet logo WELCOME TO EARTH 2.0
Geo-engineering creates a new environment for a smart planet
Dateline: 21 September 2027
Our planet couldn't cope with all the demands our modern civilization placed on it. So we built a new one. Welcome to Earth 2.0. A new planet for a new, ...
3D printing in space
Posted: 23 March 2017

As we pointed out in our MindBullet from a couple of years ago, there are big advantages to construction of massive items in orbit. Not only is it easy to handle heavy components in micro-gravity, but the constraints of rocket payloads can also be overcome. 3D printing and robotic construction is the obvious way to exploit these benefits. It seems that Made In Space, who installed the first ...

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The Future of Building and 3D Printing in Space >
23 March 2017
3D printing in space isn’t just meant to be a novelty, but a technology that enables humanity’s proliferation throughout the cosmos. Now, it’s possible for ...
3D printing in space solves problem of launching huge rockets
Dateline: 3 November 2025
A decade ago the first 3D printer to go to space was sent to the International Space Station. It proved to be so useful, more, bigger printers soon ...
Powerpacks for LA's peak
Posted: 16 March 2017

Many years ago, we wrote a MindBullet about big batteries that could power a city, especially in those peak periods in the evening, when everyone is heading home and cooking dinner. That's always been one of the headaches with solar power - what do you do when the sun goes down, and all those households with rooftop solar start downloading from the grid?

Well it seems Tesla has the answer in ...

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Tesla kills the duck with big batteries
16 March 2017
One of the problems that comes from reliance on solar power is the “duck curve” where the solar panels produce more power than is needed during the day, ...
New York City runs all night on a single charge
Dateline: 21 April 2015
In the city that never sleeps, the lights burn all night. But don't worry, they're not consuming precious fuel or polluting the environment, because the ...


Published on: 9 March 2017

A field of daffodils can power a town

Dateline: 8 March 2023

Once we thought that batteries were made of corrosive chemicals and heavy metals. But what happens when you can grow e-plants that store solar energy like super-capacitors? Back in 2017, scientists discovered they could grow nanowires inside a red rose, using the plant's own capillary system to create an internal network, and absorb electrolyte. It's a little like that old school lab experiment, where you run an LED off a potato - natural, organic electricity. Except that, in the case of e-plants, ...

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Filtered by tag: New Materials