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One step to solar-cell efficiency

June 19, 2014 1:50 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Rice University scientists have created a one-step process for producing highly efficient materials that let the maximum amount of sunlight reach a solar cell. The Rice lab of chemist Andrew Barron found a simple way to etch nanoscale spikes into silicon that allows more than 99 percent of sunlight to reach the cells' active elements, where it can be turned into electricity....

BICEP2 researchers publish nuanced account of stunning patterns in the microwave sky

June 19, 2014 1:48 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Following a thorough peer-review process, the researchers who previously announced the detection of B-mode polarization in a patch of the microwave sky have published their findings today in the journal Physical Review Letters (PDF available at

Study: Controllable optical steady behavior obtainable from nonradiation coherence

June 19, 2014 1:46 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A new proposed scheme, by Wen-Xing Yang, from the Department of Physics, Southeast University, China, and colleagues, analyzed in detail the optical steady behavior in GaAs quantum well structure driven by an elliptically polarized field (EPF) in a unidirectional ring cavity....


Groundbreaking model explains how the brain learns to ignore familiar stimuli

June 19, 2014 1:42 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A neuroscientist from Trinity College Dublin has proposed a new, ground-breaking explanation for the fundamental process of 'habituation', which has never been completely understood by neuroscientists. Typically, our response to a stimulus is reduced over time if we are repeatedly exposed to it. This process of habituation enables organisms to identify and selectively ignore....

Crime data show iPhone 'kill switch' cuts thefts

June 19, 2014 1:13 pm | by Michael Virtanen - Associated Press - Associated Press | Comments

New crime data show Apple's addition of a "kill switch" to its iPhones last September has sharply reduced robberies and thefts, authorities said Thursday. The report by state attorneys general, prosecutors, police and other officials from a year-old initiative called "Secure Our Smartphones" said...

Global flat-panel TV shipments enjoy sound growth in Q1; South Koreans top field

June 19, 2014 10:57 am | by Jusy Hong, Principal Analyst, IHS Technology | Comments

Worldwide shipments of flat-panel televisions rose convincingly in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the same period last year, a stronger-than-expected showing that puts the industry on firm footing for the year, according to a new report from IHS Technology....


Modeling how neurons work together

June 19, 2014 9:47 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A newly-developed, highly accurate representation of the way in which neurons behave when performing movements such as reaching could not only enhance understanding of the complex dynamics at work in the brain, but aid in the development of robotic limbs which are capable of more complex and natural movements....

Identifying opposite patterns of climate change between the middle latitude areas

June 19, 2014 8:59 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Korean research team revealed conflicting climate change patterns between the middle latitude areas of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres in relation to glacial and interglacial cycles which have been puzzled for the past 60 years. Doctor Kyoung-nam Jo from the Quaternary Geology Department of the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources(KIGAM) revealed a clue....


Bioengineer receives $2.9 million grant to improve brain implants

June 19, 2014 8:33 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Less than two years ago, a brain-computer interface designed at the University of Pittsburgh allowed Jan Scheuermann to control a robotic arm solely with her thoughts. Using the arm to bring a chocolate bar to her mouth and taking a bite was a sweet victory for Scheuermann, who has quadriplegia....

Probing Fukushima with cosmic rays should speed cleanup

June 19, 2014 8:28 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A Los Alamos technique called muon tomography can safely peer inside the cores of the Fukushima Daiichi reactors and create high-resolution images of the damaged nuclear material inside without ever breaching the cores themselves. The initiative, scheduled for development in partnership with Toshiba Corporation ...

Making smartphones smarter with see-through sensors

June 19, 2014 8:17 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Your smartphone's display glass could soon be more than just a pretty face, thanks to new technology developed by researchers from Montreal and the New York-based company Corning Incorporated. The team has created the first laser-written light-guiding systems that are efficient enough to be developed for commercial use....


New manufacturing methods needed for 'soft' machines, robots

June 19, 2014 8:14 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Researchers have developed a technique that might be used to produce "soft machines" made of elastic materials and liquid metals for potential applications in robotics, medical devices and consumer electronics. Such an elastic technology could make possible robots that have sensory skin....

Portable brain-mapping device allows UT Arlington researchers to 'see' where memory fails

June 19, 2014 8:10 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

UT Arlington researchers have successfully used a portable brain-mapping device to show limited prefrontal cortex activity among student veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder when they were asked to recall information from simple memorization tasks....


Breathalyzer test may detect deadliest cancer

June 19, 2014 8:05 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Lung cancer causes more deaths in the U.S. than the next three most common cancers combined (colon, breast, and pancreatic). The reason for the striking mortality rate is simple: poor detection. Lung cancer attacks without leaving any fingerprints, quietly afflicting its victims and metastasizing uncontrollably – to the point of no return....

Two low-cost, car battery-sized Canadian space telescopes launched today

June 19, 2014 8:04 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Two nanosatellites were launched from Yasny, Russia, at 15:11:11 Eastern Daylight Time today by Anthony Moffat, of the University of Montreal and the Centre for Research in Astrophysics of Quebec, and the Canadian research and technology team he leads....


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