The most undervalued problem-solving tool? Lateral thinking.
Lateral thinking is a way of approaching problems. It deliberately forgoes obvious approaches in favor of oblique or unexpected ones.
Ancient mystery solved: Why was Roman concrete so durable?
How have Roman walls held up so long? Their ancient manufacturing strategy may hold the key to designing concrete that lasts for millennia.
How heat pumps of the 1800s are becoming the technology of the future
With ever-improving efficiencies, and rising sales in multiple countries, heat pumps are only getting harder for their detractors to dismiss.
This $3,000 completely wireless TV vacuum seals to your wall
Home entertainment startup Displace has unveiled a completely wireless TV that vacuum seals to walls and is controlled by hand gestures.
5 biotech trends to watch in 2023
After a monumental year of breakthroughs, scientists, investors, and CEOs share which areas of biotech they are eagerly watching this year.
Scientists use laser beam to divert lightning strikes
Since the time of Benjamin Franklin, we’ve looked for ways to control, or at least deflect, lightning strikes. Enter laser-guided lightning.
This MIT research could help us unlock smaller, lighter, and safer batteries
Replacing the liquid electrolyte in rechargeable lithium batteries with a thinner, lighter ceramic material could revolutionize technology.
This company turns food waste and mushrooms into building materials
UK-based company Biohm uses natural vegetative material like food waste and mushrooms to ‘grow’ insulation panels.
World’s highest-res pictures of snowflakes combine art and tech
Former Microsoft CTO Nathan Myhrvold custom built a camera system to take the world’s highest-resolution pictures of snowflakes.
New ultra-thin solar cells could be the future of space power
Ultra-thin solar cells could extend the operational lifetimes of satellites while also making missions less costly and more efficient.
New deep brain stimulator is powered automatically by breathing
A deep brain stimulator powered by breathing could eliminate the need for patients to undergo regular battery-change surgeries.
“SkinKit” lets ordinary people build their own “smart tattoos”
"SkinKit" smart tattoos are wearable devices that collect data directly from users' bodies and display useful information in real time.
A new material called a mechanical neural network can learn and change its physical properties
The new material’s architecture is based on that of an artificial neural network – layers of interconnected nodes that can learn to do tasks.
Quantum computer designs heat-radiating window coating
Notre Dame researchers have used quantum computing to design a transparent window coating that reflects heat into the atmosphere.
These earbuds can tell if a newborn has hearing problems
A newborn hearing screening device made from off-the-shelf earbuds is as effective as expensive commercial options.
This amphibious electric tricycle (and camper) costs $14,600 
Latvian startup BeTRITON’s amphibious electric tricycle will take you from the road to the water to the campsite.
New motionless tech harnesses wind energy from rooftops
Aeromine Technologies’ motionless wind energy system promises to increase the amount of renewable energy generated from rooftops.
World’s whitest paint is now thin enough for cars, planes
A new, thinner version of the world’s whitest paint could slash the need for climate-harming air conditioning in cars, airplanes, and more.
Paradox-free time travel is “logically” possible, say physicists
An undergraduate and his supervisor ran the numbers and found paradox-free time travel to be mathematically consistent.
New wireless charging works from nearly 100 feet away 
A compact wireless charging system uses harmless infrared light to power devices from nearly 100 feet away.
The true meaning of Einstein’s most famous equation: E=mc²
Although most people can name Einstein's most famous equation, E = mc², very few people can explain what it means.
Powerful new magnets bring fusion power a step closer
A new system for generating magnetic fields suitable for spherical tokamaks is fueling progress on nuclear fusion.
Stanford’s new microchip could put powerful AI on your devices 
A Stanford-led team has developed a new microchip that could let us run advanced AI programs directly on our devices.
This simple kit turns your regular bike into an e-bike in minutes
The Rubbee X is a simple e-bike conversion kit that could help get more people out of gas-powered cars and onto climate-friendly bicycles.
Eye implant made from pig skin reverses blindness in 14 people
Using collagen from pig skin, Swedish researchers created an artificial cornea that reversed blindness in 14 people.
Cheap carbon capture tech could filter out CO2 in smokestacks
A new carbon capture technology made from the cheap material melamine could help keep emissions out of the atmosphere.
Russians reportedly building a satellite-blinding laser. How would it work?
If Russia is able to build the laser, it would be capable of shielding a large part of the country from the view of satellites.
Bill Gates-backed startup is building sustainable ACs
Blue Frontier is developing a new kind of air conditioner that requires 50-90% less electricity than the units we use today.
MIT’s new ultrasound sticker lets you see inside your body
MIT researchers have created an ultrasound sticker that can continuously monitor a person’s organs and tissues for up to 48 hours.
Swiss team sets new world record for solar power 
Swiss researchers have developed two perovskite-on-silicon solar cells that are more efficient than previously thought possible.
This smart mattress will help you fall asleep fast 
UT Austin engineers have developed a smart mattress that manipulates a person’s body temperature to help them fall asleep fast.
Why Einstein is a “peerless genius” and Hawking is an “ordinary genius”
Why some people are considered geniuses while other equally impressive people are not seems largely arbitrary.
This implant cools off nerves to give targeted pain relief 
A tiny implant that wraps around nerves and cools them to deliver targeted pain relief could help address the opioid crisis.
A celebrated AI has learned a new trick: How to do chemistry
We had a challenging question for the AI AlphaFold – had its structural training set taught it some chemistry?
How to be a techno-optimist
Technology will not save the world, and it is inherently neither good nor bad. But, when tech is coupled to human virtue, good will prevail.
These bendy wind turbines won’t crack in hurricanes
To significantly scale up offshore wind turbines, SUMR researchers are testing a design inspired by the flexibility of palm trees.
Future tech could 3D print objects inside your body
Direct sound printing could one day allow doctors to build medical implants inside patients’ bodies instead of surgically placing them.
Washable smart fabric turns movement into electricity 
NTU Singapore researchers have developed a washable, stretchy smart fabric that turns movement into electricity.
New tech could help prevent 2/3 of hospital-acquired infections 
A new treatment could prevent hospital-acquired infections by making it hard for biofilms to form on implanted medical devices.
A new device can make drinking water from seawater at the push of a button
A new portable unit from MIT researchers could make it much easier to remove salt from water to create drinking water.
Elon Musk’s Hyperloop is possible. How badly do we want it?
The Hyperloop is physically possible, but engineering challenges will make its construction difficult. Also, accidents would be catastrophic.
Ultrathin fuel cell uses the body’s own sugar to generate electricity 
Batteries have a limit to how small they can be made, and they need to be charged. What if you could power your own medical device?
Algae-powered computer runs for a year on light and water 
An algae-powered computer demonstrates a sustainable, reliable way we could power small IoT devices in the future.
Discovery of “impossible” superconductor promises 100x faster electronics
A device that gets electricity to flow through a superconductor in one direction without the use of magnets could revolutionize electronics.
Solar + battery hybrids are poised for explosive growth
Solar panels and battery storage can generate renewable power when solar energy is at its peak during the day and then release it as needed.
Could a former NASA scientist’s “sunlight glasses” protect your vision
A former NASA scientist has co-developed a pair of glasses designed to prevent myopia by glowing in a precise wavelength of visible light.
Invisibility cloaks are not just possible, but are becoming reality
Two types of nanotechnology, metalenses and metamaterials, could soon make Harry Potter's invisibility cloak a reality.
Researchers develop a paper-thin loudspeaker 
The flexible, thin-film device has the potential to make any surface into a low-power, high-quality audio source.
Graphene typically costs $200,000 per ton. Now, scientists can make it from trash.
Graphene is a lattice of carbon atoms arranged in a chicken-wire formation, a structure that makes it very useful for a range of uses.
A new kind of diamond will hold a billion Blu-Ray’s worth of data 
Ultra-pure diamond wafers could be used for quantum memory in tomorrow’s ultra-powerful quantum computers.
This solar-powered motorhome was designed by students 
Students from the Technical University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands have created a solar-powered motorhome, shaped like a huge teardrop.
MIT’s new heat engine beats a steam turbine in efficiency
A new highly efficient heat engine with no moving parts could allow us to generate electricity from renewables year round.
SpinLaunch to fling a NASA payload toward space
SpinLaunch is going to use a massive centrifuge to accelerate a NASA payload to supersonic speeds before flinging it toward space.
Could you sniff out counterfeit whiskey?
An “electronic nose” that can accurately identify a whiskey’s brand, region, and style could help combat the sale of counterfeit whiskey.
Cheap molten salt battery can store energy for months 
A low-cost molten salt battery that can store energy for months could allow us to tap into renewables year round.
Squid skin inspires heat-regulating coffee cup
Inspired by squid skin, UC Irvine engineers have created a cheap, easy-to-recycle material that can be “tuned” to regulate heat.
Nimo smart glasses are like a PC for your eyes
India-based startup Nimo Planet is now accepting reservations for its Nino smart glasses, which let wearers view six virtual screens.
High schoolers create $1 filter to remove lead in water
Maryland high schoolers have created a filter that removes lead in water. It costs just $1 and alerts users when it needs to be replaced.
Swiss scientists are making jet fuel from sunlight and air 
The fuel's reliance on sunlight makes desert areas prime land for production sites, leaving valuable agricultural land available for food.
What is 3G and why is it being shut down? An electrical engineer explains
3G networks are built using completely different equipment and algorithms than its newer replacements.
Hugging a cushion that “breathes” can reduce anxiety
A study found that hugging a cushion that “breathes” was able to reduce anxiety for students prior to a test as much as guided meditation.
Sonic waves could help bones grow back after cancer 
A technique that turns stem cells into bone cells using only sound waves could help people regrow bone destroyed by disease.
MIT invents $4 solar desalination device
MIT has developed a $4 solar desalination device that could provide a family of four with all the drinking water it needed to survive.
New synthetic tooth enamel is stronger than the natural kind
A synthetic tooth enamel that outperformed the natural kind in strength and durability tests could have applications beyond dentists' offices.
Shape-shifting material morphs robot from driving to flying
A shape-shifting material lets multifunctional robots morph from one shape to the next quickly and without the use of motors.
Bionic pacemaker causes heart to beat irregularly — on purpose
A new bionic pacemaker improved blood flow in animal studies by using the lungs to reintroduce lost heart rate variability.
MIT engineers invent surgical “duct tape”
MIT’s biodegradable surgical tape is designed to seal tears in the gastrointestinal tract, potentially preventing sepsis-causing leaks.
MIT’s new material is stronger than steel and as light as plastic
A new material out of MIT that’s stronger than steel and as light as plastic could one day coat smartphones, hold up bridges, and more.
NASA offers $1 million prize for prototypes to grow space food 
NASA’s Deep Space Food Challenge will give away $1 million in exchange for prototypes that could help feed astronauts on long-term missions.
Is metal 3D printing ready for the factory floor?
Metal 3D printing could potentially cut the cost of manufacturing cars, consumer tech, and more — if it can scale.
MIT tests pill to deliver RNA vaccines and therapies
A tortoise-inspired capsule designed by MIT can deliver RNA vaccines and other nucleic acid therapeutics without injections.
Undersea cable laws have hardly changed since 1884 – Tonga shows they need modernizing 
Cable-laying ships navigate complex but outdated maritime laws.
New space plane would fly directly into orbit from a runway 
Radian Aerospace is building a first-of-its-kind space plane that flies directly into orbit after taking off horizontally from the ground.
Flying “AirCar” cleared for takeoff in the EU
The AirCar — a car-airplane hybrid vehicle with a 600+ mile range — is now officially “airworthy” in the European Union.
Flexible device hugs pipes, turning waste heat into electricity
Penn State researchers have developed a thermoelectric generator that efficiently converts waste heat into electricity.
New biodegradable straws are made by bacteria 
New biodegradable straws developed in China are as cheap as plastic, stronger than paper, and made from edible materials.
Clay from kitty litter pulls methane emissions from air
A new technology for reducing methane emissions in the atmosphere relies on zeolite, a cheap, abundant clay found in cat litter.
China builds “artificial moon” on Earth
China’s artificial moon, which uses magnets to mimic lunar gravity, could help with the creation of future moon colonies.
MIT is testing a levitating space rover
MIT engineers have designed a levitating space rover that could allow us to explore parts of the moon that are too rough for rolling rovers.
New smart mailbox is built for drone deliveries 
Indiana-based startup DRONEDEK has developed a smart mailbox that can automatically receive and protect goods from delivery drones.
Clever sleeping bag design might save astronauts’ eyesight 
A sleeping bag designed for use in microgravity could protect astronauts’ vision by pulling eyeball-deforming fluids away from their brains.
How should we measure innovation?
Researchers have come up with a new method for measuring the impact of an innovation.
7 scientists we are thankful for this Thanksgiving
One of these scientists saved more lives than any other person in history.
How a BBQ lighter can make DNA vaccines more powerful
Georgia Tech researchers turned a BBQ lighter into a delivery system that uses electricity to boost the potency of DNA vaccines.
Powered exoskeletons may be the ultimate fitness machines
Enhanced Robotics is selling a powered exoskeleton to help people achieve their fitness goals, and it doesn’t cost thousands of dollars.
The future of space launches: a giant spinning arm in a vacuum 
SpinLaunch has tested a new approach to satellite launches that flings the objects into space, rather than blasting them up with rockets.
Nuclear fusion would change the world. Has its time arrived?
Energy startup Helion claims it will generate electricity from a nuclear fusion device by 2024 — a milestone that could transform the world.
Zero-emission natural gas power plants are coming to US, UK
Net Power has designed a new kind of natural gas power plant that can efficiently capture almost all of the carbon dioxide it generates.
You can repair this sustainable phone yourself 
Fairphone’s sustainable phone is easy to repair and contains ethically sourced materials — two major departures from the industry standard.
The world will electrify. This technology can power our sustainable future.
In partnership with Turntide
Attacking climate change requires reimagining our buildings and vehicles as intelligent systems. And it all starts with a smart motor.
5 recent breakthroughs that completely changed electronics
From wearable electronics to microscopic sensors, new advances are bringing "impossible" electronics to life.
New water purification tablet makes river water safe to drink
A new water purification tablet that simply and quickly decontaminates river water could help address global drinking water scarcity.
Robotic exoskeleton gives prosthetic legs a power boost
University of Utah engineers have built a robotic exoskeleton that gives people with prosthetic legs a power boost that makes walking easier.
Smart microscope slides make breast cancer cells leap off screen
Breast cancer cells appear brightly colored when placed on new smart microscope slides, which could help doctors diagnose patients earlier.
New cardiac patch can be implanted with a syringe
A new cardiac patch developed by Canadian scientists could help repair heart damage by supporting tissue without blocking electrical activity.
Spacecraft tech turns moon dust into “near-instant” landing pads
To protect spacecraft from moon dust, Masten Space Systems is developing a tech that quickly creates landing pads on the surface of the moon.
No more cords: one day an entire room may power up all your devices
Charging rooms may free us from the tangle of cords needed to power our electronic devices.
New portable blood test kit is cheap, fast, and accurate
A new blood test kit that’s fast, portable, and accurate could help bring better healthcare to people in remote and underdeveloped areas.
Helmet worn at home shrank man’s brain tumor by a third
A new brain tumor treatment shrank a man’s aggressive glioblastoma tumor by nearly a third — and all he had to do was wear a helmet at home.