New “tandem” solar cell breaks world record
A new tandem solar cell containing layers of silicon and perovskite has demonstrated an unprecedented efficiency of 33.7%.
Ancient technology that was centuries ahead of its time
These forward-thinking inventions are often called "ahead of their time." They are reflections of the ingenuity of their civilizations.
New electronic pill zaps the stomach to regulate hunger
MIT’s new electronic pill stimulates stomach cells to regulate hunger — showing it's possible to hack the powerful gut-brain axis.
MIT breakthrough creates world’s smallest holographic microscope
The world’s smallest holographic microscope foreshadows a future in which smartphones could be used for high-res microscopy.
New tech permanently destroys “forever chemicals” in water
Canadian researchers' new treatment removes 99% of the harmful “forever chemicals” in water cheaply, safely, and permanently.
Hollow “seed” shrinks cancerous tumors from the inside
A new drug delivery system for pancreatic tumors could dramatically decrease medication dosages, helping minimize unpleasant side effects.
“Nanosyringes” can inject medicine into a single cell
MIT researchers have turned a system found in bacteria into programmable “nanosyringes” for injecting proteins into human cells.
New method could triple the size of space telescope mirrors
A new technique for making super-thin, lightweight space telescope mirrors could dramatically improve our view of space.
New drug delivery tech could ensure you never forget your meds
Rice University's new drug delivery tech uses biodegradable microparticles to administer medications exactly when and where they are needed.
Technology over the long run: See how dramatically the world can change within a lifetime
Bringing to mind how dramatically the world has changed can help us see how different the world could be in a few years or decades.
Science fiction books that predicted the future with terrifying accuracy
Science fiction writers have anticipated a variety of modern inventions, from cars to organ transplants. Some books barely seem like fiction.
New material traps CO2 — and turns it into baking soda
A new material for direct air capture systems turns trapped carbon into baking soda when introduced to seawater.
New anti-dust tech could solve this major problem for NASA
A new anti-dust technology could extend the lives of space rovers, improve the efficiency of solar panels, and more.
Cyborg fish grow electrodes in their brains and fins
A gel that turns into an electrode once inside the body might end the need for invasive implantation surgeries.
Computer scientist explains why even in the age of AI, computing isn’t limitless
A computer’s power is still limited by the number of operations it can execute per second and the efficiency of the algorithms it runs.
This “chameleon” material can heat or cool houses on demand
Thanks to “electrochromism,” a newly developed material can switch between absorbing and reflecting heat from the sun.
Scientists have discovered how to make almost any vaccine more potent
An approach called “rational vaccinology” could allow us to design more powerful vaccines, just by rearranging their ingredients.
5 AI experts predict how ChatGPT and DALL-E will affect the future of work
Will society will use this moment of AI breakthroughs to advance equity or exacerbate disparities? Five experts weigh in.
The biggest AI breakthroughs of the last year
Last year saw breakthroughs from AI tools such as ChatGPT, DeepMind, and DALL-E, which generate text and code.
5 things you didn’t know GPS could do
You’d be surprised at all the things that GPS — the global positioning system that underlies all of modern navigation — can do.
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.