Researchers at University of Michigan have discovered a technique to detect the build-up of microplastics in the ocean by measuring ocean surface roughness using the Cyclone Global Navigational Satellite System (CYGNSS).
Scientists at the Australian National University (ANU) have developed a nanocrystal ultra-thin film that can be applied to a pair of glasses to convert infrared light light into visible light, allowing the wear to see in the dark.
Researchers at UCL conducted a study where participants trained themselves to use a robotic third thumb which was desisgned by the Royal College of Art. Users of the thrid thumb control its movement using their toes. The UCL study measured brain activity of participants after time using the thumb and found that the brain's representation of the hand had changed.
Aquarius Engines in Israel have developed a small single piston engine that runs on hydrogen, without the need for a more complicated hydrogen fuel cell. Applications for the clean burning engine with a small 10kg footprint are being explored by Nokia to power remote communicatinos towers.
The Irish Times published a piece this week about Percy Ludgate who is believed to be Ireland's first computer scientist. In 1914 the accountant and inventor from Skibereen presented designs for the worlds second analytical engine, a mechanical computer of the time.
Swiss company ABB has developed a drone that uses a laser to detect methane leaks while flying at 55 mph at an altitude of 130ft. The system is 1,000 more sensitive than standard methane detection tools.
Researchers at Georgia Tech have created a flexible 3D printed multi-directional antenna that can harvest 6 micorwatts of power from a 5G transmitter at up to 180 meters. Harvest wireless energy in this way can replace the use of batteries in IoT and wearable devices.
Nuclear reactor company Natrium, which is backed by Bill Gates' Terrapower, has received a US$80m Department of Energy grant to build a demonstration reactor by the mid 2020s. The 345MWe reactor can power 225,000 homes and uses molten salt as an energy storage and transfer system, which is safer than pressurised water and removes the need for a large amount of concrete shielding.