Brian Wang’s NextBigFuture has posted four compelling articles on asteroids this week.  That’s getting hard to ignore and the potential is substantial. The reason why is the resources asteroids contain.  There will be metals of considerable interest, lots of water, and perhaps some methane. Plus a lot of what many will consider junk.  Still, with […]






Purdue University assistant professor of chemical engineering Yue Wu leads a team developing a technique that uses nanotechnology to harvest energy from hot pipes or engine components.  The team has coated glass fibers with a new thermoelectric material they developed. When thermoelectric materials are heated on one side electrons flow to the cooler side, generating […]






Pratul Agarwal leads a team at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory describing in a paper published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters that light of specific wavelengths in an effect called photoactivation can be used to boost an enzyme’s function by as much as 8 to 52 fold – for effect, […]






Your humble writer gets a book to review once in a while.  Most don’t get finished, some are never read, but one simply stands out from all the others. “The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves” from Matt Ridley is one that deserves notice.  It isn’t news, but sums up, organizes and presents a view that […]






Both U.S. and Japanese news services have picked up the announcement that Hitachi has developed a high-efficiency 11 kW (About 14.75 hpe) permanent magnet synchronous motor without using the rare earths neodymium and dysprosium. The announcement has the new 11 kW motor’s efficiency rated at about 93% and running at the highest of the International […]






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