China wants to destroy space junk with giant lasers

January 18, 2018 by  
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Not only do we need to worry about pollution on Earth, but also in space . A team of six scientists in China are working on a very science-fiction-sounding solution: zapping that space trash with lasers . Could a space-based laser really help clean up the tens of thousands of pieces of junk orbiting our planet? From magnetic tugs to long tethers , the ideas of how to deal with our space mess have been imaginative but haven’t given us a firm solution yet. Could lasers offer an answer? Researchers from the Air Force Engineering University and Institute of China Electronic Equipment System Engineering Company published their work in the journal Optik last year on space-based lasers to tackle space debris. Related: ESA unveils magnetic space tug to corral broken satellites drifting in space According to the paper’s abstract, the scientists utilized numerical simulation to explore the “impacts of orbital elements of space-based laser station” on Earth-orbiting trash. Per Wired , a space laser could be mounted on a satellite , and in orbit “emit short bursts of near-infrared light:” 20 bursts a second over the course of a few minutes, which could be sufficient to break down the trash into smaller, less dangerous pieces. The scientists said in the abstract their work offers a “theoretical basis for the deployment of space-based laser station and the further application of space debris removal by using space-based laser.” The idea of space lasers isn’t wholly new – a 2015 paper cited by Gizmodo said there’s recently been a renaissance for the notion. That article says a laser would work by imparting energy into hunks of garbage so they could plummet out of orbit and burn up in Earth’s atmosphere . But would the rest of the world accept one country deploying lasers in space? Physicist Victor Apollonov of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ General Physics Institute told Gizmodo such technology could be put to military uses and “due to that, it is questionable.” He said people have been discussing the concept since the early 2000s, and there should be world-scale talks as a first step towards space lasers. Via ScienceDirect , Wired , and Gizmodo Images via Wikimedia Commons and ESA

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China wants to destroy space junk with giant lasers

New metal 3D printer is 100x faster, 10x cheaper than existing laser technologies

August 1, 2017 by  
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3D-metal printing could very easily become the go-to method for manufacturing around the world. Developed by Desktop Metal , it is reportedly faster, safer and cheaper than existing systems. Indeed, the company claims it can produce reliable metal printing up to 100 times faster than conventional manufacturing techniques with materials that cost 20 times less than existing laser technologies on the market. They also claim they can bring down costs to 10 times lower than normal. 3D printing has been a hot topic for years now, but the Massachusetts company is presenting something new — something capable of revolutionizing the manufacturing industry. Because of the new technology’s speed and efficiency, it’s even better than NASA and Boeing’s slow laser-melted metal printer and beats small design studios’ desktop 3D printers. Capable of using a variety of metal options — essentially, anything one can use in a Metal Injection Molding (MIM) system, it stands apart from other competitors. The engineering-driven startup was founded by several MIT professors and Emanuel Sachs, who holds patents in 3D printing dating back to 1989. Over the last few months, Desktop Metal raised more than $115 million (USD) and received backing from big players, including Google Ventures. Presently, the company is investing efforts in producing two systems: a studio system geared toward developing a rapid, cheap metal prototyping for engineering groups, and a production system for mass manufacture. According to New Atlas , the Studio printer “runs around and prints parts into layers of bound metal.” Then, the parts go into a “de-binding bath” that separates a substantial portion of the binding polymer. The parts then go into a sintering furnace. When the product is heated to just below the melting point, the binding agent burns off and a highly dense, sintered metal is produced. The system automatically manages the timing and temperature, depending on the design and the metals used. Support sections can be poked out with a screwdriver when the process is completed. Just don’t be surprised when the finished product is 15 percent smaller. The 3D-metal printer is 10 times cheaper than equivalent laser systems and is also less hazardous. Because there are no metal powders to deal with or dangerous lasers, they can easily — and safely — be installed in a home or office. In addition, it is very low-maintenance and does not require special support equipment or staff. All in all, the entire integrated system and the partnered software cost approximately $120,000 (USD). Though that price might seem steep, an equivalent laser system will run one more than $1 million (USD). And, that doesn’t take into account the safety and materials handling costs. The mass production system is built for speed and definitely delivers. It is faster than machining, casting, forging or other techniques, and each production printer can produce up to 500 cubic inches of complex parts per hour. As noted above, that is 100 times faster than a laser-based alternative — zero tools required. Related: MIT is 3D printing functional robots that could walk right off the printer To reach production speed with the mass system, a business would need four furnaces per printer. In contrast to the studio printer, the production machine uses powders which are bonded together during printing by spray-jetted droplets of a binder solution. They are low-cost in contrast to other systems (retail is estimated to be $360,000 USD) and are easily available — another advantage to the 3D-metal printing system. In fact, material costs are estimated to be 20 percent lower than other variations. As a result, printed metal parts may finally be economical enough to compete with traditional manufacturing processes. Though Desktop Metal is just getting started, many are predicting a 3D-metal printing revolution. The effects this technology will have on the economy will be revealed in time. + Desktop Metal Via New Atlas Images via Desktop Metal

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New metal 3D printer is 100x faster, 10x cheaper than existing laser technologies

Could Lasers Be Used to Save the Earth’s Most Important Architecture and Monuments?

October 10, 2014 by  
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When the Taliban destroyed the Bamiyan Buddhas in 2001, Ben Kacyra and his wife Barbara were devastated. While they grieved the loss of a significant site of international cultural heritage , they also knew that they had developed the technology that could have at least preserved a record of the sculptures. Kacyra is the founder of CyArk, and he developed a 3D laser scanning system that records architectural details of heritage sites and culturally significant buildings down to a few millimeters. CyArk is now a nonprofit, and after scanning 40 “Exemplar Projects,” including Mount Rushmore, Pompeii and Rapa Nui, they are calling for letters of interest from governments and the community to develop a list of 500 further sites worthy or in need of digital preservation . Read the rest of Could Lasers Be Used to Save the Earth’s Most Important Architecture and Monuments? Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 3d modeling , Architecture , Ben Kacyra , cultural heritage , cultural preservation , CyArk , CyArk 500 Challenge , destruction , digital preservation , heritage sites , Laser , laser scanning , scanning world heritage sites , sculpture , Syria , taliban

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Could Lasers Be Used to Save the Earth’s Most Important Architecture and Monuments?

Prysm Uses Laser Phosphorus Tiles to Create the World’s Greenest Video Wall

November 21, 2013 by  
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IAC ‘s Frank Gehry-designed headquarters in New York is now home to not one, but two of the most technologically advanced and environmentally friendly video walls in the world. The main attraction is a 120-foot-long by 10-foot-wide video wall that is made up of 600 Prysm Laser Phosphorus Display (LPD) tiles, and a second display is located in the lobby. The walls deliver stunning life-size images at over 50 million pixels combined, and they reduce power and cooling costs by 70 percent compared to other technologies. Read the rest of Prysm Uses Laser Phosphorus Tiles to Create the World’s Greenest Video Wall Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: energy efficient technology , energy-efficient alternatives , Frank Gehry-designed headquarters , IAC , Laser Phosphorus Tiles , LDP tiles , lowered cooling costs , Prysm , Vincent Luciani , world’s greenest video wall        

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Prysm Uses Laser Phosphorus Tiles to Create the World’s Greenest Video Wall

16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet

April 29, 2013 by  
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In the battle to beat cancer, everyone is looking the elusive silver bullet. In this case, the bullet may actually be made of gold, and it has been developed by a 16-year-old. Indian-born Arjun Nair has been awarded a $5,000 prize from the Ottawa headquarters of the National Research Council of Canada for his work as part of the 2013 Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada (SBCC). Using the experimental method of Photothermal therapy (PTT), the nanobullet he devised would inject cancer-killing gold particles to seek out and destroy the harmful cells. Read the rest of 16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 17-agg , antiobiotic , arjun nair , canada , cancer , cells , david cramb , GOLD , high school , India , Laser , nanoparticle , photothermal therapy , ptt , sanofi biogeneius challenge canada , tumor , univeristy of calgary        

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16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet

MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW

March 14, 2013 by  
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MakerBot is already one of the biggest names in desktop 3D printing , and now the company plans to expand into scanning. CEO Bre Pettis announced the arrival of the Digitizer this week at the Austin’s SXSW Interactive . The scanner consists of a turntable upon which you can mount small objects that can then be scanned by lasers and be digitized into computer files. Easier than writing code from scratch, the new device could be joined with a suite of printers and filament fabricators to create a small-scale design studio in the home. Read the rest of MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 3d printer , 3D printing , 3d scanner , austin , bre pettis , cad file , digitizer , filament , Laser , makerbot , Makerbot digitizer , sxsw , tron

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MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW

MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW

March 14, 2013 by  
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MakerBot is already one of the biggest names in desktop 3D printing , and now the company plans to expand into scanning. CEO Bre Pettis announced the arrival of the Digitizer this week at the Austin’s SXSW Interactive . The scanner consists of a turntable upon which you can mount small objects that can then be scanned by lasers and be digitized into computer files. Easier than writing code from scratch, the new device could be joined with a suite of printers and filament fabricators to create a small-scale design studio in the home. Read the rest of MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 3d printer , 3D printing , 3d scanner , austin , bre pettis , cad file , digitizer , filament , Laser , makerbot , Makerbot digitizer , sxsw , tron

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MakerBot Unveils Prototype ‘Digitizer’ Desktop 3D Scanner at SXSW

Volkswagen Unveils its First Electric Vehicle – the e-up!

March 14, 2013 by  
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Volkswagen just took the wraps off its first ever production electric vehicle – the e-up! Unveiled today at the Annual Press and Investors Conference in Wolfsburg, the four-seater e-up! is powered by an 81 horsepower electric motor and an 18.7 kWh lithium-ion battery , and it has a 93 mile driving range, which makes it ideal for commuters. Read the rest of Volkswagen Unveils its First Electric Vehicle – the e-up! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show , electric motor , electric vehicle , green car , green transportation , lithium ion battery , volkswagen , volkswagen e-up! , Volkswagen electric vehicle

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Volkswagen Unveils its First Electric Vehicle – the e-up!

Dutch Engineer Uses CAD-Based Laser Program to Build Gingerbread House

December 11, 2012 by  
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Dutch engineer Johan Von Konow has created a stunning gingerbread house – but instead of using traditional techniques he used a 50W laser engraver with a simple CAD program! Johan first created an “accurate, miniature 3D representation of his summer house in a CAD program” before turning the laser onto large blocks of gingerbread. Well, it beats using simple cooking utensils. Read the rest of Dutch Engineer Uses CAD-Based Laser Program to Build Gingerbread House Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: CAD program , cookery , cooking , gingerbread , gingerbread house , Johan von Konow , Laser , laser engraver

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Dutch Engineer Uses CAD-Based Laser Program to Build Gingerbread House

German Scientists Double the Efficiency of Black Silicon for Use in Solar Cells

October 8, 2012 by  
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Photo via Shutterstock The future of solar power is about to get a little brighter with new developments in black silicon , a material that can absorb almost the entire spectrum, including infrared light. Researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany have been making advancements in black solar panels, allowing them to double the efficiency of the material. The team is also hoping to combine a conventional panel (which can only capture three quarters of the spectrum), with the black silicon, creating a super-efficient cell that can harness the the full power of the sun. Read the rest of German Scientists Double the Efficiency of Black Silicon for Use in Solar Cells Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: black silicon , dr. stefan kontermann , Fraunhofer Institute , germany , infrared , Laser , photovoltaic panel , Solar cells , solar efficiency , solar panel

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German Scientists Double the Efficiency of Black Silicon for Use in Solar Cells

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