Chinese researchers develop flexible salt-powered batteries

August 14, 2017 by  
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As the world rushes to transition to a new energy economy, researchers are uncovering novel methods to harvest energy from mundane, everyday sources. A research team in China has created a new battery that could be safely used in wearable or implantable devices, thanks to its use of salt-based electrolytes. This breakthrough could drastically improve the quality and safety of battery-dependent medical technology and may even pave the way for sweat-powered devices. In order to be effective, implantable or wearable batteries need to be flexible to allow functional bending on organic surfaces. In prior iterations, these batteries usually included a mix of toxic chemicals that serve as the electrolytes through which electrical charge can flow. This new battery uses non-harmful electrolytes such as sodium sulfate and saline. Because there is less of a concern regarding leakage of these chemicals, the battery’s design does not require extra material to protect humans from exposure and is significantly less bulky. Related: Inexpensive new battery generates power with just a drop of saliva One particularly interesting implication of a salt-based battery is the idea that the batteries could prove effective at harvesting sweat and other salty bodily fluids to power a workout assistant device. The researchers also noted that the batteries have a marked ability to convert dissolved oxygen into hydroxide ions, which could prove useful in medical applications.  “We can implant these fiber-shaped electrodes into the human body to consume essential oxygen, especially for areas that are difficult for injectable drugs to reach,” said researcher Yonggang Wang. “Deoxygenation might even wipe out cancerous cells or pathogenic bacteria since they are very sensitive to changes in living environment pH. Of course, this is hypothetical right now, but we hope to investigate further with biologists and medical scientists.” Via Engadget Images via Deposit Photos , Tim Simpson/Flickr  and Andy Armstrong/Flickr

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Chinese researchers develop flexible salt-powered batteries

Light-powered nano-submarines could deliver medicine inside the body

December 17, 2015 by  
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A team from Rice University has created a single-molecule, submersible machine that could one day be used to target medications toward specific parts of the body. The Unimolecular Submersible Nanomachines (USNs) are made of 244 individual atoms that are bound together to create a microscopic device powered by ultraviolet light and can be tracked using lasers. Read the rest of Light-powered nano-submarines could deliver medicine inside the body

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Charming DIY cabin in Copenhagen lets people make holiday gifts for free

December 17, 2015 by  
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World’s first 3D-printed drug wins FDA approval

August 5, 2015 by  
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The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved its first 3D-printed drug , the epilepsy-fighting Spritam by Aprecia . By turning to 3D printing, drugmakers were able to solve the problem of how to get a mega dose of medication – up to 1,000 mg – into an easy-to-swallow tablet. The solution, it turns out, is a porous formula that rapidly disintegrates with a single sip of liquid. Although the FDA has previously approved the use of various 3D-printed medical devices, this news marks the first consumable drug the agency supports. Read the rest of World’s first 3D-printed drug wins FDA approval

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Carbon Black is a sleek, minimalist wheelchair for active people

January 14, 2015 by  
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The Carbon Black is the slickest wheelchair you’ve ever seen. Made from ultra-lightweight carbon fiber, this wheelchair is not just a piece of medical equipment; it’s a work of art. Six years in development, the Carbon Black wheelchair is the fulfillment of a personal dream for designer Andrew Slorance. Slorance was paralyzed after falling from a tree at the age of 14. He didn’t like the uncomfortable stigma attached to being “the boy in the wheelchair” and he established his life’s goal: recreate the wheelchair . Read the rest of Carbon Black is a sleek, minimalist wheelchair for active people Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: black , carbon fiber , custom devices , Design , engineering , lightweight , medical , medical devices , medical equipment , minimalist , modern , paralysis , paralyzed , sleek , wheelchair

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Carbon Black is a sleek, minimalist wheelchair for active people

The World’s First Bionic Eye Implant Hits US Market Next Month

November 22, 2013 by  
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The world’s first bionic eye is set to hit the US market next month! The Argus II is a retinal implant that helps restore vision to patients blinded by a degenerative eye disease. The FDA officially approved the device early this year, following successful trials that allowed some patients to read the newspaper or see in color for the first time in years. Read the rest of The World’s First Bionic Eye Implant Hits US Market Next Month Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: bionic eye , blindness , clinical trials , electronic implants , macular degeneration , medical devices , medical technology , optic nerve , retinal implant , retinitis pigementosa , second sight medical products        

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3D-Printed Tracheal Splint Saves Baby’s Life

May 23, 2013 by  
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Doctors did not expect newborn Kaiba Gionfridoo to live long when he was found to have a serious tracheal condition that inhibited his ability to breathe. The infant had a collapsed bronchus and had to be resuscitated on a daily basis. At a loss for solutions, his doctors contacted medical researchers at the University of Michigan for help. Glenn Green, M.D. and Scott Hollister, Ph.D. had designed a 3D-printed tracheal splint made of polycaprolactone, a biopolymer that eventually dissolves in the body, but they had to get special permission from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to use the device. Read the rest of 3D-Printed Tracheal Splint Saves Baby’s Life Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 3D tracheal splint , baby saved by 3-D printed device , biopolymer , Design for Health , laser printed medical devices , News , tracheal splint , university of michigan        

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3D-Printed Tracheal Splint Saves Baby’s Life

Bristol University Creates Artificial Muscles That Can Camouflage Themselves Like Squid

May 4, 2012 by  
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We love it when scientists look to the natural world for design inspiration – whether they are creating a robot based on the cheetah or vehicles that can jump like a sand flea . Inspired by the mimicry ability of creatures such as the squid and zebrafish, a team from Bristol University recently created a new type of artificial muscles made from ‘smart cells’ that can camouflage themselves. The team believes the muscles can be used in everything from medical devices to color-changing ‘smart clothing’. Read the rest of Bristol University Creates Artificial Muscles That Can Camouflage Themselves Like Squid Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: artificial muscles camouflage , artificial muscles smart cells , artificial muscles squid , bio mimicry , bristol university artificial muscles , bristol university smart cells , natural world inspiration , nature design , smart cells squid , smart clothing

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Bristol University Creates Artificial Muscles That Can Camouflage Themselves Like Squid

Kyocera Cools its Offices with Luscious, Edible Green Curtains

May 4, 2012 by  
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Japanese firm Kyocera is known for impressive eco-friendly innovations and endeavors, ranging from the development of a flexible OLED cell phone to the installation of Japan’s largest solar farm — but when it comes to their own offices, they turned to the beautifully lo-fi solution of growing edible green curtains along exterior walls. As the curtains produce vegetables for use in the company’s cafeteria, they also keep the buildings cool, reduce energy consumption, mitigate carbon emissions and provide a calming, shaded view for those working inside. Read the rest of Kyocera Cools its Offices with Luscious, Edible Green Curtains Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: carbon mitigation , climbing plants , edible garden , energy conservation , goya plant , green curtain , kyocera japan , natural insulation , natural shade , Urban Farming

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Kyocera Cools its Offices with Luscious, Edible Green Curtains

Glowing Green Jellyfish Goo Could Power Medical Devices

October 7, 2010 by  
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Photo via wikipedia Thanks to more acidic oceans , jellyfish populations seem to be flourishing. While they aren’t exactly edible for humans, they might be useful for powering nanodevices.

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