Portable 3D skin printer can form skin tissue to heal deep wounds in minutes

May 3, 2018 by  
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Need medical assistance after a blaster fight on a spaceship? This new handheld, portable 3D printer could help. Scientists at the University of Toronto created the 3D skin printer that feels like it came straight from a science fiction movie. The device, according to the university , “forms tissue in situ, depositing and setting in place, within two minutes or less.” This new portable 3D skin printer looks like a white-out tape dispenser, in the description of the university, but instead of a tape roll, the printer includes “a microdevice that forms tissue sheets.” Bio ink comprised of protein-based biomaterials like collagen and fibrin runs along the tissue sheets in vertical stripes. Collagen is the most abundant protein found in the dermis, and fibrin, another protein, is part of wound healing. Navid Hakimi, study lead author and PhD student, said in the statement, “Our skin printer promises to tailor tissues to specific patients and wound characteristics.” Related: New 3D-printed algae could revolutionize the way we make things Many current 3D bioprinters are “bulky, work at low speeds, are expensive, and are incompatible with clinical application,” according to associate professor Axel Guenther. In contrast, this handheld printer is about as big as a small shoe box and weighs under one kilogram. The university said the device “also requires minimal operator training and eliminates the washing and incubation stages required by many conventional bioprinters.” The journal Lab on a Chip published the research last month; researchers from the Ross Tilley Burn Center at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center contributed. The team’s work isn’t finished — they aim to add multiple capabilities to the skin printer such as “expanding the size of the coverable wound areas.” They’re also planning further in vivo studies with the Sunnybrook team, and are shooting for clinical trials in humans in the future. + University of Toronto + Lab on a Chip Images via Liz Do and courtesy of Navid Hakimi via GIPHY

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Portable 3D skin printer can form skin tissue to heal deep wounds in minutes

Tesla Roadster in space could collide with Venus or Earth

February 19, 2018 by  
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Elon Musk isn’t the only person amused by a Tesla in space — scientists at the University of Toronto and Charles University have devoted their attention to figuring out just what might happen to the Roadster officially classified by NASA as a celestial object . Researchers think the space-traveling car could ultimately crash into Venus or Earth — but don’t panic yet. University of Toronto Scarborough assistant professor Hanno Rein and his team think the red Tesla Roadster could collide with our planet or Venus, but probably not for millions of years. They ran several simulations with “sophisticated software that can track the motion of objects in space,” according to the University of Toronto . Related: Elon Musk releases historic video of Starman cruising through space in a Tesla Roadster The probability that Musk’s Tesla will collide with Earth during the next one million years is six percent, and 2.5 percent for Venus. The scientists ran simulations for the first three million years of the Tesla’s journey in outer space , although Rein said the most likely outcome is that the car will crash into either Earth or Venus in the next 10 million years. If the car does crash into Earth, any future people probably won’t need to be too concerned because most or all of the Tesla will probably burn up in our planet’s atmosphere . The vehicle is on “a Mars and Earth crossing orbit, meaning it will travel on an elliptical path that repeatedly carries it beyond Mars and then back to Earth’s orbital distance from the sun,” according to the press release. If you happen to be alive in 2091, the scientists think that year will mark the first close encounter of the Tesla with Earth, when the car will pass within a few hundred thousand kilometers. Those Earth encounters will likely impact the Tesla’s journey. University of Toronto Scarborough postdoctoral fellow Daniel Tamayo said in a statement, “Each time it passes the Earth, the car will get a gravitational kick. Depending on the details of these encounters, the Tesla can be kicked onto a wider or smaller orbit , so it’s random. Over time the orbit will undergo what’s called a random walk, similar to the fluctuations we see in the stock market, that will allow it to wander the inner solar system .” The scientists submitted their research for publication to the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ; a preprint is available here . Rein and Tamayo were joined by David Vokrouhlicky of Charles University. The university’s press release did not say what might happen to the Roadster’s passenger, Starman . + University of Toronto Images via Elon Musk on Instagram and Ken Jones

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Tesla Roadster in space could collide with Venus or Earth

Eco-hotel cabins float on a lake in the south of France

February 19, 2018 by  
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Paris-based Atelier Lavit recently won our hearts with their stunning treehouse guestroom , but the forest retreat isn’t the only dreamy hotel they’ve created. The architecture firm is also behind Cabanes des Grands Cepages , an eco-hotel comprising ten timber suites—some of which are built to float on water. Set in the south of France in an idyllic fishing reserve near Avignon, these ten units on the shore of a la Lionne lake embrace elegance through simplicity with minimal embellishments and carefully placed reveals that provide privacy and views. Commissioned by Cabanes Nature et Spa, the Cabanes des Grands Cepages eco-hotel offers unique retreats with some hidden on land behind reeds while others are more visibly placed on the water. The cabins are carefully oriented to preserve guest privacy. Timber cladding—particularly the vertical timber slatted screens that are a nod to the lake reeds—visually unites the various dwellings. Related: This gorgeous modern treehouse hides a surprising interior “The 10 suites evoke primitive buildings on the shore of the lake; floating on the water like rafts or on pilots like palafittes,” wrote the architects. “The architectural work perfectly matches with the lacustrine tubes from which it resumes and rationalizes the elegant vertical thrust.” The project was mostly prefabricated offsite and then reassembled on site over the course of three months to minimize landscape impact. + Atelier Lavit Images via Atelier Lavit , © Francis Pelletier

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Eco-hotel cabins float on a lake in the south of France

Canadian chemists use vitamins in new sustainable lithium battery

August 3, 2016 by  
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Chemists at the University of Toronto have developed a new battery that stores energy in a cathode derived from vitamins . The breakthrough could eventually lead to batteries that are much cheaper and more environmentally friendly than regular lithium-based batteries, but with similar performance. This development marks the first time a bio-derived polymer has been successfully applied to battery technology, an accomplishment that could unlock a new path for the future of energy storage . Flavin derived from vitamin B2 operates as the cathode in the new battery , which is the part where energy is stored when the battery is connected to an electronic device. Looking to nature for solutions, a design approach called biomimicry made a lot of sense to the research team as they sought to build a better battery. “We’ve been looking to nature for a while to find complex molecules for use in a number of consumer electronics applications,” said Dwight Seferos, an associate professor in the university’s Department of Chemistry and Canada Research Chair in Polymer Nanotechnology. Related: Researchers accidentally discover a way to make batteries last basically forever The result is an environmentally friendly battery that is also easier to make than typical lithium ion batteries. “When you take something made by nature that is already complex, you end up spending less time making new material,” Seferos added. After much trial and error, and many failures, the team of chemists successfully created a new material from vitamin B2 that begins with genetically-modified fungi and, through a semi-synthetic process, links two flavin units to create a long-chain molecule (in other words, a polymer). The bio-derived polymer makes it possible to create a truly green battery that has both high capacity and high voltage, which are both key elements to running all the portable electronic devices that modern life has come to rely upon. The research was published in this month’s edition of the journal Advanced Functional Materials. Via Phys.org Images via Diana Tyszko/University of Toronto and Shutterstock

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Canadian chemists use vitamins in new sustainable lithium battery

One-fourth of cars are causing 90% of air pollution we breathe

April 29, 2015 by  
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It’s no secret that “clunkers” on the road contribute to greenhouse gas emissions at an alarming rate. A new study from the University of Toronto confirms what ecologists have theorized for some time: just 25 percent of cars and trucks are responsible for causing 90 percent of the air pollution we breathe. Scientists measured the emissions from vehicles in action to find out exactly how their dirty emissions impact our environment, and some of their conclusions were quite surprising. Read the rest of One-fourth of cars are causing 90% of air pollution we breathe Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: air pollution , air pollution research , black carbon , carbon emissions , carbon monoxide emissions , cash for clunkers , cleaner vehicles , dirty vehicles , Environment Canada , greenhouse gas emissions , measuring vehicle emissions , University of Toronto , vehicle emissions

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One-fourth of cars are causing 90% of air pollution we breathe

New inexpensive spray-on solar cells turn (almost) any surface into a power plant

December 30, 2014 by  
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Researchers at the University of Toronto have unveiled a cheap, fast spray-on solar cell process that could enable the creation of solar arrays using the most modest of manufacturing methods. Even better, with the cells ‘printed’ onto flexible material, they could turn anything from airplane wings to your patio furniture into a solar power plant. Read the rest of New inexpensive spray-on solar cells turn (almost) any surface into a power plant Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: cqd , flexible solar , green energy , renewable energy , solar breakthrough , Solar cells , solar efficiency , Solar Power , spracyld , spray on solar , University of Toronto

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New inexpensive spray-on solar cells turn (almost) any surface into a power plant

Sukkarboard is a temporary, lightweight shelter made from recycled cardboard and newspaper

December 30, 2014 by  
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Italian architecture firm Pelizzi Architettura designed the Sukkarboard, a temporary, lightweight shelter made from cardboard boxes and newspaper. Constructed using paper mache techniques for the weeklong Jewish festival of Sukkot, the blocky structure explores the ever-changing relationships between light and shadow; material and void; and presence and absence. The design placed first in the 2014 SukkahPDX , an outside design competition hosted by the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education in Portland, Oregon. + Pelizzi Architettura The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Gianluca Pelizzi , paper mache , Pelizzi Architettura , Portland , reader submitted content , Sukkah , SukkahPDX , SukkahPDX2014 , Sukkarboard , Sukkot , temporary architecture

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Sukkarboard is a temporary, lightweight shelter made from recycled cardboard and newspaper

The NanoLight Touts Itself as the World’s Most Efficient LED Light Bulb

January 16, 2013 by  
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When trying to squeeze every last penny out of your utilities, picking the right light bulb could go a long way towards reducing your bills. LED bulbs have exploded in popularity due to their efficiency and longevity – and the new NanoLight claims to be the world’s most energy-efficient light bulb, emitting over 1600 lumens while using only 12 watts of power. While there are many 20-60 watt LED equivalent bulbs on the market, the omnidirectional NanoLight is the first 100 watt comparable device. Completely eliminating the need for a heat sink, the NanoLight claims to be 87% more efficient than a standard incandescent and it uses 50% less energy than a compact fluorescent. Created by Gimmy Chu, Tom Rodinger, and Christian Yan from the University of Toronto, the NanoLight is currently being launched through a Kickstarter campaign. The NanoLight comes in three models, with its flagship 12 watt bulb equivalent to a traditional 100 watt light. The 12 watt model goes for a minimum pledge of $45, a cost that the team claims will pay for itself in energy savings over its 25-30 year lifespan. The LED electronic components are mounted on a printed circuit board folded to resemble the shape of a traditional bulb using surface mount technology. All three versions are available in 120V AC and 220-240V AC, so they’re compatible with different geographic regions. + NanoLight Via Gizmag

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The NanoLight Touts Itself as the World’s Most Efficient LED Light Bulb

Canadian Scientists Use Scotch Tape To Turn Semiconductors into Superconductors

September 14, 2012 by  
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A team from the University of Toronto has developed a new technique that transforms semiconductors into superconductors using the most simple of products — Scotch tape. The international team of physicists used the household product  to induce high-temperature superconductivity in a semiconductor for the first time, and they believe it could pave the way for new devices with greater energy-efficiency. If Scotch tape is the latest breakthrough product in the world of physics, surely it’s only a matter of time before Blu-Tac steps up to the plate, right? Read the rest of Canadian Scientists Use Scotch Tape To Turn Semiconductors into Superconductors Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “energy efficiency” , devices , physicists , physics , quantum computing , scotch tape , semiconductors , superconductors , University of Toronto

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Canadian Scientists Use Scotch Tape To Turn Semiconductors into Superconductors

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