drewsup writes: Researchers at Northwestern University have placed nanocrystals of rock salt into lead telluride, creating a material that can harness electricity from heat-generating items such as vehicle exhaust systems, industrial processes and equipment and sun light more efficiently than scientists have seen in the past "It has been known for 100 years that semiconductors have this property that can harness electricity," said Mercouri Kanatzidis, the Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Chemistry in The Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. "To make this an efficient process, all you need is the right material, and we have found a recipe or system to make this material." Read the story at http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110118143228.htm
drewsup writes: Science Daily has a story,(http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110110121709.htm), on a new class of metallic glass that is stronger than steel. The real news is that even stronger versions will follow soon. Que the Scotty jokes..
drewsup writes: As quoted in Daily Science, Wolfgang Sigmund, a professor of materials science and engineering at University of Florida, has created a material modeled after spider hairs. A paper about the surface, which works equally well with hot or cold water, appears in this month's edition of the journal Langmuir.
Spiders use their water-repelling hairs to stay dry or avoid drowning, with water spiders capturing air bubbles and toting them underwater to breathe. Potential applications for UF's ultra-water-repellent surfaces are many, Sigmund said. When water scampers off the surface, it picks up and carries dirt with it, in effect making the surface self-cleaning. As such, it is ideal for some food packaging, or windows, or solar cells that must stay clean to gather sunlight, he said. Boat designers might coat hulls with it, making boats faster and more efficient. Hairy glass anyone?
drewsup writes: "A lighting revolution is on the way that could end at the flick of a switch the battle between supporters of conventional bulbs and the eco-friendly variety.
Cambridge University researchers have developed cheap, light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs that produce brilliant light but use very little electricity. They will cost £2 and last up to 60 years.
Despite being smaller than a penny, they are 12 times more efficient than conventional tungsten bulbs and three times more efficient than the unpopular fluorescent low-energy versions.
Lets hope this comes to fruition quickly.
drewsup writes: Here's my dilemma,
I want to build a carputer for media storage and games for the kids in the back, but i also want a radio tuner in the dash. As far as i can tell, i'm stuck with either a dvd/nav/ radio head with no hard drive storage for the dash OR a fully fuctional computer with no,(and or seperate) radio tuner. Does anyone know of any cheap options that combine BOTH features? As far as i can tell, there is no pci radio tuner cards out there.