Researchers have equipped a robot with a novel tactile sensor that lets it grasp a USB cable draped freely over a hook and insert it into a USB port. The sensor is small enough to fit on a robot’s gripper and its processing algorithm is fast, so it can give the robot feedback in real time.
“Here’s some of the stories trending This Week at NASA!” Returning human spaceflight to America
Dogs generally seem to be cheerful, happy-go-lucky characters, so you might expect that they would have an optimistic outlook on life. But, some dogs are distinctly more pessimistic than others.
Cephalopods are able to change both the color and texture of their skin within seconds to blend into their surroundings— a capability that engineers have long struggled to duplicate in synthetic materials. Now, a team has come closer than ever to achieving that goal, creating a flexible material that can change its color or fluorescence and its texture at the same time, on demand, by remote control.
A new study into meat tenderness could refine the way people cook steak. Researchers conducted studies using microscopes to see what happens to meat cells while being cooked. They found that meat shrinks while cooking not once but twice.
By now, we've got all the details about Apple's latest iPhone. But what do you really know about the guts of the iPhone 6, or any smartphone for that matter?
Researchers have developed an algorithm for bounding that they’ve successfully implemented in a robotic cheetah— a sleek, four-legged assemblage of gears, batteries and electric motors that weighs about as much as its feline counterpart. The team recently took the robot for a test run where it bounded across grass at a steady clip.
Researchers have identified a mechanism by which wrinkles may have formed in ancient rocks. Based on this mechanism, they posit that such fossilized features may be a vestige of microbial presence— in other words, where there are wrinkles, there must have been life.
“Here’s some of the stories trending This Week at NASA!” Rocket welding tool ready
Astronauts are studying how fires burn in microgravity and how to put them out. It's a basic safety issue: if a fire ever breaks out onboard a spacecraft, astronauts need to be able to control it.
The increasing acidification of ocean waters caused by rising atmospheric CO2 levels could rob sharks of their ability to sense the smell of food, a new study suggests. Elevated CO2 levels impaired the odor-tracking behavior of the smooth dogfish, a shark whose range includes the Atlantic Ocean off the eastern U.S.
An algorithm, tested aboard the International Space Station, analyzes the rotation of objects in space. Understanding how objects are spinning, where their centers of mass are and how their mass is distributed is crucial to any number of actual or potential space missions, from cleaning up debris in the geosynchronous orbit favored by communications satellites to landing a demolition crew on a comet.
Chemistry Life Hacks are tips that can change your life, or at least the temperature of your beer.
Raw honey has been used against infections for millennia. So what is the key to its’ antimicrobial properties? Researchers have identified a unique group of 13 lactic acid bacteria found in fresh honey, from the honey stomach of bees. The bacteria produce a myriad of active antimicrobial compounds.
This month's LabChat covers: a color-changing glucose monitor; the genomic sequencing of more than 99 Ebola virus genomes; and a computational approach to plant adaptation capabilities.