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Fanny Littmarck | July 4, 2014

IEEE Spectrum recently sent out a “Tech Alert” that included an article about vacuum transistors, which combine vacuum tubes and metal oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors (MOSFETs). The article suggests that this technology may wind up replacing traditional silicon transistors.

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Fanny Littmarck | June 20, 2014

This month, IEEE sent out the 50th anniversary issue of their magazine IEEE Spectrum. This particular issue offers an inspiring and hopeful special report on what the next 50 years will bring in terms of technology advancements.

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Mark Fowler | April 28, 2014

A recent discovery indicates that certain particles can be drawn into crystalline structures through the controlled use of ultraviolet light and chemistry. This discovery can eventually lead to the possibility of creating color-changing surfaces and materials for reasons of dynamic camouflaging.

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Mark Fowler | April 25, 2014

Born 140 years ago today, Guglielmo Marconi was a Nobel Prize-winning electrical engineer and an Italian inventor who is best known for pioneering long-distance radio transmission and the commercial success of radio.

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Andrew Griesmer | March 24, 2014

Born 179 years ago today, Josef Stefan was a brilliant Austrian physicist who studied radiation. He is credited with empirically deriving the relationship between the radiant energy of a blackbody and its temperature, known as the Stefan-Boltzmann law.

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Phil Kinnane | February 21, 2014

It must be an impressive sight. For people driving through the Mojave Desert from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, the world’s largest solar-based thermal power plant can be seen on the way. The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generation System consists of almost 350,000 garage door-sized mirrors, all pointing the sun’s rays to large boilers at the top of three 33-story tall towers. The result is a 390 MW power station — about a fifth the generation capacity of the Hoover Dam.

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Fanny Littmarck | February 19, 2014

On this day, in the year 1473, now famous astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was born in Torun, Poland. His main contribution to science was the controversial concept of a heliocentric universe. Five hundred years later, we not only accept the sun as the center of our solar system, we even support new theories of planets orbiting two stars at once.

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Fanny Littmarck | February 5, 2014

Rockets have been refined over the past 150 years or so. Until the 1920s, when liquid-fuel rockets were invented, rockets were powered by solid propellants and oxidizers. Both these bring forth issues in how they’re handled on the ground or in flight. Private space flight companies are now working on hybrid rocket innovations to solve this problem.

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Fanny Littmarck | January 13, 2014

It’s easy to navigate from place to place thanks to GPS, but what about once you actually get there — what about navigating indoors? From venues of leisure to buildings in flames, there are many situations where indoor location tracking is useful. GPS technology does not work inside buildings, but there are now other methods under development that will make indoor navigation possible as well.

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Fanny Littmarck | December 13, 2013

You’ve heard the story: a couple of scientists discovered graphene when they repeatedly pulled a strip of adhesive tape off a layer of graphite. Graphene has been all the rage due to its incredible strength, low weight, and electronic properties, but it’s not the only material of its kind. There are plenty of other 2D materials to consider for electrical applications — some of which may work together with graphene, and others that can be used in its place.

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Alexandra Foley | December 4, 2013

In the past, we’ve discussed a few of the extraordinary uses of 3D printing (or additive manufacturing) technology by some innovative engineers, and even printed a few of our COMSOL models. In one of our previous posts on 3D printing, we discussed some of the limitations that this technique poses from both a consumer and manufacturing stand-point — you can only print one material at a time. Now however, as was mentioned in an article in Desktop Engineering, not only […]

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