3D printing cancer cells

Drexel’s Wei Sun, PhD, Albert Soffa chair professor in the College of Engineering, has devised a method for 3D printing tumors that could soon be taking cancer research out of the petri dish.

Making graphene work for real-world devices

Graphene, a one-atom-thick form of the carbon material graphite, has been hailed as a wonder material--strong, light, nearly transparent and an excellent conductor of electricity and heat--and it very well may be. But a number of practical challenges must be overcome before it can emerge as a replacement for silicon and other materials in microprocessors and next-generation energy devices.

Scientists develop a 3D printed microscope for $2

A droplet of clear liquid can bend light, acting as a lens. Now, by exploiting this well-known phenomenon, researchers have developed a new process to create inexpensive high quality lenses that will cost less than a penny apiece.

NASA tests Orion’s parachute performance over Arizona while work progresses in Florida

The team designing the parachute system for NASA’s Orion spacecraft has demonstrated almost every parachute failure they could imagine. But on April 23, they tested how the system would perform if the failure wasn’t in the parachutes.

Following NASA's human path to Mars

NASA is developing the capabilities needed to send humans to an asteroid by 2025 and Mars in the 2030s – goals outlined in the bipartisan NASA Authorization Act of 2010 and in the U.S. National Space Policy, also issued in 2010.

When things get glassy, molecules go fractal

Colorful church windows, beads on a necklace and many of our favorite plastics share something in common -- they all belong to a state of matter known as glasses. School children learn the difference between liquids and gases, but centuries of scholarship have failed to produce consensus about how to categorize glass.

‘Double-duty’ electrolyte enables new chemistry for longer-lived batteries

Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have developed a new and unconventional battery chemistry aimed at producing batteries that last longer than previously thought possible.

Study finds accelerated soil carbon loss, increasing the rate of climate change

Research published in Science today found that increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere cause soil microbes to produce more carbon dioxide, accelerating climate change.

Superconducting qubit array points the way to quantum computers

A fully functional quantum computer is one of the holy grails of physics. Unlike conventional computers, the quantum version uses qubits (quantum bits), which make direct use of the multiple states of quantum phenomena. When realized, a quantum computer will be millions of times more powerful at certain computations than today’s supercomputers.

Weightless plants fly on a dragon

It is a race against time for ESA’s Gravi-2 experiment following launch last Friday on the Dragon space ferry. Stowed in Dragon’s cargo are lentil seeds that will be nurtured into life on the International Space Station.

Spiders in space weave a web of scientific inspiration for Spider-Man fans

While spiders were busy spinning webs in space, researchers on Earth weaved their knowledge of this activity into educational materials to inspire and motivate students. Now, this free, Web-based guide is being re-released through Scholastic and Sony Pictures as curriculum for educators to leap on the excitement surrounding the release of the film, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2.”

Report: CyberBuddy is better than no buddy

A Michigan State University researcher is looking to give exercise enthusiasts the extra nudge they need during a workout, and her latest research shows that a cyber buddy can help. The study, which appears in the Games for Health Journal, is the first to indicate that although a human partner is still a better motivator during exercise, a software-generated partner also can be effective.

Fiction prepares us for a world changed by global warming

Climate fiction, or simply cli-fi, is a newly coined term for novels and films which focus on the consequences of global warming. New research from University of Copenhagen shows how these fictions serve as a mental laboratory that allows us to simulate the potential consequences of climate change and imagine other living conditions.

Scientists study halving hydrogen

Like a hungry diner ripping open a dinner roll, a fuel cell catalyst that converts hydrogen into electricity must tear open a hydrogen molecule. Now researchers have captured a view of such a catalyst holding onto the two halves of its hydrogen feast. The view confirms previous hypotheses and provides insight into how to make the catalyst work better for alternative energy uses.

Fast, furious, and soon to be electric

Early on Saturday mornings, before the rest of campus stirs awake, Jacqueline Sly ’14 grabs coffee and heads down Massachusetts Ave. to building N51. Winding through familiar walkways, past boxes of scrap metal and old pipes, she arrives at a large, airy room dominated by two nearly finished frames of certified Formula One cars. To Sly and the rest of the MIT Formula SAE team, this is home.

Mysteries of a nearby planetary system's dynamics now are solved

Mysteries of one of the most fascinating nearby planetary systems now have been solved, report authors of a scientific paper to be published by the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society in its early online edition on 22 April 2014.

Claim: Mantis shrimp are stronger than airplanes

Inspired by the fist-like club of a mantis shrimp, a team of researchers led by University of California, Riverside, in collaboration with University of Southern California and Purdue University, have developed a design structure for composite materials that is more impact resistant and tougher than the standard used in airplanes.

‘Upside-down planet’ reveals new method for studying binary star systems

What looked at first like a sort of upside-down planet has instead revealed a new method for studying binary star systems, discovered by a University of Washington student astronomer.

A new “APEX” in plant studies aboard the International Space Station (ISS)

Growing knowledge in a given field takes time, attention, and…water? It does when you’re talking about plant studies aboard the International Space Station (ISS). All of these things and some scientific know-how come into play as astronauts find out just how green their thumbs are while assisting researchers on the ground.

Cloaked DNA nanodevices survive pilot mission

It's a familiar trope in science fiction: In enemy territory, activate your cloaking device. And real-world viruses use similar tactics to make themselves invisible to the immune system. Now scientists at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have mimicked these viral tactics to build the first DNA nanodevices that survive the body's immune defenses.