All posts by MIT News

Spotting objects amid clutter

>>New approach quickly finds hidden objects in dense point clouds, for use in driverless cars or work spaces with robotic assistants By Jennifer Chu A new MIT-developed technique enables robots to quickly identify objects hidden in a three-dimensional cloud of data, reminiscent of how some

A droplet walks into an electric field …

>>Researchers have found a simple formula that could be useful for air purification, space propulsion, and molecular analyses By Jennifer Chu When a raindrop falls through a thundercloud, it is subject to strong electric fields that pull and tug on the droplet, like a soap

Autonomous boats can target and latch onto each other

>>Fleet of “roboats” could collect garbage or self-assemble into floating structures in Amsterdam’s many canals By Rob Matheson The city of Amsterdam envisions a future where fleets of autonomous boats cruise its many canals to transport goods and people, collect trash, or self-assemble into floating

The kilo is dead. Long live the kilo!

>>An old artifact kept in a vault outside Paris is no longer the standard for the kilogram. Now, nature itself provides the definition by David L. Chandler For 130 years, a cylinder made of a platinum-iridium alloy and stored in a suburb of Paris called

In cancer research, a winding road to discovery

>>Book by MIT professor examines the circuitous history behind the investigation of cancer as a contagious illness by Peter Dizikes In 1961, people in the suburb of Niles, Illinois, experienced what they termed a “cancer epidemic.” Over a dozen children in the town were diagnosed