Category Archives: Science & Technology

Microbiome diversity is influenced by chance encounters

Study finds a role for randomness in the composition of the gut’s microbe populations by Anne Trafton, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, MA: Within the human digestive tract, there are trillions of bacteria, and these communities contain hundreds or even thousands of species. The makeup of

3-D printing with plants

World’s most abundant polymer could rival petroleum-based plastics as source of printing feedstock by David L. Chandler, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — For centuries, cellulose has formed the basis of the world’s most abundantly printed-on material: paper. Now, thanks to new research at MIT,

OLYMPUS experiment sheds light on structure of protons

Seven-year study indicates two photons, not one, are exchanged in electron-proton interactions by Helen Knight, MIT News correspondent CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A mystery concerning the structure of protons is a step closer to being solved, thanks to a seven-year experiment led by researchers at MIT. For

Graphene sheets capture cells efficiently

New method could enable pinpoint diagnostics on individual blood cells by David L. Chandler, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A single cell can contain a wealth of information about the health of an individual. Now, a new method developed at MIT and National Chiao

New technology offers fast peptide synthesis

Automated manufacturing could make it easier to develop and test new peptide drugs. by Anne Trafton, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, MA — Manufacturing small proteins known as peptides is usually very time-consuming, which has slowed development of new peptide drugs for diseases such as cancer,

Tiny fibers open new windows into the brain

Three-in-one design allows genetic, chemical, optical, and electrical inputs and outputs by David L. Chandler, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — For the first time ever, a single flexible fiber no bigger than a human hair has successfully delivered a combination of optical, electrical, and

Researchers devise efficient power converter for internet of things

Design reduces converter’s resting power consumption by 50 percent by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The “internet of things” is the idea that vehicles, appliances, civil structures, manufacturing equipment, and even livestock will soon have sensors that report information directly to networked servers,

Self-made stars

Astronomers observe black hole producing cold, star-making fuel from hot plasma jets and bubbles by Jennifer Chu, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The Phoenix cluster is an enormous accumulation of about 1,000 galaxies, located 5.7 billion light years from Earth. At its center lies a

The heart of a far-off star beats for its planet

Scientists observe first planet-induced stellar pulsations by Jennifer Chu, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — For the first time, astronomers from MIT and elsewhere have observed a star pulsing in response to its orbiting planet. The star, which goes by the name HAT-P-2, is about 400

Voice control everywhere

Low-power special-purpose chip could make speech recognition ubiquitous in electronics by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — The butt of jokes as little as 10 years ago, automatic speech recognition is now on the verge of becoming people’s chief means of interacting with their