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Latest Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Stories

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2009-01-21 16:39:42

Researchers "tune" graphene's properties by growing it on different surfaces Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered a new method for controlling the nature of graphene, bringing academia and industry potentially one step closer to realizing the mass production of graphene-based nanoelectronics. Graphene, a one-atom-thick sheet of carbon, was discovered in 2004 and is considered a potential heir to copper and silicon as the fundamental building blocks of...

2009-01-06 14:59:15

Two children have a seizure. One child never has another seizure. Twenty years later, the other child has a series of seizures and is diagnosed with epilepsy. A study being led by researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is looking at what could possibly happen in the development of these two children that would lead to such extreme variations in their neurologic health. The findings reveal that genetic predisposition, coupled with the occurrence of a patient's first seizures, could...

2008-12-20 22:49:51

The Southern Star Observation Wheel, a giant Australian Ferris wheel patterned on the London Eye, opened for business Saturday. The wheel, in the Docklands section of Melbourne, has 21 glass capsules, giving riders a comprehensive view, The Age reported. At the top of the wheel, they will be almost 400 feet in the air. Reporters got the first rides when the wheel started turning at 1 p.m. They were followed by winners of a competition. By the end of the afternoon, anyone willing to pony up...

2008-12-18 11:00:16

Special energy issue of Optics Express describes 'coming revolution' in LED lighting A revolution in energy-efficient, environmentally-sound, and powerfully-flexible lighting is coming to businesses and homes, according to a paper in latest special energy issue of Optics Express, the Optical Society's (OSA) open-access journal. The paper envisions the future of lighting -- a future with widespread use of light emitting diodes (LEDs), which offer a number of obvious and subtle advantages over...

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2008-11-24 13:50:00

A team of researchers has set out to calculate the power of a dolphin's thrust by using digital video and millions of tiny bubbles. In 1936, zoologist James Gray estimated that the drag dolphins must overcome to swim faster than 20 miles an hour. Gray said dolphins lacked the muscles to swim so fast, and yet they did. This is known as Gray's Paradox. Over the decades, scientists have found flaws in Gray's work, and most biologists have rejected his theory. "There is no paradox. The dolphins...

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2008-11-04 13:33:08

Solar panels may gain a boost in ability to capture the sun's rays thanks to a newly developed reflective coating. Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York say the new coating allows solar panels to soak up 96.2 percent of sunlight. Current solar panels -- which convert energy from the sun into electricity -- absorb only about two-thirds of available sunlight. "That is a tremendous savings," Rensselaer's Shawn-Yu Lin, whose study appears in the journal Optics...

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2008-09-22 16:16:21

New miniature image-capturing technology powered by water, sound, and surface tension could lead to smarter and lighter cameras in everything from cell phones and automobiles to autonomous robots and miniature spy planes. Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have designed and tested an adaptive liquid lens that captures 250 pictures per second and requires considerably less energy to operate than competing technologies. The lens is made up of a pair of water droplets, which...

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2008-08-30 10:35:00

Forward-facing eyes allow animals to 'see through' the clutter in the world The advantage of using two eyes to see the world around us has long been associated solely with our capacity to see in 3-D. Now, a new study from a scientist at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has uncovered a truly eye-opening advantage to binocular vision: our ability to see through things. Most animals "” fish, insects, reptiles, birds, rabbits, and horses, for example "” exist in non-cluttered...

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2008-08-11 11:04:31

Rensselaer researcher is using fluid mechanics to help athletes sharpen strokes Milliseconds can mean the difference between triumph and defeat in the world of Olympic sports, leading more trainers and athletes to look toward technology as a tool to get an edge on the competition. A fluids mechanics professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., is using experimental flow measurement techniques to help American swimmers sharpen their strokes, shave seconds from their lap times,...

2008-08-01 15:00:48

TROY, N.Y., Aug. 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A major restructuring of global energy markets is underway, challenging all to think about energy in new ways, yet the United States is at risk of being left behind because the nation lacks a comprehensive global energy security roadmap, warned the former chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in a speech to the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco. **To view the speech and Q&A go to:...


Word of the Day
callithump
  • A somewhat riotous parade, accompanied with the blowing of tin horns, and other discordant noises; also, a burlesque serenade; a charivari.
'Callithump' is a back-formation of 'callithumpian,' a 'fanciful formation' according to the Oxford English Dictionary. However, the English Dialect Dictionary, says 'Gallithumpians' is a Dorset and Devon word from the 1790s that refers to 'a society of radical social reformers' or 'noisy disturbers of elections and meetings.'
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