• Lunar Gold Rush Could Create Conflict on the Ground If We Don’t Act Now – New Research

    Many countries and private companies have ambitious plans to explore or mine the Moon. This won’t be at some remote point in time but soon – even in this decade. So far, much of the debate around exploring and mining the Moon has focused on tensions in space between state agencies and the private sector. But as we see it, the pressing challenge arises from limited strategic resources.

  • Earth to Reach Temperature Tipping Point in Next 20 to 30 Years

    Earth’s ability to absorb nearly a third of human-caused carbon emissions through plants could be halved within the next two decades at the current rate of warming, according to a new study. Researchers have identified a critical temperature tipping point beyond which plants’ ability to capture and store atmospheric carbon—a cumulative effect referred to as the “land carbon sink”—decreases as temperatures continue to rise.

  • A Climate in Crisis Calls for Investment in Direct Air Capture

    There is a growing consensus among scientists as well as national and local governments representing hundreds of millions of people, that humanity faces a climate crisis that demands a crisis response. New research explores one possible mode of response: a massively funded program to deploy direct air capture (DAC) systems that remove CO2 directly from the ambient air and sequester it safely underground.

  • It's Getting Hot in Here: Warming World Will Fry Power Plant Production

    There’s no doubt the Earth’s temperatures are going up. The power plants that keep air conditioners pushing out cold air could soon be in a vicious cycle in a warming world–not able to keep up with growing demands on hotter days and driving up greenhouse gas emissions to dangerous levels.

  • Finding Toxic Chemicals in Drinking Water

    Most consumers of drinking water in the United States know that chemicals are used in the treatment processes to ensure the water is safe to drink. But they might not know that the use of some of these chemicals, such as chlorine, can also lead to the formation of unregulated toxic byproducts.

  • Want Cheaper Nuclear Energy? Turn the Design Process into a Game

    Nuclear energy provides more carbon-free electricity in the United States than solar and wind combined, making it a key player in the fight against climate change. But the U.S. nuclear fleet is aging, and operators are under pressure to streamline their operations to compete with coal- and gas-fired plants. Researchers show that deep reinforcement learning can be used to design more efficient nuclear reactors.

  • 2020 Was on Par with Warmest Year Ever Recorded, Ends Warmest Decade on Record

    Globally, 2020 was tied with the previous warmest year 2016, making it the sixth in a series of exceptionally warm years starting in 2015, and 2011-2020 the warmest decade recorded.

  • Groundbreaking Firefighter Tracking Technology

    In the U.S. alone, approximately 80 to 100 firefighters are lost in the line of duty each year according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. More than 50,000 are injured according to the National Fire Protection Association.  Countless others risk their lives every day to serve and protect our communities. Last month, S&T and NASA JPL successfully tested the Precision Outdoor and Indoor Navigation and Training for Emergency Responders (POINTER) technology.

  • Guiding Research Direction for Grid-Forming Inverters

    Power electronics—including the inverters that interface solar, wind, battery energy storage, and electric vehicles—are on track to gradually, or even entirely, displace traditional generation. In doing so, inverters will inherit new responsibilities and introduce a new set of challenges.

  • Guiding Research Direction for Grid-Forming Inverters

    Power electronics—including the inverters that interface solar, wind, battery energy storage, and electric vehicles—are on track to gradually, or even entirely, displace traditional generation. In doing so, inverters will inherit new responsibilities and introduce a new set of challenges.

  • Screening Masked Faces at Airports: 96% Accuracy in Recent Test

    A controlled scenario test by the DHS S&T shows promising results for facial recognition technologies to accurately identify individuals wearing protective face masks.

  • Urban Land, Aerosols Amplify Hazardous Weather, Steer Storms toward Cities

    Urban landscapes and human-made aerosols—particles suspended in the atmosphere—have the potential to not only make gusts stronger and hail larger; they can also start storms sooner and even pull them toward cities, according to new research.

  • Capturing Potable Water from Air

    DARPA recently awarded five contracts and selected one government partner to develop technology to capture potable water from the air in quantities sufficient to meet critical DoD needs, even in extremely dry climates. The Atmospheric Water Extraction (AWE) performers aim to meet clean water needs of deployed troops, even in austere environments.

  • The Nashville Bombing and Threats to Critical Infrastructure: We Saw This Coming

    If fear of 5G technology proves to be the motive for the Christmas-Day bombing in Nashville, Tennessee, no one should be surprised. Audrey Kurth Cronin writes that if [Nashville bomber] Anthony Warner was indeed protesting 5G networks, it shines a light on the long-standing need for U.S. intelligence and law enforcement to meld global and local efforts to get ahead of cyber-driven threats to critical infrastructure. “Authorities need to strengthen their ability to meet anti-technology attacks on our vulnerable critical infrastructure, especially by looking close to home.”

  • It’s Electrifying! Earth Could Be Entirely Powered by Sustainable Energy

    Can you imagine a world powered by 100 percent renewable electricity and fuels? It may seem fantasy, but a collaborative team of scientists has just shown this dream is theoretically possible – if we can garner global buy-in.