Technological innovation

  • Iran's rocket more advanced than initially thought

    Iran used a Safir-2 rocket to launch a satellite into space last week; it now emerges that the rocket used a cryogenic fuel system involving liquid oxygen; this means that Iran has made an important step toward acquiring the ability to launch astronauts into space — and deliver nuclear weapons on Europe, Israel, and other targets of choice

  • DHS focuses on technology component of border network

    With a 700-mile section of the U.S.-Mexico fence almost complete, DHS shift its focus to the technology program designed to stop border crossings

  • Better detection with self-healing wireless sensor network

    New self-forming, self-healing wireless mesh sensor network can detect railway embankment landslides, humidity in art museums, water quality in water treatment facilities — and has military and security applications such as a perimeter network that can detect intrusion through breaking a light beam, or triggering a tripwire, or proximity sensor

  • Face recognition biometrics wedded to cell phones

    Face and iris recognition biometrics are good technologies, but people have to play along: They have to place their faces near the glass, look straight into the camera, make sure the light is just right; the U.S. intelligence community’s researchers want to solve this problem

  • Qinetiq to lead effort to reduce friendly fire accidents

    Qinetiq, General Dynamics United Kingdom, and Rockwell Collins have been awarded £3 million by the U.K. Ministry of Defense to develop the Joint Data Network Combat Identification Server Technical Demonstrator

  • World's largest supercomputer will be used for nuclear stockpile research

    IBM to build a 20 petaflops supercomputer, called Sequoia, for the Lawrence Livermore lab; a petaflop stands for a quadrillion floating-point operations per second; to put Sequoia’s computing power in perspective, what it can do in one hour would take all 6.7 billion people on Earth with hand calculators 320 years, if they worked together on the calculation for 24 hours per day, 365 days a year

  • Day of flying cars nears

    MIT alumni are set to produce first commercially flying car (company prefers the designation “roadable plane”); DARPA is already searching for workable ideas for what it calls “Personal Air Vehicle Technology”

  • Doubling the service life of concrete

    NIST researchers double the service life of concrete The key to the idea is a nano-sized additive that slows down penetration of chloride and sulphate ions from road salt, sea water, and soils into the concrete

  • BriefCam launches CCTV video synopsis technology

    Video synopsis technology allows one day of surveillance camera footage to be condensed into a few minutes, thus allowing security personnel to focus on evens that require attention while reducing costs

  • Reducing casualties from friendly fire

    With all the advances in information gathering and precision, instances of death and injury from friendly fire still occur; U.S. Army awards BAE Systems and Thales a contract to develop a millimeter wave-based identification system

  • Growing interest in flexible display -- for both soldiering and profit

    U.S. Army invests $50 million in flexible displays, bringing its total investment since 2004 to $100 million; flexible displays are paper-thin electronic screens that can be bent, mounted onto objects, and sewn into clothing

  • U.S. rocketry competition is under way

    Future rocket scientists: Twenty college teams to meet in Huntsville, Alabama, to compete in rocket design; event is designed to inspire young people to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics

  • Annual space trajectory competition begins

    European Space Agency announces Global Trajectory Optimization Competition; competition seeks to find the best solution to an interplanetary trajectory problem

  • Bomb-proof concrete developed

    Liverpool University researchers develop blast-resistant concrete; the Ultra High Performance Fiber Reinforced Concrete is able to absorb a thousand times more energy than conventional mixtures

  • How long will the world's uranium deposits last?

    At current consumption rates, the planet’s economically accessible uranium resources could fuel reactors for more than 200 years; further exploration and improvements in extraction technology are likely to at least double this estimate over time; if we extract uranium from seawater, and build breeder reactors, then supplies will last 30,000 to 60,000 years