tech e blog

Black Hole Event Horizon

A team of scientists are working on the "Event Horizon Telescope," which is comprised of 9 radio telescopes spanning world that will be pointed at Sagittarius A*, a black hole located 25,000-light-years away in the center of the Milky Way galaxy. "There are quite a few challenges that need to be overcome to take a picture of a black hole - it's something that's extremely small in the sky. But what we're hoping for is a full array observation in early 2017," said EHT scientist Feryal Ozel. This black hole has an event horizon with a 14.9-million-mile diameter, and it may look something like the scene above from Interstellar. Click here to view the first image in this week's things that look like other things gallery. Continue reading for a viral video of an unexpected rainbow during a NASA engine test.

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Helicopter Blades Stationary


The helicopter blades in the video above appear to be stationary, but if you understand the science behind it, you'll realize this is just a clever optical illusion. That's right, the blades look the way they do because the camera shutter speed matches the helicopter's rotor. "Imagine you're shooting a 24fps video of a helicopter rotor that spins one full rotation every second. In the video, each rotation will thus be broken into 24 frames. You'll see the blades rotating normally, just moving one-24th of their full rotation each time. But, if the blades spin exactly 24 times each second, and you're still shooting at 24 fps, each full revolution will be represented by only one frame. The blades will arrive back in their starting place each time the camera captures a frame, so they'll look like they're standing still," according to HowStuffWorks. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading for the five most popular viral videos today, including one of molten copper being poured on a rubber band ball.

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Wireless Charging Room Technology

Disney Research has unveiled technology that turns your entire room into a wireless charging station, using "ubiquitous wireless power delivery". In other words, this enables multiple devices to be charged wirelessly similar to how we get internet access through Wi-Fi. By tapping into quasistatic cavity resonance, the realized they could generate magnetic fields inside custom-built structures to deliver power to mobile devices. "This new innovative method will make it possible for electrical power to become as ubiquitous as WiFi. This in turn could enable new applications for robots and other small mobile devices by eliminating the need to replace batteries and wires for charging," said Alanson Sample, associate lab director & principal research scientist at Disney Research. Just step into the room, and your mobile devices will start charging automatically. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading for the five most popular viral videos today, including one of the world's largest 3D-printed object.

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NASA Earth-Like Planets

NASA scientists working with telescopes at the European Southern Observatory announced today that an entire system of Earth-like planets exists just 40-light-years away. Of these seven, three lie in the star's habitable "Goldilocks" zone, meaning that all may have entire oceans of liquid water, increasing the possibility of life. "The energy output from dwarf stars like TRAPPIST-1 is much weaker than that of our Sun. Planets would need to be in far closer orbits than we see in the Solar System if there is to be surface water. Fortunately, it seems that this kind of compact configuration is just what we see around TRAPPIST-1," said researcher Amaury Triaud. Continue reading for two more videos, including one explaining how long it would take for humans to get there.

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Blue Lightning Space

Astronaut Andreas Mogensen was floating 250-miles above the surface of Earth when he captured a mysterious blue light, or what looks like upside-down lightning. They're officially called "blue jets," and its color is believed to be due to a set of blue and near-ultraviolet emission lines from neutral and ionized molecular nitrogen. In addition, whereas red sprites tend to be associated with significant lightning strikes, blue jets do not appear to be directly triggered by lightning (they do, however, appear to relate to strong hail activity in thunderstorms). Click here to view the first image in this week's geek life gallery. Continue reading for a viral video showing how not to crack an 80-foot whip.

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Ingestible Battery

Researchers at MIT have developed an ingestible battery that's powered by stomach acid. This technology could be used for drug delivery and internal medical procedures, along with other wearable technology. "We need to come up with ways to power these ingestible systems for a long time. We see the GI tract as providing a really unique opportunity to house new systems for drug delivery and sensing, and fundamental to these systems is how they are powered," said MIT researcher Giovanni Traverso. Continue reading for a picture of the delivery device.

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Wattway Solar Road

The Wattway solar road surface consists of prefabricated panels with a surface of 0.38-inches-thick hardened glass, and beneath this surface is where the cells are installed. Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) states that this energy can be used for lighting of the road, traffic lights and road signs. The energy is also delivered to local dwellings. TNO thinks in future electrical vehicles might be driven by the road itself. The Ray C. Anderson Foundation recently installed 538-square-feet of Colas' Wattway solar road system near the border between Georgia and Alabama. Continue reading for another video and more information.

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Naica Crystal Cave

The Cave of the Crystals is connected to the Naica Mine 980-feet below the surface in Naica, Chihuahua, Mexico. The main chamber contains giant selenite crystals, some of the largest natural crystals ever found, similar to the ones seen in Superman's Fortress of Solitude. The cave's largest crystal found to date is 39-feet in length, 13-feet in diameter and 55 tons in weight. It's extremely hot inside, with air temperatures reaching up to 136° F at 90% - 99% percent humidity. The caverns are relatively unexplored due to these factors, as without proper protection, humans can only endure approximately 10-minutes of exposure at a time. The Cave of the Crystals was discovered by brothers Eloy and Javier Delgado. Continue reading for more fascinating images from around the web.

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Rewritable Paper

Researchers from Shandong University in China, the University of California, Riverside and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have created light-printable, rewritable paper that can be printed with light and re-written up to 80-times. "The greatest significance of our work is the development of a new class of solid-state photo-reversible color-switching system to produce an ink-free light-printable rewritable paper that has the same feel and appearance as conventional paper, but can be printed and erased repeatedly without the need for additional ink. Our work is believed to have enormous economic and environmental merits to modern society," said Yadong Yin, professor of chemistry at the University of California, Riverside. Click here to view the first image in today's viral picture gallery. Continue reading for the five most popular viral videos today, including one of a Prince Rupert's Drop being crushed by a powerful industrial hydraulic press.

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Holographic Universe

Theoretical physicists and astrophysicists from the U.K., Canada and Italy purport what we could all be living in a giant holographic projection. The team made the discovery while researching irregularities in the "afterglow" of the Big Bang. This theory claims the information that makes up our 3D reality, time included, is contained within a two-dimensional surface, on its boundaries. "Imagine that everything you see, feel and hear in three dimensions [and your perception of time] in fact emanates from a flat two-dimensional field. The idea is similar to that of ordinary holograms where a three-dimensional image is encoded in a two-dimensional surface, such as in the hologram on a credit card. However, this time, the entire universe is encoded," said Kostas Skenderis, Professor of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton. Click here to view the first image in this week's funny autocorrect texts gallery. Continue reading for a viral video about someone who biohacked a dog.

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