Emergent Futures Tumblelog

This is the Tumblelog of Paul Higgins and Sandy Teagle - Futurists from Melbourne and Brisbane in Australia. Go to Emergent Futures to see more or follow on Twitter at FuturistPaul . If you right click on the pictures, titles or links in these posts you will be able to go to the original story on the web. If you click on comments for each post you can either read what others have said or add your own comment via Disqus. If you click on the date of a post it will take you to a single post view where you can copy the web link if you want to send it to someone else. If you click on the tags it will take you to other stories from Emergent Futures with the same tag.

smarterplanet:

Secrets of the First Practical Artificial Leaf

A detailed description of development of the first practical artificial leaf — a milestone in the drive for sustainable energy that mimics the process, photosynthesis, that green plants use to convert water and sunlight into energy — appears in the ACS journal Accounts of Chemical Research. The article notes that unlike earlier devices, which used costly ingredients, the new device is made from inexpensive materials and employs low-cost engineering and manufacturing processes.

[read more] [paper] [via reddit] [photo credit: ACS]

Posted at 9:11pm and tagged with: tech, technology, biotechnology, energy, biomimicry, innovation,.

smarterplanet:

Secrets of the First Practical Artificial Leaf
A detailed description of development of the first practical artificial leaf — a milestone in the drive for sustainable energy that mimics the process, photosynthesis, that green plants use to convert water and sunlight into energy — appears in the ACS journal Accounts of Chemical Research. The article notes that unlike earlier devices, which used costly ingredients, the new device is made from inexpensive materials and employs low-cost engineering and manufacturing processes.

[read more] [paper] [via reddit] [photo credit: ACS]

Powerhouse Solar Cell Inspired by Leaf Biomimicry

A team of scientists headed up by Princeton University has achieved a whopping 47 percent increase in electricity generation from flexible plastic solar cells, simply by texturing the surface to mimic the wrinkles of a typical leaf.

Full Story: Cleantechnica

Posted at 8:21am and tagged with: biomimicry, tech, technology, energy, solar,.

Powerhouse Solar Cell Inspired by Leaf Biomimicry

A team of scientists headed up by Princeton University has achieved a whopping 47 percent increase in electricity generation from flexible plastic solar cells, simply by texturing the surface to mimic the wrinkles of a typical leaf.

Full Story: Cleantechnica

unexpectedtech:

In an effort to provide a more accurate alternative to conventional cell culture and animal models, researchers at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University have developed a microdevice that mimics the structure, physiology, and mechanics of the human intestine. The so-called “gut-on-a-chip” could help provide new insights into intestinal disorders and be used to evaluate the safety and efficacy of potential treatments.

Although it is only around the size of a USB memory stick, the device mimics the complex 3D features of the human intestine. It features a central chamber in which a single layer of human intestinal epithelial cells grows on a flexible, porous membrane that recreates the intestinal barrier. To mimic the wave-like peristaltic motions that move food along the digestive tract, the membrane is attached to the side walls of the chamber that stretch and recoil using an attached vacuum controller.

The researchers say that the ability to grow and sustain common intestinal microbes on the surface of the device’s cultured intestinal cells allows the device to simulate some of the physiological features important to understanding many diseases.

Posted at 1:14pm and tagged with: tech, technology, innovation, science, health, biomimicry,.

Nanowire Forest Splits Water with Sunlight



 researchers at University of California, San Diego havedeveloped a quite different approachto mimicking photosynthesis for splitting water molecules by using a 3D branched nanowire array that looks like a forest of trees.

According to Deli Wang, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, this tree-like structure enables both trees and the nanowire arrays to capture the maximum amount of solar energy. To illustrate what he means, Wang points to satellite imagery in which flat surfaces like oceans or deserts simply reflect the light back and forests remain dark because they are absorbing the light.


Full Story: IEEE Spectrum

Posted at 3:40pm and tagged with: nanotechnology, technology, tech, energy, biomimicry,.

Nanowire Forest Splits Water with Sunlight


 researchers at University of California, San Diego havedeveloped a quite different approachto mimicking photosynthesis for splitting water molecules by using a 3D branched nanowire array that looks like a forest of trees.
According to Deli Wang, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, this tree-like structure enables both trees and the nanowire arrays to capture the maximum amount of solar energy. To illustrate what he means, Wang points to satellite imagery in which flat surfaces like oceans or deserts simply reflect the light back and forests remain dark because they are absorbing the light.

Full Story: IEEE Spectrum

Reusable Sticky Tape Could Hold Up Your TV

Large patches of an extremely strong new adhesive, inspired by geckos, can be used over and over again.

Full Story: Technology Review

Posted at 3:27am and tagged with: innovation, biomimicry,.

Reusable Sticky Tape Could Hold Up Your TV



Large patches of an extremely strong new adhesive, inspired by geckos, can be used over and over again.

Full Story: Technology Review

Speed Limit for Birds: Researchers Find Critical Speed Above Which Birds — And Drones — Are Sure to Crash

Full Story: Science Daily

Posted at 10:47am and tagged with: robots, biomimicry,.

Speed Limit for Birds: Researchers Find Critical Speed Above Which Birds — And Drones — Are Sure to Crash


Full Story: Science Daily

Spider know-how could cut future energy costs

Scientists at Oxford University and The University of Sheffield have demonstrated that natural silks are a thousand times more efficient than common plastics when it comes to forming fibres.

Full Story: ZeitNews

Posted at 3:30am and tagged with: energy, biotechnology, biomimicry, tech, technology, environment,.

Spider know-how could cut future energy costs



Scientists at Oxford University and The University of Sheffield have demonstrated that natural silks are a thousand times more efficient than common plastics when it comes to forming fibres.

Full Story: ZeitNews

smarterplanet:

Making Cement The Way Coral Does It: Out Of Thin Air | Fast Company

Biomineralization expert Brent Constantz of Stanford University got inspiration from the way corals build reefs to make a new type of cement for buildings. The process of making this cement actually removes carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas, thought to cause global warming—from the air. The company Constantz founded, called Calera, has a demonstration plant on California’s Monterrey Bay that takes waste CO2 gas from a local power plant and dissolves it into seawater to form carbonate, which mixes with calcium in the seawater and creates a solid. It’s how corals form their skeletons, and how Constantz creates cement.

Posted at 8:37pm and tagged with: climate change, biomimicry,.

smarterplanet:

Making Cement The Way Coral Does It: Out Of Thin Air | Fast Company
Biomineralization expert Brent Constantz of Stanford University got  inspiration from the way corals build reefs to make a new type of cement  for buildings. The process of making this cement actually removes  carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas, thought to cause global warming—from  the air. The company Constantz founded, called Calera,  has a demonstration plant on California’s Monterrey Bay that takes  waste CO2 gas from a local power plant and dissolves it into seawater to  form carbonate, which mixes with calcium in the seawater and creates a  solid. It’s how corals form their skeletons, and how Constantz creates  cement.

Scientists create new type of painkiller


Scientists have found a way to make a molecule, used in traditional Asian medicine, which may lead to a whole new class of painkilling drugs.

The molecule, conolidine, is one of many complex organic molecules present in a tropical flowering plant used in Chinese, Indian and Thai herbal medicine to fight inflammation and pain.

Full Story: ABC Australia

Posted at 5:59am and tagged with: health, biotechnology, biomimicry, innovation,.

Scientists create new type of painkiller


Scientists have found a way to make a molecule, used in traditional Asian medicine, which may lead to a whole new class of painkilling drugs.
The molecule, conolidine, is one of many complex organic molecules present in a tropical flowering plant used in Chinese, Indian and Thai herbal medicine to fight inflammation and pain.
Full Story: ABC Australia

It Flies! Da Vinci’s Dream Comes True

This is not a trick. There are no invisible strings, no post production video fixes. What we have here is a graceful, flapping, unfeathery machine that looks and flies like a seagull. It was built by a team of engineers at a company called Festo in Germany, which specializes in factory automation, and for years now they’ve been doing what Leonardo dreamed of when he sat on those hills near Florence sketching birds: they copy from nature’s designs.

Full Story: NPR

Posted at 7:52am and tagged with: biomimicry, technology,.