FlyingCab acceptance study: When taxis conquer the skies

Fraunhofer IAO and Volocopter GmbH have joined forces in the FlyingCab acceptance study to analyze user opinion regarding flying taxis, which, among other things, will make transportation more individual and flexible. But just how enthusiastic are future users about the new mobility solution and the idea of navigating cities by air?

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Programmable electronics based on the reversible doping of 2-D semiconductors

In recent years, researchers have been trying to develop new types of highly performing electronic devices. As silicon-based devices are approaching their maximum performance, they have recently started exploring the potential of fabricating electronics using alternative superconductors.

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Grasping empathy: How new technology helps simulate children’s experiences

As an adult, it’s hard to imagine how children experience a world built for grownups. What is it really like for someone lower to the ground, with shorter limbs and smaller hands, to navigate a home, a school, or a park? Everyone from toy designers and teachers to doctors and parents could benefit from a realistic few minutes in a child’s shoes.

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Mapping the indoors with lidar for public safety use cases

Scenario: you’re driving to your new job at a university campus and using your Global Positioning System (GPS)-enabled smartphone to tell you—and your car—how to get there. Once you arrive, you begin using building signs to identify your structure of interest. You’ve parked, made it inside, and are greeted with a building map on a bulletin board that directs you to the particular office you’re looking for. Following the map’s diagram, you weave through unlabeled corridors, dark stairwells, and a windowless basement hallway to reach your final destination. It’s a good thing you arrived early since you got lost a couple of times between the building’s entrance and your new office. If only the GPS-enabled device you used to get around outside could tell you where to go (and where you are) inside.

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Scientists develop energy-saving ‘liquid window’

Scientists at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) have developed a liquid window panel that can simultaneously block the sun to regulate solar transmission, while trapping thermal heat that can be released through the day and night, helping to reduce energy consumption in buildings.

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Tiny micro supercapacitor for wearable devices

A tiny microsupercapacitor (MSC) that is as small as the width of a person’s fingerprint and can be integrated directly with an electronic chip has been developed. This has attracted major attention as a novel technology to lead the era of Internet of Things (IoT) since it can be driven independently when applied to individual electronic components.

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Flexible and transparent electronics fabricated using a two-dimensional semiconductor

In recent years, engineers worldwide have been trying to create electronic components that are increasingly flexible and versatile, as this could enable the fabrication of more sophisticated devices and robotic systems, such as electronic skins (e-skins) or wearable sensors. The overall objective of this particular area of research is to develop flexible electronics that can be manufactured and implemented on a large scale, but that also exhibit a high device density and excellent performance.

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Loon balloon breaks record for stratospheric flight duration—stays aloft for 312 days

Google parent Alphabet has announced that its Loon team has broken the record for the longest stratospheric flight duration, staying aloft for 312 consecutive days. The announcement was posted on the Loon blog, where the team also outlined the history of the project and its goals for the future.

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