Tag Archives: GM
News: Energy Storage April 2, 2012
The cost and weight of batteries is the Achilles heel for electric vehicles. Today’s lithium-ion batteries used in cars such as the GM Volt are serviceable but expensive, up to 60% of the cost of the car. This has provided a major incentive for science and industry to chase large-scale battery improvement for decades. The [...]
News: Neuroscience January 20, 2011
“We can activate or inactivate individual neurons or muscle cells, essentially turning the worm into a virtual biorobot.” Dr. Aravinthan D. T. Samuel, professor of physics at Harvard Center for Brain Science (Massachusetts, USA) is talking about optogenetics, one of the newest fields in science. The pioneer work was done around 2002. The name, optogenetics, [...]
Impact: Synthetic Biology February 14, 2010
What happens when genetic engineering goes viral? I’m using the word viral in its Internet sense. The New York Times has a fascinating article on the rise of synthetic biology and genetic engineering in the ranks of amateurs, mostly students, and under the guidance of an organization called iGEM. Here’s where “viral starts”… …synthetic biologists [...]
News: Genetic Modification February 12, 2010
A new report, published online in the journal Science, titled “Radically Rethinking Agriculture for the 21st Century” was prepared by sixteen top specialists in population, climate, agriculture, and food genetics. They represented a mixture of academics, corporations (Monsanto, DuPont), and government scientists. The report was first presented to the U.S. State Department in 2009. Three [...]
News: Robotics February 5, 2010
Androids, robots that look like and sometimes act like humans, are not (just) a figment of star treks in galaxies far far away. This one (below) is built by General Motors (U.S.) for NASA and is called, drolly, Robonaut2 or just R2. It’s been in the works for ten years. R2 is designed to be, [...]
News: Genetic Modification November 1, 2009
It can be the biological equivalent of “whack-a-mole.” Use gene modification to produce crops that have resistance to one disease, and the modification creates crops more vulnerable to another disease. Here’s a specific example.
News: Genetic Modification October 28, 2009
When the Royal Society (of London for the Improvement of Natural Knowledge) issues reports, lots of people pay attention. When it takes on controversy, in this case promoting (among other things) the genetic modification (GM) of food to alleviate short supply for the coming growth in world population, then it gets all kinds of attention.