Autism disorders affect one in 110 children in the U.S.--or perhaps more--but the method of diagnosing the condition, which is characterized by difficulties socializing and communicating, among other behavioral and emotional problems, is largely subjective. Now, researchers may have finally found a way to objectively and scientifically diagnose the condition early, with 94 percent accuracy, using simple MRI brain scans.
It’s a typical scenario: you ask the doctor to make you feel better; he or she proceeds to stick you with needles and bombard you with radiation. But a new breed of portable devices painless laser beams could use Raman spectrometry to diagnose conditions inside the body and put an end to X-rays and even blood drawing, in just a few years.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.