By Rose EvelethPosted 11.08.2010 at 10:20 am 2 Comments
Bomb squads have long used metal detectors, X-ray machines and dogs to uncover threats. Without them, authorities may not have intercepted some of the thirteen homemade explosives that froze Greece’s outgoing mail earlier this week. But soon they may find a new tool in their quest to find the bad guys and their bombs: microscopic worms.
Mutant silkworms can produce miles of super-strong silk, in a new breakthrough that could lead to mass production of tough, flexible spider-silk material. Thanks to the efforts of these genetically modified spider-worms, along with spidergoats and spider-alfalfa, spider clothes may soon be upon us.
This animal, which lives more than a mile and a half below the ocean’s surface, is one of three potentially novel species of acorn worms discovered on a deep-sea expedition in June. Expedition participant Monty Priede and his team from Oceanlab at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland are currently analyzing the creature’s DNA while another member of the expedition,
Nicholas Holland, a marine biologist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego, compares specimens with two species of acorn worm already described.
The sophisticated computer worm called Stuxnet, which has been targeting industrial operations around the world, was likely designed to take out Iran’s new Bushehr nuclear reactor, cybersecurity experts say. It’s the first known cyber-super-weapon designed to destroy a real-world target, reports the Christian Science Monitor.
Cocaine's a hell of a drug, and even more so when laced with another drug that's commonly used to deworm opossums. Federal agents have found that 69 percent of cocaine shipments seized entering the United States contain levamisole, a veterinary drug linked to serious weakening of the immune system in humans. Here's the real funny part: no one knows why.
The perils of space flight number in the hundreds, from radiation exposure to the impact of micro-asteroids. But for astronauts who spend an extended amount of time floating weightlessly in the near-endless void of space, muscle atrophy remains the most common health problem. Thankfully, a shipment of RNA-treated worms may help scientists on the International Space Station solve that issue.
Star Trek introduced the world to a wide range of fictional technology, most of which, like beaming or warp drive, will likely remain fiction. However, a team of scientists from the University of Canada has taken the phaser, the show's famous stun-laser, out of the TV and into reality. Unfortunately, right now it only works on worms.
Imagine robots that operate without electronic components. Well, this week scientists at a robotics lab in Japan revealed a creation that could bring the scenario a step closer to reality. The team has created what looks to be a Technicolor inchworm made of motile gel that not only crawls by itself, but changes color depending on the environment it's in. And its creators say that this creeping, self-propelled goop might one day find its way into robots.
Scientists look to worm jaws, tougher than human teeth, for the next class of super-strong aerospace and construction material
By Jaya JiwatramPosted 07.18.2008 at 12:55 pm 1 Comment
It's well known that scientists commonly look to nature to create super-strong materials. Diamond powder, for instance, is used for oil drills and road machinery, and soon spider silk could be use in bullet-proof vests.
Recently, researchers have turned their attention to the fang-like jaws of marine worms, which they believe could lead to a new cutting-edge, lightweight material so strong that it could be used for construction and as repair material for spacecraft and airplanes.