These Underwater Drones Use Water Temperature Differences To Recharge

Yi Chao likes to describe himself as an “armchair oceanographer” because he got incredibly seasick the one time he spent a week aboard a ship. So it’s maybe not surprising that the former NASA scientist has a vision for promoting remote study of the ocean on a grand scale by enabling underwater drones to recharge on the go using his company’s energy-harvesting technology. Many of the robotic gliders and floating sensor stations currently monitoring the world’s oceans are effectively treated as disposable devices because the research community has a limited number of both ships and funding to retrieve drones after they’ve accomplished their mission of beaming data back home. That’s not only a waste of money, but may also contribute to a growing assortment of abandoned lithium-ion batteries polluting the ocean with their leaking toxic materials—a decidedly unsustainable approach to studying the secrets of the underwater world. “Our goal is to deploy our energy harvesting system to use renewable energy Continue reading These Underwater Drones Use Water Temperature Differences To Recharge

Autonomous robot plays with NanoLEGO

Atoms and molecules behave in a completely different way to macroscopic objects and each brick requires its own ‘instruction manual’. Scientists have now developed an artificial intelligence system that autonomously learns how to grip and move individual molecules using a scanning tunneling microscope. More details