Start your weekend with some science! This week, help astronauts unload cargo after SpaceX Dragon’s historic docking with the ISS, get a hypospray injection from a modern day Bones, and don a pair of glasses second only to Geordi’s VISOR. All this and more, plus our gadget(s) of the week: synchronized robo dancers!
SpaceX Dragon Capsule Docks with ISS
For the first time ever, a commercial space vehicle has docked with the International Space Station. Less than 24 hours after its historical maneuver, the astronauts of the Expedition 31 crew opened the SpaceX Dragon capsule to recover some welcomed supplies. “Like the smell of a brand new car,” said NASA astronaut Don Pettit, after going inside. While the cargo delivery was not the prime mission of Dragon — the ISS is well stocked — it achieved what no other commercial vehicle has done before, to reach orbit and dock with the ISS. This marks an important turning point in commercial spaceflight and bodes well for the future of the up and coming industry.
More at SpaceX.com.
SpaceX’s Dragon capsule docks with the ISS
A Very Trek-like Hypospray in the Works
We’re no strangers to needleless injection technology (Exhibit A; Exhibit B), but this new hypospray device developed at MIT is the most Trek-like yet. This device uses a powerful magnetic piston that can deliver drugs into your body at speeds up to the speed of sound (343 m/s in air). What’s more, the injection stream is so fine that medicine can be injected into eardrums or even eyeballs without causing any damage or leaving any trace.
More at MIT News.
Bonus points for use of the word “proboscis”
Sight for the Blind with Geordie La Forge-approved Glasses
New glasses being developed at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia could give sight to the blind and even to those without eyes at all. This new innovative technology uses video cameras mounted on a pair of glasses. Images from the video are then translated into electrical signals and sent wirelessly to a chip implanted in the back of the brain. So far, the images it can produce are very rudimentary, as you’ll see in the video below, but the team hopes to improve the tech so that more realistic imagery can be realized.
Gadget(s) of the Week: Synchronized Dancing Robots
Researchers at MIT have taken cues from how bacteria work in nature to synchronize a group of robots with a new method that bypasses typical networking latency issues. While they look adorable performing a dance to Thriller, this kind of synching can allow groups of robots to perform intricate group tasks.
Not enough science for you? Here’s a warp-speed look at some more science tid-bits that are worth a peek.
- Scientists say real life tractor beam a real possibility after successful test
- Clocking devices trap a rainbow
- Earliest musical instruments found