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Tech Times

MIT CSAIL researchers have developed a new air safety system, called Air-Guardian, that is designed to serve as a “proactive co-pilot, enhancing safety during critical moments of flight,” reports Jace Dela Cruz for Tech Times

The Washington Post

A new surgical procedure and neuroprosthetic interface developed by MIT researchers allows people with amputations to control their prosthetic limbs with their brains, “a significant scientific advance that allows for a smoother gait and enhanced ability to navigate obstacles,” reports Lizette Ortega for The Washington Post. “We’re starting to get a glimpse of this glorious future wherein a person can lose a major part of their body, and there’s technology available to reconstruct that aspect of their body to full functionality,” explains Prof. Hugh Herr. 

The Boston Globe

Writing for The Boston Globe, Cady Coleman ’83 reflects on her career as an astronaut and Air Force colonel. “I am an astronaut,” writes Coleman. “Even after 24 years at NASA, two space shuttle missions, and six months living aboard the International Space Station, it thrills me to say those words, and yet there is a part of me that’s still surprised by them.”  

Boston 25 News

Researchers from MIT and elsewhere have developed a new technique that removes lead from water using repurposed beer yeast, reports Boston 25 News. The researchers “developed a hydrogel capsule to hold the yeast after it is cleaned, freeze-dried, and ground into a powder,” explains Boston 25. “Researchers said the yeast capsules could be modified to remove other dangerous contaminants from water, including PFAS and microplastics.” 

NPR

Knight Science Journalism program director Deborah Blum joins guest host Diana Plasker on NPR’s “Science Friday” to share summer science book recommendations. When asked what types of books are popular, Blum says “I think that people just remain fascinated by some of the ways that science makes the world more interesting, more beautiful. People are always drawn to the kind of books that allow you to look at the world in a new way and kind of go, wow.” 

Nobel Prize Conversations

Prof. Moungi Bawendi, a recipient of the 2023 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, speaks with Nobel Prize Conversations host Adam Smith about the joys of visualizing quantum mechanics, the inspiration for his Nobel-prize winning work and his love of music. “Being in a place like MIT and being exposed to engineering and other scientific fields and medicine across the river and Harvard Medical School and a lot of startups around here, you really are exposed to so many things that are so interesting and I love that,” says Bawendi. “Those things give me ideas of how to go back to the lab and take different directions.” 

Scientific American

Prof. Kerry Emanuel speaks with Scientific American reporter Chelsea Harvey about the future of hurricane forecasting and preparations. “I can’t predict the future, but I’m optimistic that things will get better,” says Emanuel. “And you’ll see people moving away from risky places, which is already beginning to happen. And those who elect to stay [will be] paying a lot of insurance or retrofitting houses to be built stronger.”

Popular Mechanics

Prof. Larry Gurth and University of Oxford Prof. James Maynard have uncovered a new finding “about how certain polynomials are formed and how they reach out into the number line,” reports Caroline Delbert for Popular Mechanics. Gurth and Maynard “claim they’ve proven [Dirichlet] polynomials have a certain number of large values, or solutions, within a tighter ranger than before.” 

The Washington Post

Prof. of the Practice Elisabeth Reynolds speaks with Washington Post reporter David Lynch about the Biden administration’s efforts to reduce dependance on Chinese equipment such as ship-to-shore cranes.  "In the face of China as an economic and political and national security threat, we have to rethink some strategies,” says Reynolds. “And regardless of the product and regardless of the country, we don't want to be beholden to a monopoly supplier. That's a bad strategy.”

Community Updates

Featured Multimedia

Researchers present a soft robotic hand that combines vision, motor-based proprioception, and soft tactile sensors to identify, sort, and pack a stream of unknown objects. This multimodal sensing approach enables the soft robotic manipulator to estimate an object's size and stiffness and intelligently place objects without damage.

MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology presents a vivid, 360 degree immersive retelling of the Haudenosaunee creation story by multimedia artist and 2022–24 Ida Ely Rubin Artist in Residence Jackson 2bears, also known as Tékeniyáhsen Ohkwá:ri (Kanien’kehà:ka).

Space Architectures is new collaboration between MIT Architecture, the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative. This cross-disciplinary course brings together designers and engineers to imagine, design, prototype, and test what might be needed to support human habitation and activities on the moon.

Allison Arieff, Editorial Director of Print for MIT Technology Review highlights the importance of thoughtful design, the collaborative nature of innovation, and the necessity of maintaining a critical eye on technological advancements. She shares how they balance celebrating technological breakthroughs with scrutinizing their broader impacts, ensuring a responsible and inclusive approach to innovation.

MIT researchers have developed a way to help people with amputation or paralysis regain limb control. Instead of using electricity to stimulate muscles, they used light. The new study suggests optogenetics can drive muscle contraction with greater control and less fatigue than electrical stimulation.

In explaining quantum technology, professor of physics and director of the MIT Center for Quantum Computing, Will Oliver cites MIT's interdisciplinarity as a key component in developing these technologies. In this video he, along with research scientist Jeff Grover, explore the origins of quantum mechanics and the state of quantum computing today.

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