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Fast Company

MIT startup, 24M, has designed an EV battery with a range of 1,000 miles on a single charge, reports Adele Peters for Fast Company. “The extra-long range also can help the car’s battery last much longer,” explains Peters. “If you use a rapid charger to fully charge a battery, it can damage the battery, meaning it won’t last as long. Because it has such a long range, the new battery should rarely need a full rapid charge.”

TechCrunch

TechCrunch’s Tim De Chant has a look at MIT spinoff SiTration, which has developed a new process to reat mining wastewater and filter our critical minerals using silicon. “SiTration’s filters are built on the same style of wafers that are used to make computer chips and solar panels, though using a cheaper grade of silicon,” De Chant explains.

Scientific American

Researchers at MIT have created a noise-blocking sheet of silkworm silk that could “greatly streamline the pursuit of silence,” reports Andrew Chapman for Scientific American. “The silk sheet, which is enhanced with a special fiber, expands on a technology also found in noise-canceling headphones,” explains Chapman. “These devices create silence by sampling the ambient noise and then emitting sound waves that are out of phase with those in the environment. When the ambient and emitted waves overlap, they cancel each other out.” 

Quanta Magazine

For the first time ever, researchers at MIT have observed electrons form “fractional quasiparticles without enabling the influence of a magnetic field,” reports Daniel Garisto for Quanta Magazine. This discovery “may carry the seeds of long-sought quasiparticles with stable memories that could underpin a new and powerful approach to quantum computing.” 

New Scientist

A new study by MIT engineers finds that heating metals can sometimes make them stronger, a “surprising phenomenon [that] could lead to a better understanding of important industrial processes and make for tougher aircraft,” reports Karmela Padavic-Callaghan for New Scientist. “It was just so unexpected or backwards of what you might conventionally see,” explains graduate student Ian Dowding. 

The Economist

Prof. Kripa Varanasi and Vishnu Jayaprakash SM '19, PhD '21 co-founded AgZen, an MIT spinoff that is developing new technologies to improve the performance and effectiveness of pesticide treatments, reports The Economist. The new technologies “could reduce the total amount of fungicides and insecticides sprayed over complete crops by some 90%, as well as cutting the amount of adjuvants required,” writes The Economist.

MIT Technology Review

Writing for MIT Technology Review, Georgina Gustin chronicles the research journey of Polina Anikeeva, the MIT scientist and engineer who developed flexible brain probes to stimulate neurons and potentially treat neurological disorders. In 2017, Anikeeva became fascinated by the hypothesis that Parkinson’s might be linked to pathogens in the digestive system. Today she and her team use specialized devices to explore the brain-gut connection. “This is a new frontier,” Anikeeva says. 

Popular Science

MIT researchers have developed a 3D printer that can use “unrecognizable printing materials in real-time to create more eco-friendly products,” reports Andrew Paul for Popular Science. The engineers “detailed a newly designed mathematical function that allows off-the-shelf 3D-printer’s extruder software to use multiple materials—including bio-based polymers, plant-derived resins, or other recyclables,” explains Paul.

Nature

Prof. Long Ju and his colleagues observed the fractional quantum anomalous Hall effect (FQAHE) when five layers of graphene were sandwiched between sheets of boron nitride, reports Dan Garisto for Nature. The findings are, “capturing physicists’ imagination because they are fundamentally new discoveries about how electrons behave,” writes Garisto.

Fast Company

Using microwave plasma technology developed at MIT, 6K inc., is turning metals “including scrap, into high-performance materials for various applications,” reports Alex Pasternack for Fast Company. “The process produces no salt or liquid waste, uses just 10% of the water and half of the energy of conventional processes, and reduces costs by half,” writes Pasternack. “Its technique can also precisely control the composition and structure of materials at the atomic level.”

Tech Briefs

Prof. Skylar Tibbits speaks with Tech Briefs reporter Andrew Corselli about his team’s work developing a new “additive manufacturing technique that can print rapidly with liquid metal, producing large-scale parts like table legs and chair frames in a matter of minutes.” Of his advice for engineers aiming to bring their ideas to fruition, Tibbits emphasizes: “Work hard, fail a lot, keep trying, don’t give up, and have amazing people around you. We're a research lab, so our whole goal is to go from impossible to possible. So, we're allowed to fail; we're not limited by profitability or customer demand or economy.”

TechCrunch

TechCrunch reporter Haje Jan Kamps spotlights AgZen, an MIT startup that has developed a new tool that optimizes the use of pesticides to avoid over application. “The real winner in all of this may prove to be public health and the environment,” writes Jan Kamps. “By reducing foliar pesticide usage by 30% to 50%, AgZen’s technology might help mitigate [environmental] impacts, aligning with the critical need for improved spray efficiency highlighted in recent reports.”

GBH

Former postdoc Leah Ellis speaks with GBH All Things Considered host Arun Rath about   Sublime Systems, an MIT startup she co-founded that aims to produce carbon-free cement to combat climate change. “Sublime Systems and this technology spun out of my postdoctoral work at MIT,” says Ellis. “My co-founder and I are both electric chemists, so we have experience with battery technologies and electrochemical systems. Our idea was thinking about how we might use renewable energy—which we know has become more abundant, inexpensive and available—to eliminate the CO2 emissions from cement.”

AuntMinnie.com

Prof. Xuanhe Zhao speaks with Amerigo Allegretto of AuntMinnie.com about his work developing a new ultrasound sticker that can measure the stiffness of internal organs and could one day be used for early detection and diagnosis of disease. “Due to the huge potential of measuring the rigidity of deep internal organs, we believe we can use this to monitor organ health,” Zhao explains.

Fast Company

Sublime Systems, an MIT startup, is developing new technology to fully decarbonize the cement manufacturing process, reports Adele Peters for Fast Company. “Instead of using heat to break down rocks for cement, the startup uses chemistry to dissolve them, and then blends the components back together into what it calls ‘Sublime Cement,’” explains Peters. “The process can replace limestone with other minerals, including rocks found at high volumes in industrial waste, so it’s also possible to eliminate the emissions from limestone.”