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Research Laboratory of Electronics

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CNET

A new white paper by MIT researchers underscores the importance of regaining the U.S.’s innovation leadership in the area of semiconductor manufacturing and calls for increased investment at the research level to help advance this field, reports Stephen Shankland for CNET. "The hollowing out of semiconductor manufacturing in the US is compromising our ability to innovate in this space and puts at risk our command of the next technological revolution,” write the report’s authors. “To ensure long-term leadership, leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing in the US must be prioritized and universities activities have to get closer to it."

NBC Boston

Prof. Muriel Médard speaks with NBC Boston reporter Raul Martinez about 5G technologies and helps demystify the concerns surrounding 5G networks and airline safety.

Popular Science

Popular Science reporter Rahul Rao writes that researchers from MIT and Harvard have whipped up quantum tornadoes, “the latest demonstration of quantum mechanics—the strange code of laws that governs the universe at its finest, subatomic scales.”

Smithsonian Magazine

Researchers from MIT and Harvard have directly observed a quantum tornado, reports Elizabeth Gamillo for Smithsonian. “Scientists observed the tornado-like behavior after trapping and spinning a cloud of one million sodium atoms using lasers and electromagnets at 100 rotations per second,” writes Gamillo.

CNBC

Ubiquitous Energy, an MIT startup, is developing technology to transform windows into surfaces that capture solar energy, reports Catherine Clifford for CNBC. “Ubiquitous makes a coating for windows that uses semiconducting materials to convert sunlight into electricity,” writes Clifford. “The coating is just nanometers thick and tiny wires connect the solar window to electrical systems where the energy is used.”

Mashable

MIT researchers have developed a new technique for producing low-voltage, power-dense actuators that can propel flying microrobots, reports Danica D'Souza for Mashable. “The new technique lets them make soft actuators that can carry 80 percent more payload,” D’Souza reports. 

Science News

Scientists from MIT have observed a quantum effect that blocks ultracold atoms from scattering light, reports Emily Conover for Science News. To observe the effect, the researchers “beamed light through a cloud of lithium atoms, measuring the amount of light it scattered,” writes Conover. “Then, the team decreased the temperature to make the atoms fill up the lowest energy states, suppressing the scattering of light.”

New Scientist

A new study by MIT scientists has uncovered evidence of Pauli blocking, confirming that as atoms are chilled and squeezed to extremes their ability to scatter light is suppressed, reports Leah Crane for New Scientist. “This is a very basic phenomenon, but it’s sort of a devil to see,” explains former MIT postdoc Yair Margalit. “You need these extreme conditions to be able to see it – high densities and ultra-low temperatures – and it is difficult to get both of these at once.”

Inside Science

MIT researchers are developing an electronic skin that can withstand sweating, reports Karen Kwon for Inside Science. The researchers “punched holes on the e-skin to match the size of sweat pores and the distance between them. Then, inspired by kirigami, the team cut away even more material between two holes in an alternating pattern,” writes Kwon. The resulting pattern “could tolerate bending and stretching more than the conventional e-skin with simple holes.”

Mashable

Mashable spotlights how MIT’s baseball pitching coach is using motion capture technology to help analyze and teach pitching techniques. Using the technology, Coach Todd Carroll can “suggest real-time adjustments as a player is pitching so that just one session using the technology improves their game.”

The Washington Post

Washington Post reporter Dalvin Brown spotlights Nextiles, a company spun out of MIT and the NSF that has crafted machine-washable smart fabrics that capture biometric data. “Just imagine all the biochemicals that come out of you and get released into your clothes,” says Prof. Yoel Fink of the future of e-textiles. “Today, all of that stuff gets erased in the washing machine. But at some point, your fabric could learn, listen to subtle changes, and alert you to go to the doctor for a checkup.”

Mashable

Mashable reporter Jordan Aaron spotlights how MIT researchers have developed insect-sized drones that can flap their wings over 500 times per second, allowing them to withstand collisions. The drones are “powered by a small actuator, which gives them the ability to flap so fast.”

Gizmodo

MIT researchers have developed tiny, agile drones with insect-like wings, reports John Biggs for Gizmodo. “The goal is to use these tiny, soft drones to explore close spaces where rigid drones will break on contact with hard surfaces,” writes Biggs.

Popular Mechanics

MIT researchers have developed a new atomic clock that can keep time more precisely thanks to the use of entangled atoms, reports Leila Stein for Popular Mechanics. “If all atomic clocks worked the way this one does then their timing, over the entire age of the universe, would be less than 100 milliseconds off,” Stein writes.

Popular Mechanics

Writing for Popular Mechanics, Leila Stein highlights how MIT researchers have created a perfect fluid and captured its sound. “To record the sound, the team of physicists sent a glissando of sound waves through a controlled gas of elementary particles called fermions,” Stein writes.