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Clinical trials using immune cells engineered through synthetic biology have been shown to push some patients into remission from blood cancer. from www.shutterstock.com

The synthetic biology revolution is now – here’s what that means

Right now, you're living in a kind of industrial revolution – where biotechnology, information technology, manufacturing and automation all come together to form synthetic biology.
Molecular machines are ready to join forces and take on real-world work. Chenfeng Ke

3-D printing turns nanomachines into life-size workers

Research on molecular machines won last year's Nobel Prize in chemistry. Now scientists have figured out a way to get these tiny molecules to join forces and collaborate on real work on a macro scale.
Inside Boeing’s Dreamliner: tomorrow’s polymers today. Jordan Tan

Five synthetic materials with the power to change the world

The New York World’s Fair of 1939-40 was one of the greatest expos the world had ever seen. Visitors to Flushing Meadow Park in Queens were invited to see the “world of tomorrow” giving them a first glimpse…
They’re waterproof and tough – not to mention colourful – but plastic notes were developed for their unforgeability. Lis Ferla/Flickr

Proceeds of crime: how polymer banknotes were invented

Welcome to CSIRO Inventions, a series looking at the discoveries and innovations borne from Australia’s national science agency. In this first instalment, we outline the story behind the plastic money…
Carbon fibre: it’s super light and super strong (even more so than dreadlocks). Lucas Grumet/Flickr

Black to the future: carbon fibre research seeds new innovation

A unique cutting-edge carbon fibre research facility Carbon Nexus officially opened at Deakin University in Geelong last week. It houses laboratories, a pilot scale carbon fibre line and a smaller single-tow…
Solid plastic made from gas. Novomer

Explainer: what is carbon capture and utilisation?

Carbon and carbon dioxide are found all around us. All living things contain carbon - it’s one of the essential building blocks of life and is fundamental to many chemical processes. Carbon dioxide (CO2…

Synthetic skin heals itself

A synthetic material both sensitive to touch and able to heal itself quickly has been created for the first time. Engineers…

Advancement in polymer synthesis

Researchers have developed a new method of polymer synthesis based on two processes: “segregation” and “templating”. These…

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