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A quantum dot: A high-resolution transmission electron micrograph of cadmium telluride nanoparticles. (The scale bar in the lower right is 2 nanometers long, or two millionths of a millimeter.) Nagpal Group, University of Colorado

Fighting superbugs with nanotechnology and light

Quantum dots - minuscule semiconductor particles with specific light-absorption properties - can kill drug-resistant superbugs without harming the surrounding healthy tissue.
Substances, such as these carbon nanotubes, can behave differently at the nano-scale, and may post a health risk. ZEISS Microscopy/Flickr

Big questions about risk assessment of nanomaterials

We need to carefully assess nanomaterials to ensure their safety, but there are questions over whether the existing practice of risk assessment is up to the task.
New innovations and technologies, such as the Nanopatch developed by Australian biotech Vaxxas, are instrumental to Australia’s future prosperity, and many benefit from NCRIS facilities, which are now under threat from government cuts. AIBN

Intergenerational prosperity depends on supporting research

The government believes innovation will be crucial to our future productivity, yet it is threatening cuts to research infrastructure that is instrumental to promoting innovation and new technologies.
Fossil fuels can only go so far towards meeting our burgeoning energy demands. Shutterstock

New nanomaterials will boost renewable energy

A non-metal alternative to platinum electrodes in fuel cells could make them an affordable solution for energy security.
Future technology won’t just be a gadget we use, it will re-structure our societies. Sergey Nivens/Shutterstock

Tomorrow’s technology will lead to sweeping changes in society – it must, for all our sakes

Throughout history, whenever new technologies have emerged that change our means of production and ability to communicate they have tended to transform society. The rapid technological development of the…
Ok, that’s not the way to extract it. fabriceh_com

How scorpion venom could yield new cancer treatment

In the development of new drugs, taking something from nature and modifying it has been a successful tactic employed by medicinal chemists for years. Now, with the help of nanotechnology, researchers are…
Ian Burkhart moves his paralysed hand using the thought-controlled Neurobridge brain implant. Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

Nanotechnology to outer space: ten top tech innovations of 2014

Don’t be mesmerised by cool apps and flashy new gizmos – the top technology inventions of the year are ones that will have a lasting effect. Most are advances in fields that are already changing us. Some…
Plants use photosynthesis to build molecules and energy they can use. By copying plants, humans can make cleaner fuels. Ranjit Bhatnagar/Flickr

To shift away from fossil fuels, we need to copy plants

Most of the energy that fuels our lives comes from plants. Whether it is a fossil fuel that was formed hundreds of millions of years ago or the food we eat, all carbon-borne energy has its ultimate origins…
They have cancer in their sights. StephenMitchell/Flickr

New cancer-huntingnano-robots’ to seek and destroy tumours

It sounds like a scene from a science fiction novel – an army of tiny weaponised robots travelling around a human body, hunting down malignant tumours and destroying them from within. But research in Nature…

Microchip diabetes test

US researchers have invented a microchip-based test for type 1 diabetes. The test is carried out by a handheld microchip…

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