With Better Built-In Shock Absorbers, These Power Tools Barely Vibrate

The worst thing about working with handheld power tools is the constant and intense vibrations from oscillating parts that leave your hands and arms shaking, and make it harder to do detailed precision work. So researchers developed a handheld oscillator with 70 percent less vibration and half the noise. »3/30/15 9:20am3/30/15 9:20am


Researchers Develop a Way to X-Ray Rocks To Find Hidden Diamonds

It's no surprise that the diamond industry is willing to spend whatever it takes to make the process of mining precious gems even more profitable. And while it already relies on X-ray technology for spotting diamonds on the surface of mined ore, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute's Development Center for X-ray… »4/18/14 10:40am4/18/14 10:40am

Automated High-Speed Wire Inspector Takes 40,000 Photos Every Second

Wires, pipes, and metal rails are produced at incredibly high speeds in factories. Often as fast as 33 feet per second, which makes doing detailed inspections as the materials are produced almost impossible. But researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Physical Measurement Techniques IPM in Freiburg, Germany, have… »4/04/14 2:00pm4/04/14 2:00pm

Insulating Foam Made From Wood Makes Your Log Cabin Warm and Authentic

Not only is styrofoam great for all your packing needs, it also makes for an incredibly effective and lightweight insulator. It's just too bad the chemicals and processes needed to make it aren't as earth-friendly as they could be. So researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute have successfully created an alternative… »3/20/14 4:40pm3/20/14 4:40pm

Giant CT Scanners Reveal All the Gory Details of a Mangled Car Wreck

CT, or computed tomography, scans are to x-rays what 3D movies are to classic 2D flicks. But instead of being just some gimmick to lure patrons into a theater, CT scans result in 3D models that let doctors study internal medical conditions in amazing detail. But why stop there? Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute »10/07/13 10:41am10/07/13 10:41am

This Camera Array Lets You Tweak the Shot Angle In Post-Production

In the same way the Lytro camera allows photographers to tweak the focus of their shots in post-production, this multi-camera array, developed by researchers at the Fraunhofer institute, allows directors to adjust the depth of field, the aperture, and even the camera angle of a given shot after it's been captured.… »9/27/13 10:20am9/27/13 10:20am

This Multi-Camera Rig Lets Sports Fans Watch Any Angle They Want

There's usually a talented director calling the shots at televised live events like sports or a concert, but researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute want to put some of the control in the hands of the viewer at home. They've developed the OmniCam360, an ultra-compact 360 degree camera weighing in at just over 30… »8/09/13 9:40am8/09/13 9:40am

This Room-Monitoring Smart Door Lets Fresh Air In To Keep You Awake

Have you ever noticed that near the end of a long meeting in a sealed conference room everyone's a little sleepy? It obviously has nothing to do with your clipart-filled PowerPoint slides—it's actually related to a build-up of CO2 making it hard for everyone to think and concentrate. It's an unfortunate by-product of… »6/10/13 3:22pm6/10/13 3:22pm

Color-Changing Gloves Alert Lab Workers To Invisible Toxins

The trickiest part of avoiding exposure to toxic substances is that they're often invisible, odorless, and undetectable to our five senses. And as an alternative to expensive detectors and other electronic sensors, researchers at the Fraunhofer Research Institution for Modular Solid State Technologies EMFT in… »5/03/13 12:17pm5/03/13 12:17pm

One Day Your Credit Card Will Recognize Your Signature

A signature-based security approach is only effective if a cashier actually double checks what's scrawled across the back of a credit card. And even then, there's still plenty of opportunity for fraud since minimum wage clerks usually aren't capable of spotting a forged signature—but one day your credit card might be. »3/08/13 10:45am3/08/13 10:45am

Self-Powered Wireless Window Sensors Provide Foolproof Security

Window sensors have long been a part of security systems, but since they all rely on wires so they can be constantly monitored, there's the potential for them to be compromised. That's not the case with these new wireless sensors which are invisible when installed, and don't even require an outside power source. »9/07/12 1:20pm9/07/12 1:20pm

Sad Diabetics Rejoice: This Tiny Chip Measures Blood Sugar Levels Through Your Tears

It's not the first technique for measuring blood sugar levels that avoids the finger prick blood sample route, but this tiny unobtrusive chip could be the least invasive yet. It's able to make incredibly accurate blood glucose readings from a diabetic's tears or sweat, and then wirelessly transmit the results for easy… »9/07/12 9:04am9/07/12 9:04am