OLED Wallpaper Could Be the Future of Lighting

It's the Star Trek-inspired future we were promised—walls that glow and change color, perhaps with just a gentle voice command. And it's finally (almost) possible thanks to a series of advances in OLED sheets. This new lighting solution also uses half as much energy than existing fluorescent lights. It is, however,… » 10/07/14 1:15pm 10/07/14 1:15pm

A Spoonful of This New Material Can Suck Up a Whole Roomful of Oxygen

A team of scientists in Denmark just invented a crystalline material that can absorb oxygen with astounding efficiency. How astounding? Well, a single spoonful of the stuff can suck all of the oxygen out of a room. The best part is that it can release it again with just a little bit of heat. Say goodbye to bulky… » 9/30/14 1:20pm 9/30/14 1:20pm

These Tiny Diamond Nanothreads Could Someday Support a Space Elevator

A team of scientists just strung a tone of the world's smallest diamonds into superstrong nanothreads. That makes for one impressive (and basically invisible) necklace, but the applications of these nanothreads don't end there. They could someday help string up an elevator to space—just like in science fiction. » 9/22/14 5:55pm 9/22/14 5:55pm

Nail Polish That Detects Date Rape Drugs Is a Damn Good Idea

A team of recent graduates from North Carolina State are developing a new kind of nail polish that changes color when it's exposed to date rape drugs. Just stirring a sketchy drink with a finger could let a woman know she's being targeted for assault. Although a little odd, it does sound like a pretty good idea. » 8/25/14 11:41am 8/25/14 11:41am

Get excited – spider silk finally looks ready for commercialization

Materials scientists have been eyeing spider silk as a potential supermaterial for years, but the stuff is notoriously difficult to produce in quantities. Now, recent breakthroughs in the production of synthetic spider silk could see this remarkable substance commercialized, and publicly available, sooner than… » 3/09/14 5:04pm 3/09/14 5:04pm

One Man's Nearly Impossible Quest to Make a Toaster From Scratch

In 2008, designer Thomas Thwaites decided to build a toaster from scratch-and not the "from scratch" that would land him in Home Depot for a couple of hours. He was interested in the seemingly magical process that turns what we pull out of the earth into the stuff that litters our houses. So Thwaites decided to take… » 4/21/11 4:00pm 4/21/11 4:00pm