New Artificial Protein Makes it Possible to Manipulate Matter

IN BRIEF

Researchers have used an artificial protein to assemble a buckyball molecule—opening the door to new methods of nano-engineering.

MANIPULATING MATTER

The dream of nanotechnology is to harness it to control the material world at its most fundamental level—to manipulate matter at the molecular and atomic scale.

It’s a dream that is held by scientists in many fields—medicine, materials research, electronics, computing, and others too numerous to list. The struggle has been in how to actually achieve such a precision control of matter. Sadly, the quantum effects at this level often defeat any such attempts, and have proven difficult to surmount.

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These HyperCells Can Move, ‘Think,’ and Build Cities on Their Own

A team of students created an architectural system that can move, shape-shift, and make decisions on what structures to build based on its analysis of local data. The students hope the system will replace current urban planning practices.

A team of students from the Design Research Laboratory at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London has developed a cellular self-assembly system that can be molded based on necessity and restructured as needed.

These “HyperCells” can form into structures on their own and have the ability to climb, roll, and alter in shape to suit the needs of whatever architectural system they’re used to assemble

 

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THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY COULD BRING 170,000 NEW JOBS BY 2035

Ladeja Godina Košir

In May Slovenia will host an international conference, “Embracing the Circular Economy”, with top experts from Circular Economy “Hot Spots” in the EU

Photo: Ladeja Godina Košir

Europe currently loses around 600 million tonnes of materials which could potentially be recycled or re-used in waste each year. The European Commission (EC) estimates that waste prevention, eco-design, re-use, and similar measures could bring net savings of €600 billion or 8% of annual turnover to businesses in the EU.

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Circular Economy and True Sustainability: the Next Phase for Vertical Farming

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Vertical farming, the practice of growing produce indoors, under controlled conditions and in an urban setting, is still a relatively small market compared to other parts of the agtech sector.

In 2015, startups producing technologies in and around the “indoor agriculture” space, raised just over $107 million in funding, according to AgFunder’s Investing Report. That was just over 2% of $4.6 billion total investing in agtech during the year.

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To boost their buildings’ IQ, companies tap “Internet of things”

By STACEY HIGGINBOTHAM

When General Electric (GE) announced the creation of a new company calledCurrent in October last year, CEO Jeff Immelt said it would take GE’s “commitment to energy to the next level.” Current is GE’s attempt to address the business shift posed by ubiquitous connectivity, cheap sensors and data analytics — sometimes called the Internet of Things. It was created to sell lighting as a service to GE customers.

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Lettera22: il documentario su Adriano Olivetti

Lettera22 è il film documentario su Adriano Olivetti, un industriale, un politico, un urbanista, un’intellettuale che ha segnato con la sua opera la storia del nostro paese. Adriano Olivetti ha contribuito per un trentennio alla formazione della classe dirigente italiana. Il suo pensiero, i suoi scritti e le sue opere sono state e sono tuttora all’avanguardia in Italia e nel mondo.

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Reverse photosynthesis is an ultra-efficient biofuel “game changer”

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The ongoing quest for renewable energy takes a lot of cues from nature, and here’s one more. A team of scientists from Denmark’s University of Copenhagen has developed a “reverse photosynthesis” process that turns biomass into fuel using the sun’s energy. It’s essentially the opposite of what plants do by converting sunlight into chemical energy – and it could lead to new industrialized forms of clean energy that give fossil fuels a run for their money.

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What is GDP, and how are we misusing it?

Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and growth thereof, has been widely used over the years to measure economic progress. But what is GDP, and why does it matter?

Mathematically it is the sum of consumption, investment and government spending (plus exports, minus imports). It is regularly cited in discussions related to the economic health and wellbeing of countries and regions, with some governments such as China going so far as to set specific targets for GDP growth (placed between 6.5 and 7% at the recent National People’s Congress in the newFive Year Plan).

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8 videos that explain the circular economy

8 videos that explain the circular economy

Image: REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

You may not have heard of the circular model economy but it has been described as a ‘trillion dollar opportunity’ as well as a way of making life more sustainable.

This video series presents perspectives from leaders across business, academia, policy and civil society as they explore the concept of the circular model and how growth can indeed be ‘green’. This is one of the key issues being explored in ourBeyond GDP series, as we look at ways of moving away from a linear ‘take-make-dispose’ way of living.

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