Showing posts from 2018

Important Innovations Collection: Bees Can Count

Nature Leading in Innovation Research

Bees are Intelligent, Clever Counters

This new research from scientists in the UK is astounding.  Bees have brains that can count. In fact, the scientific research, published in the journal Science, concludes bees have significant cognitive abilities with little brain power.  An insect with the power to count.  The potential science and innovation is significant for other animals, artificial intelligence and robotics.  For more on this news, go to
Important Innovations Collection: Bees Can Count: Busy Intelligent Bees Source: Queen Mary University of London: Bees Counting New UK Research This is an amazing discovery.  Research...

Important Innovations Collection: The Blackfly Personal Flight Vehicle

Revolutionary VTOL Aircraft that Google's Larry Page is Backing

Is It a UFO?  No, It's a New Personal Flying Machine
The idea for the Blackfly was developed by Canadian entrepreneur Marcus Leng.  He innovated,  built it and flew it in his own backyard in Ontario nearly 10 years ago.  Today, his company Opener is located in Palo Alto, CA and has a major investor in Alphabet/Google's Larry Page.  Some commentators think it looks like a UFO but it's a lot more for your personal commute than that.

Unique Electric VTOL
The Blackfly is a revolutionary personal flying vehicle.  It's electric, a one-seater, with vertical liftoffs and landings and a lot of safety redundancies. It can take off from and land in both water and land. 8 small rotors across 2, fixed wings power its flight.  My journalist colleague Ed Kane has a great news blog with more detail on this incredible piece of aviation innovation at…

Important Innovations Collection: Cosmic Rockin New Years - NASA Spacecraft

Happy New Year Greetings from Outer Space

Ultima Thule - Cosmic Rock
The cosmic rock is called Ultima Thule, which means "beyond what is human to see."  It is 4 billion miles above the earth.  On New Years Day 2019, NASA's spacecraft New Horizons will do a fly by around it and start transmitting data to earth.  It is the farthest any spacecraft has travelled into outer space.
For a news blog on this remarkable achievement, go to my journalist colleague Ed Kane's blog at
Important Innovations Collection: Cosmic Rockin New Years - NASA Spacecraft: NASA Mission on New Years Reaches Cosmic Rock Beyond Pluto Source:  NASA's New Horizons Historic Mission, Science and Innovation...

Barreling Across the Atlantic

French Adventurer Crossing Atlantic in a Barrel

Oceanic Entrepreneur Barreling by Currents
He's being called The French Barrel Man.  71 year old Jean-Jacques Savin is a retired military parachutist and French innovator-adventurer.  He is making his way across the Atlantic Ocean in a big orange barrel that's actually a sophisticated barrel-shaped capsule.   Savin is taking a very innovative approach.  The craft is being transported and guided solely by ocean currents.  He is literally barreling across the Atlantic

Destination - Caribbean
Savin left the Canary Islands off the west coast of Africa on December 26.  He hopes to reach the Caribbean by the end of March.  The craft is travelling at 1 to 2 miles per hour.  There's a porthole that allows him to observe fish swimming underneath the barrel.  And, he's dropping markers along the way to allow the international marine observatory organization JCOMMOPS to study ocean currents.

He built the barrel, which resemb…

Air-Ink: Ink, Paint from Pollution

Environmental Innovation - Ink & Paint Made from Exhaust System Pollution

MIT Spinoff Company's Tech has Cleaned Nearly 2 Trillion Liters of Air
This is remarkable innovation, ingenuity and engineering.  MIT spinoff company Graviky Labs is rolling out a patent-pending device called Air-Ink.  The technology attaches to the exhaust system of cars, diesel generators, vehicles and machines and converts the captured pollution into ink and paints.  The bedrock technology underlying the system is called KAALINK.  It's extraordinary innovation, beneficial to the environment, in the advanced prototype stage.  For a detailed news blog by my journalist colleague Ed Kane on this, go to

Important Innovations Collection: Air Ink: Pollution to Ink

Important Innovations Collection: Air Ink: Pollution to Ink: Ink Made From Captured Pollution Source:  Graviky Labs Capturing Innovation 1.6 Trillion litres of air cleaned so far.  That's w...

Morphing Robots

New Morphing Material
Taking Complex Shapes
Scientists at Rice University have created shape changing, morphing material.  The face in the photo takes shape when cooled and goes flat when heat is applied to it. The unique material they've innovated is a rubbery polymer.

Nanoscale Tug of War
At the nanoscale level there's a battle for control between liquid crystals and the elastomer in which they're embedded.  When cooled, the shape programmed into the crystal dominates.  When heated, the crystals relax and the material goes flat.  This innovation was just published in the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Soft Matter.

Significant Applications
This unique material is expected to have significant application for soft robots that morph into different shapes.  Also for medical devices that take preprogrammed shape at body temperature.  For more news stories on innovation go to

2019 - Year of the Hypersonics

Cooling Hypersonic Vehicles

DARPA's MACH Program
The big challenge with hypersonic jets is to keep them cool as they reach a speed of Mach 5 and above.  The US Defense Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency - DARPA - has declared 2019 the year of hypersonics.  DARPA is pursuing new materials and designs for cooling the hot, leading edges of hypersonic vehicles as they accelerate to hypersonic speeds.

New Architecture, Materials and Design for Heat Management
The new program is called MACH - Materials, Architecture and Characterization for Hypersonics (MACH) program.  DARPA wants totally new, breakthrough technology, not evolutionary improvements on existing technology.

Decades of Trying
Effective cool down of the hypersonic vehicles at Mach 5 and above is the key factor between success and disaster.  The DARPA MACH programs kicks off in late January 2019.  According to DARPA Program Manager Bill Carter, scientists have tried for decades to find a means of cooling the hot,…

Important Innovations Collection: Green, Biodegradable Plastic

Israeli Innovation

New Plastic with No Toxic Waste
Scientists at Tel Aviv University have developed a green, biodegradable plastic derived from microorganisms that feed on seaweed.  There is no toxic waste and it can be recycled into organic waste.  This is a marine resource converted into green bioplastic.  Unlike plant based bioplastics, it doesn't require arable land and fresh water.  Israel, China and India have a shortage of both.  For a news blog on this innovation breakthrough, go to Important Innovations Collection: Green, Biodegradable Plastic: Israeli Innovation - New Plastic with Zero Toxic Waste Source:  Tel Aviv University's Non-toxic Plastic Plastic that's Good fo...

Important Innovations Collections. Travel Virgin Accelerates High Speed Trains to US

Sir Richard Branson's High Speed Rails

Accelerating and Expanding in US in 2019
Sir Richard Branson is filling a big gap in high speed rail travel in the US. The US is way behind China, Japan and Europe with their Maglevs and other high speed trains.  That's about to change.  Branson is rolling out high speed travel between Orlando and Tampa, Florida in 2019 and tackling LA to Vegas next. It's called Virgin Train USA and for details here's a great news link to my colleague and fellow journalist Ed Kane at

NASA Discovery - DNA Forms in Space

Parts of DNA, the Basis of Life, Can Form in Space

Breakthrough NASA Research
NASA scientists have made a remarkable discovery through highly innovative research.  They've discovered that parts of DNA, which is the stuff of life, can form in space.  Specifically deoxyribose, sugar that's the backbone of DNA, can form in space.  They replicated space conditions in their lab by blasting ice with radiation and found deoxyribose in it.  This is breakthrough science and innovation.  For details and a news story on it by my journalist colleague Ed Kane, go to

Once in a New Moon


Out of this World
There is evidence of the first known moon outside of the solar system. The Kepler space telescope has observed a dip in starlight which suggested the existence of a Neptune sized moon orbiting around a Jupiter sized, gas exoplanet about 8000 light years away.

Hubble & Kepler
The Hubble Space Telescope recently spotted the same dip and saw the planet passing in front of its star earlier than expected, suggesting gravitational pull from a new moon.  The evidence of a new moon is not yet conclusive but it is building.  For more new blogs and news stories on important innovations, go to

News on Important Innovations: Collection

Volume 5:  Important Innovations Impacting Environment, Climate Change, Global Warming

We're pleased to announce that Important Innovations:  Collection, Vol. 5 Important Innovations Impacting the Environment, Climate Change and Global Warming Across Industries was published by Amazon on Christmas Eve.  The book is published both as a paperback and a Kindle e-book.

The focus is the latest and most impactful innovations addressing global warming and the latest science tracking Climate Change.  It contains need-to-know news briefs on developments ranging from Harvard's solar geoengineering, China's floating solar farms, Africa's electronic waste recycling programs, Asia's Melting Glaciers, global high precision satellites tracking ice melt, a plant that clears indoor pollution and much more.

To check it out go to

Mighty Micro-Robot Climber

Harvard's Robot Climber with Sticky Feet

HAMR-E on Duty for Jet Engine Safety Inspections
It's a tiny but mighty micro-robot named HAMR-E (Harvard Ambulatory Micro-Robot Electroadhesion).  It's been developed by researchers at Harvard's Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. They've created a micro-robot with incredible climbing ability.  It has electroadhesive foot pads, origami ankle joints and an optimized gait to explore spaces in 3-D, vertically and upside down.

Gecko Inspired
Rolls Royce challenged the Wyss Institute to develop an army of micro-robots to inspect their Rolls Royce engines for commercial aircraft.  Commercial jet engines have 25,000 parts, many of which aren't accessible until you pull fully dismantle the engine.  That is very expensive and time-consuming.  Enter HAMR-E from Harvard.

Future for this Innovation
The potential is that an army of HAMR-E micro-robots could one day carry cameras and instruments to inspect small spaces…

Important Innovations Collection: eBandage Accelerates Healing

New Electric Bandage that Dramatically Accelerates Healing

Chinese & US Scientists Team Up and Deliver
This is medical care innovation on the cutting edge.  Scientists and engineers from China's University of Electronic Science and Technology and the University of Wisconsin have developed a wearable, self-powered electric bandage that significantly cuts injury healing time.  Essentially down from 12 days to 3 days.

Non-healing Wounds
This is an important development. Non-healing wounds are a big global health problem.  They range from diabetic foot ulcers to non-healing surgical incisions.  Non-healing wounds put people at risk for infection, scarring and chronic pain.  For a news blog with details go to my journalist colleague Ed Kane's blog at Important Innovations Collection: eBandage Accelerates Healing: Innovation from a Global Team of Scientists   Source:  American Chemical Society New Electric Bandage Heals It's a self-powered, ...

Robot Piano Player

Robotic Hand with Rhythm

Piano:  Very Challenging & Complex Test for Robotic Passive Movement Systems
Engineers at the University of Cambridge in the UK have developed a robotic hand that can play the piano by just moving its wrist.  This is a passive movement robotic system.  The fingers don't move independently.  Because of the complexity of playing the piano, the roboticists believe it was the ideal test for their new innovation system.

The hand is 3D printed.  It replicates all the bones and joints in a human hand.  It doesn't include replications of the tendons and muscles.  Because the fingers don't move independently of the wrist (passive movement), the robot is able to achieve different styles of piano playing without changing the material or mechanical properties of the hand.  That's important new robotics.

More Natural Moving Robots
Experts believe this passive movement concept may lead to the design of more natural moving robots with minimal energ…

Important Innovations Collection: AI System Mimics Human Reasoning

Big Step toward General Artificial Intelligence for Computers

Important Invention by UCLA Engineers
UCLA scientists have significantly advanced what's called computer vision.  They have developed an AI computer system that can discover and identify real world objects in the same way that humans do.

General AI
Experts are hailing this as a step toward what's called General AI.  General AI enables computers to learn and make decisions on their own.  For a news blog on this fascinating innovation, check out my journalist colleague Ed Kane at  Important Innovations Collection: AI System Mimics Human Reasoning: Computers with Ability to Visualize and Identify Objects Source:  MIT Next Generation of Artificial  Intelligence Engineers at the ...

Important Innovations Collection: China's New Communications Sat Launch for Global B...

Important Innovations Collection: China's New Communications Sat Launch for Global B...: China Launches Space Based Communications Network China Satellite Launch Race to Space,  Broadband Space China's Hongyun  satell...

China Sat for Global Internet & Broadband

China's Space Based Communications Network

China Goes Broadband in Space
It's called the Hongyun project.  It's space based, broadband communications innovation from China.  And, it's a first for them.  China's broadband delivering satellite is designed to provide broadband connectivity to users globally, especially in underserved regions.

Bottom-line:  Global Competition on Breakthrough New Communications Innovation
This is a concept of running a low-cost, high performance satellite network to provide space-based communications and internet services.  There are many innovation companies going for this opportunity including Google, SpaceX and Telesat. Space X CEO Elon Musk wants to put 12,000 satellites into orbit by 2020 to provide broadband and internet services globally.  It's his Starlink project.

China's Launch
China is a big competitor in this tech innovation race.  The Chinese Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation plans on many more missions and s…

New Aviation Innovation - Incredible Blimp/Plane

The Plimp - Combo Plane, Blimp, Helicopter

May Be New Innovation Way to Fly
New aviation innovation just arrived in the form of The Plimp.  It's a combo plane, blimp and helicopter technology that is fascinating and may be game-changing travel for people and goods.  My journalist colleague Ed Kane has just posted a news story on this

Important Innovations Collection: Aviation Innovation - The Plimp

Important Innovations Collection: Aviation Innovation - The Plimp: Engineers Combined Plane, Blimp, Helicopter Aircraft Source:  Egan Aircraft 5 Prototype Plimps Plimp Hybrid Airship This is a brand...

Nuclear Tunnelbot For Space Exploration

Nuclear Powered Robots for the Moon Europa

Proposed to Explore One of Jupiter's Moons for Signs of Life
A group of scientists who advise and solve problems for NASA have come up with a unique proposal.  They want to deploy a tunnelbot that would use nuclear power to melt a path through one of Jupiter's frozen moons.  The moon is called Europa and it's the 4th largest of Jupiter's 53 moons.  It's considered a great place in the solar system to host life.

Powered by Nuclear Reactor or NASA's Radioactive Heat Bricks
The scientists unveiled their proposal to the American Geophysical Union.  They said the tunnelbot could use an advanced nuclear reactor or some of NASA's radioactive heat bricks to generate heat and power.  The robot would carry a payload to search for evidence of life, extant or extinct.  The researchers believe Europa's ice hides open oceans and that life may exist there.  The robot would go down to a depth of 9 miles and relay back samples of…

Important Innovations Collection: House Plant with Rabbit DNA Cuts Air Pollution

Great Environmental Science from the University of Washington

Common Household Plant with Rabbit DNA to the Rescue on Indoor Air Pollution
This is breakthrough scientific research from the University of Washington.  Cleaning up indoor household air pollution by common house plants - Devil's Ivy, embedded with a rabbit gene.  It works and their results are dramatic.  For a great news read on this, go to
Important Innovations Collection: House Plant with Rabbit DNA Cuts Air Pollution: Common Devil's Ivy Household Plant, with a Dash of Rabbit DNA, Cleans Indoor Air Source:  Stock Image of Devil's Ivy Cuts Be...

Japan's Flammable Ice - New Energy

Methane Hydrate in Ocean Floor

Energy Innovation from Flammable Ice
Japan has extracted an untapped fuel from the ocean floor.  It's methane hydrate.  It's called flammable ice.  Methane trapped in ice is buried in the waters around Japan.  In some cases, what looks like dirty ice leaks to the surface.  If you strike a match to it, it ignites.  It exists in many places including Alaska.

Fiery Ice
Big global research organizations, Japanese and global companies are racing to tap into this huge source of new energy - methane seabed ice for fuel.   They hope to start extracting it as a new energy source by the end of the next decade of 2020.  US and Japanese researchers are just starting new research on this.

Big Challenge
The challenge is to extract it from the seabed.  The methane incased in ice is so sensitive and delicate, it can't be dug and hauled up.  It breaks apart.  That's the challenge for innovators.  They need to get the methane to release on the seafloor and ex…

Important Innovations Collection: Burger Robot

Robot Gourmet Chefs

Robots are gaining importance across global industries.  An example is the restaurant business, where 2 robots, each the size of a car, are capable of churning out gourmet burgers every 30 seconds at a restaurant in San Francisco.  My journalist colleague Ed Kane has written a fascinating news blog on this latest robotic innovation.  I've provided the link
Important Innovations Collection: Burger Robot: My Chef, The Robot Source:  Creator's Robo Chef Robo-Chef Makes Gourmet Burger Every 30 Seconds At Creator Restaurant in San Franc...

Elon Musk Opens Loop

Musk's Test Tunnel to Move Cars Underground

Plans for LA, Chicago, NYC and DC

Elon Musk's Boring Company just opened his Loop Lift tunnel in Hawthorne, California.  It's 1.14 miles long.  This is his innovative loop lift system designed to bypass what he calls "soul destroying" traffic jams.  Cars are elevated down to the tunnel.  They're put on the tracks and glide along.  This is a prototype test tunnel on the grounds of his Boring Company.  Musk foresees loop lift, underground tunnel systems throughout the US.

150 MPH Speeds
Musk says the vehicles can travel at speeds up to 150 miles per hour.  The system is designed to let people get off at various stops.  They and their cars are elevated back up to the ground.  Musk wants to dig a tunnel in Los Angeles to Dodgers Stadium; in Chicago to O'Hare Airport and from New York City to Washington, DC.  He says he'd like to charge $1 for shared ride vehicles and $4 for private cars. For more stories on import…

Japan's New Companion Robot

Lovot - Fun Robotic Innovation with a Trust Building Mission

Adorable Competitor for Sony's Aibo
Japanese robotic inventors are calling it an affectionate companion robot.  It's named Lovot, an amalgam for love and robot.  It just was launched today in Tokyo.  Japanese startup Groove X created the little robot.  Founder and CEO Kaname Hayashi is a former roboticist with Softbank Robotics of Japan.  The little robot is as cute and AI-smart as it gets. It also has a big purpose:  to build trust between humans and machines.

Incredible Robotic Tech
Lovot has a thermographic camera on its head to track motion around it.  It pays close attention to detailed facial expressions, hand gestures and posture.  It contains a high powered computer system. And besides it role as a pet/companion, it can also serve as a surveillance camera or baby monitor.  A pair of 2 are priced at 598,000 yen or $5212 with delivery in fall or winter of 2019.

New Pet
Groove X says Lovot can't do housework bu…

Important Innovations Collection: Important Innovations: Collection Update

Important Innovations Collection: Important Innovations: Collection Update: Innovation News You Can Use Source:  NASA Sunrise from Earth Orbit I wanted to take a moment to thank you for reading, IDing a...

Important Update on Important Innovations

Important Innovations:  Collection

Thank you for reading our news blogs on Important Innovations and Important Innovations:  Collection.  We are journalists dedicated to providing the latest news on innovations changing our lives.

My colleague Ed Kane and I have authored 4 and soon to be 5 books Important Innovations:  Collection on innovations in Travel, Robotics, AI-AR-VR and Energy.  We are about to publish book 5 on the environment on Amazon's Kindle e-books, paperbacks and audiobooks.

If you have a moment to take a read and if you enjoy it, please provide a good review. We would greatly appreciate it. Having some good reviews on Kindle is vital to visibility on Amazon where millions of books are available 24/7.

Important Innovations:  Collection books are fun, fast news stories we've written to provide you need- to- know information on the world's latest and greatest innovations.  You can access them on Ed's Amazon Author Page

Planet that's Being Vaporized

Incredible Space Tracking by Hubble

First View of Real Star Wars
The Hubble Space Telescope has pinpointed a distant planet that's being vaporized out of existence by its accompanying star. The photo provided by NASA tells the story of a planet morphing out of existence.

Exoplanet and Host Star Power
This is an exoplanet called GJ 34706.  And, it's what astronomers call a hot Neptune. The planet is so close to its star that it's evaporating right before our eyes. Scientists call the planet's location as in the "Hot Neptune Desert" around its host star. The phenomenon and the technological innovation to enable us to see this at the outer reaches of space is amazing  It enlightens us about the dynamics of our ever active universe, even to the point of distant stars and planets.

Lead Research Perspectives
One of the lead researchers on this finding Vincent Bourrier of the University of Vienna says this is the first case of seeing such dramatic planetary evolution. …

Computer Chips Like Human Brains

Neuromorphic Computing - Self-Learning Chips

Chips that Could Revolutionize Computing
Belgium nanoelectronics company Imec has innovated a breakthrough, self-learning computer chip embedded with AI.  Some experts believe this type of neuromorphic chip, which mimics the electrical circuitry of the human brain, could upend and revolutionize computing and technology.  My colleague and fellow journalist Ed Kane has just posted a news story on his blog

A Star is Born or Maybe Two

Intergalactic Innovation & Discovery

Massive New Star Either Morphing into a Planet or Has a Companion New Star Rising
Astronomers at the University of Leeds in the UK have some of the most detailed images ever taken of a young star forming.  The views show an unexpected companion in orbit around the massive young star.  This may be the birth of not one but two new stars in our galaxy.  The original, new massive star, a proto-star they are tracking, is MM1a and the smaller star in orbit is MM1b forming in the outer region..

Disc Around a New Star
This is one of the first examples of a fragmented disc detailed around a massive young star.  The scientists say it is in these discs that planets can form.  They believe in this case we're witnessing the birth of 2 new stars.

Twice the Mass of the Sun
The central star MM1a is massive.  It weighs 40 times the mass of the sun.  Star 2 weighs less than half the weight of the sun.  This work was just published in Astrophysical Journal Lette…

Important Innovations Collection: Little Ripper - Drone Lifesaver

Little Ripper, the Lifesaver Drone from Australia

Flying Drone for Search, Rescue and First Alert Missions
This is important drone innovation developed by the University of Technology-Sydney and the Ripper Group of Australia.  Little Ripper is a remotely piloted, flying drone being deployed in Australia for search, rescue and first alert mission.  It even provides shark sighting alerts for swimmers.

For a news blog on this remarkable, new innovation, go to journalist Ed Kane's blog at
Important Innovations Collection: Little Ripper - Drone Lifesaver: Multi Tasking Flying Drone - Alert, Search and Rescue Source:  The Little Ripper Award Winning Drone Innovation from Down Under It&#3...

Medical Innovation - Ingestible Electronic Pill

Wireless, Ingestible E-Pill Controlled by Smart Phone

Delivers Drug Therapies and Monitors Body Environment with Sensors
MIT researchers, along with scientists from Brigham & Women's Hospital and Draper Labs, have just invented an ingestible, wireless electronic pill that's controlled by smart phone.  This breakthrough device can deliver drug therapies, monitor body conditions and provide the information to both patient and doctors on their smart phones.  Journalist Ed Kane has just posted a fascinating blog on this breakthrough innovation

Important Innovations Collection: Ingestible Electronic Pill Smartphone Controlled

Important Innovations Collection: Ingestible Electronic Pill Smartphone Controlled: Wireless e-Pill Delivers Drug Therapies & Monitors Real-Time Source:  MIT Medical Innovation on the Cutting Edge MIT scientists, ...

Next Aviation Frontier - Blended Wing Planes

Flying Innovation with Greater Fuel Efficiency - Aviation Futures

Blended Wing Body Aircraft
This is aviation innovation being developed globally.  The plane architecture is called BWB or Blended Wing Bodies.  It's also being developed as Hybrid Wing Bodies.  No doubt it is potentially revolutionary innovation.  It's a fixed winged aircraft with no distinction between the wing and body and it can have a tail or not.  Bottom-line: it can save significant fuel usage.

Prototype Concepts Under Development
The potential advantages of this type of new aircraft include efficient high lift wings and could include a wide airfoil shaped body.  The blended wing body can have a lift to drag ratio much greater than conventional planes.  That would result in much greater fuel efficiency.

Global Competition and Interest
There are a lot of defense contractors, governments and global universities working to bring this technology to market.  It includes Boeing with its X-48 Computer generated mode…

Innovation to Keep Traffic Moving

Artificial Intelligence on the World's Roads

By 2040, 2 billion cars will be on the world's roads.  That's almost double the number of cars in 2015.  The world is riddled with traffic jams.  And with road traffic growing that's only going to get worse.

AI Traffic Mobility Systems
Mobility systems with artificial intelligence are being developed to remedy the traffic jams.  Siemens Mobility has recently deployed an AI system for the traffic jammed streets of Bengaluru, India.  For story details on this emerging, innovative use of artificial intelligence, go  to my colleague Ed Kane's blog for a fascinating read

Important Innovations Collection: AI to Keep Traffic Moving

Important Innovations Collection: AI to Keep Traffic Moving: Global Traffic Jams Source:  India Traffic Jam Siemens Mobility System in India Globally the number of cars on the roads are expect...

Important Innovations Collection: Solar Powered Hearts

Important Innovations Collection: Solar Powered Hearts: Heart Pacemaker Powered by Ligh t Stock Photo: Sunrise Over Mountain  Solar Energy Heart Beats This is a tiny, solar cell that keeps...

Important Innovations Collection: Solar Powered Hearts

Important Innovations Collection: Solar Powered Hearts: Heart Pacemaker Powered by Ligh t Stock Photo: Sunrise Over Mountain  Solar Energy Heart Beats This is a tiny, solar cell that keeps...

World's 1st Vaccine to Save Bees

Preventing "Insect Apocalypse" Critical to World Food Supplies

Medical Innovation Breakthrough from Finland Bees are vital to the production of global food supplies.  They help fertilize 3 out of 4 crops globally.  They do so by transferring pollen from male to female flowers.  Bees are being wiped out by disease.  Scientists in Finland have innovated the world's first vaccine to protect bees against disease.
Drastic Bee Population Decline There has been a drastic decline in bee numbers that could cause a global food crisis.  The bees have been dying from what's called "colony collapse disorder", a mysterious bee epidemic worldwide.  A United Nations study indicates that 40% of the world's bees and butterflies face extinction.  Scientists warn that will result in higher food prices and food shortages.
Medical Innovation Breakthrough The new vaccine was developed by scientists at Helsinki University.  It works by giving the bees resistance to fight microbia…

Asia's Global Warming

Big Ice Loss in Asian High Mountain Glaciers

NASA-lead International Study
High mountain glaciers in Asia are flowing much more slowly because of the widespread ice loss.  This is affecting the availability of freshwater downstream in China, Pakistan and India. University scientists from France, Scotland and California Institute of Technology joined NASA in this climate change study.

Millions of Satellite Images Documenting Ice Loss
The scientists analyzed more than 2 million images of the Asian glaciers taken by satellite from 1985 through 2017.  They found that 94% of the slowing water flow rates from the glaciers is caused by reductions in the thickness of the ice.  What they found surprising is the consistent relationship between the thinning glacier ice and the reduction in the water flow rate going downstream.

Dramatic Satellite Evidence
For more than 2 decades the scientists have been tracking by satellite how the glaciers are thinning from ice melting in the warmer temperatures..…

Important Innovations Collection: Morphing Flying Drones to the Rescue

Foldable, Very Agile Drones for Search and Rescue

New Drone Innovation from University of Zurich
This is important new flying drone innovation, that just has been invented by scientists at the University of Zurich in Switzerland.  The quadrotor drones morph in shape to fly through holes and crevices. The innovation, say the scientists, was inspired by the flight of birds, which fold their wings to fly through narrow spaces.  They've duplicated those mechanics in their drone.

My colleague Ed Kane has posted a news blog on this just announced innovation

Important Innovations Collection: Morphing Flying Drones to the Rescue: Drone Innovation Source:  UZH Foldable, Highly Agile Drones for Search and Rescue Researchers at the University of Zurich have inve...

Bee e-Keepers Extraordinary Innovation

Sensor Backpack that Rides on Bumblebees

Small, Sensing Biosystem for Farms & The Environment
This is extraordinary innovation at the cutting edge to monitor the environment and farms.  It's from computer scientists and engineers at the University of Washington.   They've invented a sensor system small enough to ride on the back of a bumblebee to gather data on the health and quality of farm plants.

Better Than Drones
Farmers are using drones to monitor temperature, humidity and crop health over their fields.  There are big limits caused by power needs of drones.  The drones can't go very far without a recharge every 10 to 20 minutes.

Bees on Patrol with Backpacks
Bees fly on their own, so the system needs only a tiny rechargeable battery.  It lasts 7 hours for data collection and can be recharged wirelessly when the bees return to their hives.  The scientists download the data when the bees return to the hive.  The team says it has followed best methods for care and hand…

Virgin Galactic's Unity Reaches Space

Space Tourism on the Horizon

Sir Richard Branson and his Virgin Galactic space tourism company just successfully launched their spaceship Unity into space and it has successfully landed back in California.  Can tourist trips be far behind?

For details on this amazing accomplishment by innovator Sir Richard Branson, go to

Important Innovations Collection: Virgin Galactic Reaches Space

Important Innovations Collection: Virgin Galactic Reaches Space: Milestone for Sir Richard Branson Source:  Virgin Galactic - Unity Branson's Space Tourism Company Takes Off Virgin Galactic ...

Important Innovations Collection: Vertical Forrests - China's Greener World

Important Innovations Collection: Vertical Forrests - China's Greener World: Urban Forest Buildings:  China is Leading the Way Source:  Stefano Boeri's Vertical Forest Award Winning Architect & Innovator ...

NOAA Artic Warming Annual Update

Record Winter Ice Loss in Bering Sea

Innovation Technology Detailing Melt from Space and on the Surface
Declining Arctic sea ice and rapidly changing climate.  These are the key findings of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration  Annual report on the impact of climate change on the Arctic.  NOAA is using highly innovative and advanced technology to track, measure and provide perspective on the melt.  The technology includes NOAA polar-orbiting satellites flying over and documenting the polar region 28 times a day. And unmanned tech collecting data on the surface and monitoring conditions 24/7 over long periods of time.

Key Findings
This report contains the research and analysis of 81 scientists from 12 nations working for governments and universities.  The key findings include:
Lowest recorded winter ice in the Bering SeaSecond lowest overall sea ice in the Arctic on recordSecond warmest air temperatures ever recorded in the ArcticEarlier plankton blooms because of mel…

Aviation Innovation History Just Made in Texas

Lift Aircraft's Manned Drone Multicopter Just Flew Over Texas.  It's all electric and is being called a world first.

Maryanne Kane

Important Innovations Collection: Manned Multicopter Takes Off

Important Innovations Collection: Manned Multicopter Takes Off: Drone Innovation Took Flight Today in Texas Source:  Lift Aircraft Photo of Hexa Hexa - the Personal Flight Experience Lift Aircraft,...

Important Innovations Collection: Genetics Behind Active & Sedentary Lifestyles

Important Innovations Collection: Genetics Behind Active & Sedentary Lifestyles: Oxford University Large Population Study Source: Photo of Boston Marathon Causes & Consequences of Physical Inactivity New rese...

Climate Change & Great Barrier Reef Update

New Findings:  Less Bleaching in 2017 But Uncertain Fate for Great Barrier Reef

Experts Call for Urgent Action on Greenhouse Gas Emissions to Save Global Coral Reefs
Global warming continues to escalate and the future of the world's coral reefs remain uncertain.  In fact, experts in Australia and at NOAA are urging immediate action to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to save coral reefs, including the world's largest, the Great Barrier Reef.  Their request for urgent action is a result of their scientific research findings, released today.

ARC & NOAA Scientists
The new research findings have just been released by the ARC Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies in Australia and NOAA scientists.  They found that the Great Barrier Reef endured extreme temperatures a little better in 2017 than it did during the two previous years of coral bleaching.  Their findings were published today in Nature Climate Change.

Surprising Results
The study found the coral that bleached a…

Important Innovations Collection: Jumping Robots - Nature Inspired

Important Innovations Collection: Jumping Robots - Nature Inspired: Learning from Jumping Spiders Source:  University of Manchester - Kim Robotic Innovation This research is being conducted at the Un...

Innovation - Sounding Nature

Biggest Global Sound Map of Sounds from Nature

A World Without Noise Pollution, Just the Sound of Nature
It's called the Global Collaborative Sound Project.  It's the creation of innovator and composer Stuart Fowkes.  Fowkes has been creating sound maps since 2014 including those of sacred places and protests.

Sounding Nature
His latest sound map is Sounding Nature. It is the biggest global collection of sounds from nature.  It features 500 nature sounds from 55 countries.  It allows you to hear what the world sounds like without humans and without noise pollution.  Fowkes says he's remixing sounds from the natural world with artistic reactions including music the natural sounds have inspired.  For more stories on innovations, go to

Important Innovations Collection: DARPA's Breakthrough for Depression Treatment

Important Innovations Collection: DARPA's Breakthrough for Depression Treatment: Triple Discoveries Including Innovative Treatment  Source:  DARPA Brain Mapping of Neural Activity Could "Radically Improve Trea...

China & Far Side of the Moon

Lunar Mission Chang 4

Historic Lunar Exploration
This is a global first in space.  China has blasted off a rocket, carrying a rover probe, headed for a soft landing on the far side of the moon.  Other spacecraft have examined the far side of the moon from afar.  But this will be the first soft landing for detailed study of the other side of the moon.

January Touchdown
The mission - Chang 4 - is expected to land on the moon in early January.  There are some big challenges.  For instance, the moon blocks direct communication between the probe and Chinese researchers on earth.  To get around that, China launched a satellite in May that keeps the probe in contact with the China National Space Administration.

Chang 4' rover is going to survey the lunar terrain, determine mineral composition and study the lunar environment.  If the mission is a success, China plans to launch Chang 5 to collect samples of the moon's surface and bring them back to earth. For more news stories on Ch…

Laser Shooting Dune Buggy for US Military

Laser Innovation for the US Military

Raytheon's Laser Shooting ATV
It's a powerful laser on a dune buggy for the US Military.  Raytheon's HELWS MRZR laser-shooting dune buggy, all terrain vehicle. Once the human operator confirms the target, a fiber optic electric laser fires a controlled beam that instantly destroys the target.

Battery or Electric Powered
A simple battery charge enables 30 blasts.  If there's an electrical hookup, the magazine can last indefinitely.  This laser weapon developed by Raytheon for the US military has been cited as one of the most important innovations of 2018.  Raytheon has mounted the laser on a Polaris ATV.  For more laser and other energy news, go to my colleague Ed Kane's Amazon Author Page

Make Way for Drones Not Under the Radar

New, Low Altitude Radar Innovation Capable of Tracking Widespread Drone Use

Rollout of Widespread Drone Deliveries Enabled
Raytheon Corporation, the US defense contractor, has developed a low altitude, radar system capable of tracking flying vehicles below 3200 feet. It's an innovation breakthrough for the drone aviation industry.  For drones to be able to deliver on their potential, we have to be able to track the small, low flying vehicles, 24/7.

Enter Raytheon's Skylar
Raytheon's new, low power radar is known as Skylar.  It's a compact unit that's less than one meter square.  It scans for objects using a radar system similar to that in modern fighter jets.

Top Innovation - Potential Use
This system has been cited as a top innovation in 2018.  Here's Raytheon vision of how it could be deployed.  Networks of these units on cell towers, hills and on buildings.  They say that would be far cheaper and far more effective for tracking low flying vehicles than current …

Airbus's Zephyr Solar Plane - Big News

Record Breaking, Solar Powered Plane with First Launch Base in Australia

Ready for Takeoff:  Is It a Plane or Satellite?
Airbus's Zephyr S HAPS (Solar High Altitude Pseudo Satellite) is a solar plane worth watching.  It has set an all time record by staying aloft for more than 25 days.  The flight was over Arizona in late summer 2018.  It soared to 70,000 feet, which is well above most clouds and aircraft. It now has a site in Wyndham, Western Australia as a flight base to launch into the stratosphere. It will fill a gap to provide persistent, local satellite services.

The wing span is 82 feet.  It's a solar powered UAV and weighs only 165 pounds.  The low weight along with a unique power management system help it consume a lot less energy.  Despite the fact that it's solar powered, it keeps its elevation all night.  No other solar-powered plane can do that.  For more stories on new aviation and travel innovation, check out this

MIT and Google's Breakthru AI System

Creates Highly Realistic 3D Images

Google & MIT Research Team
Researchers at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab and Google have created a next generation AI system capable of creating 3D shapes with realistic texture, lighting and reflections.

It's called VON or Visual Objects Network.  It not only generates images more realistic than most state of the art systems.  It also enables texture and shape editing, viewpoint shifts and other 3 dimensional tweaking.

3D & 2D
Most systems focus on generating 2D images, which limits their practical use in many fields.  VON synthesizes 3D shapes and 2D images.  The researchers next step is fine modeling for producing shapes and images at a higher resolution, disentangling texture into lighting and appearance and synthesizing natural scenes.  Their research was just presented and accepted at NeurlPS 2018 in Montreal.

DARPA's Angler: Underwater Robot Wonder

Long Duration & Long Distance Sea Duty

Autonomous with No Need of GPS
DARPA, the Pentagon's Advanced Research Projects Agency, is applying robotics developed for space and terrestrial exploring robots to a new undersea robotic system.  It's called The Angler.

The Angler
DARPA is developing an underwater robotic system that autonomously explores the sea floor.  It wants the robot to be capable of physically manipulating manmade objects that it encounters.  Put simply, it's developing highly advanced underwater robots.

Robotic Innovation
Some of the robotic innovations that will be incorporated into these sea exploring robots:
Highly accurate navigations where's there is no GPSPerception and manipulation strategies to grasp objectsSystems that allow the robot to know their location and the health of their own system.Current Limits Currently underwater operations are conducted by tethered, remotely controlled robots.  They're limited by connections to manned ships and…

Salt Based Nuclear Reactors - New Tech

Thorium Based Nuclear Power - Greener Electricity

Global Innovation Research
Thorium based nuclear reactors.  Global scientists are working on this promising greener form of nuclear energy.  Thorium is a moderately radioactive chemical.  It can be used as "fuel salt" in molten salt reactors to produce electricity.  It can't be used to produce nuclear weapons and produces much less dangerous waste than current nuclear power plants.

Advantages of Thorium and Who Is Working On It
The Netherlands and China are investing in this technology.  It offers the advantages of traditional reactors.  It's reliable, efficient and low carbon emissions electricity.  And that is without the big problems of radioactive waste and nuclear proliferation.  It's a promising and greener form of renewable nuclear energy.

The European Center for Nuclear Research (CERN) believes thorium could be a radically disruptive source of clean energy, providing abundant electricity anytime and anyw…

From Tasmanian Devils, Cancer Cure?

Breakthrough Research - Certain Genes Shrink Tumors

Washington State University Innovative Cancer Research
Scientists at Washington State University have discovered genes and genetic mutations that appear to shrink deadly cancer tumors in Tasmanian devils.  This finding could have important implications for treating cancer in humans and other mammals.

Cancer Fighting Genes Leading to Drug Creation
The WSU scientists say some of the genes that they believe trigger tumor regression in the devils are also in humans.  This could lead to the development of drugs that shrink and potentially decimate tumors in humans.

A Species Plagued by Cancer
The devils are the largest carnivorous marsupial and found only in Tasmania.  A deadly, facial tumor disease has pushed the devils to near extinction.  80% of the population is gone.  An international team of scientists, led by WSU, found some of the animals are developing genetic resistance to the disease that shrinks the tumors and ends the cancer.  T…

Communicative Cat Brush - Japanese Innovation for Cat Lovers

Communicative Cat Grooming
Neko-jasuri Cat Groomer
It's called a communications brush to help an owner and their pet cat better interact and communicate with each other.  It's a metal brush - a pet hair brush inspired by another industry and company focused on metal files.  This innovation comes from Japan, that is a nation of pet lovers. The company that innovated and is developing this product is Wataoka, with expertise in making metal files for 126 years.

It's in the Grooves
Here's how they've innovated their metal files into advanced pet grooming tools.  The pet groomer has varying grooves patterned by the grooves in a cat's tongue.  They say the grooves are great for brushing and grooming your cat.  And, the cats are so familiar with the sensation they love it because it simulates what they do for themselves.

Japanese Innovation At a Global Pet Scale
Nedo-jasuri means cat file.  The Japanese government is profiling this innovation and showcasing it as a break…