How fire scientists see through flames

After years of research and many fiery laboratory experiments, scientists have discovered how to see through fire — findings that have important implications for everything from cooking to research on how buildings burn. Because sensors and other measurement tools often don’t work when a building or other object is burning, research on fire has been very difficult. Thankfully, researches have discovered the strategy of using blue light to see through flames. Before, blue light has been used — just not to this degree of effectiveness.

Key Takeaways:

  • In the past, fire has been difficult to study, because flames make it difficult to see or detect a burning object.
  • After years of research, scientists have finally successfully seen through flames, using blue light technology.
  • This result has important results for science, across different fields that use or study fire.

“The scientists tasked with understanding how fire destroys structures and devours our possessions need to watch these things burn ? in the laboratory, that is.”

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Optogenetic Cochlear Implants Aim to Improve Quality of Sound

German researchers at the Univeristy of Gottingen are performing studies on the use of light to stimulate gerbils? auditory neurons, with potential applications to the design of improved cochlear implants. Cochlear implants, despite improvements in their design and capabilities, still have trouble filtering out sounds in environments with lots of ambient noise. It is believed that the light-based stimulation of auditory nerves could be more precisely controlled than electricity-based implants. While the research thus far definitely holds promise, further studies are needed before it can be applied to implants used by humans.

Key Takeaways:

  • Researchers in Germany used light to stimulate the auditory nerves of deaf gerbils, which allowed them to hear sounds.
  • While cochlear implants have been gaining in popularity, their frequency resolution needs to be improved so people can hear in noisy places.
  • The light-based research that was conducted on gerbils may soon be used on larger animals and, eventually, on humans.

“The technology is being developed to improve the audio quality of cochlear implants, devices that can bring hearing to people with several types of hearing loss.”

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Let There be White:
Genesis Promotional Lab Beakers

 Custom imprinted science glassware with personal messages or corporate logos is becoming increasingly popular & not just for science and technology companies. Lab beakers are being used as shot glasses and drinking vessels by breweries and distilleries. Weddings see them put into service for holding candy and flowers. Here is an interesting example we recently did.   Continue reading

Wearables + Telephone Coaching Didn’t Improve Peripheral Arterial Disease Symptoms

Technology has become the darling of the fitness industry. There are trackers, tutorials, blogs, and analytical software and apps galore, all for the purpose of helping the fitness-seeker get to their goal quicker. However, in the case of those seeking progress in ameliorating the effects of a specific medical condition the stakes are higher and the technology may not yet be all that. Besides technology, medical alternatives are turning in the direction of the business and educational sector in trying to offer more stay-at-home options for patients. Some with more success than others. A new program combining a fitBit tracker and telephone coaching for the purpose of helping those with peripheral arterial disease to improve their symptoms achieved lackluster results. The gold standard before this attempted protocol was treadmill exercises, plus home exercises and three visits to an exercise center a week. Because not all patients can get to a center regularly, the alternate and fully home-based protocol was tried. Of the patients that were put on the protocol for home-care, the walking distance test, meant to show PAD symptom improvement, showed results that were essentially not different from that of the exercise center participants, although some reported less pain. One variable that may have skewed the results was that not all the participants were on point with getting their telephone coaching.

Key Takeaways:

  • Although wearables, like fitbits, have potential health benefits, a recent study found no difference in their use in treatment to improve peripheral arterial disease syndrome.
  • The idea of the study was to determine whether wearables could serve as a substitute for coached treadmill sessions.
  • Wearables and other health technology do still provide hope for a future of at-home healthcare.

“Therefore, the goal of this study was to assess the feasibility of a home-based exercise program to achieve fitness improvements, by supervising patients using wearable activity trackers, and coaching them through weekly or monthly telephone calls.”

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Glass Test Tubes with Cork Stoppers:
Versatile Chemistry Kitchenware

Test tubes, beakers and flasks are familiar science tools to anyone who ever studied science, especially biology and chemistry. They are practical for mixing, heating and storing liquids and powders. This attribute is popular with kitchen chemists and product packaging people.

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