Friday, November 15, 2013

Best of What’s New – Grand Award: MiniMax

The MiniMAX is the world’s smallest, most portable x-ray machine. Unlike its predecessors, which are a couple of feet wide and quite heavy, MiniMAX weighs five pounds.

It can be whisked to accidents, crime scenes, battlefields, airports, sidelines, and any other place that could benefit from on-the-spot x-ray vision. Inside, an x-ray source about the size of a can of soda generates a beam as powerful as stationary machines, and rather than rely on a bulky transformer, it draws power from a 9-volt battery. (Full story)

Innovation of the Year: Second Sight Argus II
 As part of the multi-­institutional Artificial Retina Project, Los Alamos researchers helped develop the first bionic eye, recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The Argus II does something once thought impossible—it gives sight to the blind. The device is the first FDA-approved artificial retina. It consists of a miniature video camera mounted on a pair of glasses that sends footage to a microprocessor worn on a person’s belt. The processor converts the visual data to electronic signals, which are transmitted wirelessly to a 60-pixel electrode array implanted in the back of the eye. (Full story)

Here's an Albuquerque Business First story about the PopSci selections: Click

The 25 Best Inventions of the Year 2013

The FDA has approved the first device that can restore partial ­vision to those who have severe retinitis pigmentosa, which can lead to blindness. The Argus II consists of an implanted artificial retina and a pair of glasses attached to a video unit that enables the patient to see outlines of images and the contrast between light and dark. (Full Story)


IST professor aims to educate citizen scientists through beauty of auroras
 “Real-time Auroral Imaging on the ISS,” an idea conceived by Elizabeth McDonald of the New Mexico Consortium in collaboration with Tapia and Michelle Hall of Science Education Solutions, was recently named the grand prize winner in the crowdsourcing contest What Would You Send to the ISS? sponsored by the Center for Advancement of Science in Space.

MacDonald is a New Mexico Consortium affiliate research scientist and a Los Alamos National Laboratory staff scientist who studies space weather.
(Full story)

Partnering for Progress: New council aims to boost research, economic development
LANL Director Charlie McMillan (left) and U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich
U.S. Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich joined leaders from the state’s research universities, national laboratories and military installations on Friday to help kick off an effort aimed at fostering scientific innovation and boosting economic opportunity in New Mexico. (Full story)

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