Issue: 20110601

Wednesday, June 1, 2011
JUNE 2011
6
True
278
Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Articles
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POPULAR SCIENCE
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0001.xml
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Digi-Key CORPORATION
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Digi-Key CORPORATION
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0002.xml
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SUBARU BOXER
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SUBARU BOXER
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0003.xml
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Energizer
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Energizer
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0004.xml
tableOfContents
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CONTENTS
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0005.xml
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Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
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Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0006.xml
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8
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Nikon Inc.: Nikon D7000
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Nikon Inc.
Nikon D7000
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0007.xml
article
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FROM THE EDITOR
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POWER FORWARD
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MARK JANNOT
THE THING ABOUT THE FUTURE is that it's always going to arrive, so it's entirely possible to blunder our way into it. But it’s better to plan. That’s the message of "Critical Matter” [page 76], this issue's investigative safari into those corners of the periodic table where lurk more than two dozen elements—from lithium to neodymium to rhenium—that are crucial to the manufacture of the batteries and other high-tech components in hybrid cars, windmills, solar panels and other clean-energy technologies.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0008.xml
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9
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Nikon Inc.: Nikon COOLPIX P7000
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Nikon Inc.
Nikon COOLPIX P7000
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0009.xml
article
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FROM THE EDITOR
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THE INBOX
POLITICAL SCIENCE
Requiem for a Satellite
Bible Study
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In our April issue, we lamented the fate of the DSCOVR climate satellite, which has been in storage for a decade. Readers shared our disappointment. We also explored the purported benefits of drinking urine, for which many of our readers did not share our credulity.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0010.xml
masthead
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POPULAR SCIENCE®
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0011.xml
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11
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DODGE
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DODGE
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0012.xml
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12,13
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Samsung Electronics America, Inc.
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Samsung Electronics America, Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0013.xml
article
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MEGAPIXELS
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DOWN TO EARTH
On their way home from space, astronauts stop in a Kazakh field
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COREY BINNS
After 159 days on the International Space Station and a 50-minute reentry, NASA commander Scott Kelly and two Russian flight engineers, Oleg Skripochka and Alexander Kaleri, landed with a gentle thud in rural Kazakhstan on March 16. High winds dragged their Soyuz capsule several feet before it came to a rest.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0014.xml
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MEGAPIXELS
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TECHNICOLOR PILE-UP
A UPS truck full of ink, a highway on-ramp, and one beatiful mess
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BJORN CAREY
Rush-hour traffic outside Boston got messier than usual on March 9, when a UPS truck hauling 16,000 pounds of industrial printer ink flipped and shut down an interstate access ramp. When the red, yellow and blue ink hit the pavement, it spread Like Technicolor through Oz.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0015.xml
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Nexus S 4G
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Nexus S 4G
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0016.xml
article
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WHAT’S NEW
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MINDING EYES
A laptop you control with little more than a glance
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Imagine bringing down World of Warcraft enemies with merely an icy stare. A new laptop prototype, developed jointly by Lenovo and eye-tracking specialist Tobii, is the first notebook you can control with your eyes. The 15-inch computer can run gaze-based apps that automatically close when you look away and reopen when you look back, or games that let you aim weapons with your eyes.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0017.xml
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THE goods
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A dozen great ideas in gear
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Daymak's electric bike does away with external cables, which can be damaged. Instead, controls at the handlebars communicate with the bike's electric throttle and regenerative brakes via radio signals. Daymak Shadow eBike $2,000; shadowebike.com
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0018.xml
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WHAT’S NEW
WHAT'S NEXT
FUEL PROOF
Mazda attempts to reinvent itself as a purveyor of extreme efficiency
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LAWRENCE ULRICH
Barely a year ago, you could get 40 miles per gallon on the highway in exactly one conventional gaspowered car—the two-seat, toastersize ForTwo, from Smart. But with fuel prices approaching $4 a gallon, membership in the 40-and-over club is growing fast.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0019.xml
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SOPUS Products: pennzoil
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SOPUS Products
pennzoil
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0020.xml
article
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WHAT’S NEW
FULLY LOADED
INDOORS, OUTDOORS
With the right camping gear, a night under the stars can be as comfy as one at home
Backpack
Bug Repellent
Lantern
Sleeping Bag
Tent
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MICHAEL MYSER
A pack that gives your back a break, a sleeping bag that holds more heat, and a bug lamp that doesn't buzz—this spring's outdoor gear makes your overnights easier to sleep through. The 65-Liter Revival moves with your body to make carrying Loads easier.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0021.xml
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GEICO
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GEICO
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0022.xml
article
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WHAT’S NEW
DREAM MACHINE
THE DESTROYER
An industrial-grade demolition machine fit for your home
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When demolition jobs require more than just a sledgehammer, consider wielding the Stanley LaBounty F16. The remote-control demolition machine rips through walls, snips rebar, and pulverizes concrete about as fast as a six-person wrecking crew armed with hand held tools.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0023.xml
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irobot
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irobot
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0024.xml
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WHAT’S NEW
TECH TREND
POWER TRIP
Portable fuel cells to charge gadgets on the go
THE TREND
WHY NOW
HOW YOU'LL BENEFIT
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Hydrogen fuel cells downsized to charge your handheld devices Hydrogen fuel cells combine captive hydrogen with oxygen from the air to produce an electrical charge. Large fuel cells in development for cars often use compressed hydrogen gas, which can be explosive.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0025.xml
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droiddoes
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droiddoes
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0026.xml
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WHAT’S NEW
TIMELINE
TICK TALK
Check texts and e-mails—and the time—on a cell-connected watch
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The days of rummaging for your cellphone may be over. Bluetoothenabled timepieces now pull all your phone alerts right to your wrist. Eventually, these watches will communicate directly with the Web and serve as mobile hotspots on their own.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0027.xml
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troweprice
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troweprice
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0028.xml
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Mouser Electronics, Inc.
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Mouser Electronics, Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0029.xml
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HEADLINES
HEALTH
OFF TO THE RACES
Veterinarians are using stem cells to speed horse rehab. Next up: us
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EMILY ANTHES
Over the course of the three races at this year’s Triple Crown, the odds are 10 to 1 that at least one horse will suffer a career-ending injury. "Orthopedically, the horse is a disaster waiting to happen,” says veterinarian Bob Harman. 'They’re so big—a 1,000-pound animal on little toothpick legs—and they’re working at high capacity.”
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0030.xml
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HEADLINES
THE ANNOTATED MACHINE
LITTLE WINGS
Making a robotic hummingbird fly (and hover, and roll)
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In 2006, Darpa, the Department of Defense’s R&D arm, commissioned AeroVironment, a company specializing in remote aircraft, to create an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) small enough to fly through an open window. AeroVironment had already built the 4.5-foot-wingspan Raven, which first saw combat over Afghanistan in 2003, but making a UAV so much smaller took five years and 300 different wing designs.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0031.xml
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PROGRESSIVE
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PROGRESSIVE
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0032.xml
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HEADLINES
ROUGH SKETCH
FASTER FUNGUS, GO GO GO!
POPSCI ON-SITE: INDY 500
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We know of at least 70,000 species of fungi, but we don't know how most of them get their spores airborne. That's what we're trying to find out. Fungi are spectacularly mobile, especially when they're launching spores, and that is a tremendous biomechanical feat.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0033.xml
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Cymbalta
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Cymbalta
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0034.xml
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HEADLINES
LOW TECH
PEEL POWER
How bananas clean water
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KALEE THOMPSON
Old pipes and factory runoff have made lead (which damages kidneys) and copper (which harms your Liver) the most common metals in U.S. drinking water. Brazilian scientists, noting that proteins in dried, minced banana peel readily bond with copper and lead ions, have developed a new filter.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0035.xml
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mothers
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mothers
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0036.xml
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HEADLINES
FINDINGS
THE EVOLVING BEDBUG
It's harder than ever to kill
SEARCH AND DESTROY
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After a half-century of relative inactivity in the U.S., bedbugs returned in the late 1990s. Nationwide, 95 percent of pest-control companies have treated an infestation in the past year. A decade ago. it was just 22 percent. In the 1940s and '50s, liberal use of DDT and other insecticides all but wiped out the pests.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0037.xml
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Hankook Tire America Corp.
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Hankook Tire America Corp.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0038.xml
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HEADLINES
THE BIG FIX
PRECISE BURNING
The firefighter's flame-throwing toolkit
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CHADWICK MATLIN
The U.S. Forest Service has battled fire with fire for nearly a century,but it wasn't until the past decade that backburning—in which professionals set brush alight before a wildfire does-became an exact science. Wildfire experts call this science prescribed burning, and its practitioners are known as burn bosses.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0039.xml
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Bose Corporation
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Bose Corporation
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0040.xml
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HEADLINES
HEALTH
ROBO-NURSE
Replace people with robots. Give them pills. Save lives
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RYAN BRADLEY
Humans are not good at delivering drugs. Doctors, nurses, pharmacists and pharmacy techs can mix pills up, provide too many or too few, or fail to dispense them quickly enough. In some cases, controlled substances disappear from hospitals, bound for the black market.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0041.xml
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Nissan North America, Inc.
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Nissan North America, Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0042.xml
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HomePatrol
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HomePatrol
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0043.xml
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5TH ANNUAL
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
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IN THE FIVE YEARS that POPULAR SCIENCE has run the Invention Awards, we’ve seen a lot of remarkable things come out of people’s garages. Some are designed to treat the sick or save the planet. Others are simply fun to play with. But no matter what the purpose, the brilliance of the inventions and the dedication of the individuals behind them are always inspiring.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0044.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
MECHANICAL DEXTERITY
A prosthetic hand that’s as functional as an electronic model—but at a fraction of the cost
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LAUREN AARONSON
PROSTHETIC hands typically come in three varieties: purely cosmetic models; hooks and other low-cost mechanical appendages that provide a limited range of motion; and electronic versions that better mimic natural hand movements yet can cost tens of thousands of dollars.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0045.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
STUNNING DEVELOPMENT
An armored glove equipped with a video camera and a stun gun to keep criminals at bay
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BROOKE BOREL
A ROBBER IS CORNERED in a dead-end alley. He turns to face the police officer pursuing him, ready to fight. He pauses. The officer's left forearm is encased in ballistic nylon, and half a million volts arc menacingly between electrodes on his wrist.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0046.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
A MAGIC WAND FOR PRINTING
A mini inkjet that prints on any flat surface with a wave of the hand
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RENA MARIE PACELLA
IN 2000, one of Europe's largest rubber-stamp companies approached Alex Breton, an engineer from Stockholm, Sweden, for product ideas. Instead of dreaming up a new stamp, he designed the PrintBrush, an 8.8-ounce handheld gadget that uses inkjets, computer-mouse-like optics and navigation software to print uploaded images and text on any flat surface, including paper, plastic, wood and even fabric.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0047.xml
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Marines
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Marines
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0048.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
HAPPY LANDINGS
A pad that enables skiers and snowboarders to pull off tricks safely
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SIX YEARS AGO, Aaron Coret, a 20-year-old engineering student at the University of British Columbia and an aspiring pro snowboarder, launched from a 50-foot jump at Whistler Blackcomb. "I remember coming off the lip of the jump and dropping my shoulder too hard.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0049.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
GLARE KILLER
Sunglasses that block out bright light with LCD-screen lenses
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ELIZABETH SVOBODA
WHEN CHRIS MULLIN was a physics postdoc at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Northern California, one of the most annoying parts of his day was his commute. He had to drive half of the 35 miles between his home in Berkeley and his lab in Livermore into near-direct sunlight.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0050.xml
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Chrysler Group LLC.
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Chrysler Group LLC.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0051.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
SNIFFING OUT BEDBUGS
An electronic dog nose that locates the bloodsucking pests in minutes
Where Inventions Are Born
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BROOKE BOREL
CHRIS GOGGIN doesn't like the title "inventor,” despite the fact that nearly two dozen patents list him as one. He prefers "innovator.” Either way, the Wilmington, North Carolina, mechanical engineer and former product developer—his résumé includes military missile electronics, the George Foreman Spin Fryer, and fuel-tank mechanisms for the F-22 Raptor jet—recognizes the need for a new device when he sees one.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0052.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
SAFETY PEN
A marker that makes screening for prenatal diseases easier and less expensive
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COREY BINNS
ON A FEBRUARY night last year, Sean Monagle got the phone call he’d been waiting two months for: Some 100 urine samples from pregnant women were ready for his analysis. A technician delivered them to his dorm, and Monagle, then a senior at Johns Hopkins University, raced off to his lab.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0053.xml
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york
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york
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0054.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
FROM WASTE TO WATER
A machine that uses exhaust heat to treat onboard sewage
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BJORN CAREY
WHEN NAMON NASSEF had to buy a new engine for his boat, he saw an opportunity He could finally install the invention he had been working on, a machine he calls the Zero Liquid Discharge Sewage Elimination System (ZLD). The device uses engine heat to oxidize and evaporate toilet, shower and galley waste.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0055.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
WATER ROCKET
A portable motorized body board that zips across lakes and rivers at 25 mph
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JACOB WARD
WHEN JASON WOODS was 19 and living on his own for the first time, he decided to buy an old ski boat. The 1969 Sportster was perfect for driving girls around Lake Berryessa, near his home in Napa, California, but after a few months, he found that transporting and storing a 16-foot boat was an expensive hassle.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0056.xml
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TAMRON USA Inc.
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TAMRON USA Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0057.xml
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2011 INVENTION AWARDS
THE IDEA
THE PICTURE OF HEALTH
A no-touch system for measuring vital signs
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GREGORY MONE
ONE NIGHT in late 2009, Ming-Zher Poh and his roommate, Dan McDuff, asked some friends to sit in front of a laptop. Poh, an electrical and medical-engineering graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was trying to transform the computer's webcam into a heart-rate monitor.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0058.xml
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POM Wonderful
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POM Wonderful
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0059.xml
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HOLLYWOOD SCIENCE
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KAPOW! THE SUMMER MOVIE SCIENCE SMACKDOWN
X-Jets, wrist lasers, vibranium shields! POPSCI gives five blockbuster gizmos a shot of reality
FROM TOP: WARNER BROS. PICTURES/DC COMICS; TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM; FACING PAGE: ROBERT ZUCKERMAN/PARAMOUNT PICTURES
X-MEN: FIRST CLASS
GREEN LANTERN
TRANSFORMERS: DARK OF THE MOON
CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
COWBOYS & ALIENS
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GREGORY MONE
STORY: The fifth in this popular series of comic-book spin-offs is a prequel: In the early 1960s, super-psychic Charles Xavier secretly establishes a school for genetic mutants with extraordinary powers. As the young mutants learn to harness their abilities, they form alliances that will divide the group into the well-meaning X-Men and their nefarious rivals, the Brotherhood of Mutants.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0060.xml
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HOLLYWOOD SCIENCE
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FUTURE SHOCKS
5 PREDICTIONS FROM THE WORLD’S FOREMOST FILM PROGNOSTICATOR
LIGHTWEIGHT EXOSKELETONS
HANDS-FREE HIGHWAYS
PRINTABLE REPLACEMENT ORGANS
SWAPPABLE CAR BODIES
COVERT BANK WARFARE
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STEVE DALY
SCIENCE FICTION is where the future happens first, and that puts futurist Syd Mead at least two steps ahead of the rest of us. The 78-year-old conceptual artist may be best known for designing the flyingcop-car-patrolled Los Angeles streetscapes in Blade Runner, but he also dreamed up the original light cycles in Tron, the Marine-transport starship in Aliens, and visions of a class-stratified, off-Earth world for Neill Blomkamp’s highly anticipated March 2013 feature Elysium.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0061.xml
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HOLLYWOOD SCIENCE
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IT'S ALIVE!
How did Guillermo del Toro create a vicious 10-inch-tall, tooth-eating homunculus? One word: science
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STEVE DALY
CONSIDER THE PLANT MONSTER from Hellboy II or the eyeless creep in Pan's Labyrinth: Director Guillermo del Toro has a genius for putting bizarre beings on screen. But no matter how grotesque the vision, he always begins his creations with what he calls “the National Geographic approach.”
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0062.xml
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brennan
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brennan
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FIELDWORK
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CRITICAL MATTER
The clean-energy revolution depends on 29 long-ignored elements from the far corners of the periodic table. Depending on who you ask, that's either a dealbreaker or no problem at all
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SETH FLETCHER
IN DECEMBER 2006, William Tahil, an energy analyst, published a paper online titled "The Trouble with Lithium." His argument would be alarming to the many people who had placed their hopes for a cleaner, more prosperous economy on the rapid development of electric cars powered by lithium-ion batteries.
PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0064.xml
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Rosetta Stone Ltd.
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Rosetta Stone Ltd.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0065.xml
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GravityDefyer
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GravityDefyer
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0066.xml
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Ashland Inc.
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Ashland Inc.
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PopularScience_20110601_0278_006_0067.xml
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HOW 2.0
YOU BUILT WHAT?!
TRAVELING LIGHT
A giant model conjures the spirit of an ill-fated airship
SCALE
DETAIL
CONTROL
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The first time retired computer engineer Jack Clemens tried to build a scale model of the USS Macon, a helium-filled naval airship lost in bad weather in 1935, his cat jumped on the prototype from a high shelf and ruined the hull. Clemens finished a second version in 2008 but totaled it during an unexpectedly windy test flight.
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POPSCI
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THEGREATCOURSES
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THEGREATCOURSES
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HOW 2.0
GRAY MATTER
AN OLD FLAME
Calcium carbide reactions can light up a room—or fill it with noise
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THEODORE GRAY
Pushing back the night with light of our own making was the first and greatest of humankind’s achievements. What a thrill it must have been to discover that the setting sun no longer had to mean darkness and fear. We’ve come a long way since that first campfire, but it’s just recently that technology has topped the most advanced form of open-flame light.
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Pfizer Inc
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Pfizer Inc
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HOW 2.0
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5 THINGS TO CLEAN UP FOR SPRING
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De-gunk your inkjet for smudge-free printouts by following the instructions at how tocleanstuff.net. You’ll need latex gloves, window cleaner, paper towels and a steady hand. Got a laser printer? The site will help you swab that too, along with everything from car battery terminals to taxidermied deer heads.
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mothers
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popsci
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HOW 2.0
BUILD IT
SUDS SLINGER
An iPhone-controlled cannon tosses beers from the fridge
THE BEER CANNON
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"I have a background in programming, but a program by itself has limited use. I was like, man, I need to make a project that will actually control something. I had my old mini-fridge from college lying around and, I thought, how about an iPhone-controlled drink vending machine? So I did it...and it sucked.
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HOW 2.0
TECH SUPPORT
MARSHALL'S PLANS
Getting started with microcontroller projects
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VIN MARSHALL
If you’re looking to gin up a project that can interface with the world—say, a device that tells the weather using sensors—you’re probably going to need a microcontroller, a simple computer system on a circuit board that consists of a processor, memory and an input/output system.
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WESTERN GOVERNORS UNIVERSITY
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WESTERN GOVERNORS UNIVERSITY
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HOW 2.0
ASK A GEEK
WHAT ELECTRONIC GEAR WILL BECOME OBSOLETE NEXT?
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Plenty of once-amazing technologies like the Sony Walkman and Betamax now belong in a museum, and every year the pace of obsolescence gets faster. Analysts predict that video, music and cellphones are the next categories likely to see familiar equipment die off in the years ahead.
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Carbonite, Inc.
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Carbonite, Inc.
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FYI
STUFF YOU JUST NEED TO KNOW
WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF I ATE NOTHING BUT MEAT?
Why are escalators so dangerous?
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RYAN BRADLEY
A You might get scurvy, like a pirate. Cooked meat contains very little vitamin C, notes Donald Beitz, a nutritional biochemist at Iowa State University. Without the vitamin, scurvy would bring on rashes and gum disease, not to mention very bad breath.
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The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company: goodyear
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The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company
goodyear
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Valentine Research, Inc.
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Valentine Research, Inc.
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Liquid Image Co.
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Liquid Image Co.
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TempurPedic
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TempurPedic
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HARBOR FREIGHT TOOLS
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FrogTape
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FrogTape
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Gorilla Glue Company
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Gorilla Glue Company
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WeatherTech
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WeatherTech
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mothers
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1&1 Internet, Inc.
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1&1 Internet, Inc.
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K&N Engineering, Inc.
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K&N Engineering, Inc.
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EdgeCraft Corporation
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EdgeCraft Corporation
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ROCKAUTO
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ROCKAUTO
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smiletrain
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Dads & Grads Gift Guide
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biehealth
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POPULAR SCIENCE DIRECT
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OTHER STUFF
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Impossible Dream
From the Invention Files
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NAOMI MAJOR
"Like truth crushed to earth, the old, old fallacy rises again," wrote Philip Rowland in our October 1920 issue. That fallacy was perpetual motion: the idea that energy can be generated forever, from nothing. Perpetual motion has long proved irresistible to particularly moony inventors, like the fictional tinkerer that Norman Rockwell painted for our cover.
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Digi-Key Corporation
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Digi-Key Corporation
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Casualty Insurance Company
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Casualty Insurance Company
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amazon
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amazon
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