Popular Science picks Fulton Schools innovation as a top world-changing technology
Electrical engineering professor Cun-Zheng Ning and his research group have been awarded a 2015 Popular Science Best of What’s New Award in the engineering category for their breakthrough in demonstrating the world’s first white laser.

The researchers created a novel nanosheet—a thin layer of semiconductor that measures roughly one-fifth of the thickness of human hair in size with a thickness that is roughly one-thousandth of the thickness of human hair—with three parallel segments, each supporting laser action in one of three elementary colors. The device is capable of lasing in any visible color, completely tunable from red, green to blue or any color in between. When the total field is collected, a white color emerges.

Study explores hand’s complex, skillful movement

Picking up an object, such as an orange from a table, for many would seem a simple task. For motor control researchers, however, the underlying movement mechanics and sensory feedback needed to accomplish that task—and repeat it in a variety of situations—is extremely complex.

A team of researchers, led by Marco Santello, a biomedical engineering professor and director of the School of Biological and Health Systems Engineering, is attempting to quantify this process in a new research study. The objective is to gain a better understanding of the neural mechanisms underlying how we perform and learn dexterous manipulation. The knowledge drawn from this current project could lead to new options in advanced and human-like prosthetics, neuroprosthetics, robotic manipulators, and research tools.

Quest to boost microalgae growth promises more sustainable energy

ASU engineer Bruce Rittmann and physicist Klaus Lackner will lead a new research project to aid U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) efforts to boost production of a promising source for clean, renewable energy.

DOE has awarded ASU a three-year, $1 million grant to fund the Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Capture and Membrane Delivery project aimed at enabling more large-scale cultivation of microalgae. Microalgae are species of microscopic single-cell organisms, such as Spirulina and Chlorella, that exist in fresh water and sea environments and can be used to make biofuels and an array of consumer products, using only sunlight and CO2.

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