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6 March 2014 1:04 pm ,
Vol. 343 ,
Magdalena Koziol, a former postdoc at Yale University, was the victim of scientific sabotage. Now, she is suing the...
Antiretroviral drugs can protect people from becoming infected by HIV. But so-called pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP...
Two studies show that eating a diet low in protein and high in carbohydrates is linked to a longer, healthier life, and...
Considered an icon of conservation science, researchers at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) headquarters in Washington, D.C.,...
The new atlas, which shows the distribution of important trace metals and other substances, is the first product of...
Early in April, the first of a fleet of environmental monitoring satellites will lift off from Europe's spaceport in...
Since 2000, U.S. government health research agencies have spent almost $1 billion on an effort to churn out thousands...
- 6 March 2014 1:04 pm , Vol. 343 , #6175
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Video: Robot Jellyfish Takes to the Air
14 January 2014 7:15 pm
When humans dream of flight, they don’t often imagine jellyfish. But a new flying machine mimics the umbrellalike flapping of an ocean jelly. The prototype has a motor-powered crankshaft that alternately flaps opposing pairs of petal-shaped wings. Though its Mylar film and carbon fiber body weighs less than one-tenth of an ounce, its stability stems from its bottom-heavy design, which lets it wobble, but not flip over. Indeed, its designers argue that the flying jelly is more stable than robots based on insects or birds, which require a tail, sails, or a feedback system to stay upright. Researchers can adjust the speed and size of the flapping to make it hover or change directions. Though the current prototype must be plugged in, future models will be battery-powered, the team reports online today in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface. Such minidrones could do military surveillance or monitor traffic or air quality. Considering the advantages of jellyfishlike flight, the scientists question why no land animals have evolved to fly this way.