May 26, 2017

World's Largest Aircraft and Other Tech Advances

By Chelsea Follett
Antibodies found that stop spread of Ebola

A study published in the journal Cell found that the antibodies from an Ebola survivor are effective in stopping the spread of all five of the virus’ strains when injected. The antibodies prevent Ebola from binding to proteins within the body, stopping its ability to replicate. Lab tests using mice and ferrets found that the vaccine effectively halted the spread of Ebola in test subjects. One of the study’s senior authors, Kartik Chandran, says he sees the vaccine not as a preventative measure but as a remedy for people who have been recently exposed to Ebola.

MIT researchers design living, ventilated workout suit

Humidity causes microbial cells in new high-tech clothing designed by MIT to expand and contract while worn. As an athlete’s workout intensifies, the clothing’s series of vents will open up and generate airflow. These cells are safe enough to consume and pose no risk to the athlete wearing the life-infused clothing. The MIT team also designed a pair of ventilated shoes and is hoping to work with sportswear companies to bring a product to market.

NASA uses GPS to detect tsunamis in real-time

Scientists from Sapienza University in Rome, Italy and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory have come together to increase tsunami detection using global navigation satellite systems. The Variometric Approach for Real-time Ionosphere Observation (VARION) system monitors gravitational waves given off as tsunamis roll though the ocean to detect them as they develop. Researchers ultimately hope that this discovery will help inform people of incoming tsunamis sooner than previously possible by monitoring the effects of earthquakes to accurately predict the likelihood of a subsequent tsunami.

Biggest aircraft in the world completes 180-minute test flight

Airlander 10, the largest aircraft in the world with a staggering length of 302 feet, completed a test flight on May 10th. The aircraft combines airplane, blimp and helicopter technology and aims to stay 20,000 feet in the air for up to five days. Hybrid Air Vehicles, the creator of Airlander 10, plans to use the aircraft for search and rescue, security, filming and premium passenger flight once more rigorous testing has been completed.