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Using a high-resolution system called electron tomography, researchers probed a tiny sample of kerogen to determine its internal structure. At left, the sample as seen from the outside, and at right, the detailed 3-D image of its internal pore structure. Image: Courtesy of the researchers

Structure of fossil-fuel source rocks is finally decoded

For the first time, MIT scientists and elsewhere have captured three-dimensional images of kerogen’s internal structure. These images ought to permit more precise expectations of how much...
An MIT study proposes that laser technology on Earth could emit a beacon strong enough to attract attention from as far as 20,000 light years away

Laser technology could be fashioned into Earth’s “porch light” to attract alien astronomers

According to a new MIT study, if aliens exist somewhere in our galaxy, the existing laser technology could, on a fundamental level, be molded into...
This photo shows water droplets placed on the nanostructured surface developed by MIT researchers. The colors are caused by diffraction of visible light from the tiny structures on the surface, ridges with a specially designed shape. Images: Kyle Wilke

A new approach to liquid-repelling surfaces

Omniphobic surfaces could potentially be used in everything from ship hulls that reduce drag and increase efficiency, to coverings that resist stains and protect against...
MIT researchers have built a system that takes a step toward fully automated smart homes, by identifying occupants even when they’re not carrying mobile devices. Image: Chelsea Turner, MIT

A step toward personalized, automated smart homes

MIT analysts have manufactured a system that steps toward completely automated tech-savvy home by recognizing occupants, notwithstanding when they're not carrying cell phones. The system,...
A major motivation for moving to MIT from his research position, Nuno Loureiro says, was working with students. Image: Jared Charney

Probing the world of plasmas

Plasma is a kind of the fourth phase of matter, like a gas yet with the particles stripped separated into a sort of soup...
MIT researchers have devised a way to help robots navigate environments more like humans do.

Model helps robots navigate more like humans do

MIT scientists have developed a new method that aids robots navigate as like as humans. The model lets robots determine how to reach a...
MIT researchers have shown that some of the atoms in an enzyme called carbon monoxide dehydrogenase can rearrange themselves when oxygen levels are low. A nickel atom (green) leaves the cube-like structure, displacing an iron atom (orange). One sulfur atom (yellow) also moves out of the cube.

Chemists discover unexpected enzyme structure

Scientists are taking a lot of interest in enzymes of microbes in order to find new ways to remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and...
Since the 1950s, scientists have observed a surprisingly straightforward, linear relationship between the Earth’s surface temperature and its outgoing heat.

How Earth sheds heat into space

The Earth sheds more heat into space as its surface heat up. In 1950, scientists observed a straightforward clear, linear connection between the Earth's...
MIT researchers have employed a new machine-learning technique to substantially reduce false positives in fraud-detecting technologies. Image: Chelsea Turner

False positive reduction in credit card fraud detection

Consumer's credit cards are declined shockingly frequently in real exchanges. One reason is that fraud-detecting innovations utilized by a shopper's bank have inaccurately hailed...