blog postsIllinois technician combines engineering and creativity in a DIY synthesizerJan 27, 2017 8:45 am1729 views Skot Wiedmann, an electronics technician and art instructor at the University of Illinois, built his Hyve Touch Synthesizer to inspire interdisciplinary work between engineers and musicians, and to allow people to explore music in a creative and fun way.Stem cells from muscle could address diabetes-related circulation problemsNov 6, 2017 10:45 am1714 views Stem cells taken from muscle tissue could promote better blood flow in patients with diabetes who develop peripheral artery disease, a painful complication that can require surgery or lead to amputation.Measure of age in soil nitrogen could help precision agricultureJul 25, 2016 8:00 am1706 views University of Illinois engineers developed a model to calculate the age of nitrogen in corn and soybean fields, which could lead to improved fertilizer application techniques to promote crop growth while reducing leaching.Nanostructured metal coatings let the light through for electrical devicesDec 8, 2015 9:15 am1680 views Light and electricity dance a complicated tango in devices like LEDs, solar cells and sensors. A new anti-reflection coating developed by engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, in collaboration with researchers at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, lets light through without hampering the flow of electricity, a step that could increase efficiency in such devices.Electroplating delivers high-energy, high-power batteriesMay 12, 2017 2:00 pm1662 views The process that makes gold-plated jewelry or chrome car accents is now making powerful lithium-ion batteries.Method opens a window on how stress and strain affect battery performanceAug 1, 2016 12:15 pm1623 views Batteries that charge faster and have greater capacity could boost portable electronic devices and electric cars. A new method to simultaneously test stress and strain in battery electrodes gives researchers a window into the mechanical, electrical and chemical forces within lithium-ion batteries. The method revealed an unexpected point of stress in the charging cycle, which could guide development of better batteries.Ultrathin LEDs create new classes of lighting and display systemsAug 20, 2009 9:00 am1573 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new process for creating ultrathin, ultrasmall inorganic light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and assembling them into large arrays offers new classes of lighting and display systems with interesting properties, such as see-through construction and mechanical flexibility, that would be impossible to achieve with existing technologies.Regenerating plastic grows back after damageMay 8, 2014 9:00 am1560 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Looking at a smooth sheet of plastic in one University of Illinois laboratory, no one would guess that an impact had recently blasted a hole through it.Muscle-powered bio-bots walk on commandJun 30, 2014 9:00 am1421 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - A new generation of miniature biological robots is flexing its muscle.Self-healing tech charges up performance for silicon-containing battery anodesMay 15, 2017 8:30 am1406 views Researchers at the University of Illinois have found a way to apply self-healing technology to lithium-ion batteries to make them more reliable and last longer.Force triggers gene expression by stretching chromatinAug 22, 2016 10:00 am1383 views A new study by University of Illinois researchers and collaborators in China has demonstrated that external mechanical force can directly regulate gene expression.Researchers develop transistors that can switch between two stable energy statesMay 9, 2017 8:30 am1341 views Engineers are unveiling an upgrade to the transistor laser that could be used to boost computer processor speeds – the formation of two stable energy states and the ability to switch between them quickly. CRISPR mines bacterial genome for hidden pharmaceutical treasureApr 10, 2017 10:00 am1306 views In the fight against disease, many weapons in the medicinal arsenal have been plundered from bacteria themselves. Using CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology, researchers have now uncovered even more potential treasure hidden in silent genes.New methods tackle a perplexing engineering conceptOct 9, 2017 2:00 pm1283 views Researchers at the University of Illinois are working to turn a complex materials design problem into an intuitive concept, understandable to engineers from novice to advanced experience levels. The group developed guidelines to help understand materials engineered to become thicker when stretched. This highly useful property, which is not commonly found in nature, has applications for protective sports equipment, body armor and biomedical devices.A little support from their online friends calms test-anxious studentsApr 27, 2017 10:00 am1271 views Reading supportive comments, “likes” and private messages from social media friends prior to taking a test may help college students who have high levels of test-anxiety reduce their nervousness by 21 percent and improve their scores, researchers at the University of Illinois found.Science at Illinois feeds the world, furthers health, protects the planetApr 17, 2017 8:30 am1260 views Illinois scientists are helping power plants run more efficiently, designing better, longer-lasting batteries, finding new ways to target cancerous tumors, and developing robots that can aid in construction, in agricultural fields and even inside the human body.Tiny aquariums put nanoparticle self-assembly on displayOct 2, 2017 8:15 am1258 views Seeing is believing when it comes to nanoparticle self-assembly. A team of University of Illinois engineers is observing the interactions of colloidal gold nanoparticles inside tiny aquariumlike sample containers to gain more control over the self-assembly process of engineered materials.Nanopores could map small changes in DNA that signal big shifts in cancerApr 12, 2017 10:00 am1243 views Detecting cancer early, just as changes are beginning in DNA, could enhance diagnosis and treatment as well as further our understanding of the disease. A new study by University of Illinois researchers describes a method to detect, count and map tiny additions to DNA called methylations, which can be a warning sign of cancer, with unprecedented resolution.Chemical etching method helps transistors stand tallJul 25, 2016 10:15 am1238 views University of Illinois researchers have developed a way to etch very tall, narrow finFETs, a type of transistor that forms a tall semiconductor “fin” for the current to travel over.Tiny exports signal big shifts in cancer tissue, researchers findJan 25, 2017 1:30 pm1221 views Microscopic shifts in metabolism and increases in tiny transport vesicles out of tumor cells preface larger changes to the tumor environment and could prepare the way for cancerous cells to spread and metastasize, University of Illinois researchers report.Researchers develop model to show how bacteria grow in plumbing systemsMar 29, 2018 11:45 am1220 views Bacteria in tap water can multiply when a faucet isn’t used for a few days, such as when a house is vacant over a week’s vacation, a new study from University of Illinois engineers found. The study suggests a new method to show how microbial communities, including those responsible for illnesses like Legionnaires’ disease, may assemble inside the plumbing systems of homes and public buildingsEngineers on a roll toward smaller, more efficient radio frequency transformersMay 14, 2018 10:00 am1184 views The future of electronic devices lies partly within the “internet of things” – the network of devices, vehicles and appliances embedded within electronics to enable connectivity and data exchange. University of Illinois engineers are helping realize this future by minimizing the size of one notoriously large element of integrated circuits used for wireless communication – the transformer.Shape-shifting agent targets harmful bacteria in the stomachNov 13, 2017 2:00 pm1177 views A new shape-shifting polymer can target and kill Helicobacter pylori bacteria in the stomach without killing helpful bacteria in the gut.Tiny drug-delivering capsules could sustain transplanted insulin-producing cells for diabeticsFeb 12, 2018 9:15 am1166 views A drug-carrying microsphere within a cell-bearing microcapsule could be the key to transplanting insulin-secreting pig pancreas cells into human patients whose own cells have been destroyed by type I diabetes.Researchers look to patterns to envision new engineering fieldOct 26, 2017 8:00 am1156 views The phenomenon that forms interference patterns on television displays when a camera focuses on a pattern like a person wearing stripes has inspired a new way to conceptualize electronic devices. Researchers at the University of Illinois are showing how the atomic-scale version of this phenomenon may hold the secrets to help advance electronics design to the limits of size and speed. New polymer manufacturing process saves 10 orders of magnitude of energyMay 9, 2018 12:00 pm1121 views Makers of cars, planes, buses – anything that needs strong, lightweight and heat resistant parts – are poised to benefit from a new manufacturing process that requires only a quick touch from a small heat source to send a cascading hardening wave through a polymer. Researchers at the University of Illinois have developed a new polymer-curing process that could reduce the cost, time and energy needed, compared with the current manufacturing process.Shrimp-inspired camera may enable underwater navigationApr 4, 2018 1:00 pm1112 views The underwater environment may appear to the human eye as a dull-blue, featureless space. However, a vast landscape of polarization patterns appear when viewed through a camera that is designed to see the world through the eyes of many of the animals that inhabit the water. Andreas C. Cangellaris to lead U. of I. College of EngineeringJun 20, 2013 9:00 am1087 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill - Andreas C. Cangellaris, the head of the department of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been chosen to be the next dean of the College of Engineering. Changes in nonextreme precipitation may have not-so-subtle consequencesSep 18, 2017 7:45 am1039 views Major floods and droughts receive a lot of attention in the context of climate change, but University of Illinois researchers analyzed over five decades of precipitation data from North America to find that changes in nonextreme precipitation are more significant than previously realized and larger than those in extreme precipitation. These changes can have a strong effect on ecosystems, agriculture, infrastructure design and resource management, and point to a need to examine precipitation in a more nuanced, multifaceted way.Cradle turns smartphone into handheld biosensorMay 23, 2013 9:00 am997 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Researchers and physicians in the field could soon run on-the-spot tests for environmental toxins, medical diagnostics, food safety and more with their smartphones.Genome-editing proteins ride a DNA zip lineAug 15, 2016 1:30 pm958 views For gene-editing proteins to be useful in clinical applications, they need to be able to find the specific site they’re supposed to edit among billions of DNA sequences. Using advanced imaging techniques, University of Illinois researchers have found that one class of genome-editing proteins rapidly travels along a strand of DNA like a rider on a zip line – a unique behavior among documented DNA-binding proteins.Industrial designer will help make wearable health-monitoring electronics comfortable, easy to useSep 15, 2015 9:30 am953 views University of Illinois researchers are taking the skin-mounted electronics developed on campus and making a wearable health-monitoring device that could measure a person’s vital signs and provide information to help his or her doctor better monitor the patient’s health.Electrostatic force takes charge in bioinspired polymersNov 2, 2017 7:00 am923 views Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst have taken the first steps toward gaining control over the self-assembly of synthetic materials in the same way that biology forms natural polymers. This advance could prove useful in designing new bioinspired, smart materials for applications ranging from drug delivery to sensing to remediation of environmental contaminants.New synthetic tumor environments make cancer research more realisticAug 27, 2015 1:00 pm917 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Tumors are notoriously difficult to study in their natural habitat – body tissues – but a new synthetic tissue environment may give cancer researchers the next-best look at tumor growth and behavior.Biomedical breakthrough: Carbon nanoparticles you can make at homeJun 18, 2015 10:30 am899 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Researchers have found an easy way to produce carbon nanoparticles that are small enough to evade the body’s immune system, reflect light in the near-infrared range for easy detection, and carry payloads of pharmaceutical drugs to targeted tissues.Particle-free silver ink prints small, high-performance electronicsJan 12, 2012 9:00 am889 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois materials scientists have developed a new reactive silver ink for printing high-performance electronics on ubiquitous, low-cost materials such as flexible plastic, paper or fabric substrates.Researchers make headway in desalination technologyOct 12, 2017 2:00 pm857 views Engineers at the University of Illinois have taken a step forward in developing a saltwater desalination process that is potentially cheaper than reverse osmosis and borrows from battery technology. In their study, the researchers are focusing on new materials that could make desalination of brackish waters economically desirable and energy efficient.Chemical array draws out malignant cells to guide individualized cancer treatmentMay 26, 2017 11:00 am848 views Melanoma is a particularly difficult cancer to treat once it has metastasized, spreading throughout the body. University of Illinois researchers are using chemistry to find the deadly, elusive malignant cells within a melanoma tumor that hold the potential to spread.New aircraft-scheduling models may ease air travel frustrationsJun 11, 2018 8:30 am819 views Flight schedules that allow for a little carefully designed wiggle room could prevent the frustration of cascading airport delays and cancellations. By focusing on the early phases of flight schedule planning and delays at various scales, researchers have developed models to help create schedules that are less susceptible to delays and easier to fix once disrupted.What are the challenges of providing services for children with mental illnesses?Aug 12, 2016 9:00 am815 views Wynne Korr, dean of the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois, discusses the challenges of diagnosing and providing treatment for this vulnerable population in light of the state's financial problemsMission possible: This device will self-destruct when heatedMay 21, 2015 2:00 pm800 views Where do electronics go when they die? Most devices are laid to eternal rest in landfills. But what if they just dissolved away, or broke down to their molecular components so that the material could be recycled?New CRISPR technology ‘knocks out’ yeast genes with single-point precisionMay 7, 2018 10:00 am795 views The CRISPR-Cas9 system has given researchers the power to precisely edit selected genes. Now, researchers have used it to develop a technology that can target any gene in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and turn it off by deleting single letters from its DNA sequence.Carle Illinois College of Medicine research affiliation agreement completedNov 2, 2015 9:00 am791 views Leaders of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Carle Health System announced the completion of a set of agreements and policies related to joint research practices and governance of the Carle Illinois College of Medicine.Biomedical breakthrough: Carbon nanoparticles you can make at homeJun 18, 2015 4:15 pm781 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Researchers have found an easy way to produce carbon nanoparticles that are small enough to evade the body’s immune system, reflect light in the near-infrared range for easy detection, and carry payloads of pharmaceutical drugs to targeted tissues.Getting into your head: Gelatin nanoparticles could deliver drugs to the brainDec 23, 2014 9:00 am735 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Stroke victims could have more time to seek treatment that could reduce harmful effects on the brain, thanks to tiny blobs of gelatin that could deliver the medication to the brain noninvasively.Laser light show machine teaches students math, computer programmingApr 20, 2018 8:00 am698 views Laser light shows are no longer just the stage dressing for rock concerts. They’re also a fun way for local middle school students to learn the fundamentals of mathematics from educators and scientists at the University of Illinois.Large, crystalline lipid scaffolds bring new possibilities to protein, drug researchOct 2, 2017 8:00 am691 views Proteins and drugs are often attached to lipids to promote crystallization or ensure delivery to targeted tissues within the body, but only the smallest proteins and molecules fit within these fat structures. A new study reveals a lipid structure that can support much larger proteins and molecules than before, potentially increasing the variety of drugs that can be attached to these fat molecules.Stemlike cells at tumor perimeter promote new blood vessels to feed tumor growthOct 25, 2017 1:00 pm668 views Stemlike cells at the edge of melanoma tumors secrete factors to promote blood-vessel growth, allowing the cancer to grow and spread.Engineers shine light on deadly landslideApr 26, 2017 12:30 pm650 views A new report by University of Illinois civil and environmental engineering professor Tim Stark and colleagues details the factors that led to the deadliest landslide on record in the continental United States, along with steps that can be taken to mitigate landslide consequences and risk in the Pacific Northwest.Next up: Environmentally safe electronics that also vanish in the bodySep 27, 2012 9:00 am646 views CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Physicians and environmentalists alike could soon be using a new class of electronic devices: small, robust and high performance, yet also biocompatible and capable of dissolving completely in water - or in bodily fluids.