Submit a link Features Reviews Podcasts Video Forums More ▾

No rest for Richard III's bones

Weeks after his remains were discovered under a car lot, Richard III's bones are yet to be put to rest. The University of Leicester, which led the exhumation project, plans to inter Richard at the local cathedral. But York, the seat of his branch of the House of Plantagenet, wants him back. Previously. [Reuters] Rob

Nike's X-ray tights

Skeletightttt

Nike Women's new performance tights digitally printed with X-ray images.

Tyrannosaurus bones seized

Joseph O'Leary writes: "U.S. officials on Friday seized the skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus dinosaur that Mongolia wants returned on suspicion that it was smuggled to the United States from the Gobi desert." Rob

Building a better spaceuit

It is no secret that spacesuits are heavy. The full spacesuit worn on the space shuttle, including life support system, clocked in at 310 pounds. At the same time, these suits are bulky, and hard to move around in. So researchers are looking for alternatives—skinnier suits that would weigh less, be more maneuverable, and maybe even have the bonus of helping to support the muscles and skeletal system, which can take a beating during prolonged periods of weightlessness.

Txchnologist has a story up right now about the quest for a better spacesuit. It includes a in-depth look at the BioSuit, which Pesco wrote about here back in 2007. But there are other approaches being explored, as well.

One concept I found particularly interesting might not do much to solve the bulk issue, but could make a big difference for astronaut muscle tone.

In this case, the engineers hope to retain astronauts’ muscle and bone strength by affixing cell phone-size gyroscopes to their arms and legs to imitate gravity. “The property of these control-moment gyroscopes is that they resist changes in angular momentum and thus could apply a couple of pounds of force (torque, in reality),” [researcher Kevin Duda] says.

With a pair of the rechargeable battery-powered units on each appendage—forearms, upper arms, calves and thighs—the astronauts would feel resistance to motion that would to some degree simulate that of normal gravitational force. When floating in deep space or near asteroids, the gyroscopic units, perhaps installed in backpacks, could help astronauts to stabilize their attitude so as to “maintain orientation toward the task at hand to boost operational efficiency.”

Previously:

3-D printer makes scaffolding for growing bones

This project at Washington State University is incredibly nifty. Researchers use a 3-D printer to make a bone-like material that can temporarily do the job of bone, while serving as a scaffold for new bone to grow on. Over time, it dissolves safely.

Read more about it on the WSU website

Video Link

The Empire of Death: A Cultural History of Ossuaries and Charnel Houses

I'm really digging the look of Dr. Paul Koudounaris' new book, The Empire of Death: A Cultural History of Ossuaries and Charnel Houses.

Don't yet have a copy in my hands (it's not out 'til October), but I've pre-Amazonned one for myself. The book is packed with hundreds of gorgeous color photographs of these sites throughout the world, many of which are usually inaccessible to outsiders.

Here's the project website, and here's the publisher's feature page. The first show and signing takes place at La Luz de Jesus gallery in Los Angeles on Sept. 24.

Here is the author/artist's statement, and here is a collection of related essays by Dr. Koudounaris.

Advance order here for $31.50. View more photos and a sneak peek inside the book, below...

Read the rest