10 most popular tech stories of September
Solar cell hits new world record with 44.7 percent efficiency
"It took three years of research on this particular solar technology to hit the new world record of 44.7 percent, an efficiency that is getting the world of solar tech tantalizingly close to 50 percent."
This little patch acts like an invisibility cloak to mosquitoes
"[T]he development of a novel form of mosquito repellent could make it much safer for humans in those areas, because the non-toxic compounds in it can effectively block mosquitoes’ ability to track humans for up to 48 hours, rendering the wearer virtually invisible to mosquitoes."
$15 micro lens turns your smartphone into a microscope
"[T]hanks to the work of Thomas Larson, a recent mechanical engineering graduate, taking microscopic pictures and videos can soon be as simple as applying a tiny micro lens to the camera on your mobile phone and clicking the shutter button."
3D-printing robots could enable solar arrays to self-fabricate in space
"Instead of sending a finished structure (or parts of one) into space, sending the raw materials into orbit and then constructing it there with robotic "spiders" and 3D printing technologies may be the future of large spacecraft and their components."
Elon Musk goes full Tony Stark, shows the future of design and manufacturing
"Tesla isn't the first to make electric cars, but like Apple with the iPhone (which followed the Blackberry and others), they were the first to get so many aspects right that against all odds for a new entrant they flew past the competition. SpaceX is also in that category, and SolarCity, while not a company that Musk oversees day-to-day, is also based on that same model."
Smart bike navigation tool gives directions, tracks your time, and maps and shares routes
"When you're pedaling through streets, trying to maintain your pace while obeying traffic signals and avoiding cars, pedestrians, and other cyclists, the last thing you want to do is take your eyes off of the road to get directions. And thanks to the development of the Hammerhead, you can get the info you need at a glance, right in front of you, without having to read any text or focus on a small screen."
Photoflow is solar power and rainwater harvesting in one
"A design company called NOS has developed a solution to two major problems facing developing countries: scarcity of drinking water and electricity. The concept is called the PhotoFlow, a combination solar photovoltaic device and rainwater harvester."
Phoneblok is radical vision of what tech could be
"As critics have been quick to point out, Hakkens' vision may not be practical or even technologically feasible, but I think they are missing the most beautiful and inspirational piece of his idea, which is his radical vision for changing the world."
Turn your bicycle into an electric bike in less than a minute
"The Rubbee module connects to the seat post of almost any bicycle and uses rollers made from a special polyurethane blend to transfer the power from its powerful (250W rated, 800W peak power) electric motor to the rear tire."
New remote traffic camera scans for toxic vehicle emissions
"The prototype of new type of device, akin to a pollution radar device for highway traffic, has been developed at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M), and can deliver real-time data on pollution emissions from individual vehicles, even on a multi-lane road."