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October 15, 2014
Comments (1) | Posted at 11:42AM PST by ClayMeow
New Trailer for The Crew Details Car Customization

Whether your reason is simply for aesthetics or to tackle a particular terrain, if you plan on picking up Ubisoft's MMO-CarPG The Crew, you're going to want to customize your car. Ubisoft has released a new "Customization Trailer" that provides just a peek inside the game's car customization system.

The Crew is set to arrive on December 2 for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Xbox 360.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 11:22AM PST by ClayMeow

With the launch of Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth just one week away, Firaxis Games has shared the game's opening cinematic, entitled "The Chosen". "As part of an expedition sent to find a home beyond Earth, lead your people into a new frontier, explore and colonize an alien planet and create a new civilization in space."

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth is launching exclusively for Windows PC on October 24, with pre-orders netting the Exoplanets Map Pack.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 11:13AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

If not for dopants, much of today's technology may not exist. Doping is the process of adding atoms to a material, to change its properties, and is critical for controlling the characteristics of semiconductors. After being placed in a material though, the doping atoms can move around, and ORNL researchers have finally caught them in the act.

Previous studies examining the diffusion of doping atoms had to use indirect macroscopic methods, and were limited to the surfaces of materials. By using a scanning transmission electron microscope though, the researchers were able to watch the as manganese and cerium atoms moved through the bulk of a piece of aluminum nitride. Just as theory predicted, though counter to normal expectations, the larger cerium atoms were observed to move while the smaller manganese atoms remained stationary.

By understanding how dopant atoms behave, this research could lead to better semiconductor devices, including LED lights. The color emitted by these lights is determined by the dopants, and their movement could affect when the LED fails.

Source: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Comments (0) | Posted at 10:43AM PST by bp9801

The middle of the week is upon us, and with it comes a few items to help pass the time. We have a review on the NZXT S340 mid tower case, which offers a very stylish look and plenty of features to appeal to nearly anyone. There is also a look at the CONNECTEDEVICE COOKOO 2, an analog watch that can connect to your phone via Bluetooth for all kinds of display options. Wrapping up today's items is the final history of the computer, which focuses on how the CPU has changed and evolved in recent years.

NZXT S340 @ ThinkComputers


History of the PC, Part 5: Computing goes mainstream, mobile, ubiquitous @ TechSpot

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:23AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

Nanoparticles are a technology that could one day become completely ubiquitous with uses in everything from medicine to cosmetics. Before that can happen though, we must first learn how they behave, including how they can penetrate human skin. Researchers at the University of Southampton have recently conducted the research to determine just how that behavior works.

Other studies have examined why some nanoparticles will enter the skin and others will not, but never quite had the level of control necessary to make definitive statements. This new research does though, as it controlled the surface charge, shape, and functionality of gold nanoparticles for its tests. The results indicate that nanorods with a positive charge are two to six times better at penetrating the skin than other nanoparticles. Coating them with penetrating peptides increased the penetration by up to a factor of ten, allowing the particles to reach into the dermis.

This work could be used to develop nanoparticles for topical drug delivery, but it could also be used to prevent nanoparticles from entering the skin. If a cosmetic were to contain potentially toxic nanoparticles, they could be prevented from entering the skin just by designing them to be unable to.

Source: University of Southampton

October 14, 2014
Comments (0) | Posted at 07:00PM PST by ClayMeow

Electronic Arts and BioWare have released a new trailer for Dragon Age: Inquisition, entitled "The Hero of Thedas", with the entire thing created using actual gameplay. I think it's safe to say that graphically, Inqusition is the most beautiful and stunning RPG to date, and will likely not even be challenged until The Witcher 3. Of course, if you want to play it in all its glory, be sure to check out the PC requirements.

Dragon Age: Inquisition will launch on November 18 in North America and November 21 in Europe for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. The Standard Edition costs $59.99 for all platforms, while a Deluxe Edition is available for $69.99 and includes the following bonus content: Flames of the Inquisition Armor, Flames of the Inquisition Armored Mount, Skyhold Throne, Red Hart Halla, Bog Unicorn, and the digital soundtrack. Pre-ordering either version grants you some nice fiery weapons from the Flames of the Inquisition Arsenal.

Remember, you can currently pick up Dragon Age: Origins for FREE on Origin.

Source: Facebook

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:51PM PST by ClayMeow
The End of the Resident Evil Film Franchise to Pave Way for a Resident Evil TV Series

The Resident Evil film franchise will likely break the $1 billion mark worldwide when the sixth film is released in 2016, making it undoutedly the most successful video game film adaptation series of all-time. That sixth film, entitled Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, will mark the end of the film franchise that began way back in 2002, but not without a spin-off. However, that spin-off won't be another film, but rather a television series.

According to Variety, production company Constantin Films will be producing the series and plans on premiering it after The Final Chapter hits theaters. Constantin Films bought the film rights from Capcom back in 1997 and has been involved with every live-action Resident Evil film since.

Source: Variety via GamesIndustry.biz

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:42PM PST by ClayMeow
What Will You Do to Survive Far Cry 4's Kyrat?

Ubisoft has released a new trailer for Far Cry 4, and while it starts out rather serene, with a title like "Survive Kyrat", it unsurprisingly takes a turn toward bloodshed.

Far Cry 4 is set to release on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on November 18.

Source: Press Release and UbiBlog

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:39PM PST by ClayMeow
The Evil Within is Upon Us

The highly anticipated survival horror game from the father of the survival horror genre, Shinji Mikami, has finally arrived. The Evil Within released today and with it, Bethesda has not only published an official Launch Trailer, but also the game's 30-second television spot. The latter is obviously not as gruesome.

The Evil Within is available for Windows PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 04:39PM PST by gebraset

Google Express, which was formerly known as Google Shopping Express and offers same-day delivery service, has just launched in three additional cities. The service allows users to choose from morning, afternoon or evening delivery windows in Chicago, Boston, Manhattan, San Francisco, San Jose, West Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. Google Express has also added 16 new retailers over the last few months, and now allows alcohol to be purchased by individuals at least 21 years old within the Bay Area. All of these changes come at a price however, as Google Express now features a subscription fee of $10 per month or $95 per year. Customers who seldom use the service can alternatively pay $4.99 for individual orders, but membership does have its perks as it can be shared with a household member.

Interested consumers can try the first three months of a Google Express membership, which can be cancelled at any time, for free.

Source: Google Blog

Comments (0) | Posted at 04:15PM PST by gebraset
Ancile Z1 Hard Gaming Mouse Pad Released by Tesoro

Tesoro, a manufacturer of high-tech gaming products, has officially released the Ancile Z1. The Ancile Z1, which is named after the  sacred shield of the Roman god Mars, is a hard gaming mouse pad that offers gamers high precision mouse control. The Tesoro Ancile Z1 features a unibody construction, a low friction surface, high texture density, and reflecting surface technology. The latest mouse pad from Tesoro also comes with a non-slip rubber base that keeps the product stationary while gaming.

The Ancile Z1 carries an MSRP of $29 and is currently available in the North American market from various retailers such as Tesoro Gaming USA, Newegg, Amazon, and NCIX.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 11:23AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

I cannot say I expected this, as the time for a new Humble Bundle came around today. The company known for selling bundles of indie games and more with a pay-what-you-want model, has just launched the Humble Mozilla Bundle. Of course Mozilla does not develop games, it develops a browser. A browser that we can play games in, and with the bundle you can own up to eight different games, from Zen Bound 2 to FTL: Advanced Edition.

Once purchased, all of the games can be played in a modern browser, such as Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome, or you can download DRM-free versions for Windows, Mac, or Linux. Most also come with Steam keys and Super Hexagon is even available on Android. Want to know more about the games before making a purchase? Demo versions can be played, from your browser, right on the Humble Bundle homepage.

As usual, part of each purchase can go to charity, and this bundle has three charities to donate to: the Mozilla Foundation, CodeNow, and the Make Education Initiative. Also there is going to be another game added to the bundle soon.



Source: Humble Bundle

Comments (0) | Posted at 10:41AM PST by bp9801

It is a new day, and for those of you who had a three day weekend, hopefully it was an enjoyable time. We have a lot of reviews to get to today, including performance numbers for the NVIDIA GTX 980 in both 3-Way and 4-Way SLI. There is also a look at the Gigabyte Z97X-UD5H motherboard, which offers an affordable option with plenty of features. Deepcool's Maelstrom 240 all-in-one liquid CPU cooler gets put to the test to see how well it can keep your CPU from going up in flames. There is also a look at the COUGAR 700M gaming mouse, along with the Tt eSPORTS Team DK Edition gaming peripherals. Plenty more is on the slate too, including  reviews the Fractal Design Core 2300 case, Alien: Isolation, the Corsair HX1000i PSU, and a contest, so check it all out below!

Video Cards
NVIDIA GTX 980 3-Way and 4-Way SLI Performance @ PC Perspective

Gigabyte Z97X-UD5H @ PC Perspective

Alien: Isolation Performance @ TechSpot

Fractal Design Core 2300 @ Benchmark Reviews

CPU Cooling
Deepcool Maelstrom 240 AIO Liquid CPU Cooler @ ThinkComputers

COUGAR 700M Aluminum Gaming Mouse @ Madshrimps
Tt eSPORTS Team DK Edition Gaming Peripherals @ ThinkComputers

Power Supplies
Corsair HXi Series Fully Modular 1000W @ PC Perspective

ThinkComputers & Thermaltake Fall Giveaway! @ ThinkComputers

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:13AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

The prospect of a battery exploding is not something anyone likes to think about, but the possibility does exist. With lithium-ion batteries seeing more and more use in consumer electronics, airplanes, and electric vehicles, the danger is only growing. Researchers at Stanford University decided to do something about this and have created a smart battery that can alert a user, before a fatal short circuit.

At one end of a lithium-ion battery is a carbon anode, and at the other a lithium metal-oxide cathode. Between them is a polymer separator that keeps the electrodes apart, while allowing lithium ions to flow through it. If a dendrite were to form from the anode though, it could pierce the separator and reach the cathode, causing a short. What the Stanford researchers have done to avoid this is add a layer of copper right next to the separator. The copper will act like a third electrode, measuring the voltage between the anode and the separator. If a dendrite does grow from the anode and touch the copper, the voltage difference will drop to zero, and thus provide a warning of impending failure.

By changing the distance from the anode, it would be possible to tune how much lead-time a warning comes with. By placing it closer to the anode, shorter dendrites will be detected, long before they can reach the cathode, cause a short, and potentially a fire.

Source: Stanford University

October 13, 2014
Comments (0) | Posted at 07:06PM PST by ClayMeow
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel Launches Tonight

In just a few short hours, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel will unlock on Steam, with the console versions launching tomorrow whenever their respective networks update. The game features four new heroes, two new weapon types, a new resource, low-gravity, jetpacks, and three gajillion guns. Of course, as we all know by now, no game launch can be complete without an official Launch Trailer:

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:50PM PST by ClayMeow
A7V Landship and Pegasus Vehicles the Focus of New Toy Soldiers: War Chest Gameplay Video

Last week, Ubisoft published two videos for Toy Soldiers: War Chest that delved into the heroes and armies present in the game. Today, we get a look at the vehicles for both Kaiser and Starbright, which are special units you can employ when you earn enough action points. Kaiser's vehicle is an A7V Landship, which is a massive tank equipped with a cannon. Starbright's vehicle is Pegasus, equipped with a confetti bomb and a golden horn.

Toy Soldiers: War Chest is scheduled to arrive early 2015 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

Source: Ubisoft

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:11PM PST by ClayMeow

No, that title is not a typo. Late-night talk show host Conan O'Brien, actor Stephen Amell, and actor-writer-comic-book-nerd Kevin Smith have all joined the LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham roster. Stephen Amell will be voicing Green Arrow, which shouldn't be much of a stretch since he's the star of The CW's Arrow. Meanwhile, Conan O'Brien and Kevin Smith will be voicing... themselves.

In addition to those three characters, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment (WBIE) has also recently unveiled Condiment King, Darkest Knight Batman, Deadshot, Deathstroke, Detective Chimp, Green Loontern, Jim Lee, Kalibak, Mad Hatter, Man Bat, Music Meister, Polka Dot Man, and Solar Suit Superman. And while they don't appear in the video above, WBIE did release screenshots for each one, which you can find below.

LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham launches November 11 in North America, November 14 in the UK, and November 12 in the rest of Europe for PC (Windows and Mac), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Wii U, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation Vita, and Nintendo 3DS.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 12:11PM PST by ClayMeow

I think we all saw this coming, but it's nice to finally get confirmation – Assassin's Creed Rogue is coming to PC. While the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions will be arriving November 11, the PC version won't arrive until early 2015. Along with the PC release announcement, Ubisoft has also released the official Story Trailer for Rogue, a week after the publisher shared the Assassin's Creed Unity Story Trailer.

Assassin's Creed Rogue will be arriving November 11 in North America and November 13 in EMEA territories for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, while the PC version is slated for early 2015. Pre-ordering nets you the Ultimate Hunter pack and the Siege of Fort de Sable mission.

Source: Press Release and UbiBlog

Comments (0) | Posted at 11:52AM PST by gebraset

The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are currently available in 33 countries and territories around the world. Apple is looking to expand its reach even further, however, as the technology giant has announced that both versions of its latest flagship phone are coming to 36 more countries and territories by the end of October. 

Potential customers in China, India, and Monaco will be able to purchase the latest iPhone on October 17, while customers in Israel will have to wait until October 23. On October 24, consumers in the Czech Republic, French West Indies, Greenland, Malta, Poland, Reunion Island, and South Africa will have the ability to purchase the latest Apple smartphone, and on October 30, those is Bahrain and Kuwait will be able to do so as well. The largest rollout in this announcement occurs on October 31, with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus coming to Albania, Bosnia, Croatia, Estonia, Greece, Guam, Hungary, Iceland, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Macau, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Thailand, and Ukraine.

According to Apple, the latest iPhone is on track to be available in 115 countries by the end of this year, which will officially make this the fastest iPhone rollout in the history of the iconic device.

Source: Press Release

Comments (1) | Posted at 08:39AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

More and more we are seeing hardware announced and released with the claim that it is 4K UHD capable, but testing those claims is not so simple. FutureMark has decided to change that with the addition of Fire Strike Ultra to 3DMark, the first 4K UHD benchmark. You do not need a 4K monitor to run it though, as it will render the content at 3840x2160, before scaling it down to your monitor's resolution. You will need 3 GB of VRAM though, and an Advanced or Professional edition of 3DMark.

FutureMark has put together some numbers on just how much processing there is behind a single, average frame of the Fire Strike Ultra benchmark:

  Fire Strike (1080) Fire Strike Extreme (1440) Fire Strike Ultra (2160)
Graphics Test 1: Tessellation patches 500,000 560,000 650,000
Graphics Test 1: Triangles 5,100,000 9,900,000 12,400,000
Graphics Test 2: Vertices 2,600,000 3,900,000 6,000,000
Graphics Test 2: Pixels 170,000,000 400,000,000 1,100,000,000

Multiply those numbers by 60, to see what it will take to run the benchmark at 60 FPS.

Source: Press Release and FutureMark

Comments (0) | Posted at 08:02AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

Data security has always been important, but has never been quite as valued as it is now. To that end, new security systems are being developed, such as the dynamic encryption system created by a professor at the Technical University of Denmark.

Many telecommunication operators use the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) to protect things like phone calls, and while it works, it is possible to decrypt it with enough computing power. This dynamic encryption system adds more layers to the encryption, making it more complex and difficult to crack, but what makes it especially effective is that it randomly chooses the layers to add. Every time someone makes a phone call using this system, AES and some additional layers are used to protect it, but with the next call, different layers are used. Even if someone were able to eavesdrop, they would find it harder to decrypt because they would not know the exact methods used to encrypt the transmission.

The dynamic encryption system is currently being marketed as a way to counter industrial espionage by the Dencrypt company the Denmark professor started.

Source: Technical University of Denmark

October 12, 2014
Comments (0) | Posted at 07:26PM PST by gebraset

Dairy Queen and Kmart are the latest businesses to announce that they have suffered a data breach due to malware that specifically exploits payment data systems. Dairy Queen has revealed that payment card customer names, numbers, and expiration dates have been stolen, but that other personal information was not affected. Kmart on the other hand has revealed that debit and credit card numbers were compromised in the data breach, but that personal information, debit card PIN numbers, email addresses, and Social Security numbers were not compromised.

Both businesses claim that their respective security holes have been addressed and all malware has been removed from their systems successfully. Due to the breach, Dairy Queen is offering affected customers free identity repair services and Kmart is providing its customers with free credit monitoring protection.

Source: CNET

Comments (0) | Posted at 07:09PM PST by gebraset

Apple has started to rollout a redesigned user interface for iTunes, ahead of the launch of OS X Yosemite that is expected to occur next week at Appleā€™s event in Cupertino, California. The new user interface incorporates design cues from the iTunes and App Store home pages on iOS devices and also features a flatter design overall. Download buttons are now displayed as simple outlines, the sidebar is now considerably flatter and features lighter typography, and fonts across the entire store have been changed. While the design is certainly sleeker and more refined, certain pages within the multimedia application have yet to be updated by Apple.

Source: 9to5Mac

October 11, 2014
Comments (0) | Posted at 12:51PM PST by ClayMeow

Announced back in August, Crytek's former Xbox One exclusive Ryse: Son of Rome has finally released for PC via Steam. Along with including all previously released DLC, the PC version also has full 4K support, if you happen to own a 4K monitor or a GTX 900 Series card and wish to utilize Dynamic Super Resolution (DSR). So I guess it only makes sense that the official PC Launch Trailer is available in 4K (2160p) and 1440p for your viewing pleasure; and viewing pleasure it is, indeed.

Source: Press Release

Comments (0) | Posted at 12:34PM PST by ClayMeow
Explore the Lowlands of Far Cry 4's Kyrat

Ubisoft is publishing a new series of Far Cry 4 videos that will introduce us to the various regions of Kyrat. "Each of the three major biomes in the game will be vastly different, both in looks and gameplay." The first video shows us the Lowlands, a massive region of rolling hilltops, local villages, and wetland marshes. It's also the home of brutal psychopath Paul de Pleur, the leader of Pagan Min's royal army. Couple that with some deadly wildlife, like bears and honey badgers, and you'll certainly have your hands full.

Far Cry 4 is set to release on PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on November 18.

Source: UbiBlog

Comments (0) | Posted at 08:31AM PST by gebraset

Netflix has quietly raised its subscription rates for customers looking to stream 4K Ultra High Definition content. According to a Netflix spokesperson, new subscribers, or current subscribers with newly purchased 4K UHD TVs, will now be charged $11.99 per month to be able to stream 4K content on up to four devices simultaneously. This represents an increase of $4 a month for Netflix subscribers that signed up for the service prior to May 9, 2014, and an increase of $3 a month for those who signed up after the recent price increase. The spokesperson did reveal however that current subscribers already paying for 4K content, who began their subscription prior to August 12, 2014, will be grandfathered into the older $7.99 per month plan until August 12, 2016.

The price hike for 4K content comes shortly after Netflix made paid agreements with Comcast and Verizon that allows subscribers to both broadband providers to fully utilize their Internet speeds to access and stream 4K content.

Source: HD Guru

October 10, 2014
Comments (0) | Posted at 09:16PM PST by ClayMeow
Will Arnett Reprising His Role in Lego Batman Movie

Unsurprisingly, Batman's appearance in The Lego Movie was quite the hit. So much so that Warner Bros. is now planning a spin-off Lego Batman movie, fast-tracked for a 2017 release. Will Arnett will be returning as the voice behind our beloved Dark Knight, while The Lego Movie animation supervisor Chris McKay will be directing the film with Seth Grahame-Smith writing the screenplay. The Lego Movie 2 is being pushed back as a result.

While 2017 is a long ways away, if you want a Lego Batman fix sooner, you can always grab LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham next month.

Source: Hollywood Reporter

Comments (0) | Posted at 07:05PM PST by ClayMeow

If you want to play one of the most highly anticipated games of the year the way it's meant to be played, you're going to want to grab the PC version and make sure you system is up to snuff. Electronic Arts has revealed the PC system requirements for Dragon Age: Inquisition, and it's actually not too bad...

OS: Windows 7 or 8.1 64-bit
CPU: AMD six core CPU @ 3.2 GHz, Intel quad core CPU @ 3.0 GHz
System RAM: 8 GB
Graphics Card: AMD Radeon HD 7870 or R9 270, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660
Graphics Memory: 2 GB
Hard Drive: 26 GB
DirectX 11

OS: Windows 7 or 8.1 64-bit
CPU: AMD quad core CPU @ 2.5 GHz, Intel quad core CPU @ 2.0 GHz
System RAM: 4 GB
Graphics CARD: AMD Radeon HD 4870, NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT
Graphics Memory: 512 MB
Hard Drive: 26 GB
DirectX 10

Along with the system requirements, EA posted an article discussing the PC version of the game, ensuring us that "BioWare is a developer whose roots are in PC gaming, [so] you can bet this version of Inquisition is the real deal." The game has been fine-tuned for keyboard and mouse play, features a ton of visual and interface options to tweak, supports 4K resolution, and supports AMD Mantle. The Xbox 360 controller is officially supported as well, if you'd inexplicably rather use that.

If you've never played a Dragon Age game, you can grab Dragon Age: Origins for FREE on Origin as part of the current On the House offering. Just be forewarned: if you're a completionist, a single playthrough can take 100+ hours. Totally worth it though.

Dragon Age: Inquisition will launch on November 18 in North America and November 21 in Europe for PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. The Standard Edition costs $59.99 for all platforms, while a Deluxe Edition is available for $69.99 and includes the following bonus content: Flames of the Inquisition Armor, Flames of the Inquisition Armored Mount, Skyhold Throne, Red Hart Halla, Bog Unicorn, and the digital soundtrack. Pre-ordering either version grants you some nice fiery weapons from the Flames of the Inquisition Arsenal.

Source: Origin News

Comments (0) | Posted at 06:20PM PST by ClayMeow
Learn About the World Within The Evil Within

Bethesda Softworks has published a third in-depth trailer and blog post for its survival horror The Evil Within, entitled "The World Within". Shifting planes of distorted reality, hordes of gruesome enemies, and deadly puzzles all await you in The Evil Within. And then there's main antagonist Ruvik, who I must say reminds me a lot of F.E.A.R.'s Alma in the way he just appears out of nowhere to creep you out.

The Evil Within will be available for Windows PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on October 14. Pre-ordering nets you "The Fighting Chance Pack", which includes five in-game items: medical kit, double barrel shotgun, incendiary agony bolt, poison agony bolt, and green gel. A Season Pass is also available, which will contain three content packs featuring new characters and stories.

Source: Press Release and Bethesda Blog

Comments (0) | Posted at 11:42AM PST by Guest_Jim_*

Many devices and technologies rely on electric fields in one way or another, which makes it important to know the fields involved. To that end, researchers at NIST and the University of Michigan have developed a new electric field probe that uses some powerful quantum properties.

At the heart of the probe is a cylinder containing atoms that have been put into high-energy, Rydberg states using red and blue lasers. In these states, the rubidium or cesium atoms are extremely sensitive and reactive to electromagnetic fields, with electric fields altering the frequencies of light they absorb. This use of quantum mechanics actually makes the system self-calibrating, improving its precision. This allows it to measure field strengths as low as 0.8 millivolts per meter, which is 100 times weaker than conventional methods can measure. The range of frequencies it can measure reaches from 1 to 500 GHz, covering radio, microwave, millimeter-wave, and sub terahertz bands, but it may be possible to reach up to 1 THz.

For the time being the probe is tabletop sized, but by using photonic structures, it should be possible to shrink it down, possibly allowing it to be part of a NIST on a chip. Potential uses include testing and calibrating antennas, sensors, biomedical, and nanoelectronic systems, as well as enable the development of future devices.

Source: NIST

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