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Defibrillator drones arrive faster than ambulances

Future Tech: Plus...thermally adaptive fabric & an amazing artificial iris.

Drones with defibrillators could prove vital for cardiac arrest patients

Defibrillator-delivery drone

From The Guardian:

Drones are already employed for anything from military to recreational use, from oil exploration to filmmaking, but they could also help save the lives of people who have suffered a cardiac arrest, research suggests.

A simulated study found that drones carrying a defibrillator, which could be used by a member of the public, arrived 16 minutes quicker than the emergency services on average, saving precious time.

Jacob Hollenberg, director of the Centre for Resuscitation Science at the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, who led the study, told the Guardian: “Cardiac arrest is one of the major killers in the western world. Every minute is crucial; I would say every second is crucial.

“Every minute that passes from collapse to [cardiopulmonary resuscitation] or defibrillation, the chances of survival goes down by 10%. That’s why survival after 10 to 12 minutes is basically zero. There’s a huge difference in using the defibrillator within the first few minutes. Even if you improve the timing of the ambulances in these type of situations, it’s too late —only one in 10 victims survive”.

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This inventive fabric adapts to temperature changes

Thermally adaptive fabric

From Popular Mechanics:

Do you ever head out of the house without checking the weather to later realize that you are either under or overdressed? A research lab in California known as Otherlab, has been working on what it calls “thermally adaptive materials” using ARPA-E funding. This fabric responds to the rises and falls in temperature to keep you comfortable in any weather.

The fabric is made of two different materials that react to temperature differently. The result is that when it gets cold, the fabric puffs out. It also operates completely passively, meaning that there are no sensors or electronics.

The response may take a little bit of time but this beats having to carry around an extra piece of clothing when you aren’t prepared for weather changes. The scientists that helped develop this fabric says that it will insulate you as well as a t-shirt does at minimum poof, and at maximum it will be almost equivalent to some heavy outdoor gear.

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An artificial iris that autonomously adjusts focus

Artificial iris developed in Finland

From Engadget:

The human iris does its job of adjusting your pupil size to meter the amount of light hitting the retina behind without you having to actively think about it. And while a camera’s aperture is designed to work the same way as a biological iris, it’s anything but automatic.

Even point-and-shoots rely on complicated control mechanisms to keep your shots from becoming overexposed. But a new “artificial iris” developed at Tampere University of Technology in Finland can autonomously adjust itself based on how bright the scene is.

Scientists from the Smart Photonic Materials research group developed the iris using a light-sensitive liquid crystal elastomer. The team also employed photoalignment techniques, which accurately position the liquid crystal molecules in a predetermined direction within a tolerance of a few picometers. This is similar to the techniques used originally in LCD TVs to improve viewing angle and contrast but has since been adopted to smartphone screens.

“The artificial iris looks a little bit like a contact lens,” TUT Associate Professor Arri Priimägi said. “Its center opens and closes according to the amount of light that hits it.”

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The Editors

The Editorial Team develops articles, company profiles and resources for the Business Hub to bring IT, tech and innovation stories to the Manitoba business community.

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