Media Watch

The New York TImes

Electric Car Owners Confront a Harsh Foe: Cold Weather

The New York Times -
The challenge for electric vehicles is the two sides of the battery — the anode and the cathode — have chemical reactions that are slowed during extremely cold temperatures. That affects both the charging and the discharging of the battery, said Jack Brouwer, director of the Clean Energy Institute and a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of California, Irvine. “It ends up being very difficult to make battery electric vehicles work in very cold conditions,” Mr. Brouwer said. “You cannot charge a battery as fast or discharge a battery as fast if it’s cold. There’s no physical way of getting around.” Read More
Spectrum News

UCI scientists help track the sand in Dana Point

Spectrum News -
This summer, the first nourishment project in decades began at Capistrano Beach Park in Dana Point. Scientist from UC Irvine’s Flood Lab will help the City of Dana Point figure out how effective the sand replenishment project is. A team, including Research Specialist Jo Schubert, will do monthly sand surveys using a drone that takes hundreds of pictures across stretches of sand from Doheny State Beach to Poche Creek through April 2024. Read More
Science News

Bacteria stitch exotic building blocks into novel proteins

Science -
Researchers report they’ve developed an efficient way to coax bacteria to add structurally unusual amino acids into proteins. So far they’ve succeeded with just four exotic building blocks, but their approach could lead to medicines that persist longer in the body and better catalysts for industry. “It’s a big accomplishment to get these new categories of amino acids into proteins,” says Chang Liu, a biomedical engineer at the University of California, Irvine who was not part of the study, which was published this week in Nature. Read More

World Nears Dangerous Climate Tipping Point With Snow in Short Supply

Bloomberg -
“That’s how sensitive the system is to snow — one single degree of temperature change,” said Amir AghaKouchak, professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of California, Irvine. “The implications are huge, both for ecosystems that don’t get a lot of attention and also drinking water.” AghaKouchak and Laurie Huning, an assistant professor of civil engineering at California State University, Long Beach, published the first global analysis of snow drought in 2020. They found that several mountain regions saw an uptick in snow drought intensity, length and frequency in the first 18 years of this century compared to the 19 years preceding it. Read More
Orange County Business Journal

Sayenza Biosciences Aims For $3.5M Seed Round

Orange County Business Journal -
Irvine-based medical equipment manufacturer Sayenza Biosciences is raising a $3.5 million seed round to complete product development of its automated fat and stem cell processor. … Prior to Sayenza, [CEO Derek] Banyard was the chief scientist at the Center for Tissue Engineering at the University of California, Irvine. It was during his time at UCI that he learned that fat possessed the same stem cells you’d find in bone marrow. He then partnered with two UCI professors at the time, Jered Haun and Alan Widgerow, to start Sayenza. Read More
MSN News

Deadly Blue-Ringed Octopus Inspires New Camouflage Technology for Defense, Communications, Scientists Say

MSN – Knewz -
A new color-changing technology has been inspired by the deadly blue-ringed octopus, an expert at camouflage. The scientists behind the breakthrough say can their invention can be used in various fields like medicine, robotics, clean energy and the military. … “We are fascinated by the mechanisms underpinning the blue-ringed octopus’ ability to rapidly switch its skin markings between hidden and exposed states,” Alon Gorodetsky, a UCI professor and co-author on the study, said. Read More
Intelligent Living

Future of Fashion: Smart Fabric Innovations Unlock New Communication Capabilities

Intelligent Living -
Researchers from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) have unveiled a groundbreaking technology that turns everyday clothing into a medium for digital communication and interaction with nearby electronic devices. Spearheaded by Assistant Professor Peter Tseng and his team, including Ph.D. student Amirhossein Hajiaghajani, these smart fabric innovations extend the functionality of near-field communication (NFC) beyond the typical few inches to over four feet, enabling a suite of practical applications that merge fashion with digital convenience. Read More
New Atlas

Blue-ringed octopus inspires self-healing camouflage & signaling tech

New Atlas -
Inspired by the small but deadly blue-ringed octopus, [UCI] researchers have created a novel technology that rapidly changes color and appearance under various kinds of light, enabling camouflaging and signaling. The tech has potential applications in fields like the military, medicine, and robotics. … “We are fascinated by the mechanisms underpinning the blue-ringed octopus’ ability to rapidly switch its skin markings between hidden and exposed states,” said Alon Gorodetsky, corresponding author of the study. Read More

Engineers invent octopus-inspired technology that can deceive and signal -
With a split-second muscle contraction, the greater blue-ringed octopus can change the size and color of the namesake patterns on its skin for purposes of deception, camouflage and signaling. Researchers at the University of California, Irvine have drawn inspiration from this natural wonder to develop a technological platform with similar capabilities for use in a variety of fields, including the military, medicine, robotics and sustainable energy. … "We are fascinated by the mechanisms underpinning the blue-ringed octopus' ability to rapidly switch its skin markings between hidden and exposed states," said senior co-author Alon Gorodetsky, UCI professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering. Read More
The Engineer

Blue-ringed octopus inspires camouflage tech

The Engineer -
Native to the Western Pacific Ocean and Indian Ocean, the octopus uses the iridescent blue rings on its underlying brown skin to signal to other creatures, camouflage itself and ward off enemies. To mimic this action, the UCI team used wrinkled blue rings surrounding brown circles, sandwiched between a transparent proton-conducting electrode and an underlying acrylic membrane, with another identical electrode underneath. The work is published in Nature Communications. According to senior co-author Alon Gorodetsky, the type of molecules used to fabricate the coloured blue ring layer are what endow the devices with their outstanding features, including adjustable spectroscopic properties, ease of manufacturing and stability under illumination. Read More