Content for MIT.Edu

MIT.Edu

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a private research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Institute is a land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant university, with an urban campus that extends more than a mile (1.6 km) alongside the Charles River. The Institute also encompasses a number of major off-campus facilities such as the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, the Bates Center, and the Haystack Observatory, as well as affiliated laboratories such as the Broad and Whitehead Institutes. Founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialization of the United States, MIT adopted a European polytechnic university model and stressed laboratory instruction in applied science and engineering. It has since played a key role in the development of many aspects of modern science, engineering, mathematics, and technology, and is widely known for its innovation and academic strength, making it one of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the world.

Charting a safe course through a highly uncertain environment

“A new technique can safely guide an autonomous robot without knowledge of its environmental conditions or the size, shape, or location of obstacles it might encounter. An autonomous spacecraft exploring the far-flung regions of the universe descends through the atmosphere …

Is it topological? A new materials database has the answer

“Searchable tool reveals more than 90,000 known materials with electronic properties that remain unperturbed in the face of disruption. What will it take to make our electronics smarter, faster, and more resilient? One idea is to build them from …

Astronomers snap first-ever image of supermassive black hole Sagittarius A*

“The image reveals a glowing, donut-shaped ring at the Milky Way’s heart. Black holes are invisible by nature. Their pull is inescapable, forever trapping any light that falls into their gravitational abyss. But just beyond a black hole’s …

Ultrathin fuel cell uses the body’s own sugar to generate electricity

“Engineers have developed a glucose power source that could fuel miniature implants and sensors. Glucose is the sugar we absorb from the foods we eat. It is the fuel that powers every cell in our bodies. Could glucose also power …

Astronomers discover a rare “black widow” binary, with the shortest orbit yet

“The system is orbited by third stellar companion and may have originated near the center of the Milky Way. The flashing of a nearby star has drawn MIT astronomers to a new and mysterious system 3,000 light years from …

Engineers use artificial intelligence to capture the complexity of breaking waves

“Their model’s predictions should help researchers improve ocean climate simulations and hone the design of offshore structures. Waves break once they swell to a critical height, before cresting and crashing into a spray of droplets and bubbles. These waves …

Soft assistive robotic wearables get a boost from rapid design tool

“Scientists have created a design and fabrication tool for soft pneumatic actuators for integrated sensing, which can power personalized health care, smart homes, and gaming. Soft, pneumatic actuators might not be a phrase that comes up in daily conversations, but …

Unpacking black-box models

“Researchers create a mathematical framework to evaluate explanations of machine-learning models and quantify how well people understand them. Modern machine-learning models, such as neural networks, are often referred to as “black boxes” because they are so complex that even the …

From seawater to drinking water, with the push of a button

“Researchers build a portable desalination unit that generates clear, clean drinking water without the need for filters or high-pressure pumps. MIT researchers have developed a portable desalination unit, weighing less than 10 kilograms, that can remove particles and salts to …

Machine learning, harnessed to extreme computing, aids fusion energy development

“Linking techniques from machine learning with advanced numerical simulations, MIT researchers take an important step in state-of-the-art predictions for fusion plasmas. MIT research scientists Pablo Rodriguez-Fernandez and Nathan Howard have just completed one of the most demanding calculations in fusion …