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Gadget in-extremis

Gadget in extremis: Ionic clock trumps atomic timekeeping

PTB timepiece

A single-ion clock has attained accuracy only ever predicted theoretically. I remember writing this one a couple of years ago – Experimental atomic clocks set new accuracy record – and it seems a potentially more accurate time system has now been developed. Apparently, it is so precise it attains a degree of accuracy that had only been predicted theoretically. The ...

Gadget in extremis: Gadgets in Space – NASA chooses

send a submarine to Titan’s largest northern sea, Kraken Mare

A robot submarine for exploring the methane oceans of Saturn’s giant moon, Titan, a greenhouse on Mars and a spacecraft that hitches rides on comets to the outer solar system are just three of the far-out ideas NASA is backing in its latest round of funding for the distant future of space exploration. New Scientist’s Jacob Aron takes up the story… ...

Gadget in extremis: LEAF, the killer European sound system

ESA ESTEC Noordwijk

Wow. How about this? Thanks to Engadget for highlighting something custom made for our Gadget-in-extremis category. It’s a sound system so powerful it would kill you to hear it in full force! It’s at the European Space Agency and is the Large European Acoustic Facility (LEAF) that simulates the noise of a rocket launch. The ESA writes: LEAF is an ...

Gadget in Extremis: DIY induction heater


When I was a kid, there were books of things for boys to make and, I kid you not, one included a mains-powered Pb-melting induction furnace complete with transformer winding hints and tips. Sadly, gone are those adventurous days – and probably gladly as I suspect some people who tried it probably got burns for their troubles. Now DON’T TRY ...