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Physics - Computer Science - 15.05.2024
A new, low-cost, high-efficiency photonic integrated circuit
A new, low-cost, high-efficiency photonic integrated circuit
Researchers at EPFL have developed scalable photonic integrated circuits, based on lithium tantalate, marking a significant advancement in optical technologies with potential to widespread commercial applications. The rapid advancement in photonic integrated circuits (PICs), whichcombine multiple optical devices and functionalities on a single chip, has revolutionized optical communications and computing systems.

Computer Science - 03.04.2024
Machine learning enables viability of vertical-axis wind turbines
Machine learning enables viability of vertical-axis wind turbines
Researchers have used a genetic learning algorithm to identify optimal pitch profiles for the blades of vertical-axis wind turbines, which despite their high energy potential, have until now been vulnerable to strong gusts of wind. If you imagine an industrial wind turbine, you likely picture the windmill design, technically known as a horizontal-axis wind turbine (HAWT).

Computer Science - Environment - 22.03.2024
How discarded smartphones can help decarbonize the building sector
How discarded smartphones can help decarbonize the building sector
Automated building systems offer a great potential for reducing the energy consumption of properties. Studies on such systems show that optimized solutions can reduce the energy requirements of buildings by around 30 percent on average. In order to avoid the necessity to produce new and emission-heavy computer chips, Empa researcher Hanmin Cai is currently investigating the extent to which damaged smartphones that are no longer used could perform these control and maintenance tasks.

Computer Science - 14.03.2024
Does Artificial Intelligence work in English?
Does Artificial Intelligence work in English?
Researchers have shown that large language models primarily trained on English text seem to use English internally, even when they are prompted in another language. As AI increasingly runs our lives, this may have important consequences regarding linguistic and cultural bias. Large language models (LLMs) including Open AI's ChatGPT and Google's Gemini have taken the world by storm, surprising with their ability to understand and respond to users with seemingly natural speech.

Computer Science - 05.03.2024
How artificial intelligence learns from complex networks
How artificial intelligence learns from complex networks
Deep neural networks have achieved remarkable results across science and technology, but it remains largely unclear what makes them work so well. A new study sheds light on the inner workings of deep learning models that learn from relational datasets, such as those found in biological and social networks.

Computer Science - Innovation - 22.02.2024
AI-driven method helps improve quality assurance for wind turbines
An international collaboration between EPFL and the University of Glasgow has led to an advanced machine-learning algorithm to effectively detect concealed manufacturing defects in wind turbine composite blades - before turbines are put into service. Faulty wind turbine blades can incur huge costs for the companies that operate them, especially if the defects go unnoticed until it's too late.

Chemistry - Computer Science - 07.02.2024
GPT-3 transforms chemical research
GPT-3 transforms chemical research
Scientists at EPFL demonstrate how GPT-3 can transform chemical analysis, making it faster and more user-friendly. Artificial intelligence is growing into a pivotal tool in chemical research, offering novel methods to tackle complex challenges that traditional approaches struggle with. One subtype of artificial intelligence that has seen increasing use in chemistry is machine learning, which uses algorithms and statistical models to make decisions based on data and perform tasks that it has not been explicitly programmed for.

Computer Science - 25.01.2024
Video game disorders: how to identify at-risk gamers?
Video game disorders: how to identify at-risk gamers?
Researchers from the Universities of Bordeaux and Lausanne have just published a study showing that the time spent playing video games has no influence on the quality of life of adult gamers.

Computer Science - Environment - 16.01.2024
AI program classifies objects in satellite images faster
An AI program can train neural networks, using just a handful of images, to rapidly characterize in satellite and drone data new objects like ocean debris, deforestation zones, urban areas and more. Images taken by drones and satellites give scientists a wealth of information. These snapshots provide crucial insight into the changes taking place on the Earth's surface, such as in animal populations, vegetation, debris floating on the ocean surface and glacier coverage.

Physics - Computer Science - 15.01.2024
Bridging light and electrons
Bridging light and electrons
Researchers at EPFL and Max Plank have merged nonlinear optics with electron microscopy, unlocking new capabilities in material studies and the control of electron beams. When light goes through a material, it often behaves in unpredictable ways. This phenomenon is the subject of an entire field of study called "nonlinear optics", which is now integral to technological and scientific advances from laser development and optical frequency metrology, to gravitational wave astronomy and quantum information science.

Microtechnics - Computer Science - 11.01.2024
Robots improve hearing aids
Robots improve hearing aids
It is extremely time-consuming to measure how sound behaves in a room. The Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts and the hearing aid manufacturer Sonova have therefore developed robots that can take over this task. This serves to improve hearing aids in rooms with a lot of background noise.

Physics - Computer Science - 08.12.2023
Training algorithm breaks barriers to deep physical neural networks
Training algorithm breaks barriers to deep physical neural networks
Researchers have developed an algorithm to train an analog neural network just as accurately as a digital one, enabling the development of more efficient alternatives to power-hungry deep learning hardware. With their ability to process vast amounts of data through algorithmic 'learning' rather than traditional programming, it often seems like the potential of deep neural networks like Chat-GPT is limitless.

Computer Science - Astronomy / Space - 22.11.2023
AI helps detecting plastic in oceans
AI helps detecting plastic in oceans
A research team from EPFL and Wageningen University has developed a new artificial intelligence model that recognises floating plastics much more accurately in satellite images than before. This could help to systematically remove plastic litter from the oceans with ships. Our society relies heavily on plastic products and the amount of plastic waste is expected to increase in the future.

Computer Science - Physics - 14.11.2023
Better energy efficiency in data processing
Better energy efficiency in data processing
Developed by researchers, the first large-scale in-memory processor using 2D semiconductor materials could substantially cut the ICT sector's energy footprint. As information and communication technologies (ICT) process data, they convert electricity into heat. Already today, the global ICT ecosystem's CO2 footprint rivals that of aviation.

Computer Science - 23.10.2023
A game changer for building robust distributed systems
A game changer for building robust distributed systems
Researchers have developed a new distributed algorithm that, for the first time, solves one of the key performance and reliability problems affecting most of the currently-deployed consensus protocols. Consensus is one of the fundamental problems in distributed systems. It allows a group of machines to maintain multiple copies of data and update them consistently, even when a fraction of the machines might fail.

Computer Science - Politics - 19.10.2023
A new EPFL tool shows the decline of political tone in the US
A new EPFL tool shows the decline of political tone in the US
A new EPFL developed tool, Quotebank , has helped researchers provide the first large-scale data-driven evidence of a drastic shift towards a more negative political tone beginning at the start of Donald Trump's primary campaign in June 2015. A vast majority of Americans believe that the tone and nature of political debate in the United States has become more negative in recent years and more than half have the impression that Donald Trump is responsible.

Life Sciences - Computer Science - 12.10.2023
How AI can help uncover the way memory works
A symphony of electrical signals and a dynamic tangle of connections between brain cells help us to make new memories. Using AI-powered models of groups of neurons, FMI researchers are working towards unlocking how the brain orchestrate this dance. Their latest study has achieved a major advance in accurately simulating the changes in the connections between neurons that sense the external environment, opening the door to a greater understanding of how countless brain cells transform sensations into perceptions and thoughts.

Environment - Computer Science - 22.09.2023
AI Increases Precision in Plant Observation
AI Increases Precision in Plant Observation
Evolutionary Biology Artificial intelligence (AI) can help plant scientists collect and analyze unprecedented volumes of data, which would not be possible using conventional methods. Researchers at the University of Zurich (UZH) have now used big data, machine learning and field observations in the university's experimental garden to show how plants respond to changes in the environment.

Physics - Computer Science - 21.09.2023
Virtual rail noise - close to reality
Virtual rail noise - close to reality
At Empa, acoustics experts have been investigating for years how noise is generated by passenger and cargo trains - and which technical and structural measures are particularly effective to prevent or at least reduce it. Their findings have now been incorporated into the SILVARSTAR project resulting in a simulation tool for rail noise that can help in practice.

Life Sciences - Computer Science - 20.09.2023
Artificial Intelligence tools shed light on millions of proteins
Artificial Intelligence tools shed light on millions of proteins
A research team at the University of Basel and the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics uncovered a treasure trove of uncharacterised proteins. Embracing the recent deep learning revolution, they discovered hundreds of new protein families and even a novel predicted protein fold. The study has now been published in "Nature".
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