10 YEARS AGO — 2002
Fish and chips: An integrated circuit may play a key role in collecting data about the habitat salmon prefer during their two to three-year ocean migration, according to University of Rhode Island researcher Godi Fischer. The IC is powered by a tiny battery that produces 1 A of current. The chips will be sealed in epoxy for durability and attached to dorsal fins of fish. They are programmable, so temperature data can be collected as often as desired. A prototype will be tested on salmon this year. Retrieval rates are expected to be about 5%.
30 YEARS AGO — 1982
Search and rescue satellite: The Tiros-N/NOAA Series of meteorological satellites will have an additional role, beginning in 1983, when the Advanced Tiros-N evaluates an international search and rescue system. To be known as NOAA-8 in orbit, the satellite is the latest in a series designed and built by RCA Astro-Electronics for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. In addition to its regular weather-watch duties, the satellite will relay distress calls from ships and aircraft equipped with emergency beacons. It also will carry instruments for monitoring variations in radiation to Earth.
50 YEARS AGO — 1962
Rigid urethane foam construction makes the 12-ft KorKi unsinkable, strong, and inexpensive, according to its builder, the Glastex Co., Monmouth, Ill. A7/8-in. layer of urethane, foamed in place between inner and outer shells of 1/16-in. laminated fiberglass, provides buoyancy for KorKi’s size and weight: The boat can support the weight of more people than can climb aboard. Closed-cell structure of the foam also adds strength — carrying a 400-lb test load and powered by a 15-hp motor, KorKi was repeatedly beached under full power and rammed into pilings without suffering structural damage.