Mechanical engineers have devised a clever technology that can levitate and move individuals particles using ultrasonic waves. Although the technology is still in its infancy, this powerful proof of concept suggests that it might one day be possible to perform surgery acoustically instead of using lasers which can destroy cells and healthy tissue. Acoustic levitation isn’t exactly new. Scientists have demonstrated it in various forms in labs across the world and you can find a lot of very entertaining videos on YouTube. What’s different about the new research is that scientists have now levitated and moved particles independently from one another for the very first time. Previously, acoustically levitated objects behaved in the same way. The team of researchers at Universidad Publica De Navarra in Spain and the University of Bristol in the UK have called their technology “Holographic Acoustic Tweezers” (HOT). The name plays on the wording of Holographic Optical Tweezers (HAT), an increasingly popular method for applying precisely controlled forces to microscopic object. The researchers hope that their method will one day replace HAT, whose main downside is that it can kill cell...