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Supercomputer Scours Fossil Record for Earth's Hidden Extinctions
Paleontologists have charted 300 million years of Earth’s history in breathtaking detail -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
5m ago scientificamerican.com
Rainstorms douse bushfires across eastern Australia
Rain and thunderstorms doused long-burning bushfires across much of eastern Australia Saturday, but they also brought a new threat of flooding in some areas.
2h ago phys.org
Male sparrows are less intimidated by the songs of aging rivals
Few singers reach their sunset years with the same voice they had in younger days. Singing sparrows are no different. Duke University-led research reveals that elderly swamp sparrows don't sound quite like they used to—nor do they strike the same fear in other males who may be listening in.
2h ago phys.org
Male sparrows are less intimidated by the songs of aging rivals
Few singers reach their sunset years with the same voice they had in younger days. Songbirds are no different. New research reveals that elderly swamp sparrows don't sound quite like they used to -- nor do they strike the same fear in other males who may be listening in. Humans are remarkably good at guessing a person's age by their voice. But this is the first time the phenomenon has been demonstrated in wild animals.
12h ago sciencedaily.com
Ingestible medical devices can be broken down with light
Engineers have developed a light-sensitive material that allows gastrointestinal devices to be triggered to break down inside the body when they are exposed to light from an ingestible LED.
14h ago sciencedaily.com
Walking with atoms: Chemical bond making and breaking recorded in action
Scientists have for the first time captured and filmed atoms bonding together, using advanced microscopy methods they captured a moment that is around half a million times smaller than the width of a human hair.
14h ago sciencedaily.com
What is an endangered species?
What makes for an endangered species classification isn't always obvious.
14h ago sciencedaily.com
What is an endangered species?
What makes for an endangered species classification isn't always obvious.
14h ago phys.org
Prosecutors' race, class bias may not drive criminal justice disparities
America's prison populations are disproportionately filled with people of color, but prosecutors' biases toward defendants' race and class may not be the primary cause for those disparities, new research from the University of Arizona suggests.
14h ago phys.org
Teens feel the heat of climate change
In 2017, when the drought in Cape Town was at its worst in over a century, aid organisation Gift of the Givers made an urgent call to South Africans to help farmers; suicide rates, amongst both small- and large-scale farmers, had surged in the few months prior. This and other evidence paints a bleak future picture in the context of climate change, and southern Africa is one of the areas that will suffer the most.
15h ago phys.org
Edible caterpillars become rare in drought-hit Botswana
Packed with protein and calcium, mopane worms are a delicacy in Botswana, where they are stirred into chunky tomato and peanut stews.
16h ago phys.org
Air France-KLM chief warns carbon taxes could backfire
Air France-KLM chief executive Ben Smith said Friday that imposing carbon taxes on ticket prices could prove counterproductive, hindering efforts by airlines to buy more fuel-efficient planes that could significantly reduce emissions.
17h ago phys.org
NASA water vapor imagery shows Tino's heavy rain potential over Fiji
When NASA's Aqua satellite passed over the Southern Pacific Ocean it gathered water vapor data that provided information about the intensity of Tropical Cyclone Tino.
17h ago phys.org
Walking with atoms—chemical bond making and breaking recorded in action
Ever since it was proposed that atoms are building blocks of the world, scientists have been trying to understand how and why they bond to each other. Be it a molecule (which is a group of atoms joined together in a particular fashion), or a block of material or a whole living organism, ultimately, everything is controlled by the way atoms bond, and the way bonds break.
17h ago phys.org
Ingestible medical devices can be broken down with light
A variety of medical devices can be inserted into the gastrointestinal tract to treat, diagnose, or monitor GI disorders. Many of these have to be removed by endoscopic surgery once their job is done. However, MIT engineers have now come up with a way to trigger such devices to break down inside the body when they are exposed to light from an ingestible LED.
17h ago phys.org
Spider-Man-style robotic graspers defy gravity
Specially designed vacuum suction units allow humans to climb walls. Scientists have developed a suction unit that can be used on rough surfaces, no matter how textured, and that has applications in the development of climbing robots and robotic arms with grasping capabilities.
18h ago phys.org
Scientists measure the evolving energy of a solar flare's explosive first minutes
Toward the end of 2017, a massive new region of magnetic field erupted on the Sun's surface next to an existing sunspot. The powerful collision of magnetic energy produced a series of potent solar flares, causing turbulent space weather conditions at Earth. These were the first flares to be captured, in their moment-by-moment progression, by NJIT's then recently opened Expanded Owens Valley Solar Array (EOVSA) radio telescope.
18h ago phys.org
Chemists allow boron atoms to migrate
Organic molecules with atoms of the semi-metal boron are among the most important building blocks for synthesis products that are needed to produce drugs and agricultural chemicals. However, during the usual chemical reactions used in industry, the valuable boron unit, which can replace another atom in a molecule, is often lost. Chemists at the University of Münster have now succeeded in significantly expanding the range of applications of commercially and industrially used boron compounds, so-called allylboronic esters. The study has been published in the scientific journal Chem.
18h ago phys.org
Not all of nature's layered structures are tough as animal shells and antlers, study finds
Nacre—the iridescent part of mollusk shells—is a poster child for biologically inspired design. Despite being made of brittle chalk, the intricately layered microstructure of nacre gives it a remarkable ability to resist the spread of cracks, a material property known as toughness.
18h ago phys.org
A new method for dating ancient earthquakes
Constraining the history of earthquakes produced by bedrock fracturing is important for predicting seismic activity and plate tectonic evolution. In a new study published in the Nature journal Scientific Reports Jan 17, 2020, a team of researchers presents a new microscale technique to determine the age of crystals grown during repeated activation of natural rock fractures over a time range of billions of years.
18h ago phys.org
Material developed which is heat-insulating and heat-conducting at the same time
Styrofoam or copper—both materials have very different properties with regard to their ability to conduct heat. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz and the University of Bayreuth have now jointly developed and characterized a novel, extremely thin and transparent material that has different thermal conduction properties depending on the direction. While it can conduct heat extremely well in one direction, it shows good thermal insulation in the other direction.
18h ago phys.org
Molecules move faster on a rough terrain
Roughness, the presence of irregularities on a surface, is commonly associated with slower motion and stickiness. This is true at different length scales: at human size (1 meter), it takes longer to walk along a path that goes up and down, rather than walking on a flat road. At the size of smaller objects (1/100 - 1/1000 meter), Italians use pasta shapes with a rough surface, e.g. rigatoni, to make better adhesive surfaces for the tomato sauce and cheese. Until now, however, no experiment was able to test if the behavior of molecules really follows the same trend observed at human scale.
18h ago phys.org
Human fetal lungs harbor a microbiome signature
The lungs and placentas of fetuses in the womb -- as young as 11 weeks after conception -- already show a bacterial microbiome signature, which suggests that bacteria may colonize the lungs well before birth. This first-time finding deepens the mystery of how the microbes or microbial products reach those organs before birth and what role they play in normal lung and immune system development.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
Transformational innovation needed to reach global forest restoration goals
New research finds that global South countries have pledged the largest areas of land to forest restoration, and are also farthest behind in meeting their targets due to challenging factors such as population growth, corruption, and deforestation.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
Chemists allow boron atoms to migrate
Organic molecules with atoms of the semi-metal boron are important building blocks for synthesis products to produce drugs and agricultural chemicals. However, the conversion of substances commonly used in industry often results in the loss of the valuable boron unit, which can replace another atom in a molecule. Chemists now introduce carbon-carbon couplings in which the boron atom is retained.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
Neuron found in mice could have implications for effective diet drugs
A CALCR cell found in mice may stop feeding without subsequential nauseating effects, as well as influence the long term intake of food.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
Spider-Man-style robotic graspers defy gravity
Traditional methods of vacuum suction and previous vacuum suction devices cannot maintain suction on rough surfaces due to vacuum leakage, which leads to suction failure. Researchers have developed a zero-pressure difference method to enhance the development of vacuum suction units. Their method overcame leakage limitations by using a high-speed rotating water ring between the surface and suction cup to maintain the vacuum.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
Scientists measure the evolving energy of a solar flare's explosive first minutes
In 2017, a massive new region of magnetic field erupted on the sun's surface next to an existing sunspot. The powerful collision of magnetic energy produced a series of solar flares, causing turbulent space weather conditions at Earth. Scientists have now pinpointed for the first time exactly when and where the explosion released the energy that heated spewing plasma to energies equivalent to 1 billion degrees in temperature.
18h ago sciencedaily.com
To Conserve Marine Species, Make Protected Areas Mobile
Because climate change is shifting ocean ecosystems, sanctuaries need to shift with them, experts argue -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
19h ago scientificamerican.com
Hands off our grasslands
In the north eastern Free State, a 60 km green corridor is being created that will link the upper Wilge Protected Environment to the Sneeuwberg.
19h ago phys.org
This Fish Knows How to Stick Around
The remora clings to other fish—and appears to use an unusual sense of touch to do so. Christopher Intagliata reports.  -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
19h ago flex.acast.com
Climate may play a bigger role than deforestation in rainforest biodiversity
"Save the rainforests" is a snappy slogan, but it doesn't tell the full story of how complicated it is to do just that. Before conservationists can even begin restoring habitats and advocating for laws that protect land from poachers and loggers, scientists need to figure out what's living, what's dying, and which patterns explain why. Tackling these questions—in other words, finding out what drives a region's biodiversity—is no small task.
19h ago phys.org
Internet use reduces study skills in university students
Research conducted at Swansea University and the University of Milan has shown that students who use digital technology excessively are less motivated to engage with their studies, and are more anxious about tests. This effect was made worse by the increased feelings of loneliness that use of digital technology produced.
19h ago phys.org
Acid reflux drugs may have negative side effects for breast cancer survivors
Acid reflux drugs that are sometimes recommended to ease stomach problems during cancer treatment may have an unintended side effect: impairment of breast cancer survivors' memory and concentration.
19h ago sciencedaily.com
Not all of nature's layered structures are tough as animal shells and antlers
Engineers looking to nature for inspiration have long assumed that layered structures like those found in mollusk shells enhance a material's toughness, but a study shows that's not always the case. The findings may help engineers avoid 'naive biomimicry, the researchers say.
19h ago sciencedaily.com
Programmable nests for cells
Using DNA, small silica particles, and carbon nanotubes, researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) have developed novel programmable nanocomposites that can be tailored to various applications and programmed to degrade quickly and gently. For medical applications, they can create environments in which human stem cells can settle down and develop further. Additionally, they are suited for the setup of biohybrid systems to produce power, for instance. The results are presented in Nature Communications and on the bioRxiv platform.
20h ago phys.org
3-D printing with applications in the pharmaceutical industry
University of Seville researchers, in collaboration with the University of Nottingham, have managed to create the first image of nanoparticles of stabilised gold with biodegradable and biocompatible systems that have been obtained with 3-D-printng techniques. The image chosen for this test was the logo of the University of Seville.
20h ago phys.org
Microplastics affect sand crabs' mortality and reproduction, study finds
Sand crabs, a key species in beach ecosystems, were found to have increased adult mortality and decreased reproductive success when exposed to plastic microfibers, according to a new Portland State University study.
20h ago phys.org
Charge model for calculating the photo-excited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators
Assistant Professor Ohmura Shu and Professor Takahashi Akira of the Nagoya Institute of Technology and others have developed a charge model to describe photo-excited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators under the JST Strategic Basic Research Programs. They have also succeeded in constructing a many-body Wannier function as the localized basis state of the photo-excited states and calculating large-system, optical conductivity spectra that can be compared with experimental results.
20h ago phys.org
Transformational innovation needed to reach global forest restoration goals
The U.N. and other international organizations agree that forest restoration is a critical part of the collective global effort to combat climate change, reduce extinctions, and improve the lives of people in rural communities. Dozens of nations have pledged to restore 230 million hectares of forest so far as part of projects such as the Bonn Challenge and REDD+. The Bonn Challenge goal is to restore 350 million hectares by 2030.
20h ago phys.org
Self-assembled artificial microtubule like LEGO building blocks
Simple LEGO bricks can be assembled to more complicated structures, which can be further associated into a wide variety of complex architectures, from automobiles, rockets, and ships to gigantic castles and amusement parks. Such an event of multi-step assembly, so-called 'hierarchical self-assembly,' also happens in living organisms.
20h ago phys.org
Sea lions yawn due to anxiety
Researchers have analysed these animals for 14 months, concluding that the frequency of their yawns increases immediately after a social conflict among members of the group.
20h ago phys.org
The war on waste pickers
The man in the tattered shirt, biceps bulging as he pulls an enormous bag of waste behind him on a trolley. The blaring horns as cars slide by, annoyed at the intrusion in their lane. The furtive WhatsApp messages on community channels, "Are these waste pickers dangerous? I don't like them digging through my trash …"
20h ago phys.org
Why bosses should let employees surf the web at work
If you're like most workers, you don't spend 100% of your time at the office doing what you're supposed to be doing.
20h ago phys.org
Real risks associated with cannabis exposure during pregnancy
A new study has definitively shown that regular exposure to THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis, during pregnancy has significant impact on placental and fetal development.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
Human ancestors started biodiversity decline millions of years ago
The human-caused biodiversity decline started much earlier than researchers used to believe. According to a new study the process was not started by our own species but by some of our ancestors.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
The core of massive dying galaxies already formed 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang
The most distant dying galaxy discovered so far, more massive than our Milky Way -- with more than a trillion stars -- has revealed that the 'cores' of these systems had formed already 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, about 1 billion years earlier than previous measurements revealed. The discovery will add to our knowledge on the formation of the Universe more generally, and may cause the computer models astronomers use, one of the most fundamental tools, to be revised.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
Molecules move faster over rough terrain
Contrary to what one might think, molecules can move faster in the proximity of rougher surfaces.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
It takes more than two to tango: Microbial communities influence animal sex and reproduction
It is an awkward idea, but a couple's ability to have kids may partly depend on who else is present. The reproductive tracts of males and females contain whole communities of micro-organisms. These microbes can have considerable impact on (animal) fertility and reproduction. They may even lead to new species.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
Activation of a distinct genetic pathway can slow the progress of metastatic breast cancer
Activation of the BMP4 signalling pathway presents a new therapeutic strategy to combat metastatic breast cancer, a disease that has shown no reduction in patient mortality over the past 20 years.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
The way you dance is unique, and computers can tell it's you
Nearly everyone responds to music with movement, whether through subtle toe-tapping or an all-out boogie. A recent discovery shows that our dance style is almost always the same, regardless of the type of music, and a computer can identify the dancer with astounding accuracy.
20h ago sciencedaily.com
Chemist proposes new method for synthesizing precursors for Parkinson's drugs
A chemist from RUDN University has proposed a new method for the synthesis of secondary propargylamine used to create antidepressants, drugs for Parkinson's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, as well as malaria. It differs from the known methods in its simplicity and stability of the resulting substance. The paper was published in the Journal of Organic Chemistry.
20h ago phys.org
Force social-media firms to share data to cut teen suicides, say psychiatrists
20h ago technologyreview.com
Changing the leopard's spots
Since wildlife poaching in Africa became a critical conservation issue, Chinese people have been portrayed as ruthless in the apparent pursuit of wildlife body parts. The Africa-China Reporting Project in Wits Journalism enable journalists to cut through the rhetoric, stereotypes and generalisations.
20h ago phys.org
Researchers testing ability of floating wetlands to survive winter
The grasses are dormant, their brown leaves poking the sky as they float in one of the frigid lily ponds in Lincoln's Sunken Gardens, the 1.5-acre public garden at 27th Street and Capital Parkway.
20h ago phys.org
The first step in managing plastic waste is measuring it – here's how we did it for one Caribbean country
Countries around the world throw away millions of tons of plastic trash every year. Finding ways to manage plastic waste is daunting even for wealthy nations, but for smaller and less-developed countries it can be overwhelming.
20h ago phys.org
Battling longer, more intense fire seasons
Fires in Australia have been burning for months. At least 28 people and hundreds of thousands of animals have died, and more than 15 million acres have been destroyed as firefighters work to squelch the blaze. Penn doctoral student Clare Super has been closely watching news of the fires. Super is a third-year doctoral student in the Department of Anthropology in the School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania.
20h ago phys.org
New astronomical instrument on the hunt for exoplanets
At the highest point of the Quinlan mountains, overlooking the Sonoran Desert as it stretches across southern Arizona, NEID (pronounced like "fluid") recently collected its first observations, known colloquially by astronomers as "first light," at the Kitt Peak National Observatory.
20h ago phys.org
We need to modernize how we measure national wealth
I recently tried an experiment. I changed several light bulbs, and since one required a little rewiring, I sent my wife (also known as the majority shareholder) a bill for $110.50 (plus GST). In return, she sent me a bill of $457.98 for her preparation in late December of a sumptuous meal, plus her work managing all social connections associated with the holidays.
20h ago phys.org
Mysterious little red jellies: A case of mistaken identity
Little red jellies are commonplace near the deep seafloor in Monterey Bay and around the world. Most of them are small—less than five centimeters (two inches) across—and a ruddy red color, but we know little else about them. Though MBARI researchers have observed them for decades, their role in the food web, what they eat, and what eats them, still largely remain mysteries. Now scientists are finding that even their evolution and relationships to one another are probably incorrect.
20h ago phys.org
Living yoga for the mind
Plants in the office are not there just to look pretty. They can lead to increased productivity, as well as improved mental health for workers.
20h ago phys.org
How grass dances with fire
There's a long-held myth that Johannesburg is the globe's largest urban forest, resplendent with an annual purple Jacaranda show. But before the planting of these (alien) trees for timber during the Gold Rush in the 19th Century, Johannesburg was a rich and varied grassland—a biome [community of plants and animals] that is one of the least protected in South Africa. Fortunately, the Department of Environmental Affairs prohibits plantation forestry in our grasslands, because of the negative impact it has on water resources and biodiversity.
20h ago phys.org
Scientists create titanium parts using additive technologies
Manufacturing products from titanium and its alloys using traditional methods remains a complex technological task that requires a lot of time and money. Scientists at South Ural State University have developed a new universal technology for manufacturing titanium alloy parts using additive technologies. The new technology will allow significant savings in further machining. An article about the study was published in Materials.
20h ago phys.org
Before we rush to rebuild after fires, we need to think about where and how
A primary school in East Gippsland was burnt down in the current bushfire crisis. While Premier Daniel Andrews immediately committed to rebuilding the school as it was, media reported the local CFA captain didn't want it rebuilt.
20h ago phys.org
Expert discusses the prospects of climate engineering
Climate engineering may offer a last-ditch technological solution to catastrophic climate change, but who makes the decisions on which solutions to implement, and who the beneficiaries will be? Once we start fiddling with the Earth's fundamental processes, where will it end? Schalk Mouton asks Professor Bob Scholes.
20h ago phys.org
French oyster farmers fume as norovirus shuts down sales
Several oyster farmers along France's Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts have been forced to halt sales since December after their sites were contaminated by the highly contagious norovirus, which they blame on overflowing sewage treatment plants.
21h ago phys.org
The way you dance is unique, and computers can tell it's you
Nearly everyone responds to music with movement, whether through subtle toe-tapping or an all-out boogie. A recent discovery shows that our dance style is almost always the same, regardless of the type of music, and a computer can identify the dancer with astounding accuracy.
21h ago phys.org
Rich rewards: Scientists reveal ADHD medication's effect on the brain
Researchers have identified how certain areas of the human brain respond to methylphenidate -- a stimulant drug which is used to treat symptoms of ADHD. The work may help researchers understand the precise mechanism of the drug and ultimately develop more targeted medicines for the condition.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Charge model for calculating the photoexcited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators
Researchers have developed a charge model to describe photoexcited states of one-dimensional Mott insulators. They have also succeeded in constructing a many-body Wannier function as the localized basis state of the photoexcited states and calculating large-system, optical conductivity spectra that can be compared with experimental results.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Rethinking interactions with mental health patients
New research overturns the belief that people with severe mental illness are incapable of effective communication with their psychiatrist, and are able to work together with them to achieve better outcomes for themselves.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
The greenbacks in mobile phone mines
No-one who is economically active can afford to go without at least a mobile phone, and at the pace that electronic equipment is re-invented, it's only a matter of time before your 'latest' iPhone 11 ends up on a dump site.
21h ago phys.org
Why action on climate change gets stuck and what to do about it
Work crews descended on 12 commuter parking lots in Toronto in late November 2018, and headed to the electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. Their work came on the heels of an IPCC report that warned of dire environmental, economic and health consequences in the absence of any serious momentum toward decarbonization by 2030.
21h ago phys.org
Lessons on how to effectively tackle insect invasions
Kenyan food production and grazing land is under threat from a huge desert locust invasion. The insects are currently in two counties in northern Kenya and are now spreading to other Kenyan regions including Meru, Laikipia, and Rift Valley. The government has yet to quantify losses but past attacks have caused harvest losses of up to 70%.
21h ago phys.org
An evolving understanding of extinction
Few things related to science capture the imagination more than the magic of worlds past. This includes the origins of life, dinosaurs, mass extinctions, meteorite impacts, and the evolution of our species. Understanding the evolution of life is central to the way we view ourselves and others and developing this field is thus critical.
21h ago phys.org
Newly developed screening processes will accelerate carbon capture research
University of Alberta researchers have developed techniques that save a significant amount of time in developing more efficient carbon capture technologies, which may help lower the costs to use the technologies and increase their adoption as a way to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions.
21h ago phys.org
Image: Hubble views galaxy from famous catalog
This bright, somewhat blob-like object—seen in this image taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope—is a galaxy named NGC 1803. It is about 200 million light-years away, in the southern constellation of Pictor (the Painter's Easel).
21h ago phys.org
The burning issue of population control
The increasing human population is putting large amounts of pressure on our natural resources and is contributing to climate change, leading many people to call for increased population control—especially for poorer communities. Beth Amato investigates whether this could be a solution to decrease the rate of climate change.
21h ago phys.org
Native plants can flourish after bushfire, but there's only so much hardship they can take
In a fire-blackened landscape, signs of life are everywhere. A riot of red and green leaves erupt from an otherwise dead-looking tree trunk, and the beginnings of wildflowers and grasses peek from the crunchy charcoal below.
21h ago phys.org
Image: Japanese archipelago and the western Pacific Ocean
The Copernicus Sentinel-3 mission takes us over the Japanese archipelago—a string of islands that extends about 3000 km into the western Pacific Ocean.
21h ago phys.org
Using waste carbon dioxide to separate metals from ores
A combined team of researchers from the University of Lyon and the University of Turin has developed a way to use waste CO2 to separate metals used in products. In their paper published in the journal Nature Chemistry, the group describes their process and why they believe it can be used as a global warming mitigation tool.
21h ago phys.org
Making new catalysts from unique metallic alloys
Heusler alloys are magnetic materials made from three different metals that are not magnetic individually. The alloys are used broadly for their magnetic and thermoelectric properties, and their ability to regain their original shape after being deformed, known as shape memory. Investigations by Tohoku University's advanced materials scientist An-Pang Tsai and colleagues now show that these materials can also be fine-tuned to speed up chemical reactions. This catalytic capability is reviewed in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials.
21h ago phys.org
Black rhino population shows steady growth
Good news stories can be hard to come by in an era of extinction, but the steady improvement in the fortunes of the black rhino is one of those stories.
21h ago phys.org
Using machine learning to fine-tune views of the ancient past
A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in China and two in the U.S. has developed a way to use machine learning to get a better look at the past. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes how they used machine learning to analyze records of the past.
21h ago phys.org
Here and gone: Outbound comets are likely of alien origin
Astronomers at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) have analyzed the paths of two objects heading out of the Solar System forever and determined that they also most likely originated from outside of the Solar System. These results improve our understanding of the outer Solar System and beyond.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Microplastics affect sand crabs' mortality and reproduction
Sand crabs, a key species in beach ecosystems, were found to have increased adult mortality and decreased reproductive success when exposed to plastic microfibers, according to a new study.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Self-assembled artificial microtubules developed
Simple LEGO bricks can be assembled to more complicated structures, which can be further associated into a wide variety of complex architectures, from automobiles, rockets, and ships to gigantic castles and amusement parks. Such an event of multi-step assembly, so-called 'hierarchical self-assembly', also happens in living organisms.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Focus on opioids and cannabis in chronic pain media coverage
New Zealand media reports on chronic pain are focusing on treatments involving opioids and cannabis at the expense of best practice non-drug treatments, researchers have found.
21h ago sciencedaily.com
Human-caused biodiversity decline started millions of years ago
The human-caused biodiversity decline started much earlier than researchers used to believe. According to a new study published in the scientific journal Ecology Letters the process was not started by our own species but by some of our ancestors.
21h ago phys.org
Measuring the wear and tear of metals
For the past 50 years, researchers at the National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) have been conducting detailed short- and long-term testing of a wide variety of structural materials manufactured in Japan to ensure they can withstand long-term stresses. Now, NIMS scientists have reviewed this data, in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials, summarizing the institute's major findings.
21h ago phys.org
How biology creates networks that are cheap, robust, and efficient
From veins that deliver oxygen to tissues to xylem that send water into stems and leaves, vascular networks are a crucial component of life. In biology, there is a wide range of unique patterns, like the individualized structures found on leaves, along with many conserved structures, such as named arteries and veins in the human body. These two observations led scientists to think that vascular networks evolved from a common design, but how, exactly, could nature create so many complex structures from a single starting point?
21h ago phys.org
Fins and limbs tell evolutionary tale
About 400 million years ago, our early ancestors took their first hesitant steps out of the primordial seas on to land.
21h ago phys.org
Vital Signs: The end of the checkout signals a dire future for those without the right skills
There has already been a fair number of jobs lost to automation over recent decades—from factory workers to bank tellers.
21h ago phys.org
The EU might ban facial recognition in public for five years
21h ago technologyreview.com
Male and female firefighters have different problems with protective suits
When female firefighters put on the protective suits they need for their work, they're often using gear that has been designed for a male body.
21h ago phys.org
Video: Researching wildfire with the Navajo Nation
Connecting with the land and nature plays a large role in many Indigenous cultures. Northern Arizona University's School of Forestry is partnering with Diné College and Navajo Forestry in researching the effects of fire on the Navajo Nation. Through working together, these organizations hope to educate students from all different backgrounds by combining western science and traditional knowledge to learn how fires have shaped the land to be what it is today and how proper resource management could foster healthy growth in the future.
21h ago phys.org
How do sea stars move without a brain? The answer could impact robotics and more
Have you ever seen a sea star move? To many of us, sea star seem motionless, like a rock on the ocean's floor, but in actuality, they have hundreds of tube feet attached to their underbelly. These feet stretch and contract to attach to rough terrain, hold on to prey and, of course, move.
21h ago phys.org
Novel protein positioning technique improves functionality of yeast cells
A research team at Kobe University has developed a method of artificially controlling the anchorage position of target proteins in engineered baker's yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae).
21h ago phys.org
Surveying all the proteins on a neuron's surface
Scientists have found a new way to home in on the proteins covering a particular cell's surface. The feat offers insight into how brain cells form intricate networks during development.
21h ago phys.org
Homosexuality may have evolved as an outcome of increased sociability in humans
How did homosexuality in humans evolve?
21h ago phys.org
Is Eating Late Bad for Your Heart?
The American Heart Association suggests that late-night eating might increase your risk of heart disease. But how solid is the evidence? -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
21h ago scientificamerican.com
Here and gone: Outbound comets are likely of extra-solar origin
Astronomers at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) have analyzed the paths of two objects heading out of the Solar System forever and determined that they also most likely originated from outside of the Solar System. These results improve our understanding of the outer Solar System and beyond.
21h ago phys.org
XMM-Newton discovers scorching gas in Milky Way's halo
ESA's XMM-Newton has discovered that gas lurking within the Milky Way's halo reaches far hotter temperatures than previously thought and has a different chemical make-up than predicted, challenging our understanding of our galactic home.
21h ago phys.org
Small economic gambles are insignificant when large background uncertainty is considered
The decision to buy a lottery ticket, gamble on a stock, or buy an insurance policy often comes down to an assessment of risk. How much do I have to lose or gain? For centuries, economists have debated about when somebody should take or walk away from a bet. Now, in new research from Caltech and Yale University, economists are weighing in on the conversation with new mathematical arguments that take a person's overall uncertainty in life into account. The results show that when somebody's overall uncertainty—or "background uncertainty"—is large enough compared to a particular small gamble, then the risk of the gamble becomes less significant.
21h ago phys.org
5 tips to get your children excited about math
What are parents to do when their children don't show much interest or become easily frustrated by math?
21h ago phys.org
Plant organ growth is not so different from animals
For a long time, researchers assumed that cell death occurs mainly during animal organ growth, but not in plant organs. A research group led by Hannele Tuominen from UPSC has now demonstrated that the death of certain cells in the root facilitated the growth of lateral roots. These new findings hint at organ growth of plants and animals might not be so different as thought. The study was published today in the journal Current Biology.
21h ago phys.org
What's in the smoke given off by the Australian wildfires?
Wildfires such as the ones that have been burning across Australia for months, pose different threats to the firefighters battling them. And, because the safety equipment used by woodland firefighters is far less regulated than that of their counterparts who fight fires in buildings and other structures, the long-term effects of these threats are still largely unknown, say two assistant bioengineering professors at Northeastern.
21h ago phys.org
Panic like it's 1999: Why aren't we tackling climate change like we did Y2K?
On Dec. 31, 1999, USC students rang in the New Year in a variety of fashions. But they all faced the prospect of a global IT implosion, now that each year was about to start with a two instead of a one.
21h ago phys.org
Diverse cropping systems don't increase carbon storage compared to corn-soybean rotations
Integrating perennial crops into corn and soybean rotations doesn't consistently increase the ability of soils to store carbon, according to a new study that defies expectations for how diverse cropping systems affect carbon sequestration.
21h ago phys.org
First Spacebus Neo satellite launched
Ariane 5's first launch of 2020 has delivered two telecom satellites, Konnect and GSAT-30, into their planned transfer orbits. Arianespace announced liftoff at 21:05 GMT (22:05 CET, 18:05 local time) this evening from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.
21h ago phys.org
How sensitive can a quantum detector be?
Quantum physics is moving out of the laboratory and into everyday life. Despite headline results about quantum computers solving problems impossible for classical computers, technical challenges are standing in the way of getting quantum physics into the real world. New research published in Nature Communications from teams at Aalto University and Lund University could provide an important tool in this quest.
21h ago phys.org
Sanitary care by social ants shapes disease outcome
Sanitary care in ants to fight disease is known to improve the wellbeing of the colony, yet it has been unclear how social disease defense interferes with pathogen competition inside the individual host body. In their recent study published in Ecology Letters, Sylvia Cremer and her research group at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) revealed that collective care-giving has the power to bias the outcome of co-infections in fungus-exposed colony members.
21h ago phys.org
Sea lions: Cash cows in the Bay Area, but farther south, fishermen say 'Shoot 'em'
Sea lions are increasingly living in parallel universes along the California coast, a disparity best observed amid the noisy, stinking spectacle that rolls out daily at San Francisco's Pier 39 shopping center.
21h ago phys.org
A Vision of Ephemeral Ice
Artist Shoshannah White views the endangered Arctic ice through a unique lens -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
22h ago blogs.scientificamerican.com
Internet use reduces study skills in university students
Research has shown that students who use digital technology excessively are less motivated to engage with their studies, and are more anxious about tests. This effect was made worse by the increased feelings of loneliness that use of digital technology produced.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
Human ancestors may have eaten hard plant tissues without damaging teeth
Hard plant foods may have made up a larger part of early human ancestors' diet than currently presumed, according to a new experimental study of modern tooth enamel. The results have implications for reconstructing diet, and for our interpretation of the fossil record of human evolution, researchers said.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
Sanitary care by social ants shapes disease outcome
Sanitary care in ants to fight disease is known to improve the wellbeing of the colony, yet it has been unclear how social disease defense interferes with pathogen competition inside the individual host body. Biologists now revealed that collective care-giving has the power to bias the outcome of coinfections in fungus-exposed colony members.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
America's most widely consumed oil causes genetic changes in the brain
New research shows soybean oil not only leads to obesity and diabetes, but could also affect neurological conditions like autism, Alzheimer's disease, anxiety, and depression.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
Cheap drug may alleviate treatment-resistance in leukemia
A common and inexpensive drug may be used to counteract treatment resistance in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), one of the most common forms of blood cancer. The researchers will now launch a clinical study to test the new combination treatment in patients.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
How sensitive can a quantum detector be?
Measuring the energy of quantum states requires detecting energy changes so exceptionally small they are hard to pick out from background fluctuations, like using only a thermometer to try and work out if someone has blown out a candle in the room you're in. New research presents sensitive quantum thermometry hitting the bounds that nature allows.
22h ago sciencedaily.com
Kill Switch for CRISPR Could Make Gene Editing Safer
Anti-CRISPR proteins could bolster biosecurity and improve medical treatments -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
1d ago scientificamerican.com
Earth's Magnetic Field Is Drastically Revised
Originally published in March 1965 -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
1d ago scientificamerican.com
The Peril and Power of Following the Evidence
The author, a climate scientist, faced a political controversy, along with a personal crisis, more than two decades ago, bringing lessons that resonate today -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
1d ago blogs.scientificamerican.com
Are Human Body Temperatures Cooling Down?
A new study finds that they have dropped, on average, over the past century and a half -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
1d ago scientificamerican.com
Study shows human ancestors could have consumed hard plant tissues without damaging their teeth
Go ahead, take a big bite.
1d ago phys.org
Study traces evolution of acoustic communication
Imagine taking a hike through a forest or a stroll through a zoo and not a sound fills the air, other than the occasional chirp from a cricket. No birds singing, no tigers roaring, no monkeys chattering, and no human voices, either. Acoustic communication among vertebrate animals is such a familiar experience that it seems impossible to imagine a world shrouded in silence.
1d ago phys.org
'Melting rock' models predict mechanical origins of earthquakes
Engineers at Duke University have devised a model that can predict the early mechanical behaviors and origins of an earthquake in multiple types of rock. The model provides new insights into unobservable phenomena that take place miles beneath the Earth's surface under incredible pressures and temperatures, and could help researchers better predict earthquakes—or even, at least theoretically, attempt to stop them.
1d ago phys.org