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  • Coastal changes worsen nuisance flooding on many US shorelines, study finds
    on March 5, 2021 at 7:00 pm

    Nuisance flooding has increased on U.S. coasts in recent decades due to sea level rise, and new research co-authored by the University of Central Florida uncovered an additional reason for its added frequency.

  • Comet Catalina suggests comets delivered carbon to rocky planets
    on March 5, 2021 at 6:44 pm

    In early 2016, an icy visitor from the edge of our solar system hurtled past Earth. It briefly became visible to stargazers as Comet Catalina before it slingshotted past the Sun to disappear forevermore out of the solar system.

  • Tantalizing signs of phase-change ‘turbulence’ in RHIC collisions
    on March 5, 2021 at 5:59 pm

    Physicists studying collisions of gold ions at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), a U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science user facility for nuclear physics research at DOE’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, are embarking on a journey through the phases of nuclear matter—the stuff that makes up the nuclei of all the visible matter in our universe. A new analysis of collisions conducted at different energies shows tantalizing signs of a critical point—a change in the way that quarks and gluons, the building blocks of protons and neutrons, transform from one phase to another. The findings, just published by RHIC’s STAR Collaboration in the journal Physical Review Letters, will help physicists map out details of these nuclear phase changes to better understand the evolution of the universe and the conditions in the cores of neutron stars.

  • Life’s rich pattern: Researchers use sound to shape the future of printing
    on March 5, 2021 at 5:46 pm

    Researchers in the UK have developed a way to coax microscopic particles and droplets into precise patterns by harnessing the power of sound in air. The implications for printing, especially in the fields of medicine and electronics, are far-reaching.

  • Using a radical to break C-F bonds one at a time
    on March 5, 2021 at 5:05 pm

    A team of researchers from the University of Science and Technology of China and the University of California has found a way to use radicals to break C-F bonds one at a time when working with trifluoroacetamides and acetates. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes how they found the right radical for such reactions and how their technique might be used in future applications.

  • New tool finds and fingerprints previously undetected PFAS compounds in watersheds on Cape Cod
    on March 5, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) found large quantities of previously undetectable compounds from the family of chemicals known as PFAS in six watersheds on Cape Cod using a new method to quantify and identify PFAS compounds. Exposures to some PFAS, widely used for their ability to repel heat, water, and oil, are linked to a range of health risks including cancer, immune suppression, diabetes, and low infant birth weight.

  • Compression or strain—the material always expands
    on March 5, 2021 at 4:11 pm

    An international research team led by chemist Prof. Thomas Heine of TU Dresden has discovered a new two-dimensional material with unprecedented properties: regardless of whether it is strained or compressed, it always expands. This so-called half-auxetic behavior has not been observed before and is therefore very promising for the design of new applications, especially in nano-sensorics.

  • New study suggests humans evolved to run on less water than our closest primate relatives
    on March 5, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    When you think about what separates humans from chimpanzees and other apes, you might think of our big brains, or the fact that we get around on two legs rather than four. But we have another distinguishing feature: water efficiency.

  • ‘Fungal ghosts’ protect skin, fabric from toxins, radiation
    on March 5, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    The idea of creating selectively porous materials has captured the attention of chemists for decades. Now, new research from Northwestern University shows that fungi may have been doing exactly this for millions of years.

  • Study shows that the GW190521 event could be explained by primordial black holes
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:30 pm

    In September 2020, the LIGO/Virgo collaboration, a large team of scientists working at different universities worldwide, announced that they had detected most massive gravitational wave binary signal observed to date, which they called GW190521. In a paper published in Physical Review Letters, they explored the hypothesis that this signal was produced by the merger of two black holes, with at least the primary component mass in the mass gap predicted by the pair-instability supernova theory.

  • Earth’s position and orbit spurred ancient marine life extinction
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:27 pm

    Ancient rocks from Tennessee revealed the Earth’s rotation and orbit around the sun controlled the timing of oceanic dead zones in a mass extinction of marine life about 370 million years ago.

  • Spacewalkers finish solar panel prep for station power boost
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:07 pm

    Spacewalking astronauts completed the first round of prep work Friday for new solar panels, part of a major power upgrade at the International Space Station.

  • Oocyte growth relies on physical phenomena that drive smaller cells to dump their contents into a larger cell
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:01 pm

    Egg cells are by far the largest cells produced by most organisms. In humans, they are several times larger than a typical body cell and about 10,000 times larger than sperm cells.

  • Greenland ice loss may have begun as early as the mid-’80s
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:00 pm

    The amount of snow falling on Greenland’s glaciers may have been less than the water lost through icebergs calving and melting since at least the mid-1980s, a study of almost 40 years of satellite images has revealed.

  • Scanning tunneling microscopy reveals the origins of stable skyrmion lattices
    on March 5, 2021 at 3:00 pm

    RIKEN physicists have discovered how interactions between electrons can stabilize a repeating arrangement of swirling magnetic patterns known as skyrmions, which could help to further exploit these structures.

  • Rare earth unlocks copper, gold and silver secrets
    on March 5, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    A study by Monash scientists has found that a rare earth affects the fate of a key reaction with copper, gold, silver, and uranium mineralisation.

  • Particle detector at Fermilab plays crucial role in Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment
    on March 5, 2021 at 2:54 pm

    A century ago, physicists didn’t know about the existence of neutrinos, the most abundant, elusive and ethereal subatomic particles of matter in the universe.

  • Improved understanding of plasma source for synthesis of carbon nanotubes
    on March 5, 2021 at 2:54 pm

    Researchers have developed an insight that could facilitate production of microscopic carbon nanotubes, structures thousands of times thinner than a human hair used in everything from microchips to sporting goods to pharmaceutical products. The research by scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) could ensure that fabrication forms nanotubes as efficiently as possible.

  • Financial crashes, pandemics, Texas snow: How math could predict ‘black swan’ events
    on March 5, 2021 at 2:51 pm

    What if mathematicians could have seen COVID-19 coming, or could predict the next outbreak? Is it possible that numbers, manipulated by statistics, might warn of future market fluctuations and environmental disasters, or herald vast shifts in finance, trade, and employment?

  • The story of polar aurora just got much bigger: Unknown magnetospheric mechanisms revealed
    on March 5, 2021 at 1:05 pm

    A critical ingredient for auroras exists much higher in space than previously thought, according to new research in the journal Scientific Reports. The dazzling light displays in the polar night skies require an electric accelerator to propel charged particles down through the atmosphere. Scientists at Nagoya University and colleagues in Japan, Taiwan and the U.S. have found that it exists beyond 30,000 kilometers above the Earth’s surface—offering insight not just about Earth, but other planets as well.

  • How an ‘antibiotic’ helps bacteria eat
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:44 pm

    For years, scientists have known that certain bacteria produce molecules that are toxic to other bacteria when there is competition for food and space. Now, Caltech researchers have discovered these so-called antibiotics have another purpose: they help the bacteria acquire essential nutrients when resources are scarce.

  • Study: Combined liver-cytokine humanization rescues circulating red blood cells for testing drugs
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:44 pm

    In a new study by the Yale Department of Immunobiology and Yale Cancer Center, researchers report combined liver and growth factor humanization enhances human red blood cell production and survival in circulation the immunodeficient murine host. The discovery could help in the development of treatments of life-threatening blood disorders, such as myelodysplastic syndrome, and diseases afflicting red blood cells, including sickle cell disease and malaria. The study is published online today in the journal Science.

  • Roundworms ‘read’ wavelengths in the environment to avoid dangerous bacteria that secrete colorful toxins
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:43 pm

    Roundworms don’t have eyes or the light-absorbing molecules required to see. Yet, new research shows they can somehow sense color. The study, published in the journal Science, suggests worms use this ability to assess the risk of feasting on potentially dangerous bacteria that secrete blue toxins. The researchers pinpointed two genes that contribute to this spectral sensitivity and are conserved across many organisms, including humans.

  • Widespread wildfire as a proxy for resource strain
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:22 pm

    Fire is a natural part of ecosystems in the western United States, but the summer fire season has grown both longer and more intense in recent years. As the size of the area burned across the region has risen year after year, so too has the expense of fire management. Indeed, federal wildfire suppression costs more than tripled between the 1980s and today, from roughly $245 million per year to $1.6 billion.

  • Large-scale study uncovers recent genetic connectivity in chimpanzee subspecies, despite isolation
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:21 pm

    Chimpanzees are divided into four subspecies separated by geographic barriers like rivers. Previous studies attempting to understand chimpanzee population histories have been limited either by a poor geographic distribution of samples, samples of uncertain origin or different types of genetic markers. Due to these obstacles, some studies have shown clear separations between chimpanzee subspecies while others suggest a genetic gradient across the species as in humans.

  • Tracking proteins in the heart of cells
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:21 pm

    Cells must provide their internal organelles with all the energy elements they need, which are formed in the Golgi apparatus, the center of maturation and redistribution of lipids and proteins. But how do the proteins that carry these cargoes—the kinesins—find their way and direction within the cell’s “road network” to deliver them at the right place? Chemists and biochemists at the University of Geneva (UNIGE), Switzerland, have discovered a fluorescent chemical dye, and for the first time, tracked the transport activity of a specific motor protein within a cell. The results are published in Nature Communications.

  • X-ray microscopy reveals the outstanding craftsmanship of Siberian Iron Age textile dyers
    on March 5, 2021 at 12:17 pm

    The Pazyryk carpet is the world’s oldest example of a knotted-pile carpet and is kept at the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. The carpet, which was made out of new wool at around 400 BC, is one of the most exciting examples of central Asian craftsmanship from the Iron Age. Ever since the carpet was discovered in 1947 by Russian archaeologists in a kurgan tomb in the Altai mountains, experts in traditional dyeing techniques have been puzzled by the vivid red, yellow and blue colors of the carpet, which lay buried in extreme conditions for almost 2,500 years.

  • Antarctic seals reveal worrying threats to disappearing glaciers
    on March 5, 2021 at 10:00 am

    More Antarctic meltwater is surfacing than was previously known, modifying the climate, preventing sea ice from forming and boosting marine productivity- according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA).

  • New quantum theory heats up thermodynamic research
    on March 5, 2021 at 10:00 am

    Researchers have developed a new quantum version of a 150-year-old thermodynamical thought experiment that could pave the way for the development of quantum heat engines.

  • Fine particulate matter from wildfire smoke more harmful than pollution from other sources
    on March 5, 2021 at 10:00 am

    Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego examining 14 years of hospital admissions data conclude that the fine particles in wildfire smoke can be several times more harmful to human respiratory health than particulate matter from other sources such as car exhaust. While this distinction has been previously identified in laboratory experiments, the new study confirms it at the population level.