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Black Hole Observatory Set to Launch on Friday

February 11, 2016 9:34 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

While the east coast is slumbering, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) will launch a new observatory into space, which is primed to study black holes and galaxy clusters.

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Power walk: Footsteps could charge mobile electronics

February 11, 2016 9:30 am | by Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison | News | Comments

When you're on the go and your smartphone battery is low, in the not-so-distant future you could charge it simply by plugging it into your shoe. An innovative energy harvesting and storage technology could reduce our reliance on the batteries in our mobile devices, ensuring we have power for our devices no matter where we are.

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'Electronic nose' may help to diagnose diseases

February 11, 2016 9:26 am | by National Research Tomsk State Univ. | News | Comments

The device analyzes a gas mixture using semiconductor sensors.

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Penguin parents: Inability to share roles increases their vulnerability to climate change

February 11, 2016 9:17 am | by Springer | News | Comments

The fixed division of labor between crested penguin parents increases their chicks' vulnerability to food shortages made ever more common by climate change. The parents have been unable to adapt their habits to the challenges of increasingly frequent years of limited food supply and, as a result, will become further threatened by extinction.

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Cotton candy machines may hold key for making artificial organs

February 11, 2016 9:09 am | by Vanderbilt Univ. | News | Comments

Cotton candy machines may hold the key for making life-sized artificial livers, kidneys, bones and other essential organs.

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Obama's Clean Power Plan Hits Wall with Supreme Court

February 11, 2016 8:48 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court issued a temporary freeze on the plan’s implementation after a 5-4 majority vote.

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Indian Scientists Study Chunk that Fell From Sky, Killed Man

February 10, 2016 2:43 pm | by Nirmala George, Associated Press | News | Comments

Scientists are analyzing a small blue object that plummeted from the sky and killed a man in southern India, after authorities said it was a meteorite.

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Climate Change Helps Bats to Spread Their Wings

February 10, 2016 2:40 pm | by Springer | News | Comments

Climate change is most likely behind the extraordinary spread of a type of vesper bat across Europe over the last four decades. Read more...

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Big-Mouthed Fish Swam the Cretaceous Oceans

February 10, 2016 2:33 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

Splashing about the oceans of the Cretaceous Period was a genus of fish with an impressive, gaping maw. Rhinconichthys, by fossil discovery standards, is a rare catch. 

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IEA: Global Oil Glut Could Get Worse This Year

February 10, 2016 11:33 am | by Ryan Bushey, Associate Editor | News | Comments

The Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA) released a report on Tuesday indicating the global energy market will continue to have a tough year.

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The Computer in Google's Autonomous Vehicle Can be Considered a 'Driver'

February 10, 2016 11:28 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

In a letter to Chris Urmson—the director of Google, Inc.’s Self-Driving Car Project—the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has said that Google’s Self-Driving System (SDS) can be considered the “driver” of the vehicle.

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Potential Anti-Suicide Drug Identified

February 10, 2016 10:11 am | by Ryan Bushey, Associate Editor | News | Comments

Common painkiller could help patients deal with emotional and physical pain. 

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Bacteria are optical objects, each cell acting like a microscopic eyeball or the world's oldest and smallest camera eye. Courtesy of eLife

This Slime Can See

February 10, 2016 9:47 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | News | Comments

It’s your classic slime, a green substance that can be found in freshwater lakes and rivers, and coats surrounding rocks. Synechocystis is a type of cyanobacteria, which evolved around 2.7 billion years ago and gleans its energy from the sun via photosynthesis. Though primordial, this bacteria is still revealing its tricks to scientists. And researchers recently discovered it perceives the world in a remarkably similar way to humans.

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Researchers are trying to develop an understanding of how using recycled concrete affects the behavior of reinforced concrete structures so that buildings using large amounts of recycled material can be designed for safety and to serve their intended purp

Why not recycled concrete?

February 9, 2016 5:13 pm | by William G. Gilroy, University of Notre Dame | News | Comments

From paper towels to cups to plastic bottles, products made from recycled materials permeate our lives. One notable exception is building materials. Why can’t we recycle concrete from our deteriorating infrastructure for use as material in new buildings and bridges? It’s a question that a team of researchers is examining. The biggest barrier to using recycled concrete has been variability and uncertainty in the quality and properties...

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(Left) The metasurface composed of a perforated plate (transparent gray region) with a hole and a coiled coplanar air chamber (yellow region). (right) The absorption coefficient, α, of the presented metasurface with a total absorption at 125.8 Hz. Results

Absorbing acoustics with soundless spirals

February 9, 2016 5:06 pm | by American Institute of Physics | News | Comments

Researchers at the French National Centre for Scientific Research, CNRS, and the University of Lorraine have recently developed a design for a coiled-up acoustic metasurface that can achieve total acoustic absorption in very low-frequency ranges. The researchers designed an acoustic absorber in which sound waves enter an internal coiled air channel through a perforated center hole.

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