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Control on shape of light particles opens the way to quantum Internet

December 15, 2014 8:53 am | by Eindhoven Univ. of Technology | Comments

In the same way as we now connect computers in networks through optical signals, it could also be possible to connect future quantum computers in a quantum Internet. The optical signals would then consist of individual light particles or photons. One prerequisite for a working quantum Internet is control of the shape of these photons.

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Fish use chemical camouflage from diet to hide from predators

December 15, 2014 8:43 am | by Brett Israel, Georgia Institute of Technology | Comments

A species of small fish uses a homemade coral-scented cologne to hide from predators, a new study has shown, providing the first evidence of chemical camouflage from diet in fish. Filefish evade predators by feeding on their home corals and emitting an odor that makes them invisible to the noses of predators, the study found.

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Engineering students aim to generate first breathable air on Mars

December 15, 2014 8:32 am | by The Univ. of Western Australia | Comments

A project by students from The Univ. of Western Australia and Mars One astronaut candidate Josh Richards has reached the finals of an international competition to land vital experiments on the Red Planet. The Helena Payload project, which aims to generate the first breathable air on Mars, is one of 10 finalists in the Mars One University Competition and is the only successful entry from the southern hemisphere.

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New method helps map species’ genetic heritage

December 15, 2014 8:20 am | by Liz Ahlberg, Physical Sciences Editor, Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign | Comments

Where did the songbird get its song? What branch of the bird family tree is closer to the flamingo: the heron or the sparrow? These questions seem simple, but are actually difficult for geneticists to answer. A new, sophisticated statistical technique developed by researchers can help researchers construct more accurate species trees detailing the lineage of genes and the relationships between species.

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Earth’s most abundant mineral finally has a name

December 15, 2014 8:00 am | by Tona Kunz, Argonne National Laboratory | Comments

An ancient meteorite and high-energy x-rays have helped scientists conclude a half century of effort to find, identify and characterize a mineral that makes up 38% of the Earth. And in doing so, a team of scientists clarified the definition of the Earth's most abundant mineral, a high-density form of magnesium iron silicate, now called Bridgmanite, and defined estimated constraint ranges for its formation.

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Team combines logic, memory to build “high-rise” chip

December 15, 2014 7:49 am | by Tom Abate, Stanford Engineering | Comments

For decades, the mantra of electronics has been smaller, faster, cheaper. Today, Stanford Univ. engineers add a fourth word: taller. A Stanford team revealed how to build high-rise chips that could leapfrog the performance of the single-story logic and memory chips on today's circuit cards.

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Lining up for molecular memory devices

December 12, 2014 11:03 am | by RIKEN | Comments

A way to use weak molecular bonding interactions to create well-ordered and stable metal–organic monolayers with optoelectronic properties has been found by researchers from the RIKEN Surface and Interface Science Laboratory.        

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Robot 'shadow hand'

December 12, 2014 10:57 am | by ESA | Comments

ESA is developing technologies for advanced human–machine interaction to transfer the human sense of touch to space.                                       

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Neutron CT helps solve battery fire puzzle

December 12, 2014 10:43 am | by Daniel Hussey, NIST | Comments

Earlier this month, the NTSB released its Aircraft Incident Report on a fire aboard a Japan Airlines Boeing 787, concluding that the fire was probably caused by an internal short circuit within a cell of the lithium-ion battery.       

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Seed grants awarded for innovative energy research

December 12, 2014 10:37 am | by Mark Shwartz and Mark Golden, Stanford University | Comments

Stanford University's Precourt Institute for Energy, Precourt Energy Efficiency Center and TomKat Center for Sustainable Energy have awarded eight seed grants totaling about $1.5 million for promising new research in clean technology and energy efficiency.

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Image: Clouds fill Grand Canyon

December 12, 2014 10:27 am | by Associated Press | Comments

A rare weather phenomenon at the Grand Canyon had visitors looking out on a sea of thick clouds just below the rim. The total cloud inversion is expected to hang inside the canyon throughout Thursday.             

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New theory could yield more reliable communication protocols

December 12, 2014 7:54 am | Comments

Researchers have begun to describe theoretical limits on the degree of imprecision that communicating computers can tolerate, with very real implications for the design of communication protocols.                                   

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Physics World names top 10 physics breakthroughs of 2014

December 12, 2014 7:47 am | Comments

The first ever landing of a man-made probe onto a comet has been named Physics World Breakthrough of the Year for 2014. From a shortlist of 10 highly commended breakthroughs, the historic achievement by scientists working on the Rosetta mission was singled out by the Physics World editorial team for its significance and fundamental importance to space science.

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RoboSimian beats out Surrogate for spot at DARPA finals

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

RoboSimian was created for the DARPA Robotics Challenge, a competition consisting of several disaster-related tasks for robots to perform. Using extra limbs from RoboSimian, researchers constructed Surrogate. Over the past six months, they have been testing both robots to see which one should compete in the finals.

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Cause of malaria drug resistance in SE Asia identified

December 12, 2014 7:00 am | Comments

Growing resistance to malaria drugs in Southeast Asia is caused by a single mutated gene inside the disease-causing Plasmodium falciparum parasite. This finding provides public health officials around the world with a way to look for pockets of emerging resistance and potentially eliminate them before they spread.

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