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Magnetic Fields Point to Extraterrestrial Life

September 30, 2015 3:23 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Articles | Comments

Earth’s magnetic field is vital for life. It deflects solar wind and protects the planet’s atmosphere, according to European Space Agency. The field is generated in Earth’s core and emanates outwards. Using computer simulations to replicate planets in the habitable zones of low-mass stars, Univ. of Washington researchers found tidally locked Earth-like planets may possess protective magnetic fields.


Measuring x-rays created by lightning strikes on an aircraft in-flight

September 30, 2015 2:00 pm | by Institute of Physics | News | Comments

Scientists have recorded measurements of x-rays of energies up to 10 MeV caused by electrons accelerated in the intense electric fields inside a thundercloud. The researchers were able to mount equipment on an Airbus during test flights that took place in April 2014.


Team recovers rare earth elements from discarded EV motors

September 30, 2015 1:00 pm | by Worcester Polytechnic Institute | News | Comments

In an effort to help develop a sustainable domestic supply of rare earth elements and lessen the U.S.'s dependence on China for materials that are vital to the production of electronics, wind turbines and many other technologies, two researchers at Worcester Polytechnic Institute have developed a method of extracting rare earths from the drive units and motors of discarded electric and hybrid cars.


Possible Black Death Ancestor in 20-Million-Year-Old Flea

September 30, 2015 12:45 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Articles | Comments

Caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, the plague caused some major pandemics in human history. The Justinian Plague, which started in 541 and persisted for 200 years, wiped out over 25 million people. It was followed by the “Black Death,” which originated in China in 1334 and spread via trade routes to Constantinople and Europe.


Sniffing out cancer

September 30, 2015 12:00 pm | by American Chemical Society | News | Comments

Scientists have been exploring new ways to “smell” signs of cancer by analyzing what’s in patients’ breath. In Nano Letters, one team now reports new progress toward this goal. The researchers have developed a small array of flexible sensors, which accurately detect compounds in breath samples that are specific to ovarian cancer.


Disappearing carbon circuits on graphene could have security, biomedical uses

September 30, 2015 11:00 am | by John Toon, Georgia Institute of Technology | News | Comments

In the television drama “Mission Impossible,” instructions for the mission were delivered on an audio tape that destroyed itself immediately after being played. Should that series ever be revived, its producers might want to talk with Georgia Institute of Technology professor Andrei Fedorov about using his “disappearing circuits” to deliver the instructions.


Making the Human Body Durable for Space Flight

September 30, 2015 10:47 am | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Articles | Comments

When European Space Agency astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, NASA’s Terry Virts and Roscosmos commander Anton Shkaplerov returned to Earth following an extended period in space, helping hands greeted them upon exiting the landing module. Members of the ground crew carried the space travelers to a sitting area nearby the landing site.


Advancing freeze-drying technology through rocket science

September 30, 2015 10:00 am | by Elizabeth K. Gardner, Purdue Univ. | News | Comments

Purdue Univ. has created a new lyophilization consortium, LyoHUB, to improve freeze-drying technology to make food, pharmaceuticals and biotech products safer and more affordable. The center is funded by NIST through a $453,623 planning grant from its Advanced Manufacturing Technology Consortia, or AMTech, program.


Scientists decode structure at root of muscular disease

September 30, 2015 8:10 am | by Mike Williams, Rice Univ. | News | Comments

Researchers at Rice Univ. and Baylor College of Medicine have unlocked the structural details of a protein seen as key to treating a neuromuscular disease. Their success at obtaining a structural map of a protein known as leiomodin 2 (Lmod2) attached to two actin subunits offers a path forward for the study of nemaline myopathy, a hereditary disorder that weakens the muscles and can sometimes be fatal.


Shedding light on metabolism

September 30, 2015 8:03 am | by Catriona Kelly, Univ. of Edinburgh | News | Comments

The way in which our cells convert food into fuel is shared by almost all living things and, now, scientists have discovered a likely reason why this is so widespread. Researchers examined how cells make energy from food, by digesting simple sugars such as glucose in a series of chemical reactions. This process is almost the same for every kind of cell, including animals, plants and bacteria.


Researchers disguise drugs as platelets to target cancer

September 30, 2015 7:59 am | by Matt Shipman, News Services, North Carolina State Univ. | News | Comments

Researchers have, for the first time, developed a technique that coats anticancer drugs in membranes made from a patient's own platelets, allowing the drugs to last longer in the body and attack both primary cancer tumors and the circulating tumor cells that can cause a cancer to metastasize. The work was tested successfully in an animal model.


Making batteries with portabella mushrooms

September 30, 2015 7:52 am | by Sean Nealon, Univ. of California, Riverside | News | Comments

Can portabella mushrooms stop cell phone batteries from degrading over time? Researchers at the Univ. of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering think so. They have created a new type of lithium-ion battery anode using portabella mushrooms, which are inexpensive, environmentally friendly and easy to produce.


U.S. falls behind in offshore wind power

September 30, 2015 7:46 am | by Karen Roberts, Univ. of Delaware | News | Comments

Univ. of Delaware faculty from the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment (CEOE), the College of Engineering and the Alfred Lerner School of Business and Economics say that the U.S. has fallen behind in offshore wind power.


Warming Antarctic May Allow Threatening King Crabs to Expand Range

September 29, 2015 6:30 pm | by Greg Watry, Digital Reporter | Articles | Comments

In the past 50 years, the western Antarctic Peninsula warmed over four times faster than the average rate of the Earth’s overall warming, according to the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. These temperature fluctuations, according to an international group of scientists, threaten species that thrive in frigid waters with negligible variation in seasonal sea temperatures.


Wearable electronic health patches may be cheaper, easier to make

September 29, 2015 3:00 pm | by Sandra Zaragoza, The Univ. of Texas at Austin | News | Comments

A team of researchers in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The Univ. of Texas at Austin has invented a method for producing inexpensive and high-performing wearable patches that can continuously monitor the body’s vital signs for human health and performance tracking, potentially outperforming traditional monitoring tools such as cardiac event monitors.



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