August 31, 2012

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LRO Radar Data Indicates that the Walls of Shackleton Crater May Hold Ice

data indicate that the walls of Shackleton crater may hold ice

Using the Mini-RF radar on NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, a team of scientists have estimated that as much as five to ten percent of material, by weight, could be patchy ice in the walls of Shackleton crater. Scientists using the Mini-RF radar on NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) have estimated the maximum amount of ice […]

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August 31, 2012

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A Superbubble in NGC 1929

NGC 1929

Using data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope and the Max-Planck-ESO telescope, this composite image shows a superbubble in NGC 1929, which is a star cluster embedded in the N44 nebula found in the Large Magellanic Cloud. This composite image shows a superbubble in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), a small satellite […]

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August 30, 2012

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Extra Gaits in Horses Traced to Single Mutation

icelandic-horse-pacing

In horses, unusual gaits have been traced to a single mutation. This endows them with a wider repertoire of gaits, showing that some seemingly complex physical traits can have a simple genetic basis. This could also elucidate the genes behind movement disorders in humans. The researchers published their findings in the journal Nature. Horses typically […]

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August 30, 2012

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Scientists Use Light from an Exploding Star to Study Distant Galaxy

stellar explosion helps understand distant galaxy

A recently published study details how scientists used light from an exploding star as a probe to study the gas conditions in the space between the host galaxy’s stars, revealing that the distant galaxy‘s interstellar conditions appear “reassuringly normal.” Nature hath no fury like a dying star – and astronomers couldn’t be happier… An international […]

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August 30, 2012

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230 Million Year Old Arthropods Found Preserved in Amber

amber-preserved-arthropods-triassic

Arthropods from the Triassic period have been discovered preserved in amber. They are 100 million years older than previous amber inclusions. The two mites and one fly were found in millimeter-scale droplets of amber from northeastern Italy. Researchers published their findings in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Arthropods are invertebrate animals […]

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August 30, 2012

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Light Activated Muscle Cells May Advance Biorobotics

genetically engineered muscle cells to flex in response to light

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and MIT have genetically engineered muscle cells to flex in response to light, which may one day enable highly articulated, flexible robots. Many robotic designs take nature as their muse: sticking to walls like geckos, swimming through water like tuna, sprinting across terrain like cheetahs. Such designs borrow properties […]

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August 30, 2012

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Genetics and Healthy Diets Are More Important for Longevity than Calorie Restriction

rhesus-monkey-feeding

Drastically cutting back on calorie intake doesn’t seem to lengthen the lifespan in primates. This conclusion comes from a 25-year study in rhesus monkeys fed 30% less than control animals, and represents a setback for the notion that a simple, diet-triggered switch could slow aging. The study actually indicates that genetics and overall dietary composition […]

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August 30, 2012

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“Patterned Regrowth” May Lead to Graphene-Based Circuits

single atom films of graphene and boron nitride

Using a technique called “patterned regrowth,” scientists at Cornell have invented a way to pattern single atom films of graphene and boron nitride without the use of a silicon substrate, an important step towards developing atomically thin integrated circuitry. Integrated circuits, which are in everything from coffeemakers to computers and are patterned from perfectly crystalline […]

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August 30, 2012

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Heavy Teenage Cannabis Use Leads to Drop in IQ

close-up-of-thc-resin-cannabis

It seems like something straightforward in essence, but apparently being a heavy cannabis smoker as a teenager results in a significant cognitive decline in adulthood, something that is not seen comparably in adult users of the drug. Clinical psychologist Madeline Meier at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina and her colleagues published their findings in […]

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August 30, 2012

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NASA’s WISE Discovers Millions of Black Holes

dust-obscured galaxies

Documented in three new studies, data from NASA’s Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission was used to discover millions of newfound supermassive black holes and extreme galaxies called hot DOGs, or dust-obscured galaxies. Pasadena, California — Images from the telescope have revealed millions of dusty black hole candidates across the universe and about 1,000 even dustier […]

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August 29, 2012

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Probing the Effects of Light at the Atomic Scale

the effects of light at the atomic scale

By mixing a pulse of x-rays with a pulse of lower frequency optical light waves, a team of scientists at the Berkley Lab were able to measure the optical manipulation of chemical bonds at the atomic scale. Light changes matter in ways that shape our world. Photons trigger changes in proteins in the eye to […]

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August 29, 2012

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New Nanocomposite Material Looks to Improve Fuel Cells

illustration of the new IBN nanocomposite material

Scientists at the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology have developed a more powerful and longer lasting fuel cell material by replacing the central part of the catalyst with gold and copper alloy and leaving just the outer layer in platinum. Using a mixture of gold, copper and platinum nanoparticles, IBN researchers have developed a more […]

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August 29, 2012

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Sugar Molecules Found in Gas Surrounding Sun-Like Star

IRAS 16293-2422

Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, a team of astronomers discovered molecules of a simple form of sugar in the gas surrounding a young binary star called IRAS 16293-2422, which is located roughly 400 light-years away. A team of astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) has spotted sugar molecules in the gas surrounding […]

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August 29, 2012

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Pair of Eclipsing White Dwarfs Produce Gravitational Waves

J0651

Discovered last year in system J0651, two white dwarf stars are so close together that they make a complete orbit in less than 13 minutes and now astronomers have detected gravitational waves at optical wavelengths in light from them. Cambridge, Massachusetts – Gravitational waves, much like the recently discovered Higgs boson, are notoriously difficult to […]

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August 29, 2012

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Biologists Create Computational Model of Gene Networks

first predictive computational model of gene networks

By translating their biological knowledge into very simple Boolean statements, biologists at the California Institute of Technology have created the first predictive computational model of gene networks that control the development of sea-urchin embryos. Pasadena, California — As an animal develops from an embryo, its cells take diverse paths, eventually forming different body parts—muscles, bones, […]

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