February 20, 2015

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The Formation of a Quadruple Star System

Astronomers View the Formation of a Quadruple Star System

Astronomers have discovered a nearby stellar nursery where quadruplets are being born. More than half of all stars are in multiple systems: binary stars, or even triplets or quadruplets, that orbit one another. No one is quite sure how or why they form, but the effects can be significant, for example influencing the character of […]

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February 20, 2015

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Hubble Reveals Detailed View of Circumstellar Debris Disk Encircling Beta Pictoris

Hubble Views Beta Pictoris

Using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers have captured the most detailed picture to date of a large disk of gas and dust encircling the 20 million-year-old star Beta Pictoris. Beta Pictoris is the only star to date where astronomers have detected an embedded giant planet in a directly-imaged debris disk. The planet, which was discovered […]

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February 20, 2015

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NuSTAR and XMM-Newton Telescopes Give Shape to Black Hole Winds

NuSTAR and XMM-Newton Telescopes Reveal Furious Black Hole Winds

Using NASA’s NuSTAR and ESA’s XMM-Newton telescopes astronomers have measured the strength of ultra-fast winds from a supermassive black hole, proving that the winds are powerful enough to inhibit the host galaxy’s ability to make new stars. NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) and ESA’s (European Space Agency) XMM-Newton telescope are showing that fierce winds […]

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February 19, 2015

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Dark Matter Influences Supermassive Black Hole Growth

Dark Matter Guides Growth of Supermassive Black Holes

Using data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and the ROSAT X-ray satellite’s all-sky survey, researchers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics detail a distinct relationship between the mass of a dark matter halo and the mass of a black hole. Cambridge, Massachusetts – Every massive galaxy has a black hole at its center, and […]

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February 19, 2015

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NASA’s Van Allen Probes Capture the Effects of a Solar Shockwave

Van Allen Probes Capture the Effects of a Solar Shockwave

NASA’s Van Allen Probes have captured the effects of a solar shockwave on Earth’s radiation from beginning to end for the first time. On October 8, 2013, an explosion on the sun’s surface sent a supersonic blast wave of solar wind out into space. This shockwave tore past Mercury and Venus, blitzing by the moon […]

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February 19, 2015

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Yale Neurobiologists Discover Surprising Trigger of New Brain Cell Growth

Researchers Find Trigger of New Brain Cell Growth

A newly published study from Yale University shows that adult hippocampal neural stem cells (NSCs) express vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) 3 and its ligand VEGF-C, which activates quiescent NSCs to enter the cell cycle and generate progenitor cells. Scientists have discovered that the human brain can produce new neurons, but exactly how those […]

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February 19, 2015

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MAVEN Spacecraft Completes First Deep Dip Campaign of Martian Atmosphere

MAVEN Completes First Deep Dip Campaign

NASA’S MAVEN spacecraft has completed its first deep-dip maneuver, gathering measurements closer to the top of the lower atmosphere of Mars. NASA’S Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution has completed the first of five deep-dip maneuvers designed to gather measurements closer to the lower end of the Martian upper atmosphere. “During normal science mapping, we make […]

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February 19, 2015

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New Horizons Spots Small Moons Orbiting Pluto

New Horizons Sees Small Moons Orbiting Pluto

NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft views Pluto’s moons Nix and Hydra as it continues on its journey toward the dwarf planet. Exactly 85 years after Clyde Tombaugh’s historic discovery of Pluto, the NASA spacecraft set to encounter the icy dwarf planet this summer is providing its first views of the small moons orbiting Pluto. The moons […]

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February 18, 2015

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New Anti-HIV Candidate Blocks Every Strain of HIV-1, HIV-2 and SIV

Scientists Announce New Anti-HIV Agent

In a new study, researchers show that a new drug candidate blocks every strain of HIV-1, HIV-2 and SIV that has been isolated from humans or rhesus macaques, including the hardest-to-stop variants. Jupiter, Florida – February 18, 2015 – In a remarkable new advance against the virus that causes AIDS, scientists from the Jupiter, Florida […]

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February 18, 2015

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The Closest Known Flyby of a Star to Our Solar System

Astronomers Identify the Closest Known Flyby of a Star to Our Solar System

A newly published study from the University of Rochester details the closest known flyby of a star to our solar system – a dim star that passed through the Oort Cloud 70,000 years ago. A group of astronomers from the US, Europe, Chile and South Africa have determined that 70,000 years ago a recently discovered […]

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February 18, 2015

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New Approach Improves Execution Times and Efficiency of Multicore Chips

New Approach Could Make Multicore Chips Much Faster

New research from MIT describes a system that cleverly distributes data around multicore chips’ memory banks, improving execution times by 18 percent on average while actually increasing energy efficiency. Computer chips’ clocks have stopped getting faster. To keep delivering performance improvements, chipmakers are instead giving chips more processing units, or cores, which can execute computations […]

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February 18, 2015

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Marijuana Munchies: How the Appetite Center of the Brain Responds to Marijuana

Marijuana Munchies How the Brain Flips the Hunger Switch

A new study from Yale University observes how the appetite center of the brain responds to marijuana, revealing what drives the hunger brought about by cannabis and how that same mechanism that normally turns off feeding becomes a driver of eating. The “munchies,” or that uncontrollable urge to eat after using marijuana, appear to be […]

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February 18, 2015

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Two Merging Stars Destined to Ignite a Vast Supernova Explosion

Two White Dwarf Stars Destined to Merge

A newly published study reveals that two massive stars at the heart of the planetary nebula Henize 2-428 should merge in 700 million years, triggering a type Ia supernova event. Astronomers using ESO facilities in combination with telescopes in the Canary Islands have identified two surprisingly massive stars at the heart of the planetary nebula […]

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February 18, 2015

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Disproving the Predicted Brown Dwarf around V471 Tau

The SPHERE Instrument Attached to the VLT

Using the new extreme-AO instrument SPHERE, researchers image the prototype eclipsing post-common envelope binary V471 Tau in search of the brown dwarf that is believed to be responsible for variations in its eclipse arrival times. The new SPHERE instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope has been used to search for a brown dwarf expected to […]

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February 17, 2015

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Satellite-Based Assessment of Ocean Acidification

Ocean Acidification

Using satellite measurements, researchers a team of international collaborators are developing new methods to quantify ocean acidity around the globe. With fundamental changes happening to the chemistry of the world’s oceans, salinity information from ESA’s SMOS mission is being used with other Earth observation data to obtain information on ‘the other carbon dioxide problem’ – […]

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February 17, 2015

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Isotopic Evidence Shows Life Could Have Flourished on Earth 3.2 Billion Years Ago

Life Could Have Flourished on Earth 3.2 Billion Years Ago

New research from the University of Washington found evidence that life was pulling nitrogen out of the air and converting it into a form that could support larger communities 3.2 billion years ago. A spark from a lightning bolt, interstellar dust, or a subsea volcano could have triggered the very first life on Earth. But […]

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February 17, 2015

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Stress Slows Women’s Recovery from Acute Myocardial Infarction

Stress Linked to Worse Recovery in Women after Heart Attack

A new study from Yale University shows that stress plays a role in the sex-based differences in recovery after acute myocardial infarction. Young and middle-aged women experience more stress than their male counterparts, which could contribute to worse recovery from acute myocardial infarction (AMI), according to new findings by Yale School of Medicine researchers and […]

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