|Top Technology News -- ScienceDaily
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 13:14:02 EST
Astronomers discover S0-2 star is single and ready for big Einstein test
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 10:36:22 EST
A team of astronomers has found that S0-2 does not have a significant other after all, or at least one that is massive enough to get in the way of critical measurements that astronomers need to test Einstein's Theory of General Relativity. Up until now, it was thought that S0-2 may be a binary, a system where two stars circle around each other.
Histology in 3-D: New staining method enables Nano-CT imaging of tissue samples
Thu, 22 Feb 2018 10:36:03 EST
To date, examining patient tissue samples has meant cutting them into thin slices for histological analysis. This might now be set to change, thanks to a new staining method. This allows specialists to investigate three-dimensional tissue samples using the Nano-CT system.
In a first, tiny diamond anvils trigger chemical reactions by squeezing
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 13:19:01 EST
Scientists have turned the smallest possible bits of diamond and other super-hard specks into 'molecular anvils' that squeeze and twist molecules until chemical bonds break and atoms exchange electrons. These are the first such chemical reactions triggered by mechanical pressure alone, and researchers say the method offers a new way to do chemistry at the molecular level that is greener, more efficient and much more precise.
Amateur astronomer captures rare first light from massive exploding star
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 13:18:39 EST
First light from a supernova is hard to capture; no one can predict where and when a star will explode. An amateur astronomer has now captured on film this first light, emitted when the exploding core hits the star's outer layers: shock breakout. Subsequent observations by astronomers using the Lick and Keck observatories helped identify it as a Type IIb supernova that slimmed down from 20 to 5 solar masses before exploding.
Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 12:29:44 EST
Astronomers reveal a new high resolution map of the magnetic field lines in gas and dust swirling around the supermassive black hole at the center of our Galaxy. The team created the map, which is the first of its kind, using the CanariCam infrared camera attached to the Gran Telescopio Canarias sited on the island of La Palma.
Microscopic solution prevents tip of scanning tunneling microscope from hitting surface
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 12:29:28 EST
Researchers believe they have addressed a long-standing problem troubling scientists and engineers for more than 35 years: How to prevent the tip of a scanning tunneling microscope from crashing into the surface of a material during imaging or lithography.
Evolution plays many tricks against large-scale bioproduction
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 12:29:17 EST
Ultra-deep DNA sequencing of thousands of cells uncovers many competing mechanisms of evolution as a threat to efficient scale-up of biobased chemicals production. Evolution plays an underestimated role in bioprocesses and limits yields much more than previously anticipated.
Fur real: Scientists improve computer rendering of animal fur
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 12:29:01 EST
The next computer-generated animals in King Kong or The Lion King could look a lot more realistic thanks to a breakthrough by computer scientists. The researchers developed a method that dramatically improves the way computers simulate fur, and more specifically, the way light bounces within an animal's pelt.
Some black holes erase your past
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 09:13:34 EST
Physicists insist on determinism: your past and present determine your future uniquely, per Einstein's equations of general relativity. They call this strong cosmic censorship. A mathematician found some types of black holes -- charged, non-rotating objects in an expanding universe -- that allow an observer inside the black hole to travel across a horizon into a place where the past is obliterated and there are an infinite number of possible futures for every initial state.
Microscale thermophoresis to characterize hits from high-throughput screening
Wed, 21 Feb 2018 09:13:31 EST
A new article details how the European Lead Factory (ELF), a large publicly accessible drug discovery platform, uses microscale thermophoresis (MST) to aid in the prioritization of small molecule hits from high-throughput screening.
Computer models allow farmers to diversify pest management methods
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 16:12:31 EST
A technology developed by Brazilian researchers can help fighting highly resistant agricultural pests by analyzing the connections between the pests' patterns of dispersal in crops and different configurations in diversified intercropping systems.
Reaching new heights in laser-accelerated ion energy
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 16:12:29 EST
A laser-driven ion acceleration scheme could lead to compact ion sources for established and innovative applications in science, medicine and industry.
MEMS chips get metalenses
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 16:12:13 EST
Lens technologies have advanced across all scales, from digital cameras and high bandwidth in fiber optics to the LIGO instruments. Now, a new lens technology that could be produced using standard computer-chip technology is emerging and could replace the bulky layers and complex geometries of traditional curved lenses. Researchers have developed a device that integrates mid-infrared spectrum metalenses onto MEMS.
Robo-picker grasps and packs
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 16:12:11 EST
A new robotic system could lend a hand with warehouse sorting and other picking or clearing tasks.
Spare parts from small parts: Novel scaffolds to grow muscle
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:35:20 EST
Australian biomedical engineers have developed a 3-D material that successfully mimics nature to transform cells into muscle.
Researchers achieve 'Olympic ring' molecule breakthrough just in time for Winter Games
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:35:11 EST
More than 7,000 miles away from the snowcapped peaks of PyeongChang, scientists in Florida have unlocked a novel strategy for synthesizing a highly versatile molecule called olympicene -- a compound of carbon and hydrogen atoms named for its familiar Olympic ring shape.
Unprecedented single-digit-nanometer magnetic tunnel junction demonstrated
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:35:09 EST
Researchers have developed ultra-small magnetic tunnel junctions with high retention properties for use in semiconductor technologies.
Reshaping drug tests
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:35:03 EST
Researchers have improved on the currently available methods for screening drugs for heart-related side effects. The method involves fabricating a tiny hole in a silicon chip over which lipid membranes, similar to those that surround cells, are encouraged to grow.
Can you eat cells? Computer model predicts which organisms are capable of phagocytosis
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:48 EST
Researchers have created a computational model capable of predicting whether or not organisms have the ability to 'eat' other cells through a process known as phagocytosis. The model may be a useful tool for large-scale microbe surveys and provides valuable insight into the evolution of complex life on Earth, challenging ideas put forward in recent studies.
Using a laser to wirelessly charge a smartphone safely across a room
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:32 EST
Engineers have for the first time developed a method to safely charge a smartphone wirelessly using a laser.
'Click chemistry' reactions may boost cancer-fighting drug potency
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:14 EST
Researchers have developed a quick and easy way to simultaneously modify dozens of drugs or molecules to improve their disease-fighting properties.
How health authorities fight the spread of infectious diseases
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:12 EST
Public outreach campaigns can prevent the spread of devastating yet treatable diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria and gonorrhea. But ensuring these campaigns effectively reach undiagnosed patients, who may unknowingly spread the disease to others, is a major challenge for cash-strapped public health agencies. Now, a team of researchers has created an algorithm that can help policymakers reduce the overall spread of disease.
Researchers use data to look 'upstream' to see what makes patients sick
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:04 EST
Researchers have successfully used data to predict primary care patients' needs for social service referrals, a finding that may potentially help shift the focus of health care from caring for ill people to preventing patients from getting sick.
Atomic structure of ultrasound material not what anyone expected
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:34:00 EST
Lead magnesium niobate (PMN) is a prototypical "relaxor" material, used in a wide variety of applications, from ultrasound to sonar. Researchers have now used state-of-the-art microscopy techniques to see exactly how atoms are arranged in PMN -- and it's not what anyone expected.
Civil engineers devise a cost-saving solution for cities
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 14:31:07 EST
Why fix a road today if it's slated to be ripped up for new sewers next summer?
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope to reveal secrets of the Red Planet
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:47:17 EST
Mars rovers and orbiters have found signs that Mars once hosted liquid water on its surface. Much of that water escaped over time. How much water was lost, and how does the water that’s left move from ice to atmosphere to soil? During its first year of operations, NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope will seek answers. Webb also will study mysterious methane plumes that hint at possible geological or even biological activity.
Researchers invent tiny, light-powered wires to modulate brain's electrical signals
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:47:13 EST
A new study shows how tiny, light-powered wires could be fashioned out of silicon to manipulate electrical signaling between neurons. The research offers a new avenue to shed light on--and perhaps someday treat--brain disorders.
Brain aging may begin earlier than expected
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:45:48 EST
Physicists have devised a new method of investigating brain function, opening a new frontier in the diagnoses of neurodegenerative and aging related diseases.
Laser-ranged satellite measurement now accurately reflects Earth's tidal perturbations
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:30:50 EST
Tides on Earth have a far-reaching influence, including disturbing satellites' measurements by affecting their motion. The LAser RElativity Satellite (LARES), is the best ever relevant test particle to move in the Earth's gravitational field. In a new study, LARES proves its efficiency for high-precision probing of General Relativity and fundamental physics.
No relation between a supermassive black hole and its host galaxy?
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:30:31 EST
Using ALMA to observe an active galaxy with a strong ionized gas outflow from the galactic center, a team has obtained a result making astronomers even more puzzled -- the team clearly detected CO gas associated with the galactic disk, yet they have also found that the CO gas which settles in the galaxy is not affected by the strong ionized gas outflow launched from the galactic center.
Robotic crystals that walk n' roll
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:29:35 EST
Scientists have developed robotic crystals that walk slowly like an inchworm and roll 20,000 times faster than its walking speed. These autonomously moving, organic crystals have great potential as material for soft robots in the future.
Shedding (high-power laser) light on the plasma density limit
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:29:33 EST
Researchers theoretically proposed the existence of density limit for hole boring by laser light on matter. They derived the maximum plasma density as a function of laser intensity, where hole boring stops and plasma blowout occurs. Theory and simulation of an ultra-high-pressure plasma state, wherein plasma's density pushes light back in the direction of the laser source, contribute to fundamental understanding, and provided grounding for applications such as laser-induced nuclear fusion.
Splitting crystals for 2-D metallic conductivity
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 12:21:00 EST
Adding oxygen atoms to a perovskite-like crystal material splits it into layers, giving it unique electrical properties.
Alexa, how do word senses evolve?
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 10:41:14 EST
A new paper is the first to look at 1,000 years of English development and detect the kinds of algorithms that human minds have used to extend existing words to new senses of meaning. This kind of 'reverse engineering' of how human language has developed could have implications for natural language processing by machines.
Quintillionths of a second in slow motion
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 10:41:09 EST
Many chemical processes run so fast that they are only roughly understood. To clarify these processes, researchers have now developed a methodology with a resolution of quintillionths of a second. The new technology stands to help better understand processes like photosynthesis and develop faster computer chips.
Astronomers reveal secrets of most distant supernova ever detected
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 10:24:14 EST
Astronomers have confirmed the discovery of the most distant supernova ever detected -- a huge cosmic explosion that took place 10.5 billion years ago, or three-quarters the age of the Universe itself.
Removing globally used anxiety drug from recycled and wastewater at low cost
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 10:24:11 EST
Researchers can now remove a common anxiety drug from recycled water and wastewater, using low-cost titanium dioxide nanofibers. In cities running out of water, removing pharmaceuticals from wastewater in a simple, low cost way is becoming a priority.
When proteins shake hands
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 10:24:06 EST
Protein nanofibers often have outstanding properties such as a high stability, biodegradability, or antibacterial effect. Artificially creating these fibers is not easy, much less assigning them specific functions. That and how fibers with new properties can be successfully created is now being reported by materials scientists in a new study.
Fake news ‘vaccine’: online game may ‘inoculate’ by simulating propaganda tactics
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 09:35:55 EST
A new online game puts players in the shoes of an aspiring propagandist to give the public a taste of the techniques and motivations behind the spread of disinformation -- potentially 'inoculating' them against the influence of so-called fake news in the process.
'Ultramassive' black holes discovered in far-off galaxies
Tue, 20 Feb 2018 09:32:59 EST
Thanks to data collected by NASA’s Chandra X-ray telescope on galaxies up to 3.5 billion light years away from Earth, an international team of astrophysicists was able to detect what is likely to be the most massive black holes ever discovered in the universe. The team’s calculations showed that these “ultramassive” black holes are growing faster than the stars in their respective galaxies.
Pausing evolution makes bioproduction of chemicals affordable and efficient
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 15:50:34 EST
Circumventing evolution in cell factories can pave the way for commercializing new biobased chemicals to large-scale.
In living color: Brightly-colored bacteria could be used to 'grow' paints and coatings
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 15:50:22 EST
Researchers have unlocked the genetic code behind some of the brightest and most vibrant colors in nature. The article is the first study of the genetics of structural color -- as seen in butterfly wings and peacock feathers -- and paves the way for genetic research in a variety of structurally colored organisms.
Real-time Captcha technique improves biometric authentication
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 14:12:19 EST
A new login authentication approach could improve the security of current biometric techniques that rely on video or images of users' faces. Known as Real-Time Captcha, the technique uses a unique 'challenge' that's easy for humans -- but difficult for attackers who may be using machine learning and image generation software to spoof legitimate users.
Computers aid discovery of new, inexpensive material to make LEDs with high color quality
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 12:48:03 EST
Computers have helped researchers develop a new phosphor that can make LEDs cheaper and render colors more accurately. Researchers predicted the new phosphor using supercomputers and data mining algorithms, then developed a simple recipe to make it in the lab. Unlike many phosphors, this one is made of inexpensive, earth-abundant elements and can easily be made using industrial methods. As computers predicted, the new phosphor performed well in tests and in LED prototypes.
Pattern formation: The paradoxical role of turbulence
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 11:53:04 EST
The formation of self-organizing molecular patterns in cells is a critical component of many biological processes. Researchers have proposed a new theory to explain how such patterns emerge in complex natural systems.
Flexible warped nanographene developed for bioimaging
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:39:06 EST
An international team of scientists has developed a water-soluble "warped nanographene," a flexible molecule that is biocompatible and shows promise for fluorescent cell imaging. The new nanographene molecule also induces cell death when exposed to blue laser light. Further investigation is required to determine how nanocarbons could be used for a range of biological applications, such as photodynamic therapy for cancer treatments.
The starry sky shows nocturnal animals the way
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:39:02 EST
Nocturnal animals can use the stars and the Milky Way to find their way during the darkest hours.
Many colors from a single dot
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:32:13 EST
Physicists have shown how even a separate single nanoparticle can be used to emit different colors of light. Their results show that the particles under consideration may be a very efficient and versatile tool to produce light of all colors at tiny scales.
Microanalysis of biological samples for early disease detection
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:32:11 EST
Researchers have developed a sensing method with the potential to significantly contribute to early detection of cancer and diabetes.
Electric eel-inspired device reaches 110 volts
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:24:19 EST
In an effort to create a power source for future implantable technologies, a team of researchers developed an electric eel-inspired device that produced 110 volts from gels filled with water, called hydrogels. Their results show potential for a soft power source to draw on a biological system's chemical energy.
Unconventional superconductor may be used to create quantum computers of the future
Mon, 19 Feb 2018 07:17:51 EST
With their insensitivity to decoherence what are known as Majorana particles could become stable building blocks of a quantum computer. The problem is that they only occur under very special circumstances. Now researchers have succeeded in manufacturing a component that is able to host the sought-after particles.
Stretchable electronics a 'game changer' for stroke recovery treatment
Sat, 17 Feb 2018 18:48:37 EST
A first-of-its-kind sensor that sticks to the throat and measures speech and swallowing patterns could be a game-changer in the field of stroke rehabilitation.
Ultrathin, highly elastic skin display developed
Sat, 17 Feb 2018 18:48:31 EST
A new ultrathin, elastic display that fits snugly on the skin can show the moving waveform of an electrocardiogram recorded by a breathable, on-skin electrode sensor. Combined with a wireless communication module, this integrated biomedical sensor system -- called 'skin electronics' -- can transmit biometric data to the cloud.
Asteroid 'time capsules' may help explain how life started on Earth
Sat, 17 Feb 2018 18:48:24 EST
In popular culture, asteroids play the role of apocalyptic threat, get blamed for wiping out the dinosaurs -- and offer an extraterrestrial source for mineral mining. But for one researcher, asteroids play an entirely different role: that of time capsules showing what molecules originally existed in our solar system. Having that information gives scientists the starting point they need to reconstruct the complex pathway that got life started on Earth.
Unprecedented study of Picasso's bronzes uncovers new details
Sat, 17 Feb 2018 11:36:48 EST
Scientists have completed the first major material survey and study of the Musee national Picasso-Paris' Pablo Picasso bronzes using portable instruments. They used the instruments and a database of alloy 'fingerprints' to non-invasively analyze a group of 39 bronzes and 11 painted sheet metal sculptures, revealing new details about the modern master's art.
Research team uncovers hidden details in Picasso Blue Period painting
Sat, 17 Feb 2018 11:36:45 EST
Scientists have used multiple modes of light to uncover details hidden beneath the visible surface of Pablo Picasso's painting 'La Miséreuse accroupie', a major work from the artist's Blue Period. The researchers found images connected to other works by Picasso as well as a landscape -- likely by another Barcelona painter -- underneath Picasso's painting.
Why we have yet to find extraterrestrial life
Fri, 16 Feb 2018 14:27:12 EST
Are we alone in the universe? Few questions have captured the public imagination more than this. Yet to date we know of just one sample of life, that which exists here on Earth.
Major discovery in controlling quantum states of single atoms
Fri, 16 Feb 2018 14:27:09 EST
The scientists identified which mechanisms destroy the quantum properties of individual insulator. Using a Scanning Tunneling Microscope, which utilizes an atomically sharp metal tip, they were able to precisely image individual iron atoms and measure and control the time that the iron atom can maintain its quantum behavior.
Humans will actually react pretty well to news of alien life
Fri, 16 Feb 2018 14:27:05 EST
Hollywood has it wrong. Humans would actually react positively to news of alien life -- intelligent or microbial.
Lab-grown human cerebellar cells yield clues to autism
Fri, 16 Feb 2018 14:26:59 EST
Increasing evidence has linked autism spectrum disorder (ASD) with dysfunction of the brain's cerebellum, but the details have been unclear. In a new study, researchers used stem cell technology to create cerebellar cells known as Purkinje cells from patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), a genetic syndrome that often includes ASD-like features.