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  • February 5, 2016
  • 03:27 PM
  • 38 views

Man-made underwater sound may have wider ecosystem effects

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Underwater sound linked to human activity could alter the behaviour of seabed creatures that play a vital role in marine ecosystems, according to new research from the University of Southampton. The study found that exposure to sounds that resemble shipping traffic and offshore construction activities results in behavioural responses in certain invertebrate species that live in the marine sediment.

... Read more »

  • February 2, 2016
  • 12:35 PM
  • 68 views

Weird small holes in the woods

by Rosin Cerate in Rosin Cerate

Within the ground beneath our feet lie dark cavities of various shapes and sizes. They're home to pale and eyeless creatures living a midnight existence. Natural holes in the ground, filled with air and/or water, can be roughly categorized into three types based on the particular habitat they provide for subterranean organisms:(1) Caves are large, deep, and tend not to contain much organic matter for organisms to munch on. They're often found in karst and volcanic areas prone to developing big h........ Read more »

  • January 25, 2016
  • 11:36 AM
  • 93 views

Death by a thousand cuts: how antibacterial clays kill

by Betty Zou in Eat, Read, Science

Researchers at Arizona State University have demonstrated for the first time the mechanism by which antibacterial clays kill bacteria. Iron and alumninum released from the clays damage the outer membrane through oxidation. Iron also enters the cell where it generates hydroxyl radicals to create oxidative stress.... Read more »

  • January 24, 2016
  • 11:17 AM
  • 100 views

Will climate change lead to more blizzards?

by dominicwhite in Two Degrees or Under

Snowstorms like the one that hit the east coast of North America this weekend are sometimes used by climate sceptics to argue that global warming is a hoax. “Surely we wouldn’t have seen 2 feet of snow if the temperature...... Read more »

  • January 17, 2016
  • 10:00 AM
  • 167 views

Week Two In Review: Open-Access Science | 11 to 17 Jan

by TakFurTheKaffe in Tak Fur The Kaffe

The world’s largest canyon discovered hidden under the Antarctic ice, citizen science is on the up, new genetic secrets of Ötzi Iceman, and the social lives of chimps. Here are 5 of the latest scientific studies published open-access this week.... Read more »

Jamieson, S., Ross, N., Greenbaum, J., Young, D., Aitken, A., Roberts, J., Blankenship, D., Bo, S., & Siegert, M. (2015) An extensive subglacial lake and canyon system in Princess Elizabeth Land, East Antarctica. Geology. DOI: 10.1130/G37220.1  

Moeller, A., Foerster, S., Wilson, M., Pusey, A., Hahn, B., & Ochman, H. (2016) Social behavior shapes the chimpanzee pan-microbiome. Science Advances, 2(1). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500997  

Coia, V., Cipollini, G., Anagnostou, P., Maixner, F., Battaggia, C., Brisighelli, F., Gómez-Carballa, A., Destro Bisol, G., Salas, A., & Zink, A. (2016) Whole mitochondrial DNA sequencing in Alpine populations and the genetic history of the Neolithic Tyrolean Iceman. Scientific Reports, 18932. DOI: 10.1038/srep18932  

Engelmann, J., & Herrmann, E. (2016) Chimpanzees Trust Their Friends. Current Biology. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.11.037  

  • January 16, 2016
  • 03:12 PM
  • 175 views

‘Space Warps’ and other citizen science projects reap major dividends for astrophysics

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Thanks to the Internet, amateur volunteers known as "citizen scientists" can readily donate their time and effort to science--in fields ranging from medicine to zoology to astrophysics. The astrophysics project Space Warps offers a compelling example of why citizen science has become such a popular tool and how valuable it can be.

... Read more »

Marshall, P., Verma, A., More, A., Davis, C., More, S., Kapadia, A., Parrish, M., Snyder, C., Wilcox, J., Baeten, E.... (2015) SPACE WARPS - I. Crowdsourcing the discovery of gravitational lenses. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 455(2), 1171-1190. DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stv2009  

More, A., Verma, A., Marshall, P., More, S., Baeten, E., Wilcox, J., Macmillan, C., Cornen, C., Kapadia, A., Parrish, M.... (2015) SPACE WARPS- II. New gravitational lens candidates from the CFHTLS discovered through citizen science. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 455(2), 1191-1210. DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stv1965  

  • January 15, 2016
  • 12:57 PM
  • 132 views

Dawn of a New Geologic Era

by Jenny Ludmer in Rooster's Report

In the Jurassic period, dinosaurs ruled and continents separated, while in the more recent Holocene, glaciers retreated and the earth warmed. Now, using the same type of data, geologists say we’ve entered a new era. Welcome to the Anthropocene — a geologic era triggered by humankind.... Read more »

Waters, C., Zalasiewicz, J., Summerhayes, C., Barnosky, A., Poirier, C., Ga uszka, A., Cearreta, A., Edgeworth, M., Ellis, E., Ellis, M.... (2016) The Anthropocene is functionally and stratigraphically distinct from the Holocene. Science, 351(6269). DOI: 10.1126/science.aad2622  

  • January 13, 2016
  • 07:00 PM
  • 17 views

Electrolithoautotrophs

by adam phillips in It Ain't Magic

Learn what electrolithoautotrophs are and how the scientists proved that A. ferrooxidans can use electric potential to fuel growth.... Read more »

  • January 13, 2016
  • 04:17 AM
  • 154 views

Night time clouds have a big role in melting of Greenland Ice Sheet

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Main Point:

Clouds, particularly at night, have a huge role in the melting of Greenland ice sheet, whether these clouds have snow or liquid.

Published in:

Nature Communications

Study Further:

Researchers are working on Greenland ice sheet in order to know the reasons behind its melting, and now they have found the probable mechanism, i.e. clouds are involved in that melting.

Perhaps, you want to know, why researchers have so much interest in Greenland Ice Sheet? Reason behind t........ Read more »

Van Tricht, K., Lhermitte, S., Lenaerts, J., Gorodetskaya, I., L’Ecuyer, T., Noël, B., van den Broeke, M., Turner, D., & van Lipzig, N. (2016) Clouds enhance Greenland ice sheet meltwater runoff. Nature Communications, 10266. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms10266  

  • January 11, 2016
  • 07:06 AM
  • 152 views

Natural clays can help in the fight against bacteria

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Main Point:

Natural clay (such as Oregon Blue clay) can help in killing a broad range of bacterial pathogens including antibiotic resistant bacteria.

Published in:

Scientific Reports

Study Further:

Researchers have reported that natural antibacterial clays upon hydration and topical application can kill human pathogens and these pathogens also include antibiotic resistant strains. They noted that only certain clays are bactericidal in nature. Those clays having soluble reduced met........ Read more »

  • December 27, 2015
  • 07:00 PM
  • 12 views

Black smokers and electroecosystems

by adam phillips in It Ain't Magic

Black smokers are deep-sea hydrothermal vents found in the ocean. Now scientists believe that they may host electroecosystems in which the primary producers use electric currents as their energy source.... Read more »

Nakamura, R., Takashima, T., Kato, S., Takai, K., Yamamoto, M., & Hashimoto, K. (2010) Electrical Current Generation across a Black Smoker Chimney. Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 49(42), 7692-7694. DOI: 10.1002/anie.201003311  

  • December 24, 2015
  • 03:54 PM
  • 294 views

It came from planet X: ‘Forbidden’ substances on super-Earths

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Using mathematical models, scientists have ‘looked’ into the interior of super-Earths and discovered that they may contain compounds that are forbidden by the classical rules of chemistry — these substances may increase the heat transfer rate and strengthen the magnetic field on these planets.... Read more »

  • December 21, 2015
  • 12:53 PM
  • 187 views

Is 2°C warming a sensible target?

by dominicwhite in Two Degrees or Under

[The] 2 °C warming target is perceived by the public as a universally accepted goal, identified by scientists as a safe limit that avoids dangerous climate change. This perception is incorrect: no scientific assessment has clearly justified or defended the...... Read more »

Knutti, R., Rogelj, J., Sedláček, J., & Fischer, E. (2015) A scientific critique of the two-degree climate change target. Nature Geoscience. DOI: 10.1038/ngeo2595  

Randalls, S. (2010) History of the 2°C climate target . Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, 1(4), 598-605. DOI: 10.1002/wcc.62  

Ricke, K., Moreno-Cruz, J., Schewe, J., Levermann, A., & Caldeira, K. (2015) Policy thresholds in mitigation. Nature Geoscience. DOI: 10.1038/ngeo2607  

  • December 16, 2015
  • 08:50 AM
  • 255 views

A Gift Worth Its Weight In Gold

by Mark Lasbury in As Many Exceptions As Rules

Gold is not considered a dietary micronutrient, and is the one of the most inert metals. But this is not to say it has no role in living systems; in fact, this metal is a veritable gold mine of biology. New research has led to a greater understanding of how gold can down-regulate inflammatory processes and gold complexes are being used in cancer and infectious disease treatments.... Read more »

  • December 15, 2015
  • 03:56 PM
  • 270 views

‘Hydricity’ concept uses solar energy to produce power round-the-clock… really?

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

Researchers are proposing a new "hydricity" concept aimed at creating a sustainable economy by not only generating electricity with solar energy but also producing and storing hydrogen from superheated water for round-the-clock power production.... Read more »

Emre Gencer, Dharik S. Mallapragada, Francois Marechal, Mohit Tawarmalani. (2015) Round-the-clock power supply and a sustainable economy via synergistic integration of solar thermal power and hydrogen processes. Proceedings of the natural sciences academy of the United States of America. info:/http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2015/12/09/1513488112.abstract

  • December 4, 2015
  • 04:02 PM
  • 258 views

A Camera That Sees Methane

by Elizabeth Preston in Inkfish



Swedish scientists have built a camera that makes methane gas visible. The tool could help researchers study greenhouses gases and answer tricky questions about climate change. It's also good for visualizing cow farts.

Magnus Gålfalk of Linköping University explains that the camera works using infrared spectroscopy. Called "hyperspectral imaging," the method simultaneously captures a spectrum of infrared light for every pixel in a photo. Many gases absorb infrared light, Gålfalk says, ........ Read more »

Gålfalk, M., Olofsson, G., Crill, P., & Bastviken, D. (2015) Making methane visible. Nature Climate Change. DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2877  

  • December 2, 2015
  • 08:18 PM
  • 317 views

Our pale blue dot in the wake of destruction

by Dr. Jekyll in Lunatic Laboratories

This is our home, that pale blue dot, dwarfed by an arrow that takes up less space on your screen than this sentence. For all our might and “overwhelming” intelligence, if we flexed our mental might and developed a weapon to destroy this pale blue dot, it would almost certainly go unnoticed in the universe.... Read more »

  • November 21, 2015
  • 04:49 AM
  • 348 views

Melting Scandinavian glaciers made Europe cool and dry

by TakFurTheKaffe in Tak Fur The Kaffe

Scientists have found an explanation for one of the big mysteries in climate science with the help of 12,000-year old Swedish midges... Read more »

Muschitiello, F., Pausata, F., Watson, J., Smittenberg, R., Salih, A., Brooks, S., Whitehouse, N., Karlatou-Charalampopoulou, A., & Wohlfarth, B. (2015) Fennoscandian freshwater control on Greenland hydroclimate shifts at the onset of the Younger Dryas. Nature Communications, 8939. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms9939  

  • November 5, 2015
  • 07:47 PM
  • 339 views

Baby Giant Squids

by Dr. M in Deep Sea News

We know almost nothing about Giant Squids with mantles lengths less than 1000 mm  (~40 inches).  Very young squids are even more enigmatic than adults.  A recent study reports the collection of three very young Giant Squids off the Japanese coast.  The three young measured 140.8, 332, and 332 mm (5.5 and 13 inches). The heaviest of […]... Read more »

  • November 4, 2015
  • 03:58 AM
  • 340 views

Earth has probably more diamonds than we think

by Usman Paracha in SayPeople

Main Point:

Scientists have suggested that we have more diamonds than we think, and the process of formation of diamond is probably not as complicated as we think.

Published in:

Nature Communications

Study Further:

In a recent study from scientists of Johns Hopkins University, it has been suggested that diamonds in the Earth are not as rare as once thought. They are of opinion that diamonds are commonly produced deep inside the Earth.

“Diamond formation in the deep Earth,........ Read more »

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