Science X Newsletter Week 05

Dear ymilog,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for week 05:

NSF's newest solar telescope produces first images, most detailed images of the sun

Just released first images from the National Science Foundation's Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope reveal unprecedented detail of the sun's surface and preview the world-class products to come from this preeminent 4-meter solar telescope. NSF's Inouye Solar Telescope will enable a new era of solar science and a leap forward in understanding the sun and its impacts on our planet.

Astronomers witness the dragging of space-time in stellar cosmic dance

An international team of astrophysicists led by Australian Professor Matthew Bailes, from the ARC Centre of Excellence of Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav), has shown exciting new evidence for 'frame-dragging'—how the spinning of a celestial body twists space and time—after tracking the orbit of an exotic stellar pair for almost two decades. The data, which is further evidence for Einstein's theory of General Relativity, is published today the journal Science.

'Curious and curiouser!' Meteorite chunk contains unexpected evidence of presolar grains

An unusual chunk in a meteorite may contain a surprising bit of space history, based on new research from Washington University in St. Louis.

Detection of very high frequency magnetic resonance could revolutionize electronics

A team of physicists has discovered an electrical detection method for terahertz electromagnetic waves, which are extremely difficult to detect. The discovery could help miniaturize the detection equipment on microchips and enhance sensitivity.

'Profound' evolution: Wasps learn to recognize faces

One wasp species has evolved the ability to recognize individual faces among their peers—something that most other insects cannot do—signaling an evolution in how they have learned to work together.

Patterns of thinning of Antarctica's biggest glacier are opposite to previously observed

Using the latest satellite technology from the European Space Agency (ESA), scientists from the University of Bristol have been tracking patterns of mass loss from Pine Island—Antarctica's largest glacier.

New study debunks myth of Cahokia's Native American lost civilization

A University of California, Berkeley, archaeologist has dug up ancient human feces, among other demographic clues, to challenge the narrative around the legendary demise of Cahokia, North America's most iconic pre-Columbian metropolis.

Lab turns trash into valuable graphene in a flash

That banana peel, turned into graphene, can help facilitate a massive reduction of the environmental impact of concrete and other building materials. While you're at it, toss in those plastic empties.

Mystery at Mars pole explained

In 1966, two Caltech scientists were ruminating on the implications of the thin carbon dioxide (CO2) Martian atmosphere first revealed by Mariner IV, a NASA fly-by spacecraft built and flown by JPL. They theorized that Mars, with such an atmosphere, could have a long-term stable polar deposit of CO2 ice that, in turn, would control global atmospheric pressure.

British carbon tax leads to 93% drop in coal-fired electricity

A tax on carbon dioxide emissions in Great Britain, introduced in 2013, has led to the proportion of electricity generated from coal falling from 40% to 3% over six years, according to research led by UCL.

Sarcophagus dedicated to sky god among latest ancient Egypt trove

Egypt's antiquities ministry on Thursday unveiled the tombs of ancient high priests and a sarcophagus dedicated to the sky god Horus at an archaeological site in Minya governorate.

What's in your water? Researchers identify new toxic byproducts of disinfecting drinking water

Mixing drinking water with chlorine, the United States' most common method of disinfecting drinking water, creates previously unidentified toxic byproducts, says Carsten Prasse from Johns Hopkins University and his collaborators from the University of California, Berkeley and Switzerland.

Scientists develop a concept of a hybrid thorium reactor

Russian scientists have proposed a concept of a thorium hybrid reactor in that obtains additional neutrons using high-temperature plasma held in a long magnetic trap. This project was applied in close collaboration between Tomsk Polytechnic University, All-Russian Scientific Research Institute Of Technical Physics (VNIITF), and Budker Institute of Nuclear Physics of SB RAS. The proposed thorium hybrid reactor is distinguished from today's nuclear reactors by moderate power, relatively compact size, high operational safety, and a low level of radioactive waste.

Bacteria engineered to protect bees from pests and pathogens

Scientists from The University of Texas at Austin report in the journal Science that they have developed a new strategy to protect honey bees from a deadly trend known as colony collapse: genetically engineered strains of bacteria.

Nanoparticle chomps away plaques that cause heart attacks

Michigan State University and Stanford University scientists have invented a nanoparticle that eats away—from the inside out—portions of plaques that cause heart attacks.

Siberian Neanderthals were intrepid nomads

A new study, published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reveals that Neanderthals made an intercontinental trek of more than 3000 km to reach Siberia's Altai Mountains, equipped with a distinctive toolkit used to kill and butcher bison and horses.

Early North Americans may have been more diverse than previously suspected

An analysis of four ancient skulls found in Mexico suggests that the first humans to settle in North America were more biologically diverse than scientists had previously believed.

Robotic submarine snaps first-ever images at foundation of notorious Antarctic glacier

During an unprecedented scientific campaign on an Antarctic glacier notorious for contributions to sea-level, researchers took first-ever images at the glacier's foundations on the ocean floor. The area is key to Thwaites Glacier's potential to become more dangerous, and in the coming months, the research team hopes to give the world a clearer picture of its condition.

Beating the heat in the living wings of butterflies

A new study from Columbia Engineering and Harvard identified the critical physiological importance of suitable temperatures for butterfly wings to function properly, and discovered that the insects exquisitely regulate their wing temperatures through both structural and behavioral adaptations.

As our planet gets greener, plants are slowing global warming

Chi Chen, a Boston University graduate researcher, and Ranga Myneni, a BU College of Arts & Sciences professor of earth and environment, released a new paper that reveals how humans are helping to increase the Earth's plant and tree cover, which absorbs carbon from the atmosphere and cools our planet. The boom of vegetation, fueled by greenhouse gas emissions, could be skewing our perception of how fast we're warming the planet.


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