Science X Newsletter Week 01

Dear ymilog,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for week 01:

The Earth has been spinning faster lately

Scientists around the world have noted that the Earth has been spinning on its axis faster lately—the fastest ever recorded. Several scientists have spoken to the press about the unusual phenomenon, with some pointing out that this past year saw some of the shortest days ever recorded.

Imminent sudden stratospheric warming to occur, bringing increased risk of snow over coming weeks

A new study led by researchers at the Universities of Bristol, Exeter, and Bath helps to shed light on the winter weather we may soon have in store following a dramatic meteorological event currently unfolding high above the North Pole.

The world's first integrated quantum communication network

Chinese scientists have established the world's first integrated quantum communication network, combining over 700 optical fibers on the ground with two ground-to-satellite links to achieve quantum key distribution over a total distance of 4,600 kilometers for users across the country. The team, led by Jianwei Pan, Yuao Chen, Chengzhi Peng from the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, reported in Nature their latest advances towards the global, practical application of such a network for future communications.

Astronomers agree: Universe is nearly 14 billion years old

From an observatory high above Chile's Atacama Desert, astronomers have taken a new look at the oldest light in the universe.

Why do men have to wait for 'round 2'?

If you type into a search engine—"why do men have to wait before having sex again?"—the results will include many references to prolactin. This hormone is thought to be involved in hundreds of physiological processes in the body. Among them is the male post-ejaculatory refractory period. This period begins when a male ejaculates and ends when he recovers his sexual capacity.

First glimpse of polarons forming in a promising next-gen energy material

Polarons are fleeting distortions in a material's atomic lattice that form around a moving electron in a few trillionths of a second, then quickly disappear. As ephemeral as they are, they affect a material's behavior, and may even be the reason that solar cells made with lead hybrid perovskites achieve extraordinarily high efficiencies in the lab.

Rare quadruple-helix DNA found in living human cells with glowing probes

New probes allow scientists to see four-stranded DNA interacting with molecules inside living human cells, unraveling its role in cellular processes.

Traditional stereotypes about masculinity may help explain support for Trump

American politicians have long been expected to uphold a certain veneer: powerful, influential and never vulnerable. New Penn State research has found that these idealized forms of masculinity may also help explain support for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election and in the days leading up to the 2020 election.

A third of rivers in US found to be changing from blue to green and yellow

A team of researchers with members from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Colorado State University reports that approximately a third of the rivers in the U.S. have changed color over the past 34 years. In their paper published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, the group describes their study of thousands of satellite images taken of the U.S. and what they learned from them.

Scientists discover how mother-of-pearl self-assembles into a perfect structure

In a new study published in Nature Physics, researchers from the B CUBE—Center for Molecular Bioengineering at TU Dresden and European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF) in Grenoble describe, for the first time, that structural defects in self-assembling nacre attract and cancel each other out, eventually leading to a perfect periodic structure.

Autism theory 25 years in the making

A unifying explanation of the cause of autism and the reason for its rising prevalence has eluded scientists for decades, but a theoretical model published in the journal Medical Hypotheses describes the cause as a combination of socially valued traits, common in autism, and any number of co-occurring disabilities.

Researchers report new state of matter described as 'liquid glass'

Discovery of liquid glass sheds light on the old scientific problem of the glass transition: An interdisciplinary team of researchers from the University of Konstanz has uncovered a new state of matter, liquid glass, with previously unknown structural elements—new insights into the nature of glass and its transitions.

How Earth's oddest mammal got to be so bizarre

Often considered the world's oddest mammal, Australia's beaver-like, duck-billed platypus exhibits an array of bizarre characteristics: it lays eggs instead of giving birth to live babies, sweats milk, has venomous spurs and is even equipped with 10 sex chromosomes. Now, an international team of researchers led by University of Copenhagen has conducted a unique mapping of the platypus genome and found answers regarding the origins of a few of its stranger features.

Researchers realize efficient generation of high-dimensional quantum teleportation

In a study published in Physical Review Letters, a team led by academician Guo Guangcan from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) has made progress in high dimensional quantum teleportation. The researchers demonstrated the teleportation of high-dimensional states in a three-dimensional six-photon system.

Evidence of water movement found in meteorites that only recently fell to Earth

A team of researchers affiliated with institutions in Australia, the U.S. and France has found evidence of relatively recent water movement in meteorites that only recently collided with the Earth. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes their study of carbonaceous chondrite (CC) meteorites that landed on the surface of the Earth within the past century and what they found.

Researchers turn coal powder into graphite in microwave oven

Using copper foil, glass containers and a conventional household microwave oven, University of Wyoming researchers have demonstrated that pulverized coal powder can be converted into higher-value nano-graphite.

Artificial enzyme may be first step toward treatment for Parkinson's disease

A growing body of research has shown that misshapen and misfolded alpha-synuclein, the protein culprit behind Parkinson's disease and its characteristics, travels from the gut to the brain, where it spreads and sticks together in lethal clumps known as Lewy bodies. As these clumps accumulate, they cause brain cell death.

Full mitochondrial control for the ultimate anticancer biohack

Insofar as variants for mitochondrial disease are supposed to be rare in the genome, don't think for even a minute that it can't happen to you. In fact, the closer one looks at the full mitonuclear genomes of normal folks, the more one realizes that no one is actually normal—we are all, shall we say, temporarily asymptomatic.

New discovery sheds light on the mysterious family life of notorious sabre-toothed tiger

New research indicates adolescent offspring of the menacing saber-toothed predator, Smilodon fatalis, were more momma's cubs than independent warriors.

CO2 levels this year '50 percent higher than 18th century'

Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere will this year reach levels 50 percent higher than before the industrial revolution because of manmade emissions, Britain's Met Office predicted on Friday.


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