Science X Newsletter Week 33

Dear ymilog,

Here is your customized Science X Newsletter for week 33:

Major nuclear fusion milestone reached as 'ignition' triggered in a lab

Ignition is a key process that amplifies the energy output from nuclear fusion and could provide clean energy and answer some huge physics questions.

Thick-shelled turtle egg with embryo still inside from the Cretaceous period found in China

A team of researchers affiliated with several institutions in China and Canada has identified a turtle egg fossil from the Cretaceous period that contains an embryo. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the group describes where the egg was found and what they learned about it during their examination.

Archaeologists find skeleton, evidence of Greek in Pompeii

Archaeologists in the ancient city of Pompeii have discovered a remarkably well-preserved skeleton during excavations of a tomb that also shed light on the cultural life of the city before it was destroyed by a volcanic eruption in AD 79.

Astronomers find a 'break' in one of the Milky Way's spiral arms

Scientists have spotted a previously unrecognized feature of our Milky Way galaxy: A contingent of young stars and star-forming gas clouds is sticking out of one of the Milky Way's spiral arms like a splinter poking out from a plank of wood. Stretching some 3,000 light-years, this is the first major structure identified with an orientation so dramatically different than the arm's.

Researchers discover hidden SARS-CoV-2 'gate' that opens to allow COVID infection

Since the early days of the COVID pandemic, scientists have aggressively pursued the secrets of the mechanisms that allow severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) to enter and infect healthy human cells.

Study finds existing drugs that can kill SARS-CoV2 in cells

Since the beginning of the pandemic, researchers worldwide have been looking for ways to treat COVID-19. And while the COVID-19 vaccines represent the best measure to prevent the disease, therapies for those who do get infected remain in short supply. A new groundbreaking study from U-M reveals several drug contenders already in use for other purposes—including one dietary supplement—that have been shown to block or reduce SARS-CoV2 infection in cells.

Nuclear scientists hail US fusion breakthrough

Nuclear scientists using lasers the size of three football fields said Tuesday they had generated a huge amount of energy from fusion, possibly offering hope for the development of a new clean energy source.

Researchers solve 20-year-old paradox in solar physics

In 1998, the journal Nature published a seminal letter concluding that a mysterious signal, which had been discovered while analyzing the polarization of sunlight, implies that the solar chromosphere (an important layer of the solar atmosphere) is practically unmagnetised, in sharp contradiction with common wisdom. This paradox motivated laboratory experiments and theoretical investigations, which instead of providing a solution, raised new issues, and even led some scientists to question the quantum theory of matter-radiation interaction.

Unlike humans, cuttlefish retain sharp memory of specific events in old age, study finds

Cuttlefish can remember what, where, and when specific events happened—right up to their last few days of life, researchers have found. The results, published this week in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, are the first evidence of an animal whose memory of specific events does not deteriorate with age.

Here comes the sun: Planetary scientists find evidence of solar-driven change on the moon

Tiny iron nanoparticles unlike any found naturally on Earth are nearly everywhere on the moon—and scientists are trying to understand why. A new study led by Northern Arizona University doctoral candidate Christian J. Tai Udovicic, in collaboration with associate professor Christopher Edwards, both of NAU's Department of Astronomy and Planetary Science, uncovered important clues to help understand the surprisingly active lunar surface. In an article recently published in Geophysical Research Letters, the scientists found that solar radiation could be a more important source of lunar iron nanoparticles than previously thought.

Geologists dig into Grand Canyon's mysterious gap in time

A new study led by the University of Colorado Boulder reveals the complex history behind one of the Grand Canyon's most well-known geologic features: A mysterious and missing gap of time in the canyon's rock record that covers hundreds of millions of years.

Can a heartburn drug help doctors treat COVID-19?

In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, doctors in Wuhan noticed something surprising. Many of the elderly patients who survived the virus were poor: not exactly the demographic you would expect to fare well in a health crisis.

Increased snowfall will offset sea level rise from melting Antarctic ice sheet

A new study predicts that any sea level rise in the world's most southern continent will be countered by an increase in snowfall, associated with a warmer Polar atmosphere. Using modern methods to calculate projected changes to sea levels, researchers discovered that the two ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica respond differently, reflecting their very distinct local climates.

Boston Dynamics' latest video shows its Atlas humanoid robot has moves like Simone Biles

Boston Dynamics, the company known for its robotic dogs, now has a humanoid robot capable of doing gymnastics.

New salts raise the bar for lithium ion battery technology

Lithium ion batteries are set to take a dominant role in electric vehicles and other applications in the near future—but the battery materials, currently in use, fall short in terms of safety and performance and are holding back the next generation of high-performance batteries.

New Zealand says it has solved Covid outbreak 'puzzle'

New Zealand reported a breakthrough Thursday in tracing the source of a COVID-19 outbreak that plunged the nation into lockdown, with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern saying it should help "stamp out" the virus.

Recordings of the magnetic field from 9,000 years ago teach us about the magnetic field today

International research by Tel Aviv University, the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Rome, and the University of California San Diego uncovered findings regarding the magnetic field that prevailed in the Middle East between approximately 10,000 and 8,000 years ago. Researchers examined pottery and burnt flints from archeological sites in Jordan, on which the magnetic field during that time period was recorded. Information about the magnetic field during prehistoric times can affect our understanding of the magnetic field today, which has been showing a weakening trend that has been cause for concern among climate and environmental researchers.

Scientists discover crystal exhibiting exotic spiral magnetism

An exotic form of magnetism has been discovered and linked to an equally exotic type of electrons, according to scientists who analyzed a new crystal in which they appear at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The magnetism is created and protected by the crystal's unique electronic structure, offering a mechanism that might be exploited for fast, robust information storage devices.

Experimental confirmation of wave-particle duality

The 21st century has undoubtedly been the era of quantum science. Quantum mechanics was born in the early 20th century and has been used to develop unprecedented technologies which include quantum information, quantum communication, quantum metrology, quantum imaging, and quantum sensing. However, in quantum science, there are still unresolved and even inapprehensible issues like wave-particle duality and complementarity, superposition of wave functions, wave function collapse after quantum measurement, wave function entanglement of the composite wave function, etc.

Further evidence of 200-million-year cycle for Earth's magnetic field

The findings of a new study by the University of Liverpool provides further evidence of an approximately 200 million-year long cycle in the strength of the Earth's magnetic field.


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