Most Recently Added Most commentedBy Title | A-Z

Rooftop solar, other renewables make 9GW of baseload fossil fuels no longer needed in Australia

August 1, 2013

800px-Panneaux_photovoltaïques

AGL Energy, one of the big three power utilities in Australia, says that 9,000MW of fossil-fuel baseload capacity needs to be taken out of the national electricity market (NEM) to bring it back into balance, RenewEconomy reports.

That assessment of 9,000MW equates to nearly one-third of the country’s baseload generation — a sure sign that renewables, and in particularly rooftop solar, are changing the dynamics of the… read more

XKeyscore: NSA tool collects ‘nearly everything a user does on the Internet’

NSA analysts require no prior authorization for searches of emails, social media activity, and browsing history
August 1, 2013

XKeyscore map

A top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals — its “widest-reaching” system for developing intelligence from the Internet — according to documents provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden, Guardian columnist Glenn Greenwald reported Wednesday.

The latest revelations come as senior intelligence officials… read more

Cellular mechanisms for attention in the brain found

July 31, 2013

AttnBrainWordle

The ability to pay attention to relevant information while ignoring distractions is a core brain function. Without the ability to focus and filter out “noise,” we could not effectively interact with our environment.

But despite much study of attention in the brain, the cellular mechanisms responsible for the effects of attention have remained a mystery.

Researchers from Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine and the University of… read more

Psychotherapy via Internet found as good as or better than face-to-face

July 31, 2013

(Credit: iStockphoto)

Online psychotherapy is just as efficient as conventional therapy, University of Zurich clinical researchers have found in a study of online psychotherapy vs. conventional face-to-face therapy.

And three months after the end of the therapy, patients given online treatment even displayed fewer symptoms.

Six therapists treated 62 patients, the majority of whom were suffering from moderate depression. The patients were divided into two equal groups… read more

International Space Station astronauts remotely control planetary rover from space

July 31, 2013

k10_planetary_rover

NASA has begun studying how remotely-operated vehicles may one day help astronauts explore other worlds.

NASA tested the Surface Telerobotics exploration concept, in which an astronaut in an orbiting spacecraft remotely operates a robot on a planetary surface. In the future, astronauts orbiting other planetary bodies, such as Mars, asteroids or the moon, could use this approach to perform work on the surface using robotic avatars.… read more

Future quantum computers with machine learning could attack larger sets of data than classical computers

July 31, 2013

universe

Seth Lloyd of MIT and his collaborators have developed a quantum version of machine learning — a type of AI in which programs can learn from previous experience to become progressively better at finding patterns in data. It would take advantage of quantum computations to speed up machine-learning tasks exponentially, Nature News reports.

Data can be split into groups — a task that is at the core… read more

How chemical components protected each other to create RNA

July 31, 2013

A computer graphic of an RNA molecule (credit: Richard Feldmann)

The chemical components crucial to the start of life on Earth may have primed and protected each other in never-before-realized ways, according to new research led by University of Washington scientists.

It could mean a simpler scenario for how that first spark of life came about on the planet, according to Sarah Keller, UW professor of chemistry, and Roy Black, UW affiliate professor… read more

How to save money by making stuff with 3D printers

July 31, 2013

RepRap print

A Michigan Technological University researcher is predicting that personal manufacturing, like personal computing before it, is about to enter the consumer mainstream in a big way.

“For the average American consumer, 3D printing is ready for showtime,” said Associate Professor Joshua Pearce.

The reason is financial: the typical family can already save a great deal of money by making things with a 3D printer… read more

Sea level rise ‘locking in’ quickly, cities threatened

July 30, 2013

climate_change_threatens_cities

Measurements tell us that global average sea level is currently rising by about 1 inch per decade. But in an invisible shadow process, our long-term sea level rise commitment or “lock-in” — the sea level rise we don’t see now, but which carbon emissions and warming have locked in for later years — is growing 10 times faster, and this growth rate is accelerating, writes Benread more

How to make cost-effective, ultra-high-performance microscopes

July 30, 2013

Artist's rendering of the new microscopy setup showing one element of an LED array illuminating a sample (credit: Yan Liang and Guoan Zheng)

Engineers at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have devised a method to convert a relatively inexpensive conventional microscope into a billion-pixel imaging system that significantly outperforms the best available standard microscope.

Such a system could greatly improve the efficiency of digital pathology, in which specialists need to review large numbers of tissue samples. By making it possible to produce robust microscopes at low cost,… read more

Molecular automata can help researchers build more targeted therapeutics

July 30, 2013

molecular automata

A new technique for developing more targeted drugs with reduced side effects by using “molecular automata” — a mixture of antibodies and short strands of DNA — has been demonstrated by Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) and Columbia University researchers.

These short DNA strands, aka oligonucleotides, can be manufactured by researchers in a laboratory for any user-specified sequence.

How it works

All cells… read more

Breakthrough in detecting single DNA mutations

Could help treat diseases like tuberculosis and cancer
July 30, 2013

This conceptual image shows probe and target complexes at different stages of the reaction that checks for mutations. The red dots represent mutations in a target base pair, while the illuminated green light indicates that no mutation was found. (Credit: Yan Liang/L2XY2.com)

Researchers have developed a new method that can look at a specific segment of DNA and pinpoint a single mutation, which could help diagnose and treat diseases such as cancer and tuberculosis.

Modern genomics has shown that just one mutation can be the difference between successfully treating a disease and having it spread rampantly throughout the body.

These small mutations can be the root of a… read more

When fluid dynamics mimic quantum mechanics

MIT researchers offer a radical new perspective on wave-particle duality
July 30, 2013

MIT researchers, in collaboration with physicist Yves Couder at the Université Paris Diderot and his colleagues, report that they have produced the fluidic analogue of a classic quantum experiment, in which electrons are confined to a circular “corral” by a ring of ions.

In the new experiments, reported in the latest issue of the journal Physical Review E (PRE), bouncing drops of fluid mimicked the… read more

Improved nuclear fuel-rod cladding might prevent future Fukushimas

July 29, 2013

A silicon carbide (SiC) sample is removed from a 1500 degree C. furnace, where it demonstrated superior tolerance to oxidation with steam.<br />
IMAGE COURTESY OF MUJID KAZIMI AND YOUHO LEE

A team of researchers at MIT is developing an alternative protection for nuclear fuel, while reducing the risk of hydrogen production by roughly a thousandfold.

Tests of the new cladding material, a ceramic compound called silicon carbide (SiC), are described in a series of papers appearing in the journal Nuclear Technology.

A substitute for traditional zircaloy could greatly reduce the danger of hydrogen explosions.… read more

Silky brain implants may help stop spread of epilepsy

July 29, 2013

Example of Silk Implant Used in the Study. Silk implants designed to release adenosine were placed into rat brains to stop the spread of epilepsy. Image courtesy of Dr. Boison, from Legacy Research Institute and OHSU.

A NIH-funded study suggests a role for adenosine in molecular processes involved in epilepsy.

Silk has walked straight off the runway and into the lab. According to a new study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, silk implants placed in the brain of laboratory animals and designed to release a specific chemical, adenosine, may help stop the progression of epilepsy.

The research was… read more

close and return to Home