Jumat, 14 Januari 2011

ScienceDaily Technology Headlines

for Friday, January 14, 2011

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Taking the pulse of a black hole system (January 14, 2011) -- Astronomers have discovered what drives the "heartbeats" seen in the light from an unusual black hole system. These results give new insight into the ways that black holes can regulate their intake and severely curtail their growth. ... > full story

When metals reach end of life: Researcher develops new method (January 14, 2011) -- Though the prevalence of machinery allowed us to build bigger, travel faster and create more quickly with complexity increasing as science advances, our dependence upon them has limitations. Everything that moves can and will break, especially metals under strain. When they fail, the consequences can be catastrophic. A researcher has developed and proven a novel method to avoid the danger that comes with reaching the breaking point. ... > full story

NASA satellites find high-energy surprises in 'constant' Crab Nebula (January 13, 2011) -- The combined data from several NASA satellites has astonished astronomers by revealing unexpected changes in X-ray emission from the Crab Nebula, once thought to be the steadiest high-energy source in the sky. ... > full story

Chemists develop fully biodegradable and recyclable synthetic resin (January 13, 2011) -- Modern synthetic resins are made from fossil sources, are not biodegradable and can only be burned under strict precautions due to the release of toxic substances. Scientists have now discovered a range of new thermoset resins made from renewable raw materials which are fully biodegradable, non-toxic and non-hazardous. ... > full story

Bisphenol A may have role in ovarian dysfunction (January 13, 2011) -- A recent study found higher bisphenol A (BPA) levels in women with polycystic ovary syndrome compared to controls. Furthermore, researchers found a statistically significant positive association between male sex hormones and BPA in these women suggesting a potential role of BPA in ovarian dysfunction. ... > full story

Hydrocarbon breakthrough made using gold catalyst (January 13, 2011) -- Researchers are opening up a new way of using hydrocarbon feedstocks to make a range of valuable products. ... > full story

Light can control electrical properties of graphene (January 13, 2011) -- New research shows how light can be used to control the electrical properties of graphene, paving the way for graphene-based optoelectronic devices and highly sensitive sensors. ... > full story

Cosmology standard candle not so standard after all (January 13, 2011) -- Astronomers have turned up the first direct proof that "standard candles" used to illuminate the size of the universe, termed Cepheids, shrink in mass, making them not quite as standard as once thought. The findings, made with NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, will help astronomers make even more precise measurements of the size, age and expansion rate of our universe. ... > full story

Gravitational lensing: Cosmic magnifying lenses distort view of distant galaxies (January 13, 2011) -- Looking deep into space is like experiencing the universe in a house of mirrors where everything is distorted through a phenomenon called gravitational lensing. Astronomers have started to apply this concept in a new way to determine the number of distant galaxies and measure dark matter in the universe. A new article makes the case that the tool may be even more necessary than originally thought when looking at distant galaxies. ... > full story

New microscope records firing of thousands of individual neurons in 3-D (January 13, 2011) -- Neuroscientists have collaborated with physicists to develop a non-invasive, ultra high-speed microscope that can record the firing of thousands of individual brain cells -- neurons -- as they communicate or miscommunicate with each other. ... > full story

Biomedical breakthrough: Blood vessels for lab-grown tissues (January 13, 2011) -- Researchers have broken one of the major roadblocks on the path to growing transplantable tissue in the lab; they've found a way to grow the necessary blood vessels and capillaries needed to keep tissues alive. ... > full story

New responsive click-track software lets drummers set their own pace (January 13, 2011) -- New software has been developed that gives drummers the freedom to speed up or slow down the pace of the music with any pre-programmed material following their lead. ... > full story

Natural dissolved organic matter plays dual role in cycling of mercury (January 13, 2011) -- Nature has a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde relationship with mercury, but researchers have made a discovery that ultimately could help explain the split personality. ... > full story

New approach to modeling power system aims for better monitoring and control of blackouts (January 13, 2011) -- Major power outages are fairly infrequent, but when they happen they can result in billions of dollars in costs -- and even contribute to fatalities. New research has led to the development of an approach by which high-resolution power-system measurements, also referred to as synchrophasors, can be efficiently used to develop reliable models of large power systems, which would help us keep an eye on their health. ... > full story

Robotic surgery of 'tremendous benefit' to patients (January 13, 2011) -- Robot-assisted surgery dramatically improves outcomes in patients with uterine, endometrial, and cervical cancer. Moreover, because of fewer post-operative complications and shorter hospital stays, robotic procedures also cost less. ... > full story

Mobile telephony without base stations (January 13, 2011) -- The new generation of mobile phone technology makes it possible to communicate directly from one telephone to another without having to rely on base stations. A Swedish researcher presents a program that runs on telephones and can deliver messages even when the infrastructure for telecommunication has been knocked out. ... > full story

Delivering a potent cancer drug with nanoparticles can lessen side effects (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers have shown that they can deliver the cancer drug cisplatin much more effectively and safely in a form that has been encapsulated in a nanoparticle targeted to prostate tumor cells and is activated once it reaches its target. ... > full story

New laboratory aims to revolutionize surgery with real-time metabolic profiling (January 12, 2011) -- Metabolic profiling of tissue samples could transform the way surgeons make decisions in the operating theater, say researchers at a new laboratory being launched in the UK. Scientists have installed a high resolution solid state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer to analyze intact tissue samples from patients taking part in studies, to investigate whether it can ultimately give surgeons detailed diagnostic information while their patients are under the knife. ... > full story

Lab-on-a-chip developed for fast, inexpensive blood tests: Smartphone app next (January 12, 2011) -- While most blood tests require shipping a vial of blood to a laboratory for analysis and waiting several days for the results, a new device invented by a team of engineers and students uses just a pinprick of blood in a portable device that provides results in less than 30 minutes. The next step will turn blood testing into a smartphone application. ... > full story

NASA radar reveals features on asteroid (January 12, 2011) -- Radar imaging at NASA's Goldstone Solar System Radar in the California desert on Dec. 11 and 12, 2010, revealed defining characteristics of recently discovered asteroid 2010 JL33. The images have been made into a short movie that shows the celestial object's rotation and shape. ... > full story

Virus killer gets supercharged: Discovery greatly improves common disinfectant (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers report that adding silicone to titanium dioxide, a common disinfectant, dramatically increases its ability to degrade aerosol- and water-borne viruses. ... > full story

Most distant galaxy cluster identified (January 12, 2011) -- Astronomers have uncovered a burgeoning galactic metropolis, the most distant known in the early universe. This ancient collection of galaxies presumably grew into a modern galaxy cluster similar to the massive ones seen today. ... > full story

Polymer membranes with molecular-sized channels that assemble themselves (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers have developed a solution-based method for inducing polymer membranes with molecular-sized channels to assemble themselves. Fully compatible with commercial membrane-fabrication, this new technique is believed to be the first example of organic nanotubes fabricated into a functional membrane over macroscopic distances. ... > full story

Water on moon originated from comets (January 12, 2011) -- The same researcher who first discovered water on the moon, has now determined the lunar water may have originated from comets smashing into the moon soon after it formed. ... > full story

Coiled nanowires may hold key to stretchable electronics (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers have created the first coils of silicon nanowire on a substrate that can be stretched to more than double their original length, moving us closer to incorporating stretchable electronic devices into clothing, implantable health-monitoring devices, and a host of other applications. ... > full story

NASA tests new propulsion system for robotic lander prototype (January 12, 2011) -- NASA's Robotic Lunar Lander Development Project has completed a series of hot fire tests and taken delivery of a new propulsion system for integration into a more sophisticated free-flying autonomous robotic lander prototype. The project is to develop a new generation of small, smart, versatile robotic landers to achieve scientific and exploration goals on the surface of the moon and near-Earth asteroids. ... > full story

No left turn: 'Superstreet' traffic design improves travel time, safety (January 12, 2011) -- The so-called "superstreet" traffic design results in significantly faster travel times, and leads to a drastic reduction in automobile collisions and injuries, according to researchers who have conducted the largest-ever study of superstreets and their impacts. ... > full story

Planck's new view of the cosmic theater (January 12, 2011) -- The first scientific results from the European Space Agency's Planck mission focus on the coldest objects in the universe, from within our galaxy to the distant reaches of space. ... > full story

Wake up and smell the willow: 'Pre-roasted' plant matter could be burned in coal-fired power stations (January 12, 2011) -- More plant matter could be burned in coal-fired power stations if this "green" fuel was delivered pre-roasted like coffee beans, according to researchers from UK. ... > full story

DNA introduced directly into cell nucleus using protein nanodisks (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers have discovered a novel gene therapy method using particles measuring only a few nanometers which encapsulate genetic material and introduce themselves directly into the cell nucleus. The nanodisks, as researchers have named the particles, travel rapidly to the interior of the cell until reaching the nucleus, thus increasing the efficiency of the gene transfer process. ... > full story

New insights into sun's photosphere (January 12, 2011) -- Researchers at Big Bear Solar Observatory have reported new insights into the small-scale dynamics of the Sun's photosphere. The observations were made during a period of historic inactivity on the Sun. The high-resolution capabilities of BBSO's new 1.6-meter aperture solar telescope have made such work possible. ... > full story

Study estimates land available for biofuel crops (January 12, 2011) -- Using detailed land analysis, researchers have found that biofuel crops cultivated on available land could produce up to half of the world's current fuel consumption -- without affecting food crops or pastureland. Focusing on marginal land, the team assessed land availability from a physical perspective to identify land around the globe available to produce grass crops for biofuels, with minimal impact on agriculture or the environment. ... > full story

International Space Station begins new era of utilization (January 12, 2011) -- A new era of utilization for research and technology begins for the completed International Space Station. The orbiting laboratory shifts focus in 2011 from finalizing construction efforts to full-scale use of the facility for scientific investigation and technological advances. ... > full story

Planck mission peels back layers of the Universe (January 12, 2011) -- The Planck mission released a new data catalogue Jan. 11, 2011 from initial maps of the entire sky. The catalogue includes thousands of never-before-seen dusty cocoons where stars are forming, and some of the most massive clusters of galaxies ever observed. Planck is a European Space Agency mission with significant contributions from NASA. ... > full story

NASA's Fermi catches thunderstorms hurling antimatter into space (January 11, 2011) -- Scientists have detected beams of antimatter produced above thunderstorms on Earth -- a phenomenon never seen before. Scientists think the antimatter particles were formed in a terrestrial gamma-ray flash (TGF), a brief burst produced inside thunderstorms and shown to be associated with lightning. It is estimated that about 500 TGFs occur daily worldwide, but most go undetected. ... > full story

New glass stronger and tougher than steel (January 11, 2011) -- A new type of damage-tolerant metallic glass, demonstrating a strength and toughness beyond that of steel or any other known material, has been developed. ... > full story

'Liquid pistons' could drive new advances in camera lenses and drug delivery (January 11, 2011) -- A few unassuming drops of liquid locked in a very precise game of "follow the leader" could one day be found in mobile phone cameras, medical imaging equipment, implantable drug delivery devices, and even implantable eye lenses. ... > full story

Bottle rockets can cause serious eye injuries in children (January 11, 2011) -- Bottle rockets can cause significant eye injuries in children, often leading to permanent loss of vision, according to a new study. ... > full story

Wave power could contain fusion plasma (January 11, 2011) -- Researchers may have found a way to channel the flux and fury of a nuclear fusion plasma into a means to help sustain the electric current needed to contain that very same fusion plasma. ... > full story

NASA's Kepler mission discovers its first rocky planet (January 11, 2011) -- NASA's Kepler mission confirmed the discovery of its first rocky planet, named Kepler-10b. Measuring 1.4 times the size of Earth, it is the smallest planet ever discovered outside our solar system. The discovery of this planet, called an exoplanet, is based on more than eight months of data collected by the spacecraft from May 2009 to early January 2010. ... > full story

Graphene grains make atom-thick patchwork 'quilts' (January 11, 2011) -- Artistry from science: researchers have unveiled striking, atomic-resolution details of what graphene "quilts" look like at the boundaries between patches, and have uncovered key insights into graphene's electrical and mechanical properties. ... > full story

How do you make lithium melt in the cold? (January 11, 2011) -- Sophisticated tools allow scientists to subject the basic elements of matter to conditions drastic enough to modify their behavior. By doing this, they can expand our understanding of matter. A research team was able to demonstrate surprising properties of the element lithium under intense pressure and low temperatures. ... > full story

Hubble zooms in on a space oddity (January 11, 2011) -- One of the strangest space objects ever seen is being scrutinized by the penetrating vision of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. A mysterious, glowing green blob of gas is floating in space near a spiral galaxy. Hubble uncovered delicate filaments of gas and a pocket of young star clusters in the giant object, which is the size of our Milky Way galaxy. ... > full story

Shellfish safer to eat, thanks to biosensor technology (January 11, 2011) -- New technology promises to make shellfish safer to eat. A new test not only ensures shellfish are free of toxins before they reach the food chain but is likely to revolutionize the global fishing industry. While the current process for monitoring potentially dangerous toxins in shellfish takes up to two days, the new test slashes the testing time to just 30 minutes using new biosensor technology and provides a much more reliable result. ... > full story

Cassini to probe icy moon Rhea for clues to Saturn rings (January 11, 2011) -- Saturn's icy moon Rhea might seem a strange place to look for clues to understanding the vast majestic rings encircling Saturn. But that's what NASA's Cassini spacecraft plans to do on its next flyby of Rhea. ... > full story

Energy limits global economic growth, study finds (January 11, 2011) -- A new study establishes macroecological correlations across countries and over time between per capita gross domestic product and per capita energy use. The authors infer a causal linkage. Correlations between these same two measures and measures of lifestyle quality lead the authors to believe that energy production would have to increase several-fold to support a still-growing world population in the current US lifestyle. ... > full story

Couch potatoes beware: Too much time spent watching TV is harmful to heart health (January 11, 2011) -- Spending too much leisure time in front of a TV or computer screen appears to dramatically increase the risk for heart disease and premature death from any cause, perhaps regardless of how much exercise one gets, according to a new study. ... > full story

IPv6 guide provides path to secure deployment of next-generation Internet protocol (January 11, 2011) -- As the day draws nearer for the world to run out of the unique addresses that allow us to use the Internet, researchers have issued a guide for managers, network engineers, transition teams and others to help them deploy the next generation Internet protocol (IPv6) securely. ... > full story

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