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Science is Cool!
Check out all the amazing things being discovered through science!
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This video captures some insane neutron star blasting action

This video captures some insane neutron star blasting action | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Here you can see an extremely rare video that shows a neutron star in the process of doing exactly what these super-violent pulsars do best: shoot a jet of particles out at an extremely high speed.
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CEO Threatens To 'Start Killing People' Over Possible Obama Gun Policy

CEO Threatens To 'Start Killing People' Over Possible Obama Gun Policy | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
One CEO says he's willing to go to outrageous lengths to protect his right to use a gun.
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Murdered "Bog Men" Found With Hair Gel, Manicured Nails

Murdered "Bog Men" Found With Hair Gel, Manicured Nails | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
The bodies of two Iron Age murder victims have been recovered from peat bogs in Ireland. Experts say one man used hair gel in a likely bid to appear taller.
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MIT discovers a new state of matter, a new kind of magnetism | ExtremeTech

MIT discovers a new state of matter, a new kind of magnetism | ExtremeTech | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Researchers at MIT have discovered a new state of matter with a new kind of magnetism. This new state, called a quantum spin liquid (QSL), could lead to significant advances in data storage.
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Crowdsourcing site compiles new sign language for math and science | UW Today

Crowdsourcing site compiles new sign language for math and science | UW Today | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
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Did Early Dinosaurs Burrow?

Did Early Dinosaurs Burrow? | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Were enigmatic, 230-million-year-old burrows created by dinosaurs?

Via Susan Clark Johanson
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Origin of Human Intelligence --"Linked to a Genetic Accident 500 Million Years Ago"

Origin of Human Intelligence --"Linked to a Genetic Accident 500 Million Years Ago" | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Researchers have identified the moment in history 500 million years ago that provided our ability to learn complex skills, analyze situations and have flexibility in the way in which we think. According to Professor Seth Grant of the University of...

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Science Can Now Turn Human Urine Into Brain Cells

Science Can Now Turn Human Urine Into Brain Cells | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
It turns out urine isn’t just human waste. Chinese researchers have managed to
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Deep Genetic Sequencing Traces Gypsies Back to Ancient Indian Origin

Deep Genetic Sequencing Traces Gypsies Back to Ancient Indian Origin | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it

The Romani people—once known as “gypsies” or Roma—have been objects of both curiosity and persecution for centuries. Today, some 11 million Romani, with a variety of cultures, languages and lifestyles, live in Europe—and beyond. But where did they come from?

 

A team of European researchers has now collected data on some 800,000 genetic variants (single nucleotides polymorphisms) in 152 Romani people from 13 different Romani groups in Europe. The team then contrasted the Romani sequences with those already known for more than 4,500 Europeans as well as samples from the Indian subcontinent, Central Asia and the Middle East.

 

According to the analysis, the initial founding group of Romani likely departed from what is now the Punjab state in northwestern India close to the year 500 CE. From there, they likely traveled through Central Asia and the Middle East but appear to have mingled only moderately with local populations there. The subsequent doorway to Europe seems to have been the Balkan area—specifically Bulgaria—from which the Romani began dispersing around 1,100 CE.

 

These travels, however, were not always easy. For example, after the initial group left India, their numbers took a dive, with less than half of the population surviving (some 47 percent, according to the genetic analysis). And once groups of Romani that would go on to settle Western Europe left the Balkan region, they suffered another population bottleneck, losing some 30 percent of their population. 

 

Local mixing was not constant over the past several centuries—even in the same groups. The genetic history, as told through this genome-wide analysis, reveals different social mores at different times. For example, Romani populations in Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Croatia show genetic patterns that suggest a limited pairing with local populations until recently. Whereas Romani populations in Portugal, Spain and Lithuania have genetic sequences that suggest they had previously mixed with local European populations more frequently but have “higher levels of recent genetic isolation from non-Romani Europeans,” the researchers noted in their paper.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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How Robots Could Change Life - The BigDog Can Carry Your Load

How Robots Could Change Life - The BigDog Can Carry Your Load | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Meet BigDog - a rough, all-terrain robot that can carry a huge load.

Via Kalani Kirk Hausman, Sakis Koukouvis
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Scientists Discover Children’s Cells Living in Mothers’ Brains: Scientific American

Scientists Discover Children’s Cells Living in Mothers’ Brains: Scientific American | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
The connection between mother and child is ever deeper than thought...

Via Sakis Koukouvis
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First-ever hyperspectral images of Earth's auroras

First-ever hyperspectral images of Earth's auroras | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it

Hoping to expand our understanding of auroras and other fleeting atmospheric events, a team of space-weather researchers designed and built NORUSCA II, a new camera with unprecedented capabilities that can simultaneously image multiple spectral bands, in essence different wavelengths or colors, of light. The camera was tested at the Kjell Henriksen Observatory (KHO) in Svalbard, Norway, where it produced the first-ever hyperspectral images of auroras—commonly referred to as "the Northern (or Southern) Lights"—and may already have revealed a previously unknown atmospheric phenomenon.


Via Sakis Koukouvis, Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Tens of Billions of Earth-like Rocky Planets Orbit Red Dwarf Stars in Milky Way Alone

Tens of Billions of Earth-like Rocky Planets Orbit Red Dwarf Stars in Milky Way Alone | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Data released early this year from the European Space Agency's (ESO) HARPS planet finder shows that rocky planets not much bigger than Earth are very common in the habitable zones around faint red stars. The international team estimates that there are tens of billions of such planets in the Milky Way galaxy alone, and probably about one hundred in the Sun’s immediate neighbourhood. This was the first direct measurement of the frequency of super-Earths around red dwarfs, which account for 80% of the stars in the Milky Way.

 

This first direct estimate of the number of light planets around red dwarf stars was announced early this year by an international team using observations with the HARPS spectrograph on the 3.6-metre telescope at ESO's La Silla Observatory in Chile. A prior announcement, showing that planets are ubiquitous in our galaxy used a different method that was not sensitive to this important class of exoplanets.

 

The HARPS team has been searching for exoplanets orbiting the most common kind of star in the Milky Way — red dwarf stars (also known as M dwarfs). These stars are faint and cool compared to the Sun, but very common and long-lived, and therefore account for 80% of all the stars in the Milky Way.

 

"Our new observations with HARPS mean that about 40% of all red dwarf stars have a super-Earth orbiting in the habitable zone where liquid water can exist on the surface of the planet," says Xavier Bonfils (IPAG, Observatoire des Sciences de l'Univers de Grenoble, France), the leader of the team."Because red dwarfs are so common — there are about 160 billion of them in the Milky Way — this leads us to the astonishing result that there are tens of billions of these planets in our galaxy alone."

 

The HARPS team surveyed a carefully chosen sample of 102 red dwarf stars in the southern skies over a six-year period. A total of nine super-Earths (planets with masses between one and ten times that of Earth) were found, including two inside the habitable zones of Gliese 581 and Gliese 667 C respectively. The astronomers could estimate how heavy the planets were and how far from their stars they orbited.

 

By combining all the data, including observations of stars that did not have planets, and looking at the fraction of existing planets that could be discovered, the team has been able to work out how common different sorts of planets are around red dwarfs. They find that the frequency of occurrence of super-Earths in the habitable zone is 41% with a range from 28% to 95%.

 

On the other hand, more massive planets, similar to Jupiter and Saturn in our Solar System, are found to be rare around red dwarfs. Less than 12% of red dwarfs are expected to have giant planets (with masses between 100 and 1000 times that of the Earth).

As there are many red dwarf stars close to the Sun the new estimate means that there are probably about one hundred super-Earth planets in the habitable zones around stars in the neighbourhood of the Sun at distances less than about 30 light-years.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Huge new flying frog discovered in Vietnam

Huge new flying frog discovered in Vietnam | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
An Australian biologist has uncovered a new species of flying frog in Vietnam.
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Promising compound restores memory loss and reverses symptoms of Alzheimer’s | KurzweilAI

Promising compound restores memory loss and reverses symptoms of Alzheimer’s | KurzweilAI | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Alzheimer's disease brain comparison (credit: Wikimedia Commons) New research in the FASEB Journal by NIH scientists suggests that a small molecule called
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Peel-and-Stick: Fabricating Thin Film Solar Cell on Universal Substrates : Scientific Reports : Nature Publishing Group

Peel-and-Stick: Fabricating Thin Film Solar Cell on Universal Substrates : Scientific Reports : Nature Publishing Group | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Fabrication of thin-film solar cells (TFSCs) on substrates other than Si and glass has been challenging because these nonconventional substrates are not suitable for the current TFSC fabrication processes due to poor surface flatness and low...
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Slab of Barrier Reef sea floor collapsing, could cause tsunami, say scientists | The Raw Story

Slab of Barrier Reef sea floor collapsing, could cause tsunami, say scientists | The Raw Story | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
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Tracing humanity’s African ancestry may mean rewriting ‘out of Africa’ dates

Tracing humanity’s African ancestry may mean rewriting ‘out of Africa’ dates | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Pamela Willoughby, chair of the anthropology department at UAlberta, is making discoveries in southern Tanzania that could answer questions about when and how modern humans emerged from Africa to colonize the globe.
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Your Christmas tree and its genome have remained very much the same over the last 100 million years

Your Christmas tree and its genome have remained very much the same over the last 100 million years | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Biologist have shown that the genome of conifers such as spruce, pine, and fir has remained very much the same for over 100 million years.

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Treegonometry uses math to perfectly decorate a Christmas tree

Treegonometry uses math to perfectly decorate a Christmas tree | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
The University of Sheffield has come up with a mathematical formula to produce the perfectly decorated Christmas tree.

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Surgeons implant first brain ‘pacemaker’ for Alzheimer’s disease in US

Surgeons implant first brain ‘pacemaker’ for Alzheimer’s disease in US | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine have surgically implanted a pacemaker-like device into the brain of a patient in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, the first such operation in the United States.

The device, which provides deep brain stimulation and has been used in thousands of people with Parkinson’s disease, is seen as a possible means of boosting memory and reversing cognitive decline. Instead of focusing on drug treatments, many of which have failed in recent clinical trials, the research focuses on the use of the low-voltage electrical charges delivered directly to the brain. There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease yet.

 

The surgery is part of a federally funded, multicenter clinical trial marking a new direction in clinical research designed to slow or halt the ravages of the disease, which slowly robs its mostly elderly victims of a lifetime of memories and the ability to perform the simplest of daily tasks, researchers at Johns Hopkins say. Some 40 patients are expected to receive the deep brain stimulation implant over the next year or so at Johns Hopkins and four other institutions in North America as part of the Advance Study led by Constantine G. Lyketsos, M.D., M.H.S., a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and Andres Lozano, M.D., Ph.D., chairman of the neurology department at the University of Toronto. Only patients whose cognitive impairment is mild enough that they can decide on their own to participate will be included in the trial. Other sites performing the operation, supported by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute on Aging (R01AG042165), are the University of Toronto, the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Florida, and Banner Health System in Phoenix, Ariz. The medical device company, Functional Neuromodulation Ltd., is also supporting the trial.

 

While experimental for Alzheimer’s patients, more than 80,000 people with the neurodegenerative disorder Parkinson’s disease have undergone the procedure over the past 15 years, with many reporting fewer tremors and requiring lower doses of medication afterward, Lyketsos says. Other researchers are testing deep brain stimulation to control depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder resistant to other therapies. The surgery involves drilling holes into the skull to implant wires into the fornix on either side of the brain. The fornix is a brain pathway instrumental in bringing information to the hippocampus, the portion of the brain where learning begins and memories are made, and where the earliest symptoms of Alzheimer’s appear to arise. The wires are attached to a pacemaker-like device, the “stimulator,” which generates tiny electrical impulses into the brain 130 times a second. The patients don’t feel the current, Rosenberg says. “Deep brain stimulation might prove to be a useful mechanism for treating Alzheimer’s disease, or it might help us develop less invasive treatments based on the same mechanism,” Rosenberg says. By 2050, the number of people age 65 and older with Alzheimer’s disease may triple, experts say, from 5.2 million to a projected 11 million to 16 million, unless effective treatments are found.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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The incredible origami house that can change shape depending on the weather

The incredible origami house that can change shape depending on the weather | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it

This new incredible folding house is able to, in the words of its creators, 'metamorphosize' into eight different configurations to adapt to seasonal, meteorological and even astronomical conditions. For example, in the summer plan, bedroom one faces east and watches the sun rise as its inhabitants wake up. It can then rotate so that the user is constantly in sunlight, while the house generates energy through its solar panels. The revolutionary home is based on the work of an early 20th Century mathematician who discovered a way to dissect a square and rearrange its parts into an equilateral triangle.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Moon-Based 3-D Printers Could Create Tools From Lunar Dust

Moon-Based 3-D Printers Could Create Tools From Lunar Dust | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
Amit Bandyopadhyay and his collaborators published recently in the Rapid Prototyping Journal an experiment in which they used a high-powered laser to liquefy and 3-D print moon rocks.

Via Sakis Koukouvis
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"World's smallest wrench" is able to rotate individual cells

"World's smallest wrench" is able to rotate individual cells | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it

A team from the University of Texas at Arlington, led by assistant professor Samarendra Mohanty, created the device.

 

The business end of the fiber-optic spanner consists of two optical fibers, which are situated end-to-end with a small gap between them. A beam of laser light is emitted from each of these fibers – when the two beams are lined up, the force of the streaming photons is sufficient to trap a microscopic object such as a cell between them. If the fibers are slightly offset, however, and their beams hit that cell on either side, they can actually spin it around in place.

 

By changing the orientation of the fibers, the cell can be turned on any axis. It’s similar to the technology used in “optical tweezers,” although those are used more just for pushing or holding microscopic objects, not for rotating them.

 

Along with its use for examining cells, the researchers believe that the fiber-optic spanner could also be used for applications such as untwisting DNA strands, guiding neurons within the spinal cord, or mixing fluids in lab-on-a-chip devices.


Via Ray and Terry's , Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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mdashf's curator insight, December 13, 2012 1:40 PM

the wrench .. hmm its called a wrenchie in Odia (obviously a borrowed word from English) there is a formula why ie is used for ee, ii, i, and y or yi etc

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NASA Voyager 1 Encounters New Region in Deep Space

NASA Voyager 1 Encounters New Region in Deep Space | Science is Cool! | Scoop.it
NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has entered a new region at the far reaches of our solar system that scientists feel is the final area the spacecraft has to cross before reaching interstellar space.

 

Scientists refer to this new region as a magnetic highway for charged particles because our sun's magnetic field lines are connected to interstellar magnetic field lines. This connection allows lower-energy charged particles that originate from inside our heliosphere -- or the bubble of charged particles the sun blows around itself -- to zoom out and allows higher-energy particles from outside to stream in. Before entering this region, the charged particles bounced around in all directions, as if trapped on local roads inside the heliosphere.

 

The Voyager team infers this region is still inside our solar bubble because the direction of the magnetic field lines has not changed. The direction of these magnetic field lines is predicted to change when Voyager breaks through to interstellar space. The new results were described at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco on Monday.

 

"Although Voyager 1 still is inside the sun's environment, we now can taste what it's like on the outside because the particles are zipping in and out on this magnetic highway," said Edward Stone, Voyager project scientist based at the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena. "We believe this is the last leg of our journey to interstellar space. Our best guess is it's likely just a few months to a couple years away. The new region isn't what we expected, but we've come to expect the unexpected from Voyager."

 

Since December 2004, when Voyager 1 crossed a point in space called the termination shock, the spacecraft has been exploring the heliosphere's outer layer, called the heliosheath. In this region, the stream of charged particles from the sun, known as the solar wind, abruptly slowed down from supersonic speeds and became turbulent. Voyager 1's environment was consistent for about five and a half years. The spacecraft then detected that the outward speed of the solar wind slowed to zero.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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