Scientists recently discovered that tiny, multilayer nanostructures inside a tarantula’s hair are responsible for its vibrant color. The science behind how these hair-raising spiders developed their blue hue may lead to new ways to improve computer or TV screens using biomimicry. read more
When certain massive stars use up all of their fuel and collapse onto their cores, explosions 10 to 100 times brighter than the average supernova occur. Exactly how this happens is not well understood. Astrophysicists from Caltech, UC Berkeley, the Albert Einstein Institute, and the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics have used the National Science Foundation’s Blue Waters supercomputer to perform three-dimensional computer simulations to fill in an important missing piece of our understanding of what drives these blasts.
NASA-funded researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology are tapping information found in the cells of all life on Earth, and using it to trace life’s evolution.
Researchers from North Carolina State University have discovered a new phase of solid carbon, called Q-carbon, which is distinct from the known phases of graphite and diamond. They have also developed a technique for using Q-carbon to make diamond-related structures at room temperature and at ambient atmospheric pressure in air
On future missions, a silver, metallic-based thermal control coating will be bonded to the Orion crew module’s back shell tiles. Credit: NASA In the wake of NASA’s supremely successful inaugural test flight of the Orion deep space capsule on the EFT-1 mission in Dec.
CRISPR gene-editing is allowing rapid scientific advances in many fields, including human health and now it has been shown that crop research can also benefit from this latest exciting technology. read more
In the last few episodes, we’ve been talking about the standard model of physics, explaining what everything is made up of. But the reality is that we probably don’t know a fraction of how everything is put together. This week we’re going to talk about baryons, the particles made up of quarks.
A supercomputer simulation of a mere 10 milliseconds in the collapse of a massive star into a neutron star proves that these catastrophic events, often called hypernovae, can generate the enormous magnetic fields needed to explode the star and fire off bursts of gamma rays visible halfway across the universe. read more
Computer simulations have allowed scientists to work out how a puzzling 555-million-year-old organism with no known modern relatives fed, revealing that some of the first large, complex organisms on Earth formed ecosystems that were much more complex than previously thought. read more
While Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in Paris hammering out the details of the global fight against climate change, a new study out of the University of Montreal and the Trottier Energy Institute shows that Canadian attitudes are somewhat ambivalent.
Scientists have discovered a hungry black hole swallowing a star at the centre of a nearby galaxy. read more
Scientists have developed a graphene based microphone nearly 32 times more sensitive than microphones of standard nickel-based construction. read more
Fresh analysis of a reptile fossil is helping scientists solve an evolutionary puzzle – how snakes lost their limbs. read more
Extinct archosaurs’ eggshell porosity may be used as a proxy for predicting covered or exposed nest types, according to a study published November 25, 2015 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Kohei Tanaka from the University of Calgary and colleagues.
More than 190 countries are meeting in Paris next week to create a durable framework for addressing climate change and to implement a process to reduce greenhouse gases over time.
This illustration shows Earth surrounded by filaments of dark matter called “hairs.
A microscopic marine alga is thriving in the North Atlantic to an extent that defies scientific predictions, suggesting swift environmental change as a result of increased carbon dioxide in the ocean, a study led a by Johns Hopkins University scientist has found. read more
Coccolithophores–tiny calcifying plants that are part of the foundation of the marine food web–have been increasing in relative abundance in the North Atlantic over the last 45 years, as carbon input into ocean waters has increased. Their relative abundance has increased 10 times, or by an order of magnitude, during this sampling period. This finding was diametrically opposed to what scientists had expected since coccolithophores make their plates out of calcium carbonate, which is becoming more difficult as the ocean becomes more acidic and pH is reduced
Saharan Africa, dozens of major ‘development corridors,’ including roads, railroads, pipelines, and port facilities, are in the works to increase agricultural production, mineral exports, and economic integration. And, if all goes according to plan, it’s going to be a disaster, say researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on Nov
An international team of astrophysicists led by a Johns Hopkins University scientist has for the first time witnessed a star being swallowed by a black hole and ejecting a flare of matter moving at nearly the speed of light. read more