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Newswise SciWire - Science News for Journalists
Newswise SciWire
Thursday, March 28, 2019

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Science News

28-Mar-2019


In Ancient Oceans that Resembled Our Own, Oxygen Loss Triggered Mass Extinction

Researchers provide first conclusive evidence linking widespread ocean oxygen loss and rising sea levels to a 430-million-year-old mass extinction event.

– Florida State University

Earth and Planetary Science Letters

27-Mar-2019


Laborer, Doorkeeper, or Future Queen: Division of labor in turtle ants is reflected in neurobiology

The neurobiology of turtle ants differs significantly according to their specialized role within the colony, according to a study published March 27, 2019 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Darcy Greer Gordon from Boston University, USA, and coll...

– PLOS

PLOS ONE

Embargo expired on 27-Mar-2019 at 14:00 ET


As the Arctic Warms, Temperate Regions Dry Out, with Likely Effects on Society

Northern Arizona University researchers used climate records dating back thousands of years to demonstrate that warming in the Arctic is associated with fewer storms and increased aridity in a huge swath of the Northern Hemisphere, which could lead t...

– Northern Arizona University

Nature

Embargo expired on 27-Mar-2019 at 14:00 ET


Are No-Fun Fungi Keeping Fertilizer From Plants?

Research explores soil, fungi, phosphorus dynamics

– American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), Soil Science Society of America (SSSA)

International Meeting of the Soil Science Society of America


100% world-class rating for Uni of Adelaide research

The University of Adelaide has reaffirmed its standing as the leading research and innovation university in South Australia.

– University of Adelaide


Urban biodiversity to lower chronic disease

Replanting urban environments with native flora could be a cost effective way to improve public health because it will help ‘rewild’ the environmental and human microbiota, University of Adelaide researchers say.

– University of Adelaide

Frontiers in Microbiology


Researchers aim to demystify complex ag water requirements for Produce Safety Rule

In an effort to ensure the safety of fresh fruits and vegetables for consumers, Cornell University’s Produce Safety Alliance is helping to explain complex federal food safety rules and develop new ways to assess agricultural water use.

– Cornell University

Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety, Feb-2019


UNH Researchers Advance Effort to Manage Parasitic Roundworms with Patent-Pending Discovery

Roundworms that feed on plants cause approximately $100 billion in annual global crop damage. Now researchers at the University of New Hampshire have made a patent-pending discovery that certain enzymes in roundworms, called nematodes, behave differe...

– University of New Hampshire

PLOS ONE


Autonomous Weed Control Via Smart Robots

Soybean fields are becoming increasingly infested with a glyphosate-resistant weed called “palmer amaranth.” One pesticide currently used for controlling it is “Dicamba,” but it has devastating effects on adjacent areas, because it tends to d...

– American Institute of Physics (AIP)

Physics of Fluids

includes video


Future of elephants living in captivity is under threat

Scientists at the University of Sheffield and University of Turku are looking at ways to boost captive populations of Asian elephants without relying on taking them from the wild.

– University of Sheffield

Proceedings of the Royal Society B


Codifying the universal language of honey bees

In a paper appearing in April’s issue of Animal Behaviour, researchers decipher the instructive messages encoded in the insects’ movements, called waggle dances.

– Virginia Tech

Animal Behaviour


GRAVITY instrument breaks new ground in exoplanet imaging

The GRAVITY instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) has made the first direct observation of an exoplanet using optical interferometry. This method revealed a complex exoplanetary atmosphere with clouds of iron and silicates sw...

– European Southern Observatory (ESO)

Astronomy and Astrophysics


Modified deep-learning algorithms unveil features of shape-shifting proteins

To function properly, proteins must morph into specific 3D shapes through a biophysical phenomenon called protein folding. Researchers at ORNL are using various deep-learning techniques to study the intermediate protein stages between the initial unf...

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory

BMC Bioinformatics, Dec-2018


The largest delta plain in Earth's history

The largest delta plain in Earth's history formed along the northern coast of the supercontinent Pangea in the late Triassic. Its size out-scales modern counterparts by an order of magnitude, and approximates 1% of the total land area of the modern w...

– Geological Society of America (GSA)

Geology


Birds bug out over coffee

New University of Delaware research has found that migratory birds prefer foraging in native leguminous tree species over non-native and many other trees used on many coffee farms. The findings will help farmers choose trees that are best for both bi...

– University of Delaware

Biotropica


Engineers Craft the Basic Building Block for Electrospun Nanofibers

Imagine wounds that heal without scars. It’s possible with electrospun nanofibers. A team from Michigan Tech streamlined the tissue scaffold production process, cutting out time spent removing toxic solvents and chemicals. Using a unique blend of p...

– Michigan Technological University

Materialia, March-2019; MEDC T3N award from the Michigan Economic Development


Data flows from NASA’s TESS Mission, leads to discovery of Saturn-sized planet

Astronomers who study stars contributed to the analysis of a planet discovered by NASA's new TESS Mission. It's the first planet identified by TESS for which the oscillations -- "starquakes" -- of the planet's host star could be measured.

– Iowa State University

The Astronomical Journal; The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series

includes video


Adhesive Formed From Bee Spit and Flower Oil Could Form Basis of New Glues

Researchers at Georgia Institute of Technology are looking at bee "glue" as a potential bioinspired adhesive because of its unique adhesive properties and ability to remain sticky through a range of conditions.

– Georgia Institute of Technology

Nature Communications; FA9550-10-1-0555

includes video


Chemists Cook Up Elusive Molecule for the First Time

Scientists from UC San Diego have confined a long-contemplated diatomic molecule by isolating a metal compound containing the elusive “BF.”

– University of California San Diego

Science; CHE-1802646


First Annual Sea Turtle Derby Part of Tortuga Music Festival on Fort Lauderdale Beach

To help financially support sea turtle research, NSU is partnering with the annual Tortuga Music Festival, creating the First Annual Sea Turtle Derby

– Nova Southeastern University


Team Creates Robotic 3D-Printed Hand for Local Boy

Wichita State University student Chelsea Sewell and Brian Brown, director of the Robotics and Automation Lab at WSU, created a robotic 3D-printed hand for a local boy.

– Wichita State University

includes video


Cosmic Fireworks in the Clouds: Volunteer Detectives Sought for Magellanic Clouds Cluster Search

Caught in a cosmic dance, our nearest neighbor galaxies, the Magellanic Clouds, are cartwheeling and circling each other as they fall toward our galaxy, the Milky Way. The gravitational interaction between the Clouds sparks cosmic fireworks—bursts ...

– Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA)

26-Mar-2019


“Scuba-diving” lizard can stay underwater for 16 minutes

A Costa-Rican lizard species may have evolved scuba-diving qualities allowing it to stay underwater for 16 minutes, according to faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

– Binghamton University, State University of New York

Herpetological Review, March-2019

includes video


Ultra-sharp Images Make Old Stars Look Absolutely Marvelous!

Using high-resolution adaptive optics imaging from the Gemini Observatory, astronomers have uncovered one of the oldest star clusters in the Milky Way Galaxy. The remarkably sharp image looks back into the early history of our Universe and sheds new ...

– Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA)

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society


New strain of canine distemper virus arrives in North America

A young dog imported from South Korea into western Canada last October brought along a dangerous hitchhiker: the Asia-1 strain of canine distemper virus (CDV), which until then had not been reported in North America.

– Cornell University


Wearable sensors mimic skin to help with wound healing process

Researchers at Binghamton University, State University of New York, have developed skin-inspired electronics to conform to the skin, allowing for long-term, high-performance, real-time wound monitoring in users.

– Binghamton University, State University of New York

Biosensors and Bioelectronics, Feb-2019


New App Can Secure All Your Saved Emails

Columbia Engineering researchers develop Easy Email Encryption, an app that encrypts all saved emails to prevent hacks and leaks, is easy to install and use, and works with popular email services such as Gmail, Yahoo, etc.

– Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science

EuroSys'19


The Sense of Water—and Nitrogen: Studies Uncover Genome-Wide Responses that Limit Crop Growth in Nutrient-Poor Soils

A team of researchers has tested how each gene within the genome of rice—one of the world’s most important staple crops—senses and responds to combinations of water and nutrients.

– New York University

Nature Communications


Electronic stealth neurons offer enhanced brain studies and treatments

Researchers funded by NIBIB have designed neuron-like probes that can be implanted and remain viable for long-term use to study and treat the brain.

– National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering

Yang et al. Nat Mater, Feb-2019; 1DP1EB025835; R21DA043985


In Hunt for Life, Astronomers Identify Most Promising Stars

NASA’s new Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is designed to ferret out habitable exoplanets, but with hundreds of thousands of sunlike and smaller stars in its camera views, which of those stars could host planets like our own? A team of...

– Cornell University

Astrophysical Journal Letters, March 2019


New tool maps a key food source for grizzly bears: huckleberries

Researchers have developed a new approach to map huckleberry distribution across Glacier National Park that uses publicly available satellite imagery. Tracking where huckleberry plants live now — and where they may move under climate change — can...

– University of Washington

International Journal of Remote Sensing, Feb-2019


Ginseng in decline in the eastern United States

American ginseng is in decline thanks chiefly to range-wide overharvesting, according to new research led by University of Georgia ecologist John Paul Schmidt. But that trend could potentially be reversed by promoting and supporting ginseng cultivati...

– University of Georgia

Biological Conservation


Air quality agencies can breathe easier about current emissions regulations

A new study provides a fuller picture of how nitrogen oxides — the tailpipe-generated particles at the center of the Volkswagen scandal, also known as NOx, — affect PM2.5, the microscopic particles that can lodge in lungs.

– University of Washington

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences


New Drilling Technology Could Make Geothermal Energy More Feasible

Geothermal wells are drilled deep into the ground in order to tap into the heat radiating from the Earth’s core and transform it into electricity, but it is a slow and expensive. A team of researchers from Texas A&M University is developing new dri...

– Texas A&M University


How Does Mother Nature Tackle the Tough Triple Bond Found in Nitrogen?

Researchers demystify how the nitrogenase enzyme breaks bonds to learn a better way to make ammonia.

– Department of Energy, Office of Science

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences


Kevin Field: Developing radiation-tolerant materials for nuclear power systems

Profiled is Kevin Field at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, who synthesizes and scrutinizes materials for nuclear power systems that must perform safely and efficiently over decades of irradiation.

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Announcing April’s SLAS Discovery Cover Article

The April cover article of SLAS Discovery features “Addressing Antimicrobial Resistance through New Medicinal and Synthetic Chemistry Strategies,” by Monika I. Konaklieva, Ph.D., an online ahead-of-print article first published in December 2018. ...

– SLAS (Society for Laboratory Automation and Screening)

Vol 24, Issue 4, 2019


National Park Service Monitors Health of Badlands Bighorn Sheep

The Badlands bighorn sheep herd is healthy and thriving—and National Park Service wants to keep it that way by monitoring survival and mortality.

– South Dakota State University


STEM Inspiration Leads Argonne Intern on Electrical Engineering Path

As a high school student, Bryce Smith participated in the Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) High School Research Program, designed to recruit, stimulate and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among ...

– Argonne National Laboratory

25-Mar-2019


The Most Aggressive Spider Societies Are Not Always the Ones That Flourish, Researchers Find

Evolutionary biologists at McMaster University who study the social lives and behaviour of colony spiders—some of which are docile, others aggressive— have found that the success of their cooperative societies depend on their neighbours.

– McMaster University

Nature Ecology & Evolution

Embargo expired on 25-Mar-2019 at 12:00 ET


International Climate Scientists Seek Refined Understanding of Climate System

Climate scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) announced today the release of new data sets that will provide fresh insights into past and future climate change.

– Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Embargo expired on 25-Mar-2019 at 12:00 ET


How the 'good feeling' can influence the purchase of sustainable chocolate

More and more products carry ethical labels such as fair-trade or organic, which consumers usually view positively. Nevertheless, the sales figures of these products often remain low, even though they offer advantages for the environment or for socie...

– University of Göttingen

Journal of Cleaner Production


Study Suggests Trees Are Crucial to the Future of Our Cities

The shade of a single tree can provide welcome relief from the hot summer sun. But when that single tree is part of a small forest, it creates a profound cooling effect. According to a study published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy ...

– University of Wisconsin-Madison

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences March 25, 2019


Argonne maps out virtual world for U.S. military

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory converted 1,000 pages of CENTCOM military information into a 3D digital visualization that allows users to immerse themselves in the data using virtual reality (VR) hea...

– Argonne National Laboratory


Getting to the root of the mystery:

To better understand the rhizosphere, a new research endeavor at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory will develop a model instrument that will enable scientists to look at the biological interactions in the rhizosphere in real time, in ...

– Ames Laboratory


Analyzing Design Team Interaction

An interdisciplinary team of researchers at Penn State will study the role team interactions have on engineering student teams’ performance during the design process.

– Penn State College of Engineering

SciWire Announcements


The Fertilizer Institute Joins the International Phytobiomes Alliance

The Fertilizer Institute has joined the International Phytobiomes Alliance as a sponsoring partner, both organizations announced today.

– International Phytobiomes Alliance


Mirage software automates design of optical metamaterials

Sandia National Laboratories has created the first inverse-design software for optical metamaterials — meaning users start by describing the result they want, and the software fills in the steps to get there.

– Sandia National Laboratories

includes video


NYU’s LeCun Wins Turing Award for Breakthroughs in Artificial Intelligence

Yann LeCun, a professor at New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, has been awarded the ACM A.M. Turing Award for his breakthroughs in artificial intelligence.

– New York University


TMS Honors 2019 Awardees

The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society (TMS) has announced the 2019 recipients of its awards during its recent TMS 2019 Annual Meeting & Exhibition.

– TMS (The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society)


Nanyin Zhang named American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering fellow

Nanyin Zhang, Huck Professor of Brain Imaging with the Penn State Department of Biomedical Engineering, has been elected to the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). AIMBE is a nonprofit organ...

– Penn State College of Engineering


All ECS Research Free during Free the Science Week

The Electrochemical Society (ECS) will celebrate its third annual Free the Science Week (April 1-7, 2019) by once again taking down the paywall to its entire online collection of published research. For the duration of the week, the ECS Digital Libra...

– The Electrochemical Society

Embargo expired on 26-Mar-2019 at 07:00 ET

includes video


GlobusWorld 2019 Program Announced

Globus, the leading research data management service, today announced the lineup of speakers for its eighth annual user conference, GlobusWorld 2019, held this year on May 1-2, 2019 in Chicago, IL.

– Globus

GlobusWorld 2019, May 1-2, 2019 in Chicago, IL


Delicious to the core: Turning apple waste into good taste

Apple juice, jams and cider have long been worth the squeeze, despite roughly one-third of the fruit being wasted during processing. Now Cornell research aims to turn the nutritious leftovers into snack foods and cereals, reducing waste and creating ...

– Cornell University


S&T Awards $5.9M to Expand Critical Infrastructure Protection Platform

DHS S&T has awarded a total of $5,900,000 to the Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) to expand the Distributed Environment for Critical Infrastructure Decision-Making Exercises (DECIDE) cyber-training platform.

– Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate


Science News Biomedical Writer Receives Endocrine Society Award for Excellence in Science and Medical Journalism

Science News health and biomedical reporter Aimee Cunningham received the Endocrine Society’s annual Award for Excellence in Science and Medical Journalism, the Society announced today.

– Endocrine Society

SciWire Marketplace


Argonne National Laboratory works with AT&T on climate resiliency project

AT&T and the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory are teaming up on a climate resiliency project that will help AT&T better prepare for and adapt to the impacts of changing weather patterns and extreme weather events.

– Argonne National Laboratory


SDSC and Sylabs Spread the Word on Singularity

The San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego, and Sylabs.io recently hosted the first-ever Singularity User Group meeting, attracting users and developers from around the nation and beyond who wanted to learn more about the latest develo...

– University of California San Diego

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