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Newswise SciWire - Science News for Journalists
Newswise SciWire
Thursday, May 16, 2019

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Science News

16-May-2019


Particles from aircraft engines affect airways

In a unique experimental setup, Swiss researchers have investigated the effect of exhaust particles from aircraft turbine engines on human lung cells. The cells reacted most strongly to particles emitted during ground idling. The study also showed th...

– Empa, Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology

HR Jonsdottir, M Delaval, Z Leni, A Keller, BT Brem, F Siegerist, D Schönenberger, L Durdina, M Elser, H Burtscher, A Liati, M G; Empa Media release

15-May-2019


How Loud is Too Loud When It Comes to Sports Whistles?

Referees and others using whistles on the job need a simple way to determine whether it’s harmful to their hearing, so researchers set out to put it to the test and to provide some clarity and damage risk criteria for impulse noise exposures. To do...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 13:30 ET


Captive Chimpanzees Spontaneously Use Tools to Excavate Underground Food

Chimps’ ability to work out how to excavate underground food with tools may indicate how ancient hominins did likewise

– PLOS

PLOS ONE

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 14:00 ET


Scientists Suss Out the Secrets of Human Screams

Screaming is well-studied in animals, but much less is known about how human screams function in communication, or how similar or different human screams are from those of other species. To help unlock the secrets of human screaming, researchers at E...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 10:00 ET


New Whistle Alerts Bats to Steer Clear of Wind Turbines

Wind turbines are a critical component in the strategy for energy independence, but these massive structures are also killing bats. Now, researchers from Texas A&M University are exploring a unique passive acoustic whistle mounted on turbine blades t...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 09:00 ET


Can Sound Protect Eagles from Wind Turbine Collisions?

Every year, bald and golden eagles are killed when they inadvertently fly into wind turbine blades. One possible way to prevent these deaths is to chase the birds away with acoustic signals. To determine what types of sounds are most effective in det...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 13:30 ET


Physicists Create Prototype Superefficient Memory for Future Computers

Researchers from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and their colleagues from Germany and the Netherlands have achieved material magnetization switching on the shortest timescales, at a minimal energy cost. They have thus developed a prot...

– Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT)

Nature

Embargo expired on 15-May-2019 at 13:00 ET


Iceland Volcano Eruption in 1783-84 Did Not Spawn Extreme Heat Wave

An enormous volcanic eruption on Iceland in 1783-84 did not cause an extreme summer heat wave in Europe. But, as Benjamin Franklin speculated, the eruption triggered an unusually cold winter, according to a Rutgers-led study. The study, in the Journa...

– Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres; Rutgers Today


Where there’s waste there’s fertilizer

Scientists recycle phosphorus by combining dairy and water treatment leftovers

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

Soil Science Society of America Journal


Coherent? Voice Disorders Significantly Affect Listeners, Too

Researchers conducted a study to determine if there are differences in speech intelligibility (a listener’s ability to recover a speaker’s message) in healthy voices compared to those who have voice disorders like hoarseness. They also wanted to ...

– Florida Atlantic University

Journal of Voice


Ghost Crab Pots

New research from the University of Delaware suggests there is a ghost crab pot problem in the state’s Inland Bays, with almost 3.5 abandoned crab pots per acre just along the Bay Cove section of Rehoboth Bay near Dewey Beach. The lost or abandoned...

– University of Delaware


ACSM Publishes Science Behind the Updated Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) published a collection of 14 new pronouncements that present the science behind the updated Physical Activity Guidelines released in November 2018. Authored primarily by ACSM subject matter experts, each...

– American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise®


From Earth’s deep mantle, scientists find a new way volcanoes form

Far below Bermuda’s pink sand beaches and turquoise tides, geoscientists have discovered the first direct evidence that material from deep within Earth’s mantle transition zone – a layer rich in water, crystals and melted rock – can percolate...

– Cornell University

Nature, May 2019


Chewing gums reveal the oldest Scandinavian human DNA

The first humans who settled in Scandinavia more than 10,000 years ago left their DNA behind in ancient chewing gums

– Stockholm University

Communications Biology


Clean and effective electronic waste recycling

As the number of electronics devices increases around the world, finding effective methods of recycling electronic waste (e-waste) is a growing concern.

– Kumamoto University

Waste Management


New research finds unprecedented weakening of Asian summer monsoon

Rainfall from the Asian summer monsoon has been decreasing over the past 80 years, a decline unprecedented in the last 448 years, according to a new study.

– American Geophysical Union (AGU)

Geophysical Research Letters


First smartphone app that can hear ear infections in children

Researchers at the UW have created a new smartphone app that can detect fluid behind the eardrum by simply using a piece of paper and the phone’s microphone and speaker.

– University of Washington

Science Translational Medicine

includes video


How does root depth affect the nearby soil?

Plants are not passive actors in the soil environment

– Soil Science Society of America (SSSA)


Disabled veterans could live more independently with new technology

Researchers at Texas A&M University are working on new Specially Adapted Housing Assistive Technology that could help veterans with severe spinal cord injuries and disorders achieve even more independence with a grant from the Department of Veterans ...

– Texas A&M University


Amsler’s dive into Antarctic Ocean airs Thursday on NatGeo Wild

The photo captures the beauty of a largely unexplored part of the world. It also captures the joy of a life’s work realized. The video tells the story of the research pioneer, and it will air this week, showcasing the work that has been a central f...

Expert Available

– University of Alabama at Birmingham

14-May-2019


How Nigerian Music Can Help You Choose a Ripe Watermelon

The quickest way to decide if a watermelon is ripe or not is by tapping on it. And if you’re having trouble detecting the subtleties of the sound, listen to some Nigerian traditional music to get your ears attuned. Nigerian researcher Stephen Onwub...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 09:00 ET


New Study Shows Toddlers Are Great at Getting the Conversation Started

Conversation is an important part of what makes us human. Previous research has shown that children begin to develop this skill at a young age. While many assume that mothers instigate communication with their children, new research suggests that chi...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 13:30 ET


How Much Language Are Unborn Children Exposed to in the Womb?

The different soundscapes of NICUs has recently attracted interest in how changes in what we hear in our earliest days might affect language development in the brain. One ongoing study is hoping to better understand these differences by painting a cl...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 13:30 ET


Species facing climate change could find help in odd place: urban environments

Research shows animals move faster through ‘low quality’ habitats (fulfilling a minimum of resources for survival) – evidence that could change the way conservationists think about managing urban landscapes to help species move in response to c...

– Tufts University

Ecology (2019) 00(00):e02701; RC-2119; RGPIN-2016-04795

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 17:00 ET


Take two (attempts): Hope for overcoming substance use disorders

Alcohol and drug problems are often described as ‘chronically relapsing’ conditions, implying that multiple recovery attempts are needed before an addiction can be overcome for good. However, a new study by researchers at Harvard Medical School i...

– Research Society on Alcoholism

Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 10:00 ET


In Guppy Courtship, the Unusual Male Wins

New FSU Study Shows Psychological Concept Underpins Mating Choices

– Florida State University

Proceedings of the Royal Society B

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 19:05 ET


Study: Treats Might Mask Animal Intelligence

Rewards are necessary for learning, but may actually mask true knowledge, finds a new Johns Hopkins University study with rodents and ferrets.

– Johns Hopkins University

Nature Communications, May-2019; DC009635; DC012557; DC05014; ANR-17-ERC2-0005; ANR-16-CE37-0016; ANR-10-LABX-0087 IEC; ANR-11-IDEX-0001-02; R90DA043849...

Embargo expired on 14-May-2019 at 05:00 ET

includes video


You Are What You Eat: How the Pursuit of Carbs Changed Mammals’ Genes and Saliva

A new study is providing insight into how the pursuit of starch may have driven evolutionary adaptations in mammals. The research, conducted on 46 mammal species, focuses on a biological compound called amylase, which is produced by humans and other...

– University at Buffalo

eLife


The moon is quaking as it shrinks

A 2010 analysis of imagery from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) found that the moon shriveled like a raisin as its interior cooled

– University of Maryland, College Park

Nature Geoscience


A late-night disco in the forest reveals tree performance

In 2017, the group from the Optics of Photosynthesis Lab (OPL) developed a new method to measure a small but important signal produced by all plants

– University of Helsinki

Remote Sensing of Environment


Tooth Fossils Fill 6-Million-Year-Old Gap in Primate Evolution

UNLV geoscientist, student among international research team behind discovery of ancient monkey species that lived in Africa 22 million years ago.

– University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV)

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, March 2019


A valuable gift of butterflies

Like many entomologists, Jason Gibbs jokes about how he doesn’t like butterflies.

– University of Manitoba


ICRA 2019 preview: bots, drones and neural nets

From ways to improve long-distance surgery techniques to better ways to get robots to work with humans in manufacturing settings and to a testing platform for UAVs, engineers at the University of California San Diego will make strong showing at the 2...

– University of California San Diego


Snapshot: Vulnerability Reduction Scorecard helps cities save lives and resources

The Plan Integration for Resilience Scorecard (PIRS) is a novel planning approach that helps prevent people and investments from being in harm’s way, and ultimately save lives and resources.

– Homeland Security's Science And Technology Directorate

13-May-2019


Want to Expand Your Toddler’s Vocabulary? Find Another Child

Children glean all kinds of information from the people around them. In particular, children mimic and learn speech patterns from their family. Previous work has shown that infants attend selectively to their mother’s voice over another female’s ...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 13-May-2019 at 16:00 ET


Signals to Noise in Acoustic Vehicles Alerting Systems

If you’ve ever wished for a quieter commute, you may be in luck: The low-emission electric vehicles of tomorrow are expected to lower noise pollution as well as air pollution. The prospect of a future powered by environmentally friendly electric ve...

– Acoustical Society of America (ASA)

177th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America

Embargo expired on 13-May-2019 at 14:30 ET


Study Concludes Glassy Menagerie of Particles in Beach Sands Near Hiroshima is Fallout Debris from A-Bomb Blast

A years-long study that involved scientists and experiments at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley concluded that an odd assortment of particles found in beach sands in Japan are most likely fallout debris from the 1945 Hiroshima A-bomb blast.

– Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Anthropocene, March 2019

Embargo expired on 13-May-2019 at 11:00 ET


New technique merging sound and math could help prevent plasma disruptions in fusion facilities

Scientists have created a novel method for measuring the stability of plasma in fusion facilities called “tokamaks.” Involving an innovative use of a mathematical tool, the method might lead to a technique for stabilizing plasma and making fusion...

– Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

Nuclear Fusion; DE-FC02- 04ER54698, DE-AC02-09CH11466, DE-AC02-09CH11466


Researchers Find Evolutionary Backing in New Analysis of Differences in Mammalian Vertebrae

Differences in numbers of vertebrae are most extreme in mammals which do not rely on running and leaping, such as those adapted to suspensory locomotion like apes and sloths, a team of anthropologists has concluded.

– New York University

Nature Ecology & Evolution; BCS-0925734


With uncanny accuracy, computer model predicts how certain policies impact air pollution

To better understand the environmental impact of the American shipping industry, a new computer model connects everything from the chemical intricacies of diesel exhaust to the geography and economics of our truck-dependent shipping infrastructure. ...

– The Fannie and John Hertz Foundation

Nature Sustainability, Feb 11-2019


BTI pangenome may lead to tastier, heartier tomatoes

Tomato breeders have traditionally emphasized traits that improve production, like larger fruits and more fruits per plant. As a result, some traits that improved other important qualities, such as flavor and disease resistance, were lost.

– Cornell University

Nature Genetics, May-2019


Another step forward for a promising new battery to store clean energy

Researchers have built a more efficient, more reliable potassium-oxygen battery, a step toward a potential solution for energy storage on the nation’s power grid and longer-lasting batteries in cell phones and laptops.

– Ohio State University

Batteries and Supercaps


UV light could cut costs, control crop diseases in fungus fight

Thanks to the work of an international, multidisciplinary team of researchers led by Cornell AgriTech’s David Gadoury, farmers may no longer have to rely exclusively on fungicides to suppress destructive plant pathogens like powdery mildew. Over th...

– Cornell University

includes video

SciWire Announcements


Marine Organisms Hold Promise for Treating Triple Negative Breast Cancer

More than 50 percent of cancer drugs currently used have originated from natural products. Researchers have received $801,000 from the Florida Department of Health for a project to investigate the use of marine natural compounds as potential treatmen...

– Florida Atlantic University


Green fluorescent protein honored with contest

Send your beautiful images or videos to ASCB’s contest to honor the 25th anniversary of green fluorescent protein used as a bioscience tool.

– American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB)


Highlights from Free the Science Week 2019

In celebration of its third annual Free the Science Week (April 1-7, 2019), the Society once again took down the paywall to the entire ECS Digital Library. For the duration of the week, readers had unrestricted access to more than 151,000 scientific ...

– The Electrochemical Society

Free the Science Week (April 1-7, 2019)


Wells Fargo Funded Innovation Incubator Selects First Cohort of Agtech Startups Focused on Sustainable Solutions

The Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN2), a technology incubator and platform funded by the Wells Fargo Foundation and co-administered by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), today announced it has selected five early-stage companies fo...

– Donald Danforth Plant Science Center


Cryogenics equipment maker licenses ORNL auto-fill method for more efficient liquid helium use

Advanced Research Systems has licensed an ORNL technology designed to automatically refill liquid helium used in laboratory equipment for low-temperature scientific experiments, which will reduce downtime, recover more helium and increase overall eff...

– Oak Ridge National Laboratory


Future cartons will track milk from farm to fridge

Cornell food scientists are designing the milk carton of the future that will give consumers precise “best by” dates and improve sustainability by reducing food waste.

– Cornell University


New Argonne coating could have big implications for lithium batteries

In a new discovery, scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory have developed a new cathode coating by using an oxidative chemical vapor deposition technique. The new coating can keep the battery’s cathode ele...

– Argonne National Laboratory

Nature Energy, May-2019


6th annual Regenerative Medicine Essentials Course Set for June

The sixth annual Regenerative Medicine Essentials Course will be held June 10 - 14 in downtown Winston-Salem. The course is made possible through the collaborative partnership between the Regenerative Medicine Foundation (RMF) and the Wake Forest Ins...

– Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

SciWire Marketplace


New cyber resilience report highlights Argonne’s global expertise

The World Economic Forum (WEF) has sought expertise from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory in addressing cyber resilience issues. In February, the WEF published a study developed with the help of Argonne experts that...

– Argonne National Laboratory

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