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Friday, October 3, 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Exotic matter: A closer look at the perfect fluid sheds light on what happened microseconds after the Big Bang

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:18 AM PDT

By combining data from two high-energy accelerators, nuclear scientists have refined the measurement of a remarkable property of exotic matter known as quark-gluon plasma. The findings reveal new aspects of the ultra-hot, 'perfect fluid' that give clues to the state of the young universe just microseconds after the big bang.

Humans to blame for plummeting numbers of cheetahs

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 11:17 AM PDT

A new study into how cheetahs burn energy suggests that human activity, rather than larger predators, may force them to expend more energy and thus be the major cause of their decline.

How giant clams harness the sun by growing algae as a source of food

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 09:37 AM PDT

Beneath the waves, many creatures sport iridescent structures that rival what materials scientists can make in the laboratory. Researchers have now shown how giant clams use these structures to thrive, operating as exceedingly efficient, living greenhouses that grow symbiotic algae as a source of food. This understanding could have implications for alternative energy research, paving the way for new types of solar panels.

52-million-year-old amber preserves 'ant-loving' beetle

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 09:36 AM PDT

Scientists have uncovered the fossil of a 52-million-year old beetle that likely was able to live alongside ants -- preying on their eggs and usurping resources -- within the comfort of their nest. The fossil, encased in a piece of amber from India, is the oldest-known example of this kind of social parasitism, known as 'myrmecophily.' The research also shows that the diversification of these stealth beetles, which infiltrate ant nests world-wide today, correlates with the ecological rise of modern ants.

Unexpectedly speedy expansion of human, ape cerebellum

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 09:36 AM PDT

A new study could rewrite the story of ape and human brain evolution. While the neocortex of the brain has been called 'the crowning achievement of evolution and the biological substrate of human mental prowess,' newly reported evolutionary rate comparisons show that the cerebellum expanded up to six times faster than anticipated throughout the evolution of apes, including humans.

Auditory system: The ruffling effect of rumble

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 06:24 AM PDT

Barely perceptible low-frequency signals nevertheless activate measurable responses in our auditory circuits. Neurobiologists have now characterized the remarkable impact of low-frequency sounds on the inner ear.

Sharks have personalities, study shows

Posted: 02 Oct 2014 05:43 AM PDT

Some sharks are 'gregarious' and have strong social connections, whilst others are more solitary and prefer to remain inconspicuous, according to a new study which is the first to show that the notorious predators have personality traits.

Wintertime ozone pollution in Utah oil and gas fields explained

Posted: 01 Oct 2014 10:30 AM PDT

Chemicals released into the air by oil and gas exploration, extraction and related activities can spark reactions that lead to high levels of ozone in wintertime, high enough to exceed federal health standards, according to new research.

Supersensitive nanodevice can detect extremely early cancers

Posted: 29 Sep 2014 06:02 AM PDT

Extremely early detection of cancers and diseases is on the horizon with a supersensitive nanodevice being developed. The device is ready for packaging into a lunchbox-size unit that ultimately may use a cellphone app to provide test results.

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