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Friday, November 7, 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Cockroach cyborgs use microphones to detect, trace sounds

Posted: 06 Nov 2014 07:40 AM PST

Researchers have developed technology that allows cyborg cockroaches, or biobots, to pick up sounds with small microphones and seek out the source of the sound. The technology is designed to help emergency personnel find and rescue survivors in the aftermath of a disaster.

New bioenergetic organelle found in plants

Posted: 06 Nov 2014 05:26 AM PST

To date, it was thought that mitochondria and chloroplasts were the only plant cell components able to produce chemical energy. However, according to a new article, another organelle has been identified by researchers, the chromoplast, able to synthetize energy for its metabolism.

Zebrafish stripped of stripes

Posted: 06 Nov 2014 05:20 AM PST

Within weeks of publishing surprising new insights about how zebrafish get their stripes, the same group is now able to explain how to "erase" them.

Birth of planets revealed in astonishing detail in ALMA’s 'best image ever'

Posted: 06 Nov 2014 05:20 AM PST

Astronomers have captured the best image ever of planet formation around an infant star as part of the testing and verification process for the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array's (ALMA) new high-resolution capabilities.

ADHD-air pollution link: Breathing dirty air during pregnancy raises odds of childhood ADHD-related behavior problems

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 12:45 PM PST

Prenatal exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAH, a component of air pollution, raises the odds of behavior problems associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, at age 9, according to researchers.

Direct brain interface between humans

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 12:45 PM PST

Researchers have successfully replicated a direct brain-to-brain connection between pairs of people as part of a scientific study following the team's initial demonstration a year ago. In the newly published study, which involved six people, researchers were able to transmit the signals from one person's brain over the Internet and use these signals to control the hand motions of another person within a split second of sending that signal.

Humans, baboons share cumulative culture ability

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 11:10 AM PST

The ability to build up knowledge over generations, called cumulative culture, has given humankind language and technology. While it was thought to be limited to humans until now, researchers have recently found that baboons are also capable of cumulative culture.

Clearing a path for electrons in polymers: Closing in on the speed limits

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

A new class of low-cost polymer materials, which can carry electric charge with almost no losses despite their seemingly random structure, could lead to flexible electronics and displays which are faster and more efficient.

Milestone in accelerating particles with plasma: Technique is powerful, efficient enough to drive future particle accelerators

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

Scientists have shown that a promising technique for accelerating electrons on waves of plasma is efficient enough to power a new generation of shorter, more economical accelerators. This could greatly expand their use in areas such as medicine, national security, industry and high-energy physics research.

Genesis of genitalia: We have one. Lizards have two. Why?

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

When it comes to genitalia, nature enjoys variety. Snakes and lizards have two. Birds and people have one. And while the former group's paired structures are located somewhat at the level of the limbs, ours, and the birds', appear a bit further down. In fact, snake and lizard genitalia are derived from tissue that gives rise to hind legs, while mammalian genitalia are derived from the tail bud. But despite such noteworthy contrasts, these structures are functionally analogous and express similar genes. Researchers have now discovered how functionally analogous genitalia can arise from divergent tissue.

First amphibious ichthyosaur discovered, filling evolutionary gap

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

The first fossil of an amphibious ichthyosaur has been discovered in China. The fossil represents a missing stage in the evolution of ichthyosaurs, marine reptiles from the Age of Dinosaurs about 250 million years ago.

Coexist or perish, new wildfire analysis says: Changing wildfire paradigm from fighting to coexistence

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

An international team of fire experts have concluded that it is time to stop fighting fires and instead develop strategies to live with fire. In many areas, fire management is difficult or impossible, and interferes with fire's key role in the ecosystem. Instead, we should develop zoning & building codes and evacuation protocols to allow people to live with fire, just as we now live with earthquake and tornado hazards.

Giant groundhog-like creature: Newly discovered fossil is a clue to early mammalian evolution

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 10:19 AM PST

A newly discovered 66–70 million-year-old groundhog-like creature, massive in size compared to other mammals of its era, provides new and important insights into early mammalian evolution.

Brain dissociates emotional response from explicit memory in fearful situations

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 08:26 AM PST

Researchers have been tracking the traces of implicit and explicit memories of fear in human. The study describes how in a context of fear, our brain differently encodes contextual memory of a negative event (the place, what we saw ...) and emotional response associated.

High-fat diet postpones brain aging in mice

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 08:26 AM PST

New research suggests that signs of brain aging can be postponed in mice if placed on a high-fat diet. In the long term, this opens the possibility of treatment of children suffering from premature aging and patients with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

Taking a deeper look at 'ancient wing'

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 05:48 AM PST

In order to determine the feather color of ancient organisms such as Archaeopteryx, microscopic melanin-containing structures called melanosomes have been compared in a variety of living and fossil birds. However, might there be another explanation for the presence of these structures? This research uses scanning electron microscopy and high-sensitivity molecular techniques to respond to alternative interpretations and shed light -- and color -- on Jurassic feathers.

Jet-fueled electricity at room temperature: Fuel cell can run without high heat

Posted: 05 Nov 2014 05:37 AM PST

Engineers have now developed the first room-temperature fuel cell that uses enzymes to help jet fuel produce electricity without needing to ignite the fuel. These new fuel cells can be used to power portable electronics, off-grid power and sensors.

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