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  • Chemistry in Pictures: Shining Better Together

    Chemistry in Pictures: Shining Better Together

    via c&en: Before Yujie Tu crystallized this anthracene derivative, it hardly glowed at all. In the closely packed structure of the crystals, the molecules clumped together, locking down squirmy parts of the molecules that would otherwise absorb light and thus prevent fluorescence. Tu studies this phenomenon, called aggregate-induced emission, as part of his PhD work at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. Finding organic molecules that glow when they clump together is useful in biological […]

  • Quantum Biology: Spooky, Mysterious, and Fundamental to Life Itself

    Quantum Biology: Spooky, Mysterious, and Fundamental to Life Itself

    via Interesting Engineering: As little as a decade ago, scientists were sure that the chemistry of life and the weird chemistry of the quantum world were completely separate things. Quantum effects were usually observed only on the nanometer scale, surrounded by hard vacuum, ultra-low temperatures, and a tightly controlled laboratory environment. Biology, however, is a macroscopic world that is warm, messy, and anything but controlled. It seemed elementary that a quantum phenomenon such as ‘coherence’, in […]

  • Science Isn’t About ‘The Truth’ – It’s About Building Models

    Science Isn’t About ‘The Truth’ – It’s About Building Models

    via WIRED: YOU MIGHT THINK you can just leave the science stuff to scientists—but you can’t. We live in a world that is surrounded by science and we use toys that depend on science (like that fancy smartphone in your hand). Other issues, like climate change and vaccinations, can have a significant impact on any one of us. You don’t have to be science nerd, but you have to at least know the important parts of […]

  • Self-healing material can build itself from carbon in the air

    Self-healing material can build itself from carbon in the air

    via MIT News: A material designed by MIT chemical engineers can react with carbon dioxide from the air, to grow, strengthen, and even repair itself. The polymer, which might someday be used as construction or repair material or for protective coatings, continuously converts the greenhouse gas into a carbon-based material that reinforces itself. The current version of the new material is a synthetic gel-like substance that performs a chemical process similar to the way plants incorporate […]

  • Planet Earth Wobbles As It Spins, and Now Scientists Know Why

    Planet Earth Wobbles As It Spins, and Now Scientists Know Why

    via LIVESCIENCE: Humans are responsible for some of the wobble in Earth’s spin. Since 1899, the Earth’s axis of spin has shifted about 34 feet (10.5 meters). Now, research quantifies the reasons why and finds that a third is due to melting ice and rising sea levels, particularly in Greenland — placing the blame on the doorstep of anthropogenic climate change. Another third of the wobble is due to land masses expanding upward as the glaciers […]

  • Scientists discover natural plant-based food preservative

    Scientists discover natural plant-based food preservative

    via Phys: Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) scientists have discovered a plant-based food preservative that is more effective than artificial preservatives. The organic preservative comprises naturally occurring flavonoids, a diverse group of phytonutrients found in almost all fruits and vegetables. The flavonoids created by NTU scientists have strong antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, two key traits of preservatives that inhibit bacterial growth and extend food freshness. In tests carried out on on meat and fruit juice […]

  • More Energy, More Rain

    More Energy, More Rain

    via Science: Energy generation by wind and solar farms could reduce carbon emissions and thus mitigate anthropogenic climate change. But is this its only benefit? Li et al. conducted experiments using a climate model to show that the installation of large-scale wind and solar power generation facilities in the Sahara could cause more local rainfall, particularly in the neighboring Sahel region. This effect, caused by a combination of increased surface drag and reduced albedo, could increase […]

  • Scientists Just Invented a More Efficient Way to Turn Sunlight Into Unlimited, Renewable Fuel

    Scientists Just Invented a More Efficient Way to Turn Sunlight Into Unlimited, Renewable Fuel

    via science alert: Life has been soaking up sunlight and storing it as a fuel source for billions of years. But scientists have just put a new twist on this ancient process that could finally provide us with the efficiency we need to compete with fossil fuels. A study led by the University of Cambridge in the UK has resulted in a better way to split water into hydrogen and oxygen by linking a photosynthesis pathway […]

  • Getting to the root of plant evolution

    Getting to the root of plant evolution

    via ScienceDaily: Despite plants and vegetation being key to the Earth’s ecosystem, little is known about the origin of their roots. However in new research, published in Nature, Oxford University scientists describe a transitional root fossils from the earliest land ecosystem that sheds light on how roots have evolved. The findings suggest that plant roots have evolved more than once, and that the characteristics of roots developed in a step-wise manner — with the central root […]

  • New stem cell model can be used to test treatments for a rare nervous system disorder

    New stem cell model can be used to test treatments for a rare nervous system disorder

    via ScienceDaily: A City of Hope researcher has developed a stem cell model to assess possible treatments for a rare nervous system disorder that is in the same disease group as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The finding takes Yanhong Shi, Ph.D., senior author of the study, and her colleagues one step closer to finding a way to slow or treat Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. The team studied Alexander disease […]