Brightsurf Science News & Current Events

September 26, 2003
Don't drink the water: Texas A&M researcher conducting study of polluted Mexican lake
Finding clean, fresh water can often be a problem. If it's Mexico City, with its population of 20 million people and a history as one of the world's most polluted areas, finding drinkable water can be more than just a problem - it can be a matter of life and death.

Making tiny plastic particles to deliver lifesaving medicine
Many medications now must enter the body through painful injections.

Rating the performance of residential fuel cells
NIST researchers have launched a new effort to collect data on how well residential fuel cells work under a variety of different conditions.

Scientists determine biological and ecosystem changes in polar regions linked to solar variability
A Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientist, in collaboration with an international team of colleagues, has reported that noticeable changes in the sub-polar climate and ecosystems appear to be linked to variations in the sun's intensity during the past 12,000 years.

Envisat observes resurgent ozone hole
The latest ESA Earth Observation data show that reports of the demise of the ozone hole appearing annually above Antarctica have been greatly exaggerated.

'Good' chemical, neurons in brain elevated among exercise addicts
A study in the journal Neuroscience confirms that exercise increases the chemical BDNF - brain-derived neurotrophic factor - in the hippocampus, a curved, elongated ridge in the brain that controls learning and memory.

Social insects point to non-genetic origins of societies
Examining the model of social insects, a biologist argues that social structures are most likely to have developed from the fundamental network dynamics acting on groups of animals.

Tiny 'test tubes' may aid pharmaceutical R&D
Using laser light as tweezers and a scalpel, NIST scientists have demonstrated the use of artificial cells as nanovials for ultrasmall volume chemistry.

Without thinning the worst is yet to come for fire-prone forests
Considering the cost of wildfires against the cost of thinning overly dense forests at risk for devastating crown fires in two national forests in Washington and Oregon has implications for forests across the Intermountain West, from Canada to Arizona and New Mexico.

UT Southwestern faculty members receive American Heart Association's Distinguished Scientist honor
Three scientists at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas are to receive the American Heart Association's newly created Distinguished Scientist title, the highest designation of membership given by the organization.

New weapon may help flush stealth stashes of HIV in cells
The evolving science of

Free CD demystifies complex standards system
A new CD from NIST can help steer engineers, novice trade-association representatives and new government staffers through the thicket of organizations, activities, policies and laws related to standards and measurement in the United States.

Early Andean cultures part of intensive silver industry
The examination of sediments from the Bolivian Andes suggests that ores were actively smelted earlier than originally thought--providing evidence for a major pre-Incan silver industry, says a University of Alberta professor, part of a team that conducted the research.

ZARM Drop Tower becomes ESA External Facility
The European Space Agency is to declare the

Dual microscopes illuminate electronic switching speeds
Reporting in the Sept. 22 issue of Applied Physics Letters, a NIST researcher and a Korean guest researcher, describe a new method for scanning semiconductors for defects that may help accelerate the market for gallium nitride, silicon carbide, and other advanced semiconductor materials.

Faculty earns $330,000 for particle physics research
The CMS experiment is a large, general-purpose particle detector under construction at the Large Hadron Collider accelerator at the European Center for Particle Physics (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland.

Johns Hopkins APL creates system to detect digital video tampering
The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Md., has opened the door to using reliable digital video as evidence in court by developing a system that identifies an attempt to alter digital video evidence.
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