Current Forces News and Events

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RUDN University physicists analyzed the role of gravity in elementary particles formation
Gravity might play a bigger role in the formation of elementary particles than scientists used to believe. A team of physicists from RUDN University obtained some solutions of semi-classical models that describe particle-like waves. They also calculated the ratio between the gravitational interaction of particles and the interaction of their charges. (2021-02-17)

A new way of forming planets
Scientists of the Universities of Zurich and Cambridge, associated with the Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research PlanetS, suggest a new explanation for the abundance in intermediate-mass exoplanets - a long-standing puzzle of Astronomy. (2021-02-11)

Tiny sensor technique reveals cellular forces involved in tissue generation
A team of Brown University researchers developed a technique that uses tiny polymer spheres to sense the forces at play as body tissue forms and grows. (2021-02-05)

Lasing mechanism found in water droplets
As reported in Advanced Photonics, Chen's NTU team recently discovered that when a water droplet interacts with a surface to form a contact angle, the interfacial molecular forces determine the geometry of a droplet resonator. Dramatic mechanical changes at the interface play a significant role in the optical oscillation of droplet resonators. (2021-01-28)

Study: Sudden police layoffs in one US city associated with increases in crime
A new study examined the effects on crime of budget shortfalls in two New Jersey cities--one of which laid off more than 10 percent of its police force while the other averted layoffs. The study found that the police layoffs were associated with significant increases in overall crime, violent crime, and property crime. (2021-01-27)

How cells move and don't get stuck
Theoretical physicists from Berlin teamed up with experimental physicists from Munich to determine the precise mechanics involved in cell motility. The findings were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). (2021-01-18)

A mathematical study describes how metastasis starts
A scientific study carried out by the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) and the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM) has produced a mathematical description of the way in which a tumor invades the epithelial cells and automatically quantifies the progression of the tumor and the remaining cell islands after its progression. The model developed by these researchers could be used to better understand the biophysical characteristics of the cells involved when developing new treatments for wound healing, organ regeneration, or cancer progression. (2021-01-18)

Research reveals how teeth functioned and evolved in giant mega-sharks
A pioneering study by University of Bristol researchers finds that the evolution of teeth in the giant prehistoric shark Megalodon and its relatives was a by-product of becoming huge, rather than an adaptation to new feeding habits. (2021-01-13)

Mechanophores: Making polymer crystallization processes crystal clear
Scientists at the Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) have come up with a new technique to evaluate the mechanical forces generated in polymer crystallization as they cool down from their molten state. In a new study published in Nature Communications, they used small, fluorescent molecules to visualize the crystallization process, guiding manufacturers in their goals to optimize polymer materials. (2021-01-05)

Looking for dark matter near neutron stars with radio telescopes
In 1983, theoretical physicist Pierre Sikivie found that axions have another remarkable property: In the presence of an electromagnetic field, they should sometimes spontaneously convert to easily detectable photons. What was once thought to be completely undetectable, turned out to be potentially detectable as long as there is high enough concentration of axions and strong magnetic fields. (2020-12-21)

The mechanics of the immune system
Not only chemistry plays a role in the docking of antigens to the T-cell; micromechanical effects are important too. Submicrometer structures on the cell surface act like microscopic tension springs. Tiny forces that occur as a result are likely to be of great importance for the recognition of antigens. At TU Wien, it has now been possible to observe these forces directly using highly developed microscopy methods. (2020-12-21)

New mechanism of force transduction in muscle cells discovered
Researchers at the University of Münster (Germany) have now discovered how the muscle-specific adhesion molecule metavinculin modulates mechanical force transduction on the molecular level. The research results have just been published in the journal Nature Communications. (2020-12-18)

A step toward understanding why COVID-19 boosts stroke risk
A UCLA-led study may help explain how COVID-19 increases the risk for stroke. Scientists made the finding by running fluid spiked with a COVID-19-like protein through a 3D-printed model of the arteries of a patient who had suffered a stroke. (2020-12-18)

Ultracold atoms reveal a new type of quantum magnetic behavior
An MIT experiment with ultracold atoms reveals new quantum magnetic behavior that may help in design of spintronic devices and magnetic materials. (2020-12-16)

Trapping nanoparticles with optical tweezers
In new research published in EPJ E, Janine Emile and Olivier Emile at the University of Rennes, France, demonstrate a novel tweezer design, which enabled them to trap fluorescent particles just 200 nanometres across for the first time. (2020-12-11)

Breakthrough in nuclear physics
The positively charged protons in atomic nuclei should actually repel each other, and yet even heavy nuclei with many protons and neutrons stick together. The so-called strong interaction is responsible for this. Prof. Laura Fabbietti and her research group at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have now developed a method to precisely measure the strong interaction utilizing particle collisions in the ALICE experiment at CERN in Geneva. (2020-12-09)

New and unexplored dimension in the study of protein-protein interactions
Cells accumulate glutamate and related molecules under stress, and so formation of high-order protein assemblies under these conditions has important biological implications. Specifically, this would represent a mechanism by which the presence of stressor compounds in the cell could control DNA replication. (2020-12-09)

A dessert-like desert: Californian lithosphere resembles crème brûlée
A model for the southeastern California lithosphere suggests that a strong upper crust overlies weaker lower rock layers. (2020-11-30)

A shapeshifting material based on inorganic matter
By embedding titanium-based sheets in water, a group led by scientists from the RIKEN Center for Emergent Matter Science has created a material using inorganic materials that can be converted from a hard gel to soft matter using temperature changes, recreating the strange behavior of sea cucumbers. (2020-11-30)

A new beat in quantum matter
Oscillatory behaviors are ubiquitous in Nature, ranging from the orbits of planets to the periodic motion of a swing. In pure crystalline systems, presenting a perfect spatially-periodic structure, the fundamental laws of quantum physics predict a remarkable and counter-intuitive oscillatory behavior: when subjected to a weak electric force, the electrons in the material do not undergo a net drift, but rather oscillate in space, a phenomenon known as Bloch oscillations. (2020-11-23)

WSU scientists discover new, simple way to classify marine biomes
Washington State University scientists have developed a new way to classify the ocean's diverse environments, shedding new light on how marine biomes are defined and changed by nature and humans. (2020-11-20)

Simple measurement could transform injury rehabilitation
Researchers from Edith Cowan University in Western Australia have found a simple way to analyse the effectiveness of exercise training that could one day be conducted easily at a local gym or physio. Using vertical jumps as a test activity, the researchers could predict detailed information regarding technique and muscle activation patterns just through a relatively simple analysis of forces produced against the ground during the jump. (2020-11-19)

Molecular telegraphy: precisely sending and receiving single molecules
Researchers of the University of Graz, Austria, managed to send single molecules to a distant location and receive them from there. The study appears as the cover story in the current issue of the magazine Science. (2020-11-19)

Predicting forces between oddly shaped nanoparticles
Materials scientists at Duke University have devised a simplified method for calculating the forces that cause nanoparticles to self-assemble. With this new model and graphical user interface, researchers will be able to make previously impossible predictions about how nanoparticles with a wide variety of shapes will interact with one another. The new method offers opportunities for rationally designing such particles for a wide range of applications from harnessing solar energy to driving catalytic reactions. (2020-11-19)

Missing in lockdown -- new report reveals the vulnerable are more at risk
The number of people who went missing during the first national lockdown in England fell by over a third, compared to data from the previous year. However, a new report out today shows that those who did go missing were deemed more vulnerable and at higher risk. (2020-11-18)

Relaxing cell divisions
During one lifetime, the human body experiences ten quadrillion cell divisions. This biological process is essential to form and maintain tissues and organs within the body. Now, Professor Carl-Philipp Heisenberg and his team at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria discovered how mechanical tension from surrounding tissue influences the division process. The scientists published their study in the journal Developmental Cell. This study presents an entirely new influence on cell division and could also be important for tumor research. (2020-11-17)

Nanodevices show how living cells change with time, by tracking from the inside
For the first time, scientists have introduced minuscule tracking devices directly into the interior of mammalian cells, giving an unprecedented peek into the processes that govern the beginning of development. (2020-10-20)

Stressed out volcanoes more likely to collapse and erupt, study finds
An international study led by Monash scientists has discovered how volcanoes experience stress. The study, published in Scientific Reports, has implications for how the world might be better protected against future volcano collapses. (2020-10-15)

The Marangoni Effect can be used to obtain freshwater from the sea
A study conducted at the Politecnico di Torino, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and published in the journal Energy and Environmental Science, presents a solar desalination device capable of spontaneously removing the accumulated salt. In the future, this discovery could lead to the development of sustainable desalination systems with stable efficiencies over time (2020-10-08)

Mechanical forces of biofilms could play role in infections
Studying bacterial biofilms, EPFL scientists have discovered that mechanical forces within them are sufficient to deform the soft material they grow on, e.g. biological tissues, suggesting a ''mechanical'' mode of bacterial infection. (2020-10-08)

Gene expression altered by direction of forces acting on cell
Tissues and cells in the human body are subjected to a constant push and pull - strained by other cells, blood pressure and fluid flow, to name a few. The type and direction of the force on a cell alters gene expression by stretching different regions of DNA, researchers at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and collaborators in China found in a new study. (2020-10-01)

Men predominate in 85%+ COVID-19 decision-making/advisory bodies globally
Men predominate in more than 85% of COVID-19 decision-making and key advisory bodies around the globe, with gender parity in just 3.5%, reveals an analysis of the available data, published in the online journal BMJ Global Health. (2020-10-01)

Wasp egg-laying organ inspires new tool to reduce trauma in minimally invasive surgery
A new surgery tool based on the egg-laying organ of parasitic wasps could advance minimally invasive surgery by enabling tissue removal in deeper areas of the body while further minimising trauma and patient recovery time. Researchers at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands based their prototype on the ovipositor of wasps, an ultra-thin flexible organ, which uses friction forces generated by sliding internal blades to achieve efficient transport on a small scale. (2020-09-30)

Tiny worlds reveal fundamental drivers of abundance, diversity
Ecology is traditionally a data-poor discipline, but tiny microbial worlds offer the quantity of data needed to solve universal questions about abundance and diversity. New research in Nature Communications reveals the fundamental relationship between the environment and the species present in a microbial community and can be used as a starting point for investigating bigger systems. (2020-09-23)

'Firefly' imaging method zooms in on 'the forces within us'
Scientists have developed a new technique using tools made of luminescent DNA, lit up like fireflies, to visualize the mechanical forces of cells at the molecular level. (2020-09-22)

Food mechanics recipe to serve up healthy food that lasts
Researchers are investigating the science of food drying to design faster, cheaper and better ways to store food. (2020-09-13)

How bacteria adhere to fiber in the gut
Researchers have revealed a new molecular mechanism by which bacteria adhere to cellulose fibers in the human gut. Thanks to two different binding modes, they can withstand the shear forces in the body. Scientists of the University of Basel and ETH Zurich published their results in the journal ''Nature Communications''. (2020-08-28)

A colorful detector
Researchers at the University of Tsukuba introduced a new type of porous crystal that can indicate the presence of moisture based on a reversible change in color. This research may open the way for many new gas sensors in industrial applications. (2020-08-25)

Polymers prevent potentially hazardous mist during dentist visit
If the mist in a dentist's office -- sent flying into the air by spinning, vibrating tools -- contains a virus or some other pathogen, it is a health hazard. So researchers in Illinois studied the viscoelastic properties of food-grade polymers and discovered that the forces of a vibrating tool or dentist's drill are no match for them. Not only did a small admixture of polymers completely eliminate aerosolization, but it did so with ease. (2020-08-25)

Memory protein
When UC Santa Barbara materials scientist Omar Saleh and graduate student Ian Morgan sought to understand the mechanical behaviors of disordered proteins in the lab, they expected that after being stretched, one particular model protein would snap back instantaneously, like a rubber band. (2020-08-25)

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