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Xbox gaming technology may improve X-ray precision
With the aim of producing high-quality X-rays with minimal radiation exposure, particularly in children, researchers have developed a new approach to imaging patients based on the Xbox gaming system. Using proprietary software developed for the Microsoft Kinect system, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have adapted hands-free technology used for the popular Xbox system to aid radiographers when taking X-rays. (2015-12-01)

Missing link found between turbulence in collapsing star and hypernova, gamma-ray burst
Extremely bright supernovas, called hypernovae, have been linked to gamma-ray bursts, but theorists have struggled to explain how a collapsing massive star could produce a magnetic field a million billion times greater than that of the sun, which is necessary to blow off the outer portions of the star and accelerate charged particles to speeds needed to produce gamma rays. A new supercomputer simulation by UC Bereley and Caltech scientists shows how this happens (2015-11-30)

Factoring for cosmic radiation could help set a more accurate 'molecular clock'
Since the 1960s, scientists have theorized the number of molecular differences in DNA, RNA and proteins from related species could pinpoint the time of their genetic divergence. A new paper by Adrian Melott at the University of Kansas examines a major hiccup in the molecular clock theory. The problem is that fossil evidence doesn't always sync with molecular dating for a variety of species. (2015-11-30)

Simulation shows key to building powerful magnetic fields
New simulations show how a dynamo in collapsed massive stars can build the strong magnetic fields needed to power extremely energetic blasts. (2015-11-30)

AugerPrime looks for cosmic superaccelerators
The Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina, an international large-scale experiment to study cosmic rays, will be continued until 2025 and extended to 'AugerPrime'. The observatory, for the project management of which Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is responsible, will be upgraded with new scintillation detectors for a more detailed measurement of gigantic air showers. This is required to identify cosmic objects that accelerate atomic particles up to highest energies. (2015-11-26)

New detector perfect for asteroid mining, planetary research
A team of scientists from Vanderbilt and Fisk Universities, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Planetary Science Institute have proposed a new type of gamma-ray spectroscope that has ideal properties for planetary exploration and asteroid mining. (2015-11-20)

Details from the inner life of a tooth
Both in materials science and in biomedical research it is important to be able to view minute nanostructures. Scientists of Technical University of Munich, University of Lund, Charite hospital in Berlin and Paul Scherrer Institute have developed a new computed tomography method based on scattering of X-rays. With this technique they can visualize nanostructures in objects measuring just a few millimeters, for example the precise 3-D structure of collagen fibers in a piece of human tooth. (2015-11-19)

Dark matter dominates in nearby dwarf galaxy
A Caltech researcher has measured what could be the highest concentration of dark matter in any known galaxy. (2015-11-18)

FDA-approved drug protects mice from Ebola
A new study suggests that gamma interferon, which is an FDA-approved drug, may have potential as an antiviral therapy to prevent Ebola infection when given either before or after exposure to the virus. The University of Iowa study, published Nov. 12 in the journal PLOS Pathogens, found that gamma interferon, given up to 24 hours after exposure, can inhibit Ebola infection in mice and completely protect the animals from death. (2015-11-18)

Perpetual youth for batteries?
A key issue with lithium ion batteries is aging. It significantly reduces their potential storage capacity. To date, very little is known about the causes of the aging effects. Scientists from the Department of Technical Electrochemistry and the Research Neutron Source FRM II at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have now come a step closer to identifying the causes in their latest experiments. (2015-11-17)

Ultra-short X-ray pulses could shed new light on the fastest events in physics
If you've ever been captivated by slow-motion footage on a wildlife documentary, or you've shuddered when similar technology is used to replay highlights from a boxing match, you'll know how impressive advancements in ultra-fast science can be. Researchers from the Department of Physics at Oxford University have demonstrated, for the first time, that it is possible to generate ultra-short X-ray pulses using existing technology -- and it could open up a huge range of scientific applications. (2015-11-16)

NASA's Fermi satellite detects first gamma-ray pulsar in another galaxy
Researchers using NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope have discovered the first gamma-ray pulsar in a galaxy other than our own. The object sets a new record for the most luminous gamma-ray pulsar known. (2015-11-12)

Dark matter research earns doctoral student a fellowship at Fermilab
South African Fulbright scholar Gopolang Mohlabeng has earned a yearlong Fermilab Graduate Student Fellowship in Theoretical Physics beginning in Aug. 2016. Fermilab in Illinois is America's premier laboratory for particle physics and accelerator research. (2015-11-11)

Close-up view of galaxies prompts re-think on star formation
Astronomers have identified for the first time one of the key components of many stars, a study suggests. (2015-11-10)

BIDMC researchers describe strategies to decrease immune responses in IBD
New research led by scientists at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center helps explain the role of an immunosuppressive pathway associated with irritable bowel disease, a condition that develops in genetically susceptible individuals when the body's immune system overreacts to intestinal tissue, luminal bacteria or both. (2015-11-10)

UTA physicists use beams of antimatter to investigate advanced materials
Researchers at The University of Texas at Arlington are developing a next generation positron beam facility that will enable them to analyze the properties of advanced materials for future electronics applications such as ultra compact high-speed computers and ultra small high-powered batteries. (2015-11-09)

Dark matter and particle acceleration in near space
The CALorimetric Electron Telescope (CALET) investigation will rely on the instrument to track the trajectory of cosmic ray particles and measure their charge and energy. The instrument is optimized for measuring electrons and gamma rays, which may contain the signature of dark matter or nearby sources of high-energy particle acceleration. (2015-11-09)

NASA's Swift spots its thousandth gamma-ray burst
NASA's Swift spacecraft has detected its 1,000th gamma-ray burst (GRB). GRBs are the most powerful explosions in the universe, typically associated with the collapse of a massive star and the birth of a black hole. (2015-11-06)

'Chemsex' needs to become a public health priority
Chemsex -- sex under the influence of illegal drugs -- needs to become a public health priority, argue experts in The BMJ this week. (2015-11-03)

Study led by Temple researchers reveals new link between Down syndrome and Alzheimer's
Individuals with Down syndrome who survive into adulthood face the additional challenge of early-onset dementia, in which toxic amyloid plaques build up in the brain. The condition is strikingly similar to Alzheimer's disease, and as new work led by researchers at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University shows, dementia in Down syndrome involves defects in a regulatory enzyme known as γ-secretase activating protein, which also happens to malfunction in Alzheimer's disease. (2015-11-02)

Astrosat's Soft X-ray Telescope sees first light
The Soft X-ray focusing Telescope (SXT) onboard Astrosat, India's first satellite dedicated to astronomical observations, saw its first light from an astronomical source in a distant galaxy, on Oct. 26. The SXT is India's first X-ray telescope based on doubly reflecting grazing incidence optics, containing 320 mirrors assembled together in 2 sets of 40 co-axial shells. The mirrors and the precision structure for assembling them were built at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Mumbai. (2015-10-31)

One hundred cancer patients a year in Manchester benefit from new scan technology
Researchers in Manchester have used recent advances in PET scanning technology to reduce the radiation dose for both patients and staff by up to 30 percent, allowing an addition of an annual 100 scans a year at Central Manchester University Hospitals. (2015-10-27)

Virginia Tech researchers take cue from spider glue in efforts to create new materials
Researchers found that the webs of sun-soaked spiders were far more resistant to UVB rays than the webs of those that hunt in the dark or shade, perhaps indicating an important adaptive trait. (2015-10-26)

Final kiss of 2 stars heading for catastrophe
Using ESO's Very Large Telescope, an international team of astronomers have found the hottest and most massive double star with components so close that they touch each other. The two stars in the extreme system VFTS 352 could be heading for a dramatic end, during which the two stars either coalesce to create a single giant star, or form a binary black hole. (2015-10-21)

Berkeley Lab scientists to help build world's first total-body PET scanner
Scientists from Berkeley Lab have set out to help build the world's first total-body positron emission tomography scanner, a medical imaging device that could change the way cancers and other diseases are diagnosed and treated. The project is a consortium led by a UC Davis research team and includes scientists from Berkeley Lab and the University of Pennsylvania. It's supported by a recently announced five-year, $15.5 million Transformative Research Award from the National Institutes of Health. (2015-10-21)

Astronomers catch a black hole shredding a star to pieces
A team of astronomers, including several from the University of Maryland, has observed a tidal disruption event in a galaxy that lies about 290 million light years from Earth. The event is the closest tidal disruption discovered in about a decade, and is described in a paper published in the Oct. 22, 2015 issue of the journal Nature. (2015-10-21)

Restrictive approach to chest X-rays provides positive outcomes for ICU
Researchers from Mount Sinai Beth Israel, in New York, New York, created a quality improvement initiative in 2012, recommending a restrictive approach to ordering chest X-rays compared with ordering them routinely. They hypothesized that this restrictive approach would significantly reduce patients' exposure to radiation and reduce ICU operating costs without adversely affecting patient outcomes. (2015-10-19)

VLA reveals spectacular 'halos' of spiral galaxies
Using the capabilities of the upgraded VLA, astronomers have found the true extent of 'halos' consisting of cosmic rays and magnetic fields surrounding spiral galaxies. (2015-10-13)

Researchers discover distant galactic halos
A study of spiral galaxies seen edge-on has revealed that halos of cosmic rays and magnetic fields above and below the galaxies' disks are much more common than previously thought. (2015-10-13)

Caution: Shrinks when warm
Most materials swell when warm, and shrink when cool. But some weird materials do the opposite. Although thermal expansion, and the cracking and warping that often result, occurs everyday -- in buildings, electronics, and almost anything else exposed to wide temperature swings -- physicists have trouble explaining why solids behave that way. New research into a material that has negative thermal expansion may lead to a better understanding of why materials change volume with temperature at all. (2015-10-08)

Two-hit therapy for breast tumors using approved drugs looks promising in animal study
Disabling a cancer-causing pathway and administering an immune-molecule-based mop-up therapy eradicated a specific type of breast tumor in mice. (2015-10-07)

Researchers measure how specific atoms move in dielectric materials
Researchers have measured the behavior of specific atoms in dielectric materials when exposed to an electric field. The work advances our understanding of dielectric materials, which are used in a wide variety of applications -- from handheld electronics to defibrillators. (2015-10-01)

Measuring X-rays created by lightning strikes on an aircraft in-flight
Scientists have recorded measurements of X-rays of energies up to 10 MeV caused by electrons accelerated in the intense electric fields inside a thundercloud. The researchers, based at the Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands, the National Aerospace Laboratory (NLR), The Netherlands, and Airbus France, report their findings today, Wednesday 30th September, in the Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics. (2015-09-30)

How do atoms alter during a supernova explosion?
A research group from Osaka University, in collaboration with an international research team, successfully realized in laboratory the world of exotic atoms under extreme state through high - brightness X-ray sources, typically realized in supernova explosions. A world first research produced highly unusual plasma composed of hollow atoms by utilizing the Japan Atomic Energy Agency Kansai Advanced Relativistic Engineering Laser, one of the world's most powerful compact femtosecond laser facility. (2015-09-29)

Launch of Astrosat first Indian astronomy satellite
The first Indian astronomy satellite Astrosat, was launched on Sept. 28, 2015 at Sriharikota, by ISRO. Astrosat has the unique capability to simultaneously observe cosmic sources in multi wavelengths. It is set to perform cutting-edge research in astrophysics. Researchers from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research have played a leading role, along with collaborators, in the design and fabrication of three out of five payloads that are on board Astrosat. (2015-09-28)

The rise of X-ray beam chemistry
By using powerful photon beams generated by the Advanced Photon Source, a DOE User Facility, researchers have shown that they can now control the chemical environment and provide nanoscale structural detail while simultaneously imaging the mineral calcite as it is pushed to its extremes. (2015-09-24)

Hot, dense material surrounds O-type star with largest magnetic field known
Observations using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory revealed that the unusually large magnetosphere around an O-type star called NGC 1624-2 contains a raging storm of extreme stellar winds and dense plasma that gobbles up X-rays before they can escape into space. (2015-09-23)

Tracking down the beam
Proton beams are new high-precision weapons in the fight against cancer. However, uncertainty with regard to the range of the beams has prevented the full exploitation of the potential of this method until now. Researchers are therefore looking for ways to measure the exact range during a course of treatment. Scientists at the National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology -- OncoRay and at Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf have developed a surprisingly simple solution. Initial preclinical tests have already gone well. (2015-09-22)

New approach to mammograms could improve reliability
Detecting breast cancer in women with dense mammary tissues could become more reliable with a new mammogram procedure that researchers have now tested in pre-clinical studies of mice. In their report in the journal ACS Nano, they describe injecting gold nanoparticles in mammary tissue to enhance the imaging of early signs of breast cancer. (2015-09-16)

2015 International Balzan Prizes awarded to 3 Americans
The 2015 Balzan Prizewinners were disclosed Monday. (2015-09-07)

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