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A cold-health watch and warning system for cold waves in Quebec
A team from the Institut national de la recherche scientifique (INRS) and the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ), led by Professor Fateh Chebana, has recently developed a cold-health watch and warning system for cold waves, a first in the world. Their results were published in November 2020 in the journal Science of the Total Environment. (2020-11-26)

Sound waves power new advances in drug delivery and smart materials
Sound waves have been part of science and medicine for decades, but the technologies have always relied on low frequencies. Now researchers have revealed how high frequency sound waves could revolutionise the field of ultrasound-driven chemistry. (2020-11-24)

Shining a light on nanoscale dynamics
Watching metamaterials at work in real time using ultrafast electron diffraction: a research team led by University of Konstanz physicist Peter Baum succeeds in using ultrashort electron pulses to measure light-matter interactions in nanophotonic materials and metamaterials. (2020-11-24)

Understanding the utility of plasmas for medical applications
Plasma medicine is an emerging field, as plasmas show promise for use in a wide range of therapies from wound healing to cancer treatment, and plasma jets are the main plasma sources typically used in plasma-surface applications. To better understand how plasma jets modify the surfaces of biological tissue, researchers conducted computer simulations of the interaction between an atmospheric pressure plasma jet with a surface that has properties similar to blood serum. (2020-11-24)

NSF's National Solar observatory predicts a large sunspot for Thanksgiving
On November 18 scientists from the US National Science Foundation's National Solar Observatory predicted the arrival of a large sunspot just in time for Thanksgiving. Using a special technique called helioseismology, the team has been ''listening'' to changing sound waves from the Sun's interior which beckon the arrival of a large sunspot. (2020-11-24)

COVID-19: Air quality influences the pandemic
An interdisciplinary team from the University of Geneva and the ETH Zürich spin-off Meteodat investigated possible interactions between acutely elevated levels of fine particulate matter and the virulence of the coronavirus disease. Their results suggest that high concentrations of particles less than 2.5 micrometers in size may modulate, or even amplify, the waves of SARS-CoV-2 contamination and explain in part the particular profile of the COVID-19 pandemic. (2020-11-24)

Targeting calcium overload could improve stroke outcomes, research suggests
Excessive calcium contributes to harmful inflammation in ischemic stroke, and targeting it may provide doctors with a new way to improve patient outcomes. (2020-11-23)

Laser technology: New trick for infrared laser pulses
For a long time, scientists have been looking for simple methods to produce infrared laser pulses. Now a new method has been presented that does not require large experimental setups; it can be easily miniaturized and is therefore particularly interesting for practical applications. (2020-11-23)

How rotavirus causes severe gastrointestinal disease
Using intercellular calcium waves, rotavirus amplifies its ability to cause disease beyond the cells it directly infects. This is the first virus identified to activate ADP-mediated intercellular calcium waves. (2020-11-19)

Upgraded radar can enable self-driving cars to see clearly no matter the weather
A new kind of radar could make it possible for self-driving cars to navigate safely in bad weather. Electrical engineers at the University of California San Diego developed a clever way to improve the imaging capability of existing radar sensors so that they accurately predict the shape and size of objects in the scene. The system worked well when tested at night and in foggy conditions. (2020-11-17)

No losses: Scientists stuff graphene with light
Physicists from MIPT and Vladimir State University, Russia, have achieved a nearly 90% efficiency converting light energy into surface waves on graphene. They relied on a laser-like energy conversion scheme and collective resonances. (2020-11-16)

Love waves from the ocean floor
Supercomputer simulations of planetary-scale interactions show how ocean storms and the structure of Earth's upper layers together generate much of the world's seismic waves. Decoding the faint but ubiquitous vibrations known as Love waves could yield insights about Earth's storm history, changing climate and interior. (2020-11-13)

Dark matter from the depths of the universe
Cataclysmic astrophysical events such as black hole mergers could release energy in unexpected forms. Exotic low-mass fields (ELFs), for example, could propagate through space and cause feeble signals detectable with quantum sensor networks such as the atomic clocks of the GPS network or the magnetometers of the GNOME network. These results are particularly interesting in the context of the search for dark matter, as low-mass fields are regarded as promising candidates for this exotic form of matter. (2020-11-11)

A new model found to predict earthquake propagation speed
In an article published on November 9th in Nature Geoscience, Jean-Paul Ampuero and Huihui Weng, two researchers from Université Côte d'Azur and the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD-France) propose a new model to predict the propagation speed of earthquakes. (2020-11-09)

Electrified magnets: researchers uncover a new way to handle data
The properties of synthesised magnets can be changed and controlled by charge currents as suggested by a study and simulations conducted by physicists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and Central South University in China. In the journal 'Nature Communications', the team reports on how magnets and magnetic signals can be coupled more effectively and steered by electric fields. This could result in new, environmentally friendly concepts for efficient communication and data processing. (2020-11-09)

Final dance of unequal black hole partners
Lousto and James Healy (both of Rochester Institute of Technology) used the Frontera supercomputer to model for the first time a black hole merger of two black holes with very different sizes (128:1). The research required seven months of constant computation. The results, published in Physical Review Letters, predicts the gravitational waves such a merger would produce, as well as characteristics of the resulting merged black hole. (2020-11-06)

FAST reveals mystery of fast radio bursts from the universe
The Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST) has revealed some mystery of the fast radio bursts, according to a study published in Nature on Oct. 28. (2020-11-04)

The cement for coral reefs
Coral reefs are hotspots of biodiversity. As they can withstand heavy storms, they offer many species a safe home. A team of researchers from Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) and the University of Bayreuth have now discovered that a very specific type of 'cement' is responsible for the stability of coral reefs - by forming a hard calcareous skeleton, coralline red algae stabilise the reefs, and have been doing so for at least 150 million years. (2020-11-03)

Tunable THz radiation from 3D topological insulator
Wu's research group has been investigating a three-dimensional topological insulator of bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3) as a promising basis for an effective THz system. They recently systematically investigated THz radiation from Bi2Te3 nanofilms driven by femtosecond laser pulses. (2020-11-02)

Sheer protection from electromagnetic radiation
A printable ink that is both conductive and transparent can also block radio waves. (2020-11-01)

Weak equivalence principle violated in gravitational waves
New research published in EPJ C proves theoretically that the Weak Equivalence Principle can be violated by quantum particles in gravitational waves - the ripples in spacetime caused by colossal events such as merging black holes. (2020-10-28)

Deep magma facilitates the movement of tectonic plates
A small amount of molten rock located under tectonic plates encourages them to move. This is what scientists from the LGL-TPE (CNRS/ENS de Lyon/UCBL1) have recently discovered. Their new model takes into account not only the velocity of seismic waves but also the way in which they are attenuated by the medium they pass through. The velocity of tectonic plates near the surface is thus directly correlated with the quantity of magma present. (2020-10-21)

A new way of looking at the Earth's interior
Current understanding is that the chemical composition of the Earth's mantle is relatively homogeneous. But experiments conducted by ETH researchers now show that this view is too simplistic. Their results solve a key problem facing the geosciences - and raise some new questions. (2020-10-21)

Ultrafast camera films 3-D movies at 100 billion frames per second
Lihong Wang's latest camera technology captures ultrafast video in three dimensions and may help solve some scientific mysteries. (2020-10-16)

Zeptoseconds: new world record in short time measurement
In the global race to measure ever shorter time spans, physicists from Goethe University Frankfurt have now taken the lead: together with colleagues at the accelerator facility DESY in Hamburg and the Fritz-Haber-Institute in Berlin, they have measured a process that lies within the realm of zeptoseconds for the first time: the propagation of light within a molecule. A zeptosecond is a trillionth of a billionth of a second (10 exp -21 seconds). (2020-10-16)

Magnitude comparison distinguishes small earthquakes from explosions in US west
By comparing two magnitude measurements for seismic events recorded locally, researchers can tell whether the event was a small earthquake or a single-fire buried chemical explosion. (2020-10-13)

New global temperature data will inform study of climate impacts on health, agriculture
A new data set provides high-resolution, daily temperatures from around the globe that could prove valuable in studying human health impacts from heat waves, risks to agriculture, droughts, potential crop failures, and food insecurity. (2020-10-13)

Mathematical tools predict if wave-energy devices stay afloat in the ocean
Ocean waves represent an abundant source of renewable energy. But to best use this natural resource, wave-energy converters need to be capable of physically handling ocean waves of different strengths without capsizing. (2020-10-13)

UMD astronomers find x-rays lingering years after landmark neutron star collision
It's been three years since the landmark detection of a neutron star merger from gravitational waves. Since that day, an international team of researchers led by University of Maryland astronomer Eleonora Troja has been continuously monitoring the subsequent radiation emissions to provide the most complete picture of such an event. Their analysis provides possible explanations for X-rays that continued to radiate from the collision long after models predicted they would stop. (2020-10-12)

Surface waves can help nanostructured devices keep their cool
A research team led by The Institute of Industrial Science, The University of Tokyo demonstrated that hybrid surface waves called surface phonon-polaritons provide enhanced thermal conductivity in nanoscale membranes. These surface waves can aid in the thermal management of nanostructured devices as conventional cooling methods reach their material-related limits. Surface phonon-polaritons will be particularly useful for heat conduction in silicon-based microelectronics and photonics applications. (2020-10-12)

Scientists find upper limit for the speed of sound
A research collaboration between Queen Mary University of London, the University of Cambridge and the Institute for High Pressure Physics in Troitsk has discovered the fastest possible speed of sound. (2020-10-09)

'Universal law of touch' will enable new advances in virtual reality
Seismic waves, commonly associated with earthquakes, have been used by scientists to develop a universal scaling law for the sense of touch. A team, led by researchers at the University of Birmingham, used Rayleigh waves to create the first scaling law for touch sensitivity. The results are published in Science Advances. (2020-10-09)

The black hole always chirps twice: New clues deciphering the shape of black holes
A team of gravitational-wave scientists led by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGrav) reveal that when two black holes collide and merge, the remnant black hole 'chirps' not once, but multiple times, emitting gravitational waves--intense ripples in the fabric space and time--that inform us about its shape. Today the study has been published in Communications Physics (from the prestigious Nature journal). (2020-10-08)

Graphene detector reveals THz light's polarization
Physicists have created a broadband detector of terahertz radiation based on graphene. The device has potential for applications in communication and next-generation information transmission systems, security and medical equipment. (2020-10-08)

US viewer preference for right-wing TV media linked to fewer preventive measures against COVID-19
Viewer preference for right-wing US TV media is linked to significantly fewer preventive measures against COVID-19 and behaviours likely to increase the risk of infection, finds research published in the online journal BMJ Global Health. (2020-10-08)

Traveling brain waves help detect hard-to-see objects
A team of Salk Institute scientists led by Professor John Reynolds has uncovered details of the neural mechanisms underlying the perception of objects. They found that patterns of neural signals, called traveling brain waves, exist in the visual system of the awake brain and are organized to allow the brain to perceive objects that are faint or otherwise difficult to see. The findings were published in Nature on October 7, 2020. (2020-10-07)

Millimetre-precision drug delivery to the brain
Focused ultrasound waves help ETH researchers to deliver drugs to the brain with pinpoint accuracy, in other words only to where their effect is desired. This method is set to enable treatment of psychiatric and neurological disorders and tumours with fewer side effects in the future. (2020-10-05)

On the trail of causes of radiation events during space flight
Scientists have made significant progress in understanding the sources of radiation events that could impact human space-flight operations. Relativistic Electron Precipitation (REP) events are instances when high energy electrons move through areas of space at significant fractions of the speed of light. These REP events may pose challenges to human spaceflight, specifically during extravehicular activity (EVA). (2020-10-05)

Neuroscientists discover a molecular mechanism that allows memories to form
Encoding memories in engram cells is controlled by large-scale remodeling of the proteins and DNA that make up cells' chromatin, according to an MIT study. This chromatin remodeling, which allows specific genes involved in storing memories to become more active, takes place in multiple stages spread out over several days. (2020-10-05)

Potential new tool for frost screening in crops
Agricultural scientists and engineers at the University of Adelaide have identified a potential new tool for screening cereal crops for frost damage. (2020-10-02)

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