Scientists solve riddle of celestial archaeology

A decades old space mystery has been solved by an international team of astronomers led by Professor Martin Barstow of the University of Leicester and President-elect of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Solar System's edge redefined

New work from Carnegie's Scott Sheppard and Chadwick Trujillo of the Gemini Observatory reports the discovery of a distant dwarf planet, called 2012 VP113, which was found beyond the known edge of the Solar System.

Tracking 3D nanoscale changes in rechargeable battery material during operation

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have made the first 3D observations of how the structure of a lithium-ion battery anode evolves at the nanoscale in a real battery cell as it discharges and recharges.

Dark energy hides behind phantom fields

Quintessence and phantom fields, two hypotheses formulated using data from satellites, such as Planck and WMAP, are among the many theories that try to explain the nature of dark energy. Now researchers from Barcelona and Athens suggest that both possibilities are only a mirage in the observations and it is the quantum vacuum which could be behind this energy that moves our universe.

Major increase in West Antarctic glacial loss reported

Six massive glaciers in West Antarctica are moving faster than they did 40 years ago, causing more ice to discharge into the ocean and global sea level to rise, according to new research.

Engineered bacteria produce biofuel alternative for high-energy rocket fuel

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Joint BioEnergy Institute have engineered a bacterium to synthesize pinene, a hydrocarbon produced by trees that could potentially replace high-energy fuels, such as JP-10, in missiles and other aerospace applications.

Studying crops from outer space

Plants convert energy from sunlight into chemical energy during a process called photosynthesis. This energy is passed on to humans and animals that eat the plants, and thus photosynthesis is the primary source of energy for all life on Earth.

Lick's Automated Planet Finder: First robotic telescope for planet hunters

Lick Observatory's newest telescope, the Automated Planet Finder (APF), has been operating robotically night after night on Mt. Hamilton since January, searching nearby stars for Earth-sized planets.

Mars-mimicking chamber explores habitability of other planets

A research team in Spain has the enviable job of testing out new electromechanical gear for potential use in future missions to the "Red Planet." They do it within their Mars environmental simulation chamber, which is specially designed to mimic conditions on the fourth planet from the sun -- right down to its infamous Martian dust.

Will the Yellowstone supervolcano erupt during our lifetime?

As with many things in nature, it helps to understand the past when trying to predict the future. Ilya Bindeman, an associate professor of geological sciences at the University of Oregon, believes this is true of the Yellowstone supervolcano and the likelihood that it will produce an apocalyptic eruption as it has three times over the last the last 2 million years.

Claim: Children learn aggressive ways of thinking and behaving from violent video games

Children who repeatedly play violent video games are learning thought patterns that will stick with them and influence behaviors as they grow older, according to a new study by Iowa State University researchers. The effect is the same regardless of age, gender or culture. Douglas Gentile, an associate professor of psychology and lead author of the study published in JAMA Pediatrics, says it is really no different than learning math or to play the piano.

The causes and consequences of global climate warming - 56 million years ago

The growing and justified concern about the current global warming process has kindled the interest of the scientific community in geological records as an archive of crucial information to understand the physical and ecological effects of ancient climate changes.

Parallel programming may not be so daunting

Computer chips have stopped getting faster: The regular performance improvements we’ve come to expect are now the result of chipmakers’ adding more cores, or processing units, to their chips, rather than increasing their clock speed.

Engineers design ‘living materials’

Inspired by natural materials such as bone — a matrix of minerals and other substances, including living cells — MIT engineers have coaxed bacterial cells to produce biofilms that can incorporate nonliving materials, such as gold nanoparticles and quantum dots.

Plugging the hole in Hawking’s black hole theory

Recently physicists have been poking holes again in Stephen Hawking’s black hole theory – including Hawking himself. For decades physicists across the globe have been trying to figure out the mysteries of black holes – those fascinating monstrous entities that have such intense gravitational pull that nothing – not even light – can escape from them. Now Professor Chris Adami, Michigan State University, has jumped into the fray.

Prepping for radar vision

Sentinel-1A, Europe’s first satellite for Copernicus, is almost ready for launch on 3 April. Meanwhile, ESA is showing how its advanced radar will map ice, monitor subsidence and much more. Marking a new era in Earth observation focusing on operational applications, Sentinel-1A is set to deliver timely imagery for numerous Copernicus services.

Mars Rover's next stop has sandstone variations

Variations in the stuff that cements grains together in sandstone have shaped the landscape surrounding NASA's Curiosity Mars rover and could be a study topic at the mission's next science waypoint.

Study: Plankton make scents for seabirds and a cooler planet

The top predators of the Southern Ocean, far-ranging seabirds, are tied both to the health of the ocean ecosystem and to global climate regulation through a mutual relationship with phytoplankton, according to newly published work from the University of California, Davis.

Report: Lots of carbon dioxide equivalents from aquatic environments

According to a study carried out by two master’s students at Linköping University, large amounts of carbon dioxide equivalents taken up by plants on land are returned to the atmosphere from aquatic environments.

Researchers devise new, stretchable antenna for wearable health monitoring

Researchers from North Carolina State University have developed a new, stretchable antenna that can be incorporated into wearable technologies, such as health monitoring devices.