Πέμπτη, 1 Μαΐου 2014

ScienceDaily: Top Technology News

ScienceDaily: Top Technology News

Widespread hydrogen fueling infrastructure goal of new project

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 04:25 PM PDT

Established by the Energy Department's Fuel Cell Technologies Office in the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the Hydrogen Fueling Infrastructure Research and Station Technology (H2FIRST) project will draw on existing and emerging core capabilities at the national labs in the U.S. and aim to reduce the cost and time of new fueling station construction and improve the stations' availability and reliability.

MRI-guided biopsy for brain cancer improves diagnosis

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 11:28 AM PDT

Neurosurgeons have, for the first time, combined real-time magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology with novel non-invasive cellular mapping techniques to develop a new biopsy approach that increases the accuracy of diagnosis for patients with brain cancer. As many as one third of brain tumor biopsies performed in the traditional manner can result in misdiagnosis.

When did the universe emerge from its 'dark age'? Spectrum of gamma-ray burst's afterglow indicates beginning of re-ionization process

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 10:29 AM PDT

Scientists have discovered an indicator of when re-ionization of the primordial Universe began. The team used the Faint Object Camera and Spectrograph (FOCAS) mounted on the Subaru Telescope to thoroughly study the visible wavelength spectrum of the afterglow of a gamma-ray burst, which is a violent explosion of a massive star. Direct measurement of the absorption features in the spectrum of the afterglow toward GRB 130606A, located at a great distance, revealed the proportion of neutral hydrogen gas absorbing the light in its vicinity. This finding provides the best estimate of the amount of such neutral gas in the early universe. The team's research means that scientists can now narrow down the time when the universe was beginning to re-ionize after its dark age.

Astronomers observe corkscrew nature of light from a distant black hole

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 10:29 AM PDT

For the first time an international team of astronomers has measured circular polarization in the bright flash of light from a dying star collapsing to a black hole, giving insight into an event that happened almost 11 billion years ago.

Length of exoplanet day measured for first time: Spin of Beta Pictoris b measured

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 10:28 AM PDT

Observations from ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT) have, for the first time, determined the rotation rate of an exoplanet. Beta Pictoris b has been found to have a day that lasts only eight hours. This is much quicker than any planet in the planetary system — its equator is moving at almost 100,000 kilometers per hour. This new result extends the relation between mass and rotation seen in the solar system to exoplanets.

Sell-side analysts lean towards high valuation companies for comparison

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 09:11 AM PDT

Brokerage-based analysts have a tendency to benchmark companies they are researching against others in the same category whose stock is already expensively-priced, shows a new study.

Entire star cluster thrown out of its galaxy

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 09:11 AM PDT

The galaxy known as M87 has a fastball that would be the envy of any baseball pitcher. It has thrown an entire star cluster toward us at more than two million miles per hour. The newly discovered cluster, which astronomers named HVGC-1, is now on a fast journey to nowhere. Its fate: to drift through the void between the galaxies for all time.

Sustainable barnacle-repelling paint could help the shipping industry and the environment

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 08:22 AM PDT

Barnacles might seem like a given part of a seasoned ship's hull, but they're literally quite a drag and cause a ship to burn more fuel. To prevent these and other hangers-on from slowing ships down, scientists are developing a sustainable paint ingredient from plants that can repel clingy sea critters without killing them.

Flexible pressure-sensor film shows how much force a surface 'feels' -- in color

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 08:22 AM PDT

A newly developed pressure sensor could help car manufacturers design safer automobiles and even help Little League players hold their bats with a better grip, scientists report. Their high-resolution sensor can be painted onto surfaces or built into gloves.

New tool to investigate the chemistry of nature: Laser-based tabletop setup generates ultrashort XUV light pulses

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 07:19 AM PDT

Scientists have built a laser-based tabletop setup which generates ultrashort XUV light pulses and achieves their monochromatization by implementing special reflection zone plates. Liquid phases are a natural environment for many interesting processes in chemistry and biology, and short light pulses allow insights into electronic and structural dynamics of molecules and molecular complexes.

Direct current, another option to improve the electrical power transmission

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 05:31 AM PDT

Even though today most of the electricity transmission lines are alternating current ones, in some cases direct current lines are also used. Scientists have been working to improve the technology needed for this conversion. The aim has been that this transmission should be done in a more straightforward, smoother and consequently less expensive way.

New lab-on-a-chip device overcomes miniaturization problems

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 05:31 AM PDT

Chemists have invented a new type of tiny lab-on-a-chip device that could have a diverse range of applications, including to detect toxic gases, fabricate integrated circuits and screen biological molecules. The novel technique developed by the team involves printing a pattern of miniscule droplets of a non-volatile solvent -- an ionic liquid -- onto a gold-coated or glass surface.

Optimizing data transmission for smart grid users with effective mechanism for data exchange

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 05:29 AM PDT

SMArc aims to optimize data transmission for smart grid users thanks to an effective mechanism for data exchange. This way, users can be simultaneously consumers and energy producers.

Next gen cell phones, computers? Harnessing magnetic vortices for making nanoscale antennas

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 05:27 AM PDT

Scientists seeking ways to synchronize the magnetic spins in nanoscale devices to build tiny yet more powerful signal-generating or receiving antennas and other electronics have published a study showing that stacked nanoscale magnetic vortices separated by an extremely thin layer of copper can be driven to operate in unison. These devices could potentially produce a powerful signal that could be put to work in a new generation of cell phones, computers, and other applications.

How do we clean up the junkyard orbiting Earth?

Posted: 30 Apr 2014 05:27 AM PDT

The biggest-sized junkyard in the world orbits it, and an aerospace systems engineering graduate student says it's time to get active about reducing the debris field before we reach a tipping point beyond which we may not be able to do much.

Solving a mystery of thermoelectrics: Analysis of phase-change materials

Posted: 29 Apr 2014 10:38 AM PDT

Why some materials work well for thermoelectric devices, and others do not has been the focus of recent research. A new paper demonstrates that researchers have finally found a theoretical explanation for the differences, which could lead to the discovery of new, improved thermoelectric materials. This could lead to the discovery of new kinds of materials that also have very low thermal conductivity.

Electronic cigarettes may cause, worsen respiratory diseases, among youth

Posted: 29 Apr 2014 07:49 AM PDT

Electronic cigarette "vapors" are made of small particles containing chemicals that may cause or worsen acute respiratory diseases, including asthma and bronchitis, among youth, according to a new study. Researchers examined particles emitted by e-cigarettes, an alternative nicotine delivery device, to understand what a user inhales and how these particles may affect the teen user's lungs. In a cellular model, the study found some e-cigarette emissions cause acute toxicity, or lung damage, similar to that caused by conventional tobacco smoke.

Drug monitoring information improves regimen adherence, researchers say

Posted: 29 Apr 2014 06:26 AM PDT

In a 10-month study in the homes of older adults with chronic health problems, researchers found that adherence to a medication regimen improved when people had ready access to a digital display of their medication-taking record. These people were more likely to take the correct medication promptly and at the same time of day than people who didn't receive the ongoing feedback.

Graphene is only as strong as its weakest link: Experiments determine real-world limits of two-dimensional carbon

Posted: 29 Apr 2014 05:51 AM PDT

Scientists have tested the fracture toughness of graphene for the first time by making and measuring "pre-cracks" under stress. The results show the material to be somewhat brittle.

Ozone levels drop 20 percent with switch from ethanol to gasoline

Posted: 28 Apr 2014 11:33 AM PDT

When fuel prices drove residents of São Paulo, Brazil, to mostly switch from ethanol to gasoline in their flexible-fuel vehicles, local ozone levels dropped 20 percent. At the same time, nitric oxide and carbon monoxide concentrations tended to go up. The four-year study by an economist and a chemist is the first real-world trial looking at the effects of human behavior at the pump on urban air pollution.

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