New York, Feb 27 - At a time when scientists the world over are experimenting with making cheaper alternative energies for our future, a team of scientists has invented a new technology that increases the odds of helping algae-based biofuels cross the gap and come closer to reality.
The team’s invention - the environmental photobioreactor (ePBR system) - is the world’s first standard algae growing platform, one that simulates dynamic natural environments.
The ePBR system is like a pond in a jar that helps identify, cultivate and test algal strains that have the potential to make the leap from lab to pond - proliferate in real-world, real-pond settings and produce the most oil.
Washington, Feb 27 - Debunking earlier theories that big stars form within very massive, isolated 'cores' weighing at least 100 times the mass of the sun, research offers insights into how cosmic seeds can grow into massive stars.
Astrophysicists studied Snake nebula which is located about 11,700 light years from earth from Smithsonian's Submillimeter Array (SMA) telescope.
It was targeted because it shows the potential to form many massive stars - stars heavier than eight times our sun.
“High-mass stars form in villages. It is a family affair,” said Qizhou Zhang of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) in Massachusetts.
Washington, Feb 27 - US space agency NASA said Wednesday its Kepler spacecraft has verified the existence of 715 more planets orbiting stars outside the solar system.
The latest discovery brings the confirmed count of planets beyond the solar system to nearly 1,700, Jack Lissauer, a planetary scientist at NASA's Ames Research Center told a press teleconference, Xinhua reported.
"We've almost doubled just today the number of planets known to humanity," Lissauer said.
These newly-verified worlds orbit 305 stars, meaning many are in "multiple-planet systems much like our own solar system," NASA said.
New York, Feb 22 - Here comes a new and revolutionary naming system for all life on earth that would create a more robust and precise name for any organism - be it a bacterium, fungus, plant or animal.
A Virginia Tech researcher has developed a new way to classify and name organisms based on their genome sequence and in doing so created a universal language that scientists can use to communicate with unprecedented specificity about all forms of life.
Washington, Feb 22 - Don't miss the strongest solar flare of the year that sent out giant bursts of light and radiation into the space.
NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) captured its strongest solar flare since its launch in the summer of 2013.
IRIS looks into chromosphere, a layer of the sun's lower atmosphere just above the surface, with unprecedented resolution.
Chromosphere regulates the flow of energy and material as they travel from the sun's surface out into space.
On Jan 28, scientists spotted a magnetically active region on the sun and focused IRIS on it to see how the solar material behaved under intense magnetic forces.
Washington, Feb 22 - The US space agency -- NASA -- said Friday it has suspended the recovery testing of a test version of its next generation spacecraft -- Orion -- off the coast of California.
Orion is America's new spacecraft that will take astronauts to an asteroid and Mars in the future. Its first uncrewed test flight is planned for September this year.
The recovery team experienced issues with handling lines securing the Orion capsule inside the well deck of the USS San Diego during Thursday's exercise, Xinhua quoted NASA saying in a statement .
Washington, Feb. 21 : Researchers have discovered that a common space weather phenomenon on the outskirts of Earth's magnetic bubble, the magnetosphere, has much larger repercussions for Venus.
The giant explosions, called hot flow anomalies, can be so large at Venus that they're bigger than the entire planet and they can happen multiple times a day.
Glyn Collinson, a space scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md, said that they are not only are they gigantic but as Venus doesn't have a magnetic field to protect itself, the hot flow anomalies happen right on top of the planet. They could swallow the planet whole.
Washington, Feb. 17 - Researchers at the U. S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have combined atoms with multiple orbitals and precisely pinned down their electron distributions.
Using advanced electron diffraction techniques, the scientists discovered that orbital fluctuations in iron-based compounds induce strongly coupled polarizations that can enhance electron pairing-the essential mechanism behind superconductivity.
Washington, Feb 16 - The 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, caused by the explosion of British Petroleum's deep-sea drilling rig, harmed tunas in a way that could lead to heart attacks and sudden cardiac death, according to a report.
The study, carried out by researchers at Stanford University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was published Friday in Science magazine.
Researchers discovered that remains of the crude interfere with the heart cells of these fish and lead to a slower heart rate and irregular heartbeats that can lead to cardiac arrest and the animals' sudden death.
Washington, Feb 14 - New research suggests that the enigmatic "ribbon" of energetic particles discovered at the edge of our solar system by NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) may be only a small sign of the vast influence of the galactic magnetic field.
IBEX researchers have sought answers about the ribbon since its discovery in 2009.
Comprising primarily space physicists, the IBEX team realized that the galactic magnetic field wrapped around our heliosphere -the giant "bubble" that envelops and protects our solar system-appears to determine the orientation of the ribbon and the placement of energetic particles measured in it.
Washington, Feb 14 - Orangutans come down from the trees and spend more time on the ground than previously realized, and this behaviour may be partly influenced by man, according to a new study.
Dr Mark Harrison, based in the Department of Geography at the University of Leicester and Managing Director of the Orangutan Tropical Peatland Project (OuTrop) has, along with international colleagues, published results of a seven year study of orangutans in Borneo.
The research, conducted between June 2006 and March 2013, is based on a large-scale analysis of orangutan terrestriality using comprehensive camera-trapping data from 16 sites across Borneo.
Washington, Feb. 12 - Researchers have found that crocodiles, who in most people's opinion just waddle on the ground or wade in water, can climb trees as far as the crowns.
Vladimir Dinets, a research assistant professor in the Department of Psychology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and his colleagues observed crocodile species on three continents-Australia, Africa and North America-and examined previous studies and anecdotal observations.
Washington, Feb 11 : Researchers have suggested that using urban adaptation strategies like green roof, cool roof, and hybrid technologies can help offset not only future climate warming due to urban expansion but also temperature increases driven by greenhouse gases.
Recent modeling studies have suggested that in the absence of adaptive urban design the spread of population centers in the US during the coming century could raise temperatures by as many as 3 degrees - independently of greenhouse gas-induced warming.
Washington, Feb 11 - US space agency NASA said Monday its Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Odyssey orbiter have sent back clues that liquid water may still exist today on the Red Planet.
The spacecraft spotted "dark, finger-like markings" that advance down some Martian slopes when temperatures rise, as well as corresponding seasonal changes in iron minerals on the same slopes, Xinhua quoted NASA as saying.
One suggested explanation for the phenomenon is that "brines with an iron-mineral antifreeze", like ferric sulfate, could flow seasonally on parts of Mars, it said.
Washington, February 10 : A former air raid shelter from World War II is being used for farming 100 feet underground.
The project called Growing Underground, which is supported by TV chef Michel Roux Jr, is spread across 2.5 acres under the London Underground where the plants are grown under LED lights using hydroponics, which provides nutrients in water, Fox news reported.
The website of the company explains that it has "zero effect on the environment" and it uses 70 percent less water than a typical farm.
The company notes that it doesn't use pesticides as there are "no pests living this far underground". (ANI)
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