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May 23, 2022

See four dwarf galaxies merging into one in Hubble image

Posted by in category: space

An image from the Hubble Space Telescope shared this week by NASA shows an unusual interaction of four dwarf galaxies. There are two small galaxies which are so close together that they look like one object, called NGC 1,741, located at the top of the image. Then there is another cigar-shaped galaxy close by to the right, and a fourth galaxy in the bottom left which is connected to the other three by a stream of young stars.

Together, the four galaxies make up a set called the Hickson Compact Group 31, or HCG 31. The group is located 166 million light-years away from Earth, which is relatively close for seeing interacting dwarf galaxies. The galaxies are currently so close together, at within 75,000 light-years of each other, that all four of them would fit within the Milky Way.

May 23, 2022

Targeting Toxin Release To Treat Lethal Bacterial Infection

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Researchers have discovered that Clostridium septicum rapidly kills cells by releasing a toxin that punches holes in the surface of the cell. This induces an immune response that can lead to sepsis and shock. The team is now exploring whether it’s possible to develop drugs to neutralize the toxin to treat the infection.

May 23, 2022

Gene Mutation Predisposes Individuals to Severe Staphylococcus Infections

Posted by in category: genetics

Staphylococcus aureus infections can be highly unpredictable – some cause a slight rash, whereas others can lead to deadly complications – and researchers have identified a genetic mutation that could be the cause of these differences.

May 23, 2022

Heart Disease May Be Worsened

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

T cells that attack apolipoprotein B, the main component of “bad” cholesterol, could be contributing to inflammation that worsens heart disease.

May 23, 2022

China launches an autonomous mothership full of autonomous drones

Posted by in categories: drones, robotics/AI

China christened a remarkable new 290-foot ship last week – the world’s first semi-autonomous drone carrier. It’ll carry, launch, recover and co-ordinate the actions of more than 50 other autonomous aerial, surface and underwater vehicles.

The Huangpu Wenchong Shipyard began construction on the Zhu Hai Yun last July in Guangzhou. According to the South China Morning Post, it’s the first carrier of its kind, a self-contained autonomous platform that will roll out with everything necessary to perform a fully integrated operation including drone aircraft, boats and submersibles.

Continue reading “China launches an autonomous mothership full of autonomous drones” »

May 23, 2022

Topological Materials Are Everywhere — New Database Reveals Over 90,000

Posted by in categories: materials, mathematics

Searchable tool reveals more than 90,000 known materials with electronic properties that remain unperturbed in the face of disruption.

What will it take for our electronics to become smarter, faster, and more resilient? One idea is to build them out of topological materials.

Topology stems from a branch of mathematics that studies shapes that can be manipulated or deformed without losing certain essential properties. A donut is a common example: If it were made of rubber, a donut could be twisted and squeezed into a completely new shape, such as a coffee mug, while retaining a key trait — namely, its center hole, which takes the form of the cup’s handle. The hole, in this case, is a topological trait, robust against certain deformations.

Continue reading “Topological Materials Are Everywhere — New Database Reveals Over 90,000” »

May 23, 2022

A lab-on-a-chip that takes the chip out of the lab

Posted by in category: computing

Diagnostic device promises miniaturization in stand-alone system.

May 23, 2022

“Fly ash” contains rare earth elements needed for electronics

Posted by in categories: mobile phones, satellites, sustainability

The United States’ reliance on China for rare earth elements could soon come to an end, thanks to a new process that pulls the valuable metals from the ash left over when we burn coal.

Why it matters: The 17 rare earth elements aren’t actually rare — they’re all more common than gold, and one is more abundant than copper. But getting our hands on them is difficult because they’re widely dispersed in Earth’s crust and hard to extract through mining.

Continue reading “‘Fly ash’ contains rare earth elements needed for electronics” »

May 23, 2022

The DoD plans to launch two nuke-propelled spacecraft by 2027

Posted by in category: space travel

Two commercial enterprises have been awarded contracts by the DoD to develop the next generation of nuclear propulsion in space.

May 23, 2022

Paper-based semiconductor aids the drive for sustainable electronics

Posted by in categories: materials, sustainability

According to the team, the new semiconducting cellulose nanopaper (CNP) can be tailored for a variety of applications. The paper itself can be shaped into different designs and the material’s electrical conduction properties can be tuned from 1012 to 10–2 Ω cm – values that exceed those of previously-reported 3D semiconducting materials – by changing the concentration of charge carriers (electrons and holes) in it. This means it is suitable for use in many devices, from water vapour sensors to electrodes in enzymatic biofuel cells.

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