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Dec 8, 2022

Ultra-precise readings shed new light on a ‘hell planet’ with an 18-hour year

Posted by in category: space

Planet 55 Cnc e, also known as “Janssen”, orbits so close to its sun that a year is shorter than an Earth day.

Scientists shed new light on planet 55 Cnc e, known by some as the “hell planet”, revealing how it became so fiery.

That wasn’t always the case, though. New, exact measurements of a planet roughly 40 light-years away from Earth allowed scientists to gain further insight into the way planets can turn into fiery hellscapes over many millennia, as per a press statement.

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Dec 8, 2022

Astronomers reconstruct the chaotic birth of a 2500-year-old nebula

Posted by in categories: futurism, space

And it’s all thanks to the death of an Earth-sized star as well as a few ‘innocent bystanders.’

The stunning Southern Ring Nebula, NGC 3,132, was created when a star expelled most of its gas 2,500 years ago. It was selected as one of the first five image packages from the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).

The research opens the door for future JWST nebula investigations.

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Dec 8, 2022

New information about long gamma-rays shatters astrophysicists’ theory

Posted by in categories: computing, physics, space

Until now, it was thought they came from massive star collapses.

Astrophysicists around the world may be shocked to learn that long gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) do not solely come from the collapse of massive stars. A new study by astrophysicists at Northwestern University upends the long-standing belief, uncovering new evidence that at least some long GRBs can result from neutron star mergers, which were previously believed to produce only short GRBs, the university’s publication reported.

It all began in December 2021 when the team detected a 50-second-long GRB (any GRB longer than 2 seconds is considered ‘long’).

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Dec 8, 2022

Chrome gets memory and energy saver modes

Posted by in categories: computing, food

Google today announced two new performance settings in its Chrome browser: Memory Saver and Energy Saver.

Modern browsers eat up a lot of memory and while that’s not a problem if you have 32GB of RAM, Chrome using multiple gigabytes of your memory can quickly slow your machine down if you’re on a machine with lower specs. The Memory Saver mode promises to reduce Chrome’s memory usage by up to 30% by putting inactive tabs to sleep. The tabs will simply reload when you need them again. The Energy Saver mode, meanwhile, limits background activity and visual effects for sites with animations and videos when your laptop’s battery level drops below 20%.

Dec 8, 2022

‘Massive evidence’ on evolution: Extinct human species with tiny brains ‘used fire’ to live underground

Posted by in categories: evolution, food, neuroscience

‘I almost died on the way out,’ said the six-foot-two tall archeologist who lost 25 kgs to enter a 17.5-centimeter cave.

Researchers claim to have discovered new evidence of extinct human species who lived in the underground caves of modern-day South Africa.

“We have massive evidence. It’s everywhere,” said Berger, who reported the findings in a press release and a Carnegie Science lecture at the Martin Luther King Jr.

Continue reading “‘Massive evidence’ on evolution: Extinct human species with tiny brains ‘used fire’ to live underground” »

Dec 8, 2022

In a world first, physicists move light back and forth in time simultaneously

Posted by in categories: computing, quantum physics

The experiment could help to form a unified theory of quantum gravity.

Scientists have, for the first time ever, made light appear to move simultaneously forward and backward in time. The new method, achieved by an international group of scientists, could help create novel quantum computing techniques and give scientists a better understanding of quantum gravity, a report from LiveScience.

It was achieved thanks to a combination of two principles that form a part of the bizarre world of quantum mechanics.

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Dec 8, 2022

Student-made invisibility coat aims to hide wearers from AI cameras

Posted by in categories: information science, robotics/AI, security

The accuracy of pedestrian identification was reduced by 57% when the students tested the outfit on on-campus security cameras.

According to the South China Morning Post (SCMP), Chinese students have successfully developed a coat that can make people invisible to security cameras. So the SCMP story goes, the coat looks the same as regular camouflaged clothing, but it can trick digital cameras, especially ones with AI.

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Dec 8, 2022

Researchers plan to use quantum computers in search for dark matter

Posted by in categories: computing, cosmology, particle physics, quantum physics

This research could potentially lead to a better understanding of the galaxy and its many mysteries.

It’s a cosmic riddle: How can galaxies remain together when all the matter we observe isn’t enough to keep them intact? Scientists believe an invisible force must beat play, something so mysterious they named it “dark matter” because of its lack of visibility.

This mysterious presence accounts for nearly three times more than what we can observe — a startling 27% of all existence! The mysterious dark matter is a profound mystery to scientists, its existence making up nearly one-third of the universe’s energy and mass yet remaining elusive due to its ability to avoid detection.

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Dec 8, 2022

The Fermi paradox: Are we alone in the universe?

Posted by in category: existential risks

Two possibilities exist: Either we are alone in the universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying. ~Carl Sagan.

Looking up at a starry night sky makes one wonder if we are really alone. If you have never asked yourself this question, here’s some perspective on the vastness of our universe.

And this is just one galaxy.

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Dec 8, 2022

Gamma-ray and meteorites helped life form in outer space, a study suggests

Posted by in category: space

The first-of-its-kind experiment proved that gamma ray-catalyzed reactions can produce amino acids, which contributed to the origin of life on Earth.

How life arose on Earth remains one of science’s most complex mysteries. One of the many myths and hypotheses is the possibility of meteorites delivering amino acids, known as life’s building blocks, to our planet.

In a first-of-its-kind experiment, researchers have shown that amino acids might have formed in early meteorites from reactions driven by gamma rays produced inside space rocks due to the decay of radioactive elements.

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