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Jan 16, 2020

The mysterious, legendary giant squid’s genome is revealed

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, education

How did the monstrous giant squid—reaching school-bus size, with eyes as big as dinner plates and tentacles that can snatch prey 10 yards away—get so scarily big?

Today, important clues about the anatomy and evolution of the mysterious (Architeuthis dux) are revealed through publication of its full by a University of Copenhagen-led team that includes scientist Caroline Albertin of the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), Woods Hole.

Giant are rarely sighted and have never been caught and kept alive, meaning their biology (even how they reproduce) is still largely a mystery. The genome sequence can provide important insight.

Jan 15, 2020

Researchers gain control over internal structure of self-assembled composite materials

Posted by in category: materials

Composites made from self-assembling inorganic materials are valued for their unique strength and thermal, optical and magnetic properties. However, because self-assembly can be difficult to control, the structures formed can be highly disordered, leading to defects during large-scale production. Researchers at the University of Illinois and the University of Michigan have developed a templating technique that instills greater order and gives rise to new 3D structures in a special class of materials, called eutectics, to form new, high-performance materials.

The findings of the collaborative study are published in the journal Nature.

Eutectic materials contain elements and compounds that have different melting and solidification temperatures. When combined, however, the composite formed has single melting and freezing temperatures—like when salt and water combined to form brine, which freezes at a lower temperature than water or salt alone, the researchers said. When a eutectic liquid solidifies, the individual components separate, forming a cohesive structure—most commonly in a layered form. The fact that eutectic materials self-assemble into composites makes them highly desirable to many modern technologies, ranging from high-performance turbine blades to solder alloys.

Jan 15, 2020

Transparency discovered in crystals with ultrahigh piezoelectricity

Posted by in categories: computing, materials

Use of an AC rather than a DC electric field can improve the piezoelectric response of a crystal. Now, an international team of researchers say that cycles of AC fields also make the internal crystal domains in some materials bigger and the crystal transparent.

“There have been reports that the use of AC fields could significantly improve the piezoelectric responses—for example by 20% to 40%—over DC fields and the improvements have always been attributed to the smaller internal ferroelectric sizes that resulted from the cycles of AC fields,” said Long-Qing Chen, Hamer Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, professor of engineering science and mechanics, and professor of mathematics at Penn State. “About three years ago, Dr. Fei Li, then a research associate at the Materials Research Institute at Penn State, largely confirmed the improvement of piezoelectric performances from application of AC fields. However, it was not clear at all how the internal ferroelectric domains evolved during AC cycles.

”Our group does mostly computer modeling, and more than a year ago we started looking into what happens to the internal domain structures if we apply AC fields to a ferroelectric piezoelectric crystal. We are very curious about how the domain structures evolve during AC cycles. Our and theoretical calculations did show an improved piezoelectric response, but our simulations also demonstrated that the ferroelectric domain sizes actually got bigger during AC cycles rather than smaller as reported in the literature.”

Jan 15, 2020

Researchers demonstrate first stable semiconductor neutron detector

Posted by in categories: materials, security

Homeland Security might soon have a new tool to add to its arsenal.

Researchers at Northwestern University and Argonne National Laboratory have developed a new material that opens doors for a new class of neutron detectors.

With the ability to sense smuggled , highly efficient neutron detectors are critical for national security. Currently, there are two classes of detectors which either use helium gas or flashes of light. These detectors are very large—sometimes the size of a wall.

Jan 15, 2020

Precise measurements find a crack in universal physics

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

The concept of universal physics is intriguing, as it enables researchers to relate physical phenomena in a variety of systems, irrespective of their varying characteristics and complexities. Ultracold atomic systems are often perceived as ideal platforms for exploring universal physics, owing to the precise control of experimental parameters (such as the interaction strength, temperature, density, quantum states, dimensionality, and the trapping potential) that might be harder to tune in more conventional systems. In fact, ultracold atomic systems have been used to better understand a myriad of complex physical behavior, including those topics in cosmology, particle, nuclear, molecular physics, and most notably, in condensed matter physics, where the complexities of many-body quantum phenomena are more difficult to investigate using more traditional approaches.

Understanding the applicability and the robustness of universal is thus of great interest. Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the University of Colorado Boulder have carried out a study, recently featured in Physical Review Letters, aimed at testing the limits to universality in an ultracold system.

“Unlike in other physical systems, the beauty of ultracold systems is that at times we are able to scrap the importance of the periodic table and demonstrate the similar phenomenon with any chosen atomic species (be it potassium, rubidium, lithium, strontium, etc.),” Roman Chapurin, one of the researchers who carried out the study, told Phys.org. “Universal behavior is independent of the microscopic details. Understanding the limitations of universal phenomenon is of great interest.”

Jan 15, 2020

Astronomers discover class of strange objects near our galaxy’s enormous black hole

Posted by in category: cosmology

Astronomers from UCLA’s Galactic Center Orbits Initiative have discovered a new class of bizarre objects at the center of our galaxy, not far from the supermassive black hole called Sagittarius A*. They published their research today in the journal Nature.

“These objects look like gas and behave like ,” said co-author Andrea Ghez, UCLA’s Lauren B. Leichtman and Arthur E. Levine Professor of Astrophysics and director of the UCLA Galactic Center Group.

The new objects look compact most of the time and stretch out when their orbits bring them closest to the black hole. Their orbits range from about 100 to 1,000 years, said lead author Anna Ciurlo, a UCLA postdoctoral researcher.

Jan 15, 2020

Advanced Lockheed Martin satellite leaves Colorado in massive plane, bound for South America

Posted by in category: satellites

Four years after Lockheed Martin secured a contract to build the JCSAT-17 satellite, the satellite is now traveling to South America where it will soon launch.

Jan 15, 2020

SpaceX’s Crew Dragon

Posted by in category: space travel

Short videographic on the SpaceX project. An in-flight abort test of SpaceX Crew Dragon takes place on Saturday.

Jan 15, 2020

The History of the Pharma Cartel

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, health

The Supreme Court of the U.S. finds John Rockefeller and his Trust guilty of corruption, illegal business practices and racketeering. As a result of this decision, the entire Rockefeller Standard Oil-Trust, the world’s largest corporation of its time, was sentenced to be dismantled. But Rockefeller was already above the Supreme Court and did not care about this decision.

In order to disperse public and political pressure on him and other robber-barons, Rockefeller uses a trick called “philanthropy”, whereby the illegal gains from his robber-practices in the oil business are used to launch the Rockefeller Foundation. This tax haven was used to strategically take over the health care sector in the U.S…

The Rockefeller Foundation was the front organization for a new global business venture of Rockefeller and his accomplices. This new venture was called the pharmaceutical investment business. Donations from the Rockefeller Foundation went only to medical schools and hospitals. These institutions had become missionaries of a new breed of companies: the manufacturers of patented, synthetic drugs.

Jan 15, 2020

Japan confirms first case of coronavirus infection

Posted by in category: futurism

Man from Kanagawa had reportedly travelled to Wuhan and was hospitalised with a fever after returning to Japan.