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Apr 4, 2018

Study reveals more than 100 tiny plastics in every meal

Posted by in category: particle physics

We could be swallowing more than 100 tiny plastic particles with every main meal, a Heriot-Watt study has revealed.

The , which can come from soft furnishings and synthetic fabrics, gets into household which falls on plates and is consumed.

The university academics made the discovery after putting Petri dishes containing sticky dust traps on the table next to dinner plates in three homes at meal times.

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Apr 4, 2018

Telematics technology steering toward smarter EU roads

Posted by in categories: climatology, economics, sustainability

If we are to have truly smart cities our transport systems will have to be more cost-effective, safer and sustainable. Perhaps most of all they will need to be more integrated, as the EU-funded project MFDS demonstrates.

The stated aim of the EU’s ‘smart, green and integrated transport’ initiative is to build a European transport that is ‘resilient, resource-efficient, climate- and environmentally friendly, safe and seamless for the benefit of all citizens, the economy and society.’

In contribution, the EU-funded MFDS project has developed a versatile and affordable ‘Intelligent Transport System’ offering several functions including wrong-way driver detection, traffic congestion detection, vehicle counting by vehicle classification and parking accounting. The core innovation of MFDS is the system’s ability to perform its functions simultaneously, while remaining low-cost to buy and install, as well as running on minimum power. The project’s feasibility study has demonstrated that the system will be of interest to multiple EU markets.

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Apr 4, 2018

Rocket Lab sets date for first commercial launch of its Electron rocket

Posted by in category: satellites

US spaceflight startup Rocket Lab is officially open for business and has scheduled its very first commercial launch for later this month. The company will launch its small Electron rocket with payloads from two paying satellite operators on board — just three months after completing a second test flight of the vehicle. The upcoming mission will initiate the beginning of customer operations for Rocket Lab, which claims to have a busy manifest for this year and next.

After four years of developing the Electron, Rocket Lab flew the vehicle for the first time in May 2017 out of the company’s own private launch site in New Zealand. That test flight — appropriately dubbed “It’s a Test” — made it to space, though the rocket didn’t achieve orbit, due to a glitch in communication equipment on the ground. Rocket Lab was able to fix the problem, though, and performed a second test flight of the Electron in January in a mission called “Still Testing.” That time, the vehicle did make it to orbit and even deployed four satellites, including a secret disco ball probe made by Rocket Lab’s CEO Peter Beck.

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Apr 4, 2018

Despite the growing evidence against supplements making brain/ memory improvement claims, sales keep growing

Posted by in categories: business, health, neuroscience

How can we help educate the general public?


___ Why you shouldn’t bother with memory or brain health supplements (Consumer Reports): The signs of memory loss can be bewildering and scary: misplaced keys, a forgotten street name, that task you suddenly can’t remember. It’s no wonder that, according to the Nutrition Business Journal, sales of supplements touted.

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Apr 4, 2018

Russian science chases escape from mediocrity

Posted by in categories: economics, government, science

For all its progress, Russia’s state-funded science still lags behind that of emerging science powers including China, India and South Korea, especially when it comes to translating discoveries into economic gains. Decades of underfunding, excessive state bureaucracy and entrenched opposition to reform within the country’s sputtering research institutions are hampering competitiveness, says Khokhlov. “What we need are new ideas, new labs, fresh talent and more freedom and competition.”


With Vladimir Putin set to earn another presidential term, researchers wonder whether his government will reverse decades of decline.

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Apr 4, 2018

Neuroscientists Confirm That Our Loved Ones Become Ourselves

Posted by in category: neuroscience

A new study has confirmed that humankind’s capacity for love and friendship sets us apart from all other species. Researchers at University of Virginia have found that humans are hardwired to empathize with those close to them at a neural level.

Interestingly, the ability to put yourselves in another person’s shoes depends drastically on whether the person is a stranger or someone you know. The study titled “Familiarity Promotes the Blurring of Self and Other in the Neural Representation of Threat” appears in the August issue of the journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscien ce.

According to researchers, the human brain puts strangers in one bin and the people we know in another compartment. People in your social network literally become entwined with your sense of self at a neural level. “With familiarity, other people become part of ourselves,” said James Coan, a psychology professor in University of Virginia’s College of Arts & Sciences who used functional magnetic resonance imaging brain (fMRI) scans to find that people closely correlate people to whom they are attached to themselves.

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Apr 4, 2018

Different shades of shadow

Posted by in category: cosmology

This graphic is perhaps more complex than first meets the eye. The Sun glows hot to the left, illuminating the Earth’s surface. The side facing away from the Sun is cast in deep shadow, and the man-made lights of cities are visible. The darkest patch of shadow, where the Earth blocks all the Sun’s light, is called the umbra. The lighter slivers of shadow either side of the umbra, which are not in total darkness, is the penumbra. Needless to say, this is not to scale!

This graphic will form part of the “The Living Universe” exhibition, to be displayed at the ESO Supernova, opening in spring 2018.

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Apr 4, 2018

How to stop ‘nightmare bacteria’ from spreading across the U.S.

Posted by in category: biotech/medical

Bacteria and antibiotic resistant superbugs are popping up across the U.S, the CDC says. But aggressive control can help stop their spread.

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Apr 3, 2018

Lockheed wins nearly $250 million NASA contract to build supersonic plane

Posted by in category: transportation

Silence is Golden.


Lockheed Martin has won a nearly quarter-billion dollar NASA contract to develop a plane capable of supersonic speed without creating the deafening sonic boom that comes with breaking the sound barrier.

The cost-plus NASA contract, valued at $247.5 million, will allow the defense contractor’s secretive Skunk Works division to continue development of Lockheed Martin’s Quiet Supersonic Technology (or QueSST) aircraft.

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Apr 3, 2018

NASA Is Developing A Quiet Plane That’s Faster Than Sound

Posted by in category: transportation

NASA is making a plane that will go from NYC to LA in 2 hours.

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