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E.g., 01/24/2018
E.g., 01/24/2018
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  • News

    New device can transmit underwater sound to air

    Don’t expect to play a game of Marco Polo by shouting from beneath the pool’s surface. No one will hear you because, normally, only about 0.1 percent of sound is transmitted from water to the air. But a new type of device might one day help.

    Researchers have designed a new metamaterial — a type of material that behaves in ways conventional materials can’t — that increases sound...

    01/23/2018 - 13:00 Materials, Physics
  • Feature

    Your phone is like a spy in your pocket

    Consider everything your smartphone has done for you today. Counted your steps? Deposited a check? Transcribed notes? Navigated you somewhere new?

    Smartphones make for such versatile pocket assistants because they’re equipped with a suite of sensors, including some we may never think — or even know — about, sensing, for example, light, humidity, pressure and temperature.

    Because...

    01/23/2018 - 12:00 Computing, Technology
  • News

    Stars with too much lithium may have stolen it

    Something is giving small, pristine stars extra lithium. A dozen newly discovered stars contain more of the element than astronomers can explain.

    Some of the newfound stars are earlier in their life cycles than stars previously found with too much lithium, researchers report in the Jan. 10 Astrophysical Journal Letters. Finding young lithium-rich stars could help explain where the extra...

    01/23/2018 - 11:00 Astronomy
  • News

    New technique could help spot snooping drones

    Now there’s a way to tell if a drone is spying on someone.

    Researchers have devised a method to tell what a drone is recording — without having to decrypt the video data that the device streams to the pilot’s smartphone. This technique, described January 9 at arXiv.org, could help military bases detect unwanted surveillance and civilians protect their privacy as more commercial drones...

    01/23/2018 - 07:00 Technology, Science & Society
  • Science Ticker

    Here’s the key ingredient that lets a centipede’s bite take down prey

    Knocking out an animal 15 times your size — no problem. A newly identified toxin in the venom of a tropical centipede helps the arthropod to overpower giant prey in about 30 seconds.

    Insight into how this venom overwhelms lab mice could lead to an antidote for people who suffer excruciatingly painful, reportedly even fatal, centipede bites, an international research team reports the week...

    01/22/2018 - 17:25 Biomedicine, Animals
  • News

    Mysterious high-energy particles could come from black hole jets

    It’s three for the price of one. A trio of mysterious high-energy particles could all have the same source: active black holes embedded in galaxy clusters, researchers suggest January 22 in Nature Physics.

    Scientists have been unable to figure out the origins of the three types of particles — gamma rays that give a background glow to the universe, cosmic neutrinos and ultrahigh energy...

    01/22/2018 - 15:48 Astronomy, Particle Physics
  • News

    Massive dust storms are robbing Mars of its water

    Storms of powdery Martian soil are contributing to the loss of the planet’s remaining water.

    This newly proposed mechanism for water loss, reported January 22 in Nature Astronomy, might also hint at how Mars originally became dehydrated. Researchers used over a decade of imaging data taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to investigate the composition of the Red Planet’s frequent...

    01/22/2018 - 11:00 Planetary Science, Astrobiology
  • Television

    ‘First Face of America’ explores how humans reached the New World

    A teenage girl climbed into an underground cave around 13,000 years ago. Edging through the ink-dark chamber, she accidentally plunged to her death at the bottom of a deep pit.

    Rising seas eventually inundated the cave, located on Central America’s Yucatán Peninsula. But that didn’t stop scuba divers from finding and retrieving much of the girl’s skeleton in 2007.

    “First Face of...

    01/22/2018 - 07:00 Anthropology, Archaeology, Ancestry
  • News

    New twist on a flu vaccine revs up the body’s army of virus killers

    Sometimes an old fight needs a new hero. With the United States in the midst of a tough flu season — and with evidence from Australia that the current flu shot is only 10 percent effective against the strains responsible for most illnesses — a different approach to flu vaccine development may do the trick.

    Vaccines traditionally protect against illness by stimulating...

    01/19/2018 - 15:42 Health, Immune Science
  • News

    Cilia in the brain may be busier than previously thought

    Nerve cells in the brain make elaborate connections and exchange lightning-quick messages that captivate scientists. But these cells also sport simpler, hairlike protrusions called cilia. Long overlooked, the little stubs may actually have big jobs in the brain.

    Researchers are turning up roles for nerve cell cilia in a variety of brain functions. In a region of the brain linked to...

    01/19/2018 - 13:16 Neuroscience, Genetics