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Your search has returned 27 articles:
  • Food for Thought

    Troubling Meaty 'Estrogen'

    Women take note. Researchers find that a chemical that forms in overcooked meat, especially charred portions, is a potent mimic of estrogen, the primary female sex hormone. That's anything but appetizing, since studies have linked a higher lifetime cumulative exposure to estrogen in women with an elevated risk of breast cancer.

    Indeed, the new finding offers a "biologically...

    10/17/2007 - 01:38 Nutrition
  • Feature

    Fractal or Fake?

    Jackson Pollock couldn't possibly have been thinking of fractals when he started flinging and dripping paint from a stick onto canvas. After all, mathematicians didn't develop the idea of a fractal until a couple of decades later. But if one physicist is right, Pollock ended up painting fractals anyway. And that mathematical quality may explain why Pollock's seemingly chaotic streams of paint...

    02/20/2007 - 10:14 Humans & Society
  • Feature

    Venting Concerns

    Researchers cruising the South Pacific between Tonga and Fiji study huge snails that, aided by an abundance of bacteria housed in their gills, feed off plumes of metal-rich compounds at active hydrothermal vents. Scientists working off the California coast use chemical-sniffing probes, robotically driven subs, and seafloor-tethered temperature sensors to watch flows of lava pave over a once-...

    10/03/2006 - 10:43 Humans & Society
  • News

    Fish as Farmers: Reef residents tend an algal crop

    A damselfish cultivates underwater gardens of an algal species that researchers haven't found growing on its own.

    The special alga could be the fishy version of people's domesticated crops, says Hiroki Hata of Kyoto University in Japan. Growth tests of the alga, surveys of its distribution, and genetic analyses support that idea, he and Makoto Kato say in an upcoming Biology...

    08/09/2006 - 12:05 Ecology
  • Feature

    Making Stuff Last

    Around the world, archives, museums, and their storage facilities brim with society's most prized objects. Some have been stashed on dusty back shelves for decades, while others bask under spotlights and curious gazes.

    If you're a patron of museums and archives, how can you be sure that on those shelves or under that glass, the treasures you value aren't...

    11/08/2004 - 17:25 Materials
  • News

    An early cosmic wallop for life on Earth?

    Life on Earth either started with a bang or it suffered an unusually rocky childhood, a new study suggests.

    Analyzing lunar meteorites, researchers have found new evidence that a swarm of debris bombarded the moon some 3.9 billion years ago. That's about the same time that life may have formed on Earth. If our planet suffered a similarly catastrophic bombardment, as scientists...

    10/18/2004 - 20:04 Planetary Science
  • News

    Tiny scope spies distant planet

    Using a telescope not much bigger than the one Galileo invented nearly 400 years ago, astronomers have discovered a planet orbiting a star 500 light-years from Earth. The 4-inch telescope in the Canary Islands is one of three small, globally separated telescopes that monitor the brightness of some 12,000 stars in the constellation Lyra. Periodic dips in brightness can result from an orbiting...

    09/29/2004 - 09:45 Planetary Science
  • Feature

    Extreme Impersonations

    Extreme physical conditions have a way of bringing out the strangest behaviors that nature can muster. Just ask physicist John E. Thomas. Two years ago, he and his colleagues at Duke University in Durham, N.C., were working with intense lasers in a high-vacuum chamber at temperatures next to absolute zero. They were manipulating tiny clouds of lithium gas. When the scientists turned off the...

    09/11/2004 - 17:58 Physics
  • Feature

    Starting from Square One

    Quarks are the smaller-than-a-proton particles without which there would be no stars, dogs, or breakfast burritos. In 1986, after a dozen frustrating years of trying to find ways of using computers to calculate properties of quark-containing entities such as protons and neutrons, Kenneth G. Wilson threw in the towel at a physics meeting. Wilson, who had already won a Nobel prize for previous...

    08/03/2004 - 10:16 Physics
  • News

    Inside Plastic Transistors: Crystal-clear window opens on hidden flows

    Plastic semiconductors are spawning a new breed of electronic devices that are cheap to make, lightweight, and flexible. The microscopic details of how electric charges move through transistors and other devices made of such materials have remained obscure, however.

    Now, by creating a new type of transistor from such materials, known as organic semiconductors (SN: 8/30/03, p. 133...

    07/21/2004 - 10:32 Physics