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Your search has returned 14 articles:
  • Feature

    Pick Your Antipoison

    On a warm, sunny afternoon last June, emergency room physician Sean Bush got a call on his pager that made his blood run cold. The number was his wife's, followed by three digits: 9-1-1. Whatever the page concerned, Bush knew that it was a serious emergency—he and his wife don't take those numbers lightly.

    A quick call from the hospital where he was on duty to his home 22...

    09/12/2006 - 09:49 Biomedicine
  • News

    Terrific Timekeeper: Optical atomic clock beats world standard

    Physicists in Colorado say that they've refined an innovative atomic clock to be more precise than the breed of clocks that's been the best for 50 years.

    The advance indicates that the reign of atomic clocks tuned to the element cesium is coming to an end, says physicist James C. Bergquist of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Boulder, Colo., who led the...

    07/19/2006 - 11:23 Physics
  • News

    Wary male spiders woo lifelessly

    Certain male spiders confront the threat of a cannibalistic female with a novel tactic: They play dead while having sex.

    Nursery spiders (Pisaura mirabilis) belong to a family known for violent females that, on occasion, attack and eat males attempting courtship, notes Trine Bilde of Århus University in Denmark.

    Biologists already knew that males of this species have one method...

    03/28/2006 - 11:53 Animals
  • News

    Easy Answers: Quantum computer gives results without running

    Physicists have long known that quantum computers have the potential to race through calculations trillions of times as fast as ordinary computers do. Now, it seems that those machines may not have to calculate at all to deliver answers.

    That seemingly absurd possibility, which was advanced as a theory several years ago, has now received experimental verification. What's more, although...

    02/22/2006 - 12:18 Physics
  • News

    Champion of strength is forged in mighty anvil

    A newly created form of carbon has captured the crown of world's strongest known material. A team of researchers in Germany and France made the new material using a specialized, multijawed anvil that simultaneously squeezed and heated a powder of all-carbon molecules known as buckyballs.

    At 200,000 times atmospheric pressure and a temperature of 2,500 kelvins, the powder...

    09/13/2005 - 12:18 Physics
  • Feature

    Cosmic Computing

    To see the light, you sometimes have to journey through darkness. That aphorism, it seems, applies not only to journeys of the heart but also to excursions through the history of the universe. In the largest and most detailed computer simulation of this cosmic saga, something utterly dark shapes the universe as it unfolds over some 13.7 billion years.

    That new simulation traces...

    08/09/2005 - 08:18 Astronomy
  • Feature

    Empty Nets

    In the 1850s, 43 schooners from a single port, Beverly, Mass., plied the North Atlantic's Scotian shelf, which is prime cod territory in Canadian waters. Over the sides of the ships, crews dropped lines with single hooks and doggedly jigged their bait along the seafloor to entice the big predatory fish. Although the combined fleet used fewer than 1,200 hooks, the ships' logs indicate that...

    05/31/2005 - 18:30 Ecology
  • 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
  • News

    Tiny Timepiece: Atomic clock could fit almost anywhere

    Physicists have shrunk the high-tech heart of an atomic clock to the size of a rice grain. This dramatic miniaturization may lead to widespread use of atomic clocks in battery-powered devices such as global positioning system (GPS) receivers, wireless computers, and cell phones, says John Kitching, leader of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) team in Boulder, Colo.,...

    09/01/2004 - 13:01 Technology
  • News

    Lowering lilies on the tree of life

    New genetic analyses are shaking the lowest living branch on the family tree of flowering plants. The question is: Should we move water lilies down to that ancient lineage?

    Last summer, presentations at the International Botanical Congress in St. Louis redrew the notoriously puzzling base of the tree. On the lowest branch that still has a living sprout, they placed a living...

    08/10/2004 - 17:51 Plants