359 articles from THURSDAY 19.3.2020

Trials to begin on Covid-19 vaccine in UK next month

Researchers hope to conduct animal tests next week and safety trials as early as next monthCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageA massive effort is under way to develop a UK vaccine for coronavirus within months and make it available to save lives before the end of the year, the Guardian has learned.Researchers at Oxford University, led by Prof Sarah Gilbert, are planning...

NASA's Mars perseverance rover gets its sample handling system

With the launch period for NASA's Mars Perseverance rover opening in a little less than four months, the six-wheeler is reaching significant pre-launch milestones almost daily at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The rover had some components removed prior to being shipped from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California to the Cape in early February. Last week,...

A landmark plan for realizing fusion energy and advancing plasma science

Creating and controlling on Earth the fusion energy that powers the sun and stars is a key goal of scientists around the world. Production of this safe, clean and limitless energy could generate electricity for all humanity, and the possibility is growing closer to reality. Now a landmark report released this week by the American Physical Society Division of Plasma Physics Community Planning...

Composite metal foams take the heat, move closer to widespread applications

North Carolina State University researchers have demonstrated that composite metal foams (CMFs) can pass so-called "simulated pool fire testing" with flying colors, moving the material closer to use in applications such as packaging and transportation of hazardous materials. In addition, researchers used this experimental data to develop a model for predicting how variations in the CMF would...

Graphene underpins a new platform to selectively identify deadly strains of bacteria

Using a single atom-thick sheet of graphene to track the electronic signals inherent in biological structures, a team led by Boston College researchers has developed a platform to selectively identify deadly strains of bacteria, an advance that could lead to more accurate targeting of infections with appropriate antibiotics, the team reported in the journal Biosensors and Bioelectronics.

Nasa shortlists four astrophysics missions for 2025 launch

Four proposals will get funds for nine months of study before two are chosen to go aheadNasa has shortlisted four proposals for its next astrophysics missions, due for launch in 2025. The agency has funding to fly two of them, and the four will now each receive funds for a nine-month period of technical study. The two missions will be chosen next year.The competing proposals are: the...

How to prepare for severe weather in the age of social distancing

The coronavirus pandemic has changed life on Earth dramatically the last several months. Countries have completely closed their borders, businesses have shuttered, schools have emptied and major cities have turned into ghost towns as millions self-quarantine in their homes to help reduce the spread of the disease.But one thing that hasn't changed in the U.S. is that the return of spring comes...

How skin cells prepare to heal wounds

Researchers have published the first comprehensive overview of the major changes that occur in mammalian skin cells as they prepare to heal wounds. Results from the study provide a blueprint for future investigation into pathological conditions associated with poor wound healing, such as in diabetic patients.

Composite metal foams take the heat, move closer to widespread applications

Engineering researchers have demonstrated that composite metal foams (CMFs) can pass so-called 'simulated pool fire testing' with flying colors, moving the material closer to use in applications such as packaging and transportation of hazardous materials. In addition, researchers used this experimental data to develop a model for predicting how variations in the CMF would affect its performance.

High-speed microscope captures fleeting brain signals

Neuroscientists can now capture millisecond electrical changes in neurons in the cortex of an alert mouse, allowing tracing of neural signals, including subthreshold events, in the brain. The new technique combines all-optical scanning with two-photon fluorescence imaging to produce a 2D rasterized picture every 1,000-3,000 milliseconds. That and another technique that allows 3D imaging of large...

The UK government's woeful response to the coronavirus outbreak | Letters

Guardian readers lament Boris Johnson’s failure to grasp the scale of the crisis, which was foreshadowed by cuts to the NHS and public servicesI could not agree more with Richard Horton (Scientists have been sounding the alarm on coronavirus for months. Why did Britain fail to act?, 18 March). Watching from 6,000 miles away and on the other side of the coronavirus curve, the British...