27 articles from SUNDAY 1.11.2020

Starwatch: look either side of the moon to find Gemini, the twins

The constellation, one of the 12 zodiacal patterns, is between Ursa Major and Orion in the northern hemisphereThe waning gibbous moon this week will guide you to the heart of the constellation Gemini, the twins.In the northern hemisphere, Gemini sits between the well-known constellations of Ursa Major, the great bear, to the north and Orion, the hunter, to the south. Sandwiched between these two...

Covid: how chilling projections prompted Johnson to lockdown

Opposition of Sunak melted away during quad meeting and PM sided with Gove and HancockCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageMorgues in converted ice rinks, security guards outside overwhelmed hospitals to turn patients away, even municipal mass graves.When Boris Johnson’s “quad” of senior ministers met on Friday, they were presented with a chilling prognosis of what...

Yuri Orlov obituary

Russian physicist whose campaigning for human rights in the Soviet Union led to imprisonment and exile to the USThe outstanding Russian physicist Yuri Orlov, who has died aged 96, became one of the bravest champions of human rights in the final period of the Soviet Union. He suffered years of hardship in prison, labour camps and exile to Siberia before having his citizenship withdrawn in 1986 and...

Johnson’s dithering has doubled this lockdown. We will all pay the price | Tom Kibasi

The prime minister either did not understand what scientists told him about Covid, or he ignored it for political reasons Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverage“No responsible prime minister could ignore the message of those figures,” intoned Boris Johnson after the chief medical officer had finished his presentation of the latest Covid-19 data at Saturday’s press...

Tiny variants in genes may dictate severity of coronavirus

Scientists are tracking small differences in DNA to explain why the disease has different effectsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageIt has been one of the most baffling aspects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Healthy young men and women have become infected with the virus and developed life-threatening side effects. But at the same time, many of their contemporaries have...

Super typhoon batters Philippines; 1 million in shelters

A super typhoon slammed into the eastern Philippines with ferocious winds early Sunday, knocking down power in several towns and prompting the evacuation of about a million people in its likely path, including in the capital, Manila, where the main airport was shut down.

Space station marking 20 years of people living in orbit

The International Space Station was a cramped, humid, puny three rooms when the first crew moved in. Twenty years and 241 visitors later, the complex has a lookout tower, three toilets, six sleeping compartments and 12 rooms, depending on how you count.

Secrets of the ice: unlocking a melting time capsule

As the Earth’s ice melts, large numbers of perfectly preserved ancient artefacts are being revealed. But time is running out and ‘glacial archaeologists’ are racing to find these fragile treasuresBack in August 2018, archaeologists William Taylor and Nick Jarman were scrambling around a snowy, scree-strewn slope in the Altai mountains in northwest Mongolia at the end of an exhausting day. A...

Why a digital Christmas goes against our instincts

What can science tell us about our urge to celebrate with loved ones this festive season despitethe dangers?Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageEven at the best of times, Christmas can be a season of contradictory feelings. There is a yearning to enjoy the season of goodwill with our relatives and yet their proximity often creates friction. For many families, it is the...

Covid: Johnson’s U-turn puts England under tough new lockdown

Rules will shut pubs, cafes and non-vital shops, while local reviews will take place after a four-week periodBoris Johnson performed an extraordinary U-turn on Saturday as he unveiled new month-long national lockdown measures across England, amid accusations that government indecision and delay will cost lives and livelihoods across the country.With immediate warnings of the grave economic fallout...

A versatile photodetector assisted by photovoltaic and bolometric effects

A versatile photodetector based on MoTe2/VO2 heterostructure integrates photovoltaic and bolometric effects. The photodetector can realize three different functional modes including p-n junction, bolometer and Schottky junction, satisfying the demand of ultrasensitive and ultrabroad spectrum response, showing great potential in advanced photodetector.

Beetle larvae think with a brain 'under construction'

In human brains, hundreds of billions of nerve cells are interconnected in the most complicated way. This is no different for insects, although their brains 'only' have up to one million nerve cells. To a large extent, the brain develops in the embryo, but in many animals it is completed only after birth. Biologists from Göttingen University found that beetle larvae start using their brains,...

Light-modulated graphene-organic heterojunction transistors realizing photocurrent logic changes

The optical intermodulation and graphene removing doping modulation proposed in this paper provide a reference for the future fabrication of graphene-based all-optical input photodetectors and photoelectric modulation devices, as well as positive and negative logic photocurrents modulated by utilizing critical value of effective exciton length. This logical reversal light modulation photoresponse...

Neurosurgeons and malpractice suits

To determine the frequency of medical malpractice suits among neurosurgeons and neurosurgeons' reactions when faced with the prospect of such lawsuits, three researchers from The Netherlands surveyed members of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. The results of the survey can be found in this article.

Ninety years of data shows global warming impacts on foundation of marine ecosystems

Phytoplankton are microscopic plants that underpin ocean productivity and provide 50% of the world's oxygen via photosynthesis. An investigation of a 90 year data set from a coastal station offshore from Sydney provides a unique opportunity to better predict the impact of global warming on future ocean phytoplankton communities, on biodiversity and ultimately fisheries production.