157 articles from TUESDAY 10.5.2022

Artificial cell membrane channels composed of DNA can be opened and locked with a key

Just as countries import a vast array of consumer goods across national borders, so living cells are engaged in a lively import-export business. Their ports of entry are sophisticated transport channels embedded in a cell's protective membrane. Regulating what kinds of cargo can pass through the borderlands formed by the cell's two-layer membrane is essential for proper functioning and survival.

Machine learning framework IDs targets for improving catalysts

Chemists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have developed a new machine-learning (ML) framework that can zero in on which steps of a multistep chemical conversion should be tweaked to improve productivity. The approach could help guide the design of catalysts—chemical "dealmakers" that speed up reactions.

Strong solar flare erupts from sun

The Sun emitted a strong solar flare on Tuesday, May 10, 2022, peaking at 9:55 a.m. EDT. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

Spintronics: How an atom-thin insulator helps transport spins

An intermediate layer consisting of a few atoms is helping to improve the transport of spin currents from one material to another. Until now, this process involves significant losses. A team from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), the Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Microstructure Physics, and the Freie Universität Berlin reports in the ACS scientific journal Nano Letters on how this...

Scales are tipping against walleye; time to get hooked on new fish

As lakes across the upper Midwest grow warmer year after year, cool-water species of fish are finding it harder to thrive. In Wisconsin, that trend is especially noticeable in struggling populations of walleye—important to many indigenous communities, a top target in the state's sport fishery, and a popular item on many restaurant menus.

Machine learning improves Hawai'i rainfall mapping

Rainfall map accuracy is vital in climate and hydraulic modeling and supports environmental management decision making, water resource planning and weather forecasting. University of Hawaiʻi and East-West Center researchers have developed more accurate monthly rainfall maps by using machine learning. They used a machine learning technique to detect erroneous rainfall maps. The results of this...

Superconducting X-ray laser reaches operating temperature colder than outer space

Nestled 30 feet underground in Menlo Park, California, a half-mile-long stretch of tunnel is now colder than most of the universe. It houses a new superconducting particle accelerator, part of an upgrade project to the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) X-ray free-electron laser at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.

Computational sleuthing confirms first 3D quantum spin liquid

Computational detective work by physicists has confirmed cerium zirconium pyrochlore is a 3D quantum spin liquid, a solid material in which quantum entanglement and the geometric arrangement of atoms cause electrons to fluctuate between quantum magnetic states no matter how cold they become.

4D composite printing can improve the wings of drones

The aviation industry faces multiple pressures from higher fuel costs and increased scrutiny over the environmental and quality-of-life impacts from its aircraft. Researchers are looking for new methods of keeping expenses down while improving overall efficiency, and the relatively new market of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) -- or drones -- is no exception.

Study finds that air pollution dropped during pandemic lockdowns

As vehicle traffic lightened and industry slowed during the COVID-19 stay-at-home period in 2020, a University of Houston study by the air quality forecasting group led by Yunsoo Choi, associate professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, estimated levels of potentially-dangerous air pollutants simultaneously decreased in major cities across the country.

How a gene mutation leads to higher intelligence

When genes mutate, this can lead to severe diseases of the human nervous system. Researchers at Leipzig University and the University of Würzburg have now used fruit flies to demonstrate how, apart from the negative effect, the mutation of a neuronal gene can have a positive effect—namely higher IQ in humans. They have published the discovery in the journal Brain.

Clues about concussions from the gut

Scientists suggest telltale signs of concussions might be found in the gut. By taking blood, stool and saliva samples from 33 football players, the researchers were able to examine the diagnostic potential of the gut's microbiome. They say their findings demonstrate that a simple, objective diagnostic test could be developed to track the impact of concussions and signal when it's safe to return to...

Brain searches for the best way to move the body

Research that examines how the body adapts to new movements is shedding new light on how the nervous system learns, and could help to inform a wide range of applications, from customized rehabilitation and athletic training to wearable systems for healthcare.