103 articles from TUESDAY 3.1.2023

China is flying blind as pandemic rages

Most scientists believe China’s decision to end its zero-COVID policy was long overdue. But now they have a new worry: that the country is collecting and sharing far too little data about the rough transition to a new coexistence with the virus. China abruptly dropped virtually all controls a month ago, after protests, a sagging economy, and the extreme transmissibility of the...

Self-powered, printable smart sensors created from emerging semiconductors could mean cheaper, greener Internet of Things

Creating smart sensors to embed in our everyday objects and environments for the Internet of Things (IoT) would vastly improve daily life -- but requires trillions of such small devices. A professor believes that emerging alternative semiconductors that are printable, low-cost and eco-friendly could lead the way to a cheaper and more sustainable IoT.

Researchers find hints of a 'hidden state' involving one of Earth's most abundant ions

While conducting an otherwise straightforward investigation into the assembly mechanism of calcium-phosphate clusters, researchers made a surprising discovery: Phosphate ions in water have a curious habit of spontaneously alternating between their commonly encountered hydrated state and a mysterious, previously unreported 'dark' state. This recently uncovered behavior, they say, has implications...

Tweets, news offer insights on invasive insect spread

A new North Carolina State University study shows the potential for using Twitter and online news articles to track the timing and location of invasive insect spread in the United States and around the globe. Researchers say these sources are promising for filling in gaps when official data are not widely available.

Coprolites identify oldest bearded vulture nest in the Paleolithic Iberian Peninsula

Coprolites (fossil feces) from around 30,000 years ago have been used to identify the presence of bearded vultures (Gypaetus barbatus) at the Paleolithic site of Lagar Velho (Portugal). A comparison of the coprolites found in the excavations with the feces of present-day lammergeyers has confirmed the presence of these animals in the past. The research study, published in the journal Scientific...

Researchers develop strain sensors for health, machine use

Researchers at North Carolina State University have developed a stretchable strain sensor that has an unprecedented combination of sensitivity and range, allowing it to detect even minor changes in strain with greater range of motion than previous technologies. The researchers demonstrated the sensor's utility by creating new health monitoring and human-machine interface devices.