862,002 articles

Sperm can count

The speed at which the calcium concentration in the cell changes controls the swimming behavior of sperm. They can calculate the calcium dynamics and react accordingly.

Tweets get scrutiny in Rutgers webcam spying trial

(AP) -- With the story of alleged invasion of privacy and bias intimidation already told, prosecutors have turned to trying to show jurors that a former Rutgers University student accused of using a webcam to spy on his roommate's intimate encounter with another man tried to cover up his actions.

Twin Grail spacecraft begin collecting lunar science data

(PhysOrg.com) -- NASA's Gravity Recovery And Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft orbiting the moon officially have begun their science collection phase. During the next 84 days, scientists will obtain a high-resolution map of the lunar gravitational field to learn about the moon's internal structure and composition in unprecedented detail. The data also will provide a better understanding of...

Robot Balloon Cranes Could Revolutionize World's Seaports

Every U.S. manufactured good sold overseas or iPad shipped from China makes one of 500 million journeys aboard ship containers crossing the world's oceans each year — a journey that ends at deep-water ports capable of docking and offloading the world's biggest cargo ships. Now a U.S. entrepreneur wants to give every city or town an instant seaport with his vision for robot cranes floating in the...

'Star comb' to aid quest for Earth-like planets

If there is life on other planets, a laser frequency comb may help find it. Such a comb -- a tool for precisely measuring frequencies, or colors, of light -- has for the first time been used to calibrate measurements of starlight from stars other than the Sun. The good results suggest combs will eventually fulfill their potential to boost the search for Earth-like planets to a new...

Nanomanufacturing using DNA origami

In recent years, scientists have begun to harness DNA's powerful molecular machinery to build artificial structures at the nanoscale using the natural ability of pairs of DNA molecules to assemble into complex structures. While most researchers of "DNA origami" are working to demonstrate what's possible, scientists are now seeking to determine what's...

Stumped by a problem? This technique unsticks you

Stuck solving a problem? Seek the obscure, says a psychologist. "There's a classic obstacle to innovation called 'functional fixedness,' which is the tendency to fixate on the common use of an object or its parts. It hinders people from solving problems." Researchers have developed a systematic way of overcoming that obstacle: the "generic parts...

Oxide thin films to create new field of oxide electronics

Researchers have developed the first functional oxide thin films that can be used efficiently in electronics, making new high-power devices and sensors possible. This is the first time researchers have been able to produce positively-charged and negatively-charged conduction in a single oxide material, launching a new era in oxide...

Nanotrees harvest the sun's energy to turn water into hydrogen fuel

Electrical engineers are building a forest of tiny nanowire trees in order to cleanly capture solar energy without using fossil fuels and harvest it for hydrogen fuel generation. The team said nanowires, which are made from abundant natural materials like silicon and zinc oxide, also offer a cheap way to deliver hydrogen fuel on a mass...