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240,990 articles from PhysOrg

Toward customizable timber, grown in a lab

Each year, the world loses about 10 million hectares of forest—an area about the size of Iceland—because of deforestation. At that rate, some scientists predict the world's forests could disappear in 100 to 200 years.

Diatoms are under threat of decline due to ocean acidification, study shows

While calcifying organisms like oysters and corals have difficulty forming their shells and skeletons in more acidic seawater, diatoms have been considered less susceptible to the effects of ocean acidification—a chemical change triggered by the uptake of carbon dioxide (CO2). The globally widespread tiny diatoms use silica, a compound of silicon, oxygen and hydrogen, as a building material for...

Highly efficient acousto-optic modulation using non-suspended thin-film lithium niobate-chalcogenide hybrid waveguides

Traditional acousto-optic (AO) devices based on bulk crystal materials have weak energy confinement abilities for both photons and phonons, leading to a low AO interaction strength. Compared with bulk materials, photonic integrated circuits (PICs) allow surface acoustic waves (SAWs) to be well confined within the thin film used to disturb the guided light waves, exhibiting a high energy overlap...

Researchers use CRISPR technology to modify starches in potatoes

Humble potatoes are a rich source not only of dietary carbohydrates for humans, but also of starches for numerous industrial applications. Texas A&M AgriLife scientists are learning how to alter the ratio of potatoes' two starch molecules—amylose and amylopectin—to increase both culinary and industrial applications.

How mice choose the best escape route

Escaping imminent danger is essential for survival. Animals must learn a new environment fast enough for them to be able to choose the shortest route to safety. But how do they do this without ever having experienced threat in the new environment?

Addressing racial gaps in NIH grant funding

In 2020, a commentary published in Cell urged the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to address long-standing funding disparities between Black and white researchers. According to a 2011 study, Black applicants were 10 percentage points less likely to receive NIH funding than white applicants. A feature article in Chemical & Engineering News, an independent news outlet of the American Chemical...

Review identifies gaps in our understanding of how machine learning can aid stock valuation

Over the past two decades, researchers have used big data and machine learning (ML) methods to provide insight relevant for equity valuation. Many of these studies either use or inform on accounting variables. In a paper published in KeAi's The Journal of Finance and Data Science, Doron Nissim, a Professor of Accounting at Columbia Business School in the U.S., has reviewed a selection of these...

Protein nanoparticle vaccine shows potential for broader, safe SARS-CoV-2 vaccines

A nanoparticle vaccine that combines two proteins that induce immune responses against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that has caused the global pandemic, has the potential to be developed into broader and safe SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, according to researchers in the Institute for Biomedical Sciences at Georgia State University.

How the universe got its magnetic field

When we look out into space, all of the astrophysical objects that we see are embedded in magnetic fields. This is true not only in the neighborhood of stars and planets, but also in the deep space between galaxies and galactic clusters. These fields are weak—typically much weaker than those of a refrigerator magnet—but they are dynamically significant in the sense that they have profound...

Cryogenic electron microscopy reveals drug targets against common fungus

Most people carry the fungus Candida albicans on their bodies without it causing many problems. However, a systemic infection with this fungus is dangerous and difficult to treat. Few antimicrobials are effective, and drug resistance is increasing. An international group of scientists, including Albert Guskov, associate professor at the University of Groningen, have used single-particle cryogenic...

Finding superconductivity in nickelates

The study of superconductivity is littered with disappointments, dead ends, and serendipitous discoveries, according to Antia Botana, professor of physics at Arizona State University.

A novel environmental DNA monitoring method for identifying rare and endangered fish species sold in markets

In a paper recently published in Methods in Ecology and Evolution, researchers in the Conservation Forensics Lab at The University of Hong Kong have outlined a powerful new tool for monitoring trade of rare and endangered fish species in Hong Kong wet markets. Using environmental DNA (eDNA) present in the drain runoff water of fish markets, researchers were able to extract and sequence enough DNA...

Astrophysics student discovers link between global warming and locally unstable weather

Climate change gives rise to more unstable weather, local droughts and extreme temperature records, but a coherent theory relating local and global climate is still under active development. Now a Danish astrophysics student at the Niels Bohr Institute used a mathematical approach to unveil how global temperature increase engenders locally unstable weather on Earth.

Secure communication with light particles that sidesteps the reliance on polarization

A new communication system has been developed to exchange symmetric keys between parties in order to encrypt messages so that they cannot be read by third parties. In cooperation with Deutsche Telekom, researchers led by physics professor Thomas Walther succeeded in operating a quantum network that is scalable in terms of the number of users and at the same time robust without the need for trusted...

Explosions help probe elusive atmospheric waves

Infrasound waves can probe some of the most complex weather patterns hidden to normal observations, but finding a powerful enough source of infrasound waves can be a challenge unless there is a munitions factory nearby.

How do smallholders transform to sustainable production in North China?

Smallholders are the main body of China's agricultural producers, numbering about 203 million, accounting for 98% of all kinds of agricultural production enterprises. They often invest excess resources in the production process, and the efficiency of their resource utilization is low, resulting in serious environmental impacts, such as air pollution, soil degradation, eutrophication, and resource...

Secrets of thymus formation revealed

The thymus is a crucial organ of the immune system. In the thymus, the well-known T cells mature: As killer cells, they recognize and destroy virus-infected or malignant cells, and as so-called helper T cells they assist the body in antibody formation. In the last decades, Thomas Boehm's research group at the Max Planck Institute of Immunobiology and Epigenetics in Freiburg has identified the...

White roofs and rooftop lawns can mitigate urban heat island effect, researchers say

Alleviating the urban heat-island effect through regulating urban landscape can improve human thermal comfort and living environment in urban residential areas. However, most previous studies focused on the single environmental factor of temperature, ignoring the actual human feeling of thermal comfort, which is affected not only by temperature, but also by humidity, wind speed, and radiation,...