Monthly Archives: November 2010
New research has resolved decades of scientific debate. A team of researchers has found the final link between the trapped electrons in space and the glow in the upper atmosphere known as diffuse aurora.
This new research will help scientists better understand the “space weather”, which will be useful for satellites, power companies and airlines, among others. It will also allow a more detailed understanding of how storms affect spatial Earth’s atmosphere.
Scientists have long known that the “diffuse aurora” is caused by electrons that bombard the upper atmosphere. However, the trapped electrons are usually much higher in the Earth’s magnetic field through a long chain of events that begins in the Sun The enigma has been on how these electrons reach the atmosphere.
In new research, has discovered a link between psychosis and an anomalous relationship between two chemicals that have responsibilities signaling in the brain. The finding opens a new perspective on therapy to prevent psychotic symptoms, which could lead to better drugs to treat schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia is one of the most common serious mental illnesses. The patients experience symptoms such as inability to distinguish between reality and imagination, manifested by delusions and hallucinations, among other things. The disease tends to start between seventeen and twenty years ago and generally lasts for the lifetime of the patient.
Neurotransmitters are chemicals in the brain that carry signals from one neuron to another. In previous research we know that there is a relationship between schizophrenia and exceptionally high levels of a neurotransmitter called dopamine, a brain region called the striatum. The drugs currently used to treat schizophrenia block the effects of dopamine in the brain. These drugs are not effective for all patients, and may also have serious side effects.
A team of astronomers have developed a method for almost imperceptible planets that were previously buried in the glare of its star. The new technique allows scientists to search for planets closer to their stars than has been possible until now.
Using new optical technology developed at the Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona, the international team of astronomers has obtained images of a planet in an orbit much closer to its star than any other extrasolar planet found previously.
The discovery is the result of an international collaboration between the Steward Observatory, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, the European Southern Observatory, the University of Leiden in the Netherlands and the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany.
How astronomers can weigh a star that is billions of miles away and, of course, is too large to fit on any scale produced by the Human Being?
In most cases can not, although it is possible to obtain a good estimate by using computer models of stellar structure.
But the new work of astrophysicist David Kipping suggests that in special cases, despite a star viable “directly.” If the star is a planet, that planet has a moon, and they cross in front of its star (from a visual perspective of the Earth), then it is feasible to measure their sizes and orbits to obtain data on the star.
It has managed to watch the real-time formation of nanoparticles. The achievement is the work of a team of scientists at Argonne National Laboratory, U.S., and the Carnegie Institution in Washington.
The revolutionary technique allows researchers to scrutinize in a remarkably detailed the early stages of the formation of nanoparticles, which have long been a mystery because the only available polling methods unsuitable. The new technique could lead to improved behavior of nanomaterials in applications ranging from solar cells to sensors, to many others.
The shape of nanoparticles and their behavior depends on its architecture, size, structure, texture and chemistry of the surface. This, in turn, depends greatly on the conditions under which nanoparticles are formed.
Previous studies have shown that various activities to practice improves learning and memory capacity of most of those skills, somewhat more successfully than if the person concentrates on a single task. A team of cognitive neuroscientists now describe the neural basis of this paradox.
In the new study, researchers from the University of Southern California and California in Los Angeles (UCLA), 59 volunteers divided into six groups: A member of three of the groups were asked to practice a difficult move arm , while the components of the other three groups practiced the movement and related tasks in a framework based on variations in practice.
The volunteers assigned to the variable practice showed better retention of learned skill. The consolidation of memories about the things needed to learn the skill and kept alive a part of the brain (prefrontal cortex) that is associated with high-level planning.
The recent discovery, made by Rutgers University physicists, new material properties could lead to the production of plastic solar cells cheaper and more efficient, which undoubtedly would lead to a much needed boost to the global production of clean electricity.
The research team has discovered that the particles that carry energy and are generated by packets of light travel a thousand times farther on organic semiconductors (carbon-based) than previously observed by scientists. This increases the hope that solar cells based on this emerging technology could one day soon surpass the silicon cost and performance, and therefore, increase the viability of large-scale generation of solar power as an alternative the use of fossil fuels.
Organic semiconductors are promising for solar cells and other uses, such as video screens, because they can be manufactured in large sheets of inexpensive plastic. But its limited efficiency in photovoltaic conversion has left parked for some time. The new finding may provide an additional boost to technological development in this field.
Fresh water flows into the oceans in increasing numbers every year, because of the increased frequency and strength of storms, caused by intensified global warming. This was discovered a team of researchers has also revealed that overall in 2006 compared to 1994, came into the oceans by 18 percent more water from rivers and melting of polar ice. The average annual increase is 1.5 percent.
This 1.5 percent per year may seem small, but after a few decades, the difference is large, as highlighted by Jay Famiglietti, professor at the University of California at Irvine, and principal investigator on the study.
In general, having more water is good, but only if it where needed and not cause flooding. Unfortunately, there is what is happening. What we are seeing is exactly what the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicted: The rain is increasing in the tropics and the Arctic Circle, by severe storms, a way that almost any human community is not adequate for more water, and in the meantime, hundreds of millions of people live in arid regions, which also are becoming even drier.
The evolution of complex life depends critically on the mitochondria that tiny central power supply found in all complex cells. It confirms a new study.
For 70 years, scientists have considered the evolution of the cell nucleus was crucial for complex life. Now a new study, Nick Lane, the University College London, and William Martin of the University of Dusseldorf, revealed that mitochondria were indeed the decisive factor for the development of complex innovations, including the kernel, because they provide a the cell the energy required to allow the existence of many key evolutionary innovations.
This invalidates the traditional view that the leap to the greater complexity of eukaryotic cells simply required the appropriate types of mutation. Really required a revolution “industrial” in terms of energy production.
Scientists at the University of Maryland and Tulane have developed a computer model of a fish swimming. This model is the first to address the interaction of external and internal forces on locomotion.
The interdisciplinary research team simulated how to bend the body of the fish, depending on the strength of the fluid moving around and the muscles of the animal.
Understanding these interactions in a fish help design better prosthetic devices for people. These prostheses will work in full harmony with the natural mechanisms of the body, not against them.