Tag Archives: science

Migrating West African Fruit Bats May Play A Key Role In Finding A Cure for Ebola

migrating fruit bats

The recent Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the deadliest yet, killing more than 8,000 people and stretching the health infrastructures of a number of African countries to their limits (and sometimes beyond). According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 20,000 people from Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia – the three hardest hit countries – have contracted the Ebola virus. Since the outbreak began, scientists have been searching for clues to help them understand where the virus came from and how it behaves. Part of

Solar Powered Plane Prepares For Record-Setting Round-The-World Trip (Video)

solar impulse feat

Over the span of two months, Swiss pilots André Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard will attempt to travel around the world using only solar energy. The record-setting flight would be the first time a solar-powered plane traveled around the entire world. According to the BBC… “The plans have been set for the solar-powered plane, Solar Impulse 2, to take off from Abu Dhabi and then fly around the globe using only the sun’s energy.”   Scientific American provides a bit more background on the pilots and their

New Neural Implant Helps Paralyzed Rats Walk Again (Video)

e-dura feat

A new technology, known as the e-Dura, has been labeled as “groundbreaking” after successfully giving paralyzed rats the ability to walk. The new technology is flexible and stretchy, allowing it to be implanted directly on the spinal chord with maximum comfort for the patient. The e-Dura also mimics the tissue around the spine (known as dura mater), so the body doesn’t reject the implant’s presence. According to The Telegraph… “It closely imitates the mechanical properties of living tissue, and can simultaneously deliver

New Study: Human Activity Has Propelled the Earth Past 4 of 9 “Planetary Boundaries”

planetary boundaries feat

In 2009, a group of scientists from Stockholm University published a paper outlining nine different “planetary boundaries”. The boundaries set theoretical limits on just how much we could alter the Earth’s environment before destabilizing it, including things like ozone depletion, forest cover and freshwater consumption. For the last few years, a team of 18 researchers from all over the world has been conducting a follow-up study to determine how close we actually are to those boundaries today. According to their recently published research, we have

Watch the Explosive Crash Landing of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 Rocket Test Last Week (Video)

falcon 9 crash land

Last week, SpaceX attempted to do something that few people had ever even thought of doing before: launching a rocket to deploy a supply ship to the International Space Station, and then landing said rocket on a football field-sized barge in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Everything went according to plan until the very end of the test flight. Shortly after the Falcon was scheduled to land, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk made the following tweet: Rocket made it to drone spaceport ship, but

World’s Largest Indoor Farm Produces 100x More Food While Using 99% Less Water

indoor farm feat

Humans have spent around 10,000 years mastering the art of farming. But one thing we  have yet to figure out is how to prevent the destruction of crops as a result of natural weather-related disasters, like severe droughts and violent storms. Shigeharu Shimamura, a plant physiologist and indoor farmer based in eastern Japan, thinks he may have solved that problem. Shimamura got the idea to pursue indoor farming when, as a teenager, he came across a “vegetable factory” at Expo ’85 (an international science and technology

New Study: Two-Thirds of Cancer Cases Can Be Attributed to Bad Luck

cancer feat

It seems like every day there’s some new study claiming that this, that or the other causes cancer. First it was cell phones and aspartame, then it was processed foods and GMOs. While all of those things may very well play a role in the development of cancers, new research indicates that the majority of cancer cases can be attributed to random mutations that occur in DNA when cells divide. The study was carried out by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. According

Russia Plans to Build A Genetic Noah’s Ark By Collecting DNA of All Living Things

noahs ark

Researchers from Moscow State University just announced plans for a bold new project: creating a databank on all of Earth’s living organisms. The plans were announced by the university’s president Dr. Viktor Sadovnichy at a press conference this past Thursday (December 25). “I call the project ‘Noah’s Ark.’ It will involve the creation of a depository – a databank for the storing of every living thing on Earth, including not only living, but disappearing and extinct organisms. This is the challenge we

Unique Red and Green Rock Containing 30,000 Diamonds Discovered in Siberian Mine

udachnaya

According to IFL Science… “Researchers have unveiled a strange ornament-sized rock from near the Arctic that’s red and green and comprised of diamonds. Nearly 30,000 colorless micro-diamonds, to be exact.”   The strange rock was discovered in Siberia’s Udachnaya Diamond Mine, which is dominated by mantle xenoliths. Mantle xenoliths are rocks made up of a number of different minerals that are fused together by high temperatures and pressures deep within the Earth’s mantle. The rocks are then pushed up to

Colorado Man Becomes First to Control Two Robotic Arms With Just His Mind (Video)

les baugh

According to Johns Hopkins University… “A Colorado man made history at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) this summer when he became the first bilateral shoulder-level amputee to wear and simultaneously control two of the Laboratory’s Modular Prosthetic Limbs.” The man, Leslie Baugh, lost his arms in a freak electrical accident 40 years ago. Baugh is now part of Johns Hopkins’ new “Revolutionizing Prosthetics” program, which is funded in part by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). To prepare

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