Animals, Feature Post

To protect itself, this Moth looks just like a Hornet

Photograph by Gyorgy Csoka.

Acting tougher than you really are is not uncommon in the natural world – but this moth has taken it to the next level. The Hornet Moth (Sesia apiformis) has evolved to mimic not only the look, but also the mannerisms of a real hornet. The Hornet Moth is a large moth with a wingspan of 33–48 mm. It has a…

Design, News, Technology

Developing smart cities: In the Spanish city of Santander, the walls will have ears

Image via Ear-It

Urban noise can be quite a nuisance, but it can also provide a lot of valuable information about the city’s needs. A first of its kind project in the city of Santander will check if this data can actually be used to improve the lives of citizens and develop a better, smarter city. “The EAR-IT project is an EU FP7 co-funded project…

Biology, Chemistry, News

Of Yeast and Flies: The Science of why Beer is so Delicious

Delicious beers - image via Cottage Life.

Whether you enjoy a strong malty taste, or a fruity savor, or even just a subtle aroma in your beer – you have yeast to thank for. Yeast imbues beer with aromatic molecules that account for most, if not all of the final flavor. But why is it that they create all this wide array of flavors? Kevin Verstrepen, a yeast geneticist…

News, Space

UK Launches Space Weather Forecasting Program

Space weather can have huge effects on Earth, such as

The UK has officially opened its first space weather forecasting program this week. Space weather is a term referring to environmental changes in the solar system, especially those concerning near-Earth space. Magnetic fields, radiation, particles and matter which have been ejected from the Sun interact with and can affect the Earth’s magnetosphere to produce a variety of effects. Major impacts include…

Astronomy, News

Mind-Blowing $1.4 billion Thirty Meter Telescope begins construction in Hawaii

thirty-meter-telescope-top-view-640x426

After years of planning and engineering schemes, the construction of the $1.4 billion telescope in Hawaii has finally begun. The unimaginatively named Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) will provide astronomers with unparalleled power to observe the stars – it will have a resolution 10 times better than Hubble. The telescope is designed for observations from near-ultraviolet to mid-infrared (0.31 to 28 μm…

Animals, Environment, News

Alien Mussels Threaten U.K. Biodiversity

Quagga mussels. Image via 100th Meridian.

The single most threatening species to U.K.’s biodiversity is a species of mussels – the quagga mussel. Coming from the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea in Eastern Europe, the quagga mussel came with four other freshwater invaders which have now become a huge danger for Britain’s wildlife. The quagga mussel, scientific name Dreissena rostriformis bugensis, is an invasive species….

News, Pollution

NASA confirms there’s a huge cloud of methane over southwest US

methane us

A cloud of methane gas about the size of Delaware was detected over the Four Corners area of the American southwest years ago. But people didn’t take it seriously, because (believe it or not) – it was so big that they thought it was an instrument error. “We didn’t focus on it because we weren’t sure if it was a true…

Archaeology

Amateur archaeologist finds 1000-year old Viking treasure hoard with a Metal Detector

65bb968b-77f4-498a-b09c-40f4b5c657db-680x1020

A magnificent Viking treasure has been unearthed in Scotland, in Dumfries and Galloway. More than 100 objects, including solid gold jewelry, arm bands and silver ingots, were discovered not by archaeologists, but by an amateur researcher working with a metal detector. The artifacts are thought to have been buried between the 9th and 10th century and they also include a rare early Christian…

Materials, News

New crystal might allow us to breathe Underwater

Professor Christine McKenzie (center in photo) and postdoc Jonas Sundberg. Credit: Image courtesy of University of Southern Denmark

Researchers from Denmark have synthesized crystalline materials that can bind and store oxygen in high concentrations, releasing them when needed. A single crystal about the size of a sponge can suck all the oxygen from a room. Naturally, there are many potential applications for this type of technology. The most obvious one would be breathing underwater or in outer space. We…

Anatomy, Health & Medicine, News

New Paint-on, See-through bandage Emits Phosphorescent Glow for Healing Below

Credit: Li/Wellman Center for Photomedicine.

An interdisciplinary  team of researchers has created a paint-on, see-through, “smart” bandage that glows to indicate a wound’s tissue oxygenation concentration. Oxygenation plays a crucial role in healing, so mapping it in severe wounds and burns can help to significantly improve the success of surgeries to restore limbs and physical functions. “Information about tissue oxygenation is clinically relevant but is often…