Space food: what astronauts eat in space

Many of you reading this hope to one day be able to explore outer space; the thrill of discovery, entwined with the peace and solitude that only the silent void can provide. It’s awesome stuff, I’m completely on board. But as it usually goes, great adventures come with great sacrifices.

Tremors around St. Helens may hint at a new eruption

Seismic tremors around Mount St. Helens hint at a new possible eruption in the area. Geological surveys have revealed the interior structure of the volcanic system, and geologists have been able to correlate seismic activity with the activation of the system

Canadian study questions the efficacy of helmet legislation

Researchers studied the link between cycling helmet legislation and recorded head injuries in various parts of the country. Their findings put into question the efficacy of helmet legislation, and the researchers suggest that the best way to protect cyclists is for the government to provide infrastructure tailored to their needs.

Can’t find motivation to exercise? Do some drugs, expert says

Exercise is good for you, we all know that. Even better with drugs.

Drug resistant Strep and the return of the scarlet fever

In a study published Monday in the journal Scientific Reports, researchers from the University of Queensland caution that the surge in scarlet fever cases may pose an unexpected threat.

Study finds most women are gay or bisexual — a personal take

The study recorded the biological responses (a fancy wording for arousal) of a sample of 345 women who watched videos of nude males and females. And the data is quite surprising: 82% of participants responded sexually to both men and women.

Treasure trove of Permian fossils discovered in Brazil

The fossils were discovered in the Parnaiba Basin of north-eastern Brazil, and are some 278 million years old, corresponding to the Permian period, when all the continents we know today were still fused together.

Japan casts steel-like glass using levitation

Using a newly-developed production method, the Institute of Industrial Science at Tokyo University succeeded in producing a type of glass that rivals steel in hardness. The new material opens huge developmental lanes for any glass and glass-related product, from tableware to bulletproof glass.

List of secret mustard gas test subjects publicized by NPR

The NPR was recently investigating into records pertaining to secret experiments and found the names of nearly 4,000 individuals that were exposed to mustard gas. The names are joined by a further 1,700 individuals that the NPR could only find a “last known location” for.

How oxytocin and THC stimulate social interactions

A new study from the University of California looks at the link between the bonding hormone oxytocin and the effect of marijuana in social contexts that improve interpersonal bonding. Their findings offer insight into how the hormone could make social interactions more fulfilling and satisfying by enhancing our natural cannabinoid receptors.

Is the light still on if you close the door? CT-scan looks at the inside of a walnut

CT-Scans create an image by using Röntgen radiation, more widely known as X-rays — having a much higher energy than visible light, they penetrate through most materials and are captured by a special film on the other side.

Google balloons to ring the Earth in 2016 — for Internet, not world domination

Connecting traditionally problematic areas of the world to the Internet is high on the list of many virtual giants already, and some time ago, in 2013, Google also stepped up to the challenge. Their solution was, in classic Google fashion, ambitious, simple, and light.

Brain fMRI study predicts efficiency of anti-smoking Ads

Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, scientists from the universities of Michigan and Pennsylvania scanned the brains of 50 smokers while they viewed anti-smoking ads. They recorded their neural activity spikes as they watched the sample of 40 images one at a time, looking for increase activity in the medial prefrontal cortex, the area that handles decision making processes.

Tuatara embryos reveal common origin of the phallus

Ahh, the phallus. In most sexually-reproductive species, half of the individuals lack one, while the other half is constantly trying to share theirs as much as possible with the first group, with varying degrees of success — bragging, fighting or impressing their way to the continuation of the species. Marvelous!

Wall-Less Hall drives poised to unlock space colonization

French scientist working on the Hall thrusters — an advanced type of engine that harnesses a stream of plasma to generate forward momentum — have recently figured out a way to optimize them, allowing them to run on (wait for it) a staggering 100 million times less fuel than conventional chemical rockets. The research has been published in Applied Physics Letters.

Everything about Aluminium: facts, recycling, importance

The next time you throw away an aluminium can, picture the can half full of gasoline. That’s how much energy goes into making it, and how much energy will have to be spent to produce a new one rather than recycle.

Using ultrasound to operate on the brain

A preliminary study from Switzerland, published this month in the Annals of Neurology, proved the effectiveness of a new method of non-invasive brain surgery: using a newly-developed operating device that relies on ultrasound, in conjunction with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), allowed neurosurgeons to precisely remove small pieces of brain tissue in nine patients suffering from chronic pain without removing skin or skull bone. Researchers now plan to test it on patients with other disorders, such as Parkinson’s. Neal Kassell, neurosurgeon at the University of Virginia, not directly involved in the study.

Agricultural behaviors recorded in bees for the first time

Cristiano Menezes of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation has discovered farming behaviors in bees, adding them to the list of social insects that practice agriculture.

Study finds global effect of temperature on productivity

A recent study published Wednesday in the journal Nature shows that there is a strong functional relationship between a region’s average recorded temperature and economic productivity — further warning of the damage climate warming would inflict on our economy.

U.S. economic losses from hurricanes fueled by climate change

A recent U.S. study shows how the upward trend in economic damage from hurricanes correlates very closely to the influence global warming has on the number and intensity of hurricanes. Published in Nature Geoscience, it concludes that the commonly cited reasons for growing hurricane damage — increases in vulnerability, value, and exposure of property — don’t stand up very well to scrutiny.