Sharks may confuse kitesurfers with birds and attack them

A new study investigated the circumstances under which a 15-year-old kitesurfing male died after a tiger shark attacked him in the South Pacific. Their analysis suggests that attack took place mostly likely because the kitesurfer’s motion was confused by the shark with a bird overtaking the water. In light of other similar shark attack cases, the researchers advise any kitesurfing in waters known to harbor sharks should be made with extreme care.

Used cigarette buds could provide energy storage sollution

Scientists have found a way to transform cigarette buds into a material which stores energy cheap and efficiently. The material outperforms both commercial and prototypical materials made from graphene and carbon nanotubes and may be eventually added into computers, smart phones or wind turbines.

Scientists turn a brown butterfly purple – in just six generations

Scientists have managed to make the coloring of a butterfly species evolve from brown to purple in just six generations. This study shows that even complex coloring mechanisms can undergo fast rearrangements, potentially adapting quickly to outside stimuli.

New lithium ion battery cathod can withstand 25,000 cycles. Your laptop battery only has 300

Using approximate computational methods, researchers at the SHARP Corporation and Kyoto Universities have identified a new battery material that can retain charge even after a massive amount of charge and discharge cycles. Experiments suggest that the new lithium ion battery that uses a co-substitute of lithium iron phosphate as the cathode can retain 70% of its charge even after 25,000 cycles. In comparison, a typical laptop battery can only retain 80% of its initial charge after 300 cycles.

Measuring particle momentum without breaking the uncertainty principle

Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle makes quantum physics nasty. There’s no reason why we can’t get all along, though. A novel technique explores how it may be possible to know both position and momentum for a particle. No laws of physics were broken. I promise!

Spray-coated solar cells bring solar power to every corner

Researchers at University of Sheffield demonstrate a perovskite spray-on solar cell for the first time. Also, this is the first time rated efficiency for a spray-on solar cell tops two figures in efficiency, marking an important milestone and breakthrough in the field.

NASA confirms “Impossible” propellant-free microwave thruster works

Designs for a device called a “microwave thruster” were proposed in 2006. While the device was physically sound and followed the principles of relativity, it has been dismissed by researchers who claimed that such a functioning device would defy the law of conservation of momentum. A team from NASA set out to trial the device and see if it works; lo and

New Wi-Fi has a range of 100 km (62 miles)

I remember when once upon a time, wi-fi could barely reach from one room to the other. It wasn’t even regarded as a serious technology by some back then – but oh my, how times have changed! Now, wi-fi is almost ubiquitous in the developed world, but the problem still remains the same – the range. Now, the IEEE (Institute

Computer games sometimes better than medication in treating elderly depression

Computer games could be the key to treating elderly people who have been diagnosed with depression, but who aren’t responding to conventional treatment. A new study has shown that playing a certain type of computer games was more effective at reducing symptoms of depression than the “gold standard” – the antidepressant drug escitalopram. Recently, we’ve been bombarded about the positive effects that video

An aspirin a day could dramatically reduce cancer risk, huge study concludes

The new study concludes that an aspirin a day for middle-aged people could save 130,000 lives over 20 years in Britain alone, by reducing cancer risk. Aspirin was most effective in cutting cancer risk in people from 50 to 64, and in order for the effects to be felt to the fullest, people should take 1 aspirin per day for 10

ESA’s billion-star surveyor, Gaia, ready to begin its science mission

Gaia is an unmanned space observatory of the European Space Agency (ESA) which aims to catalog approximately 1 billion astronomical objects (mostly stars), about 1% of the Milky Way population. Gaia will provide a trove of valuable and spectacular data, including a precise three-dimensional map of astronomical objects throughout the Milky Way and map their motions. We were telling you

New material allows ultra-thin, transparent solar cells

Austrlian researchers have successfully developed transparent, ultra-thin, foldable solar cells.

Aboriginals boost kangaroo populations when hunting with fire

The Aboriginal Martu people have been hunting kangaroos and sand monitor lizards for over 2,000 years. During this time, the natives have not only lived sustainably, but also became unwilling conservationists helping kangaroo populations grow by sparking wild fires that help them catch lizards, a study by researchers at University of Utah found. In other remote areas where this subsistence practice ceased,

Mathematical equation predicts happiness

Scientists successfully predicted human happiness using a mathematical equation – you too can use the smartphone app they developed and be a part of the experiment.

There’s more to excellence than just practice, study finds

The old adage goes ‘practice makes perfect’, and while we all know there is truth in it, at some point practice ceases to become the driving factor towards excellence, at least if we’re to judge from the recent findings of a group of psychologists who  studied how people acquire skills and become experts at what they do. There’s quite a

Sobering Aerial footage of the Mount Polley environmental disaster

The Cariboo Regional District has released troubling video of what can already be called a full-scale environmental disaster following the release of five million cubic meters of effluent from a tailing pond at the Mount Polley gold and copper mine near Likely, B.C., on Monday. Mount Polley is an open pit copper/gold mine with a developing underground project, located in

Active learning greatly outperforms passive lecturing in classrooms

Most University professors still rely on passive lectures to get their subject across. A meta-study which analyzed 225 studies found that active teaching – lectures that actively engage students and make the learning experience two-way – improves grades and significantly reduces fail rates. The findings add to an already body of literature that suggests the current dominant teaching model is

Beijing to shut down all coal-fired power plants and other coal facilities by 2020 to curb air pollution

Beijing and the surrounding area will ban coal by the end of 2020, the official Xinhua news agency said on Monday. It’s not much, but it’s a start – about 1% of the Chinese population lives in that area, and over one quarter of the energy they use comes from coal, so banning it is definitely a good signal. Fuel

Cheap self-assemling anti-cancer molecules created in minutes

Researchers have found a cheap and quick way of producing peptides in a laboratory. Producing one of the body’s natural defenses against cancer and then implanting it into patients can prove pivotal in the fight against cancer.

Golden bat discovered in Bolivia

Scientists previously misclassified a golden bat which lives in Bolivia. This new study reemphasizes the importance of museum specimens, which can be used to draw new information about species thought to be understood.