research

Study: marijuana reduces plaque, inflammation related to Alzheimer’s

Study: marijuana reduces plaque, inflammation related to Alzheimer’s

The THC and some other compounds found in marijuana have been found effective in treating many ailments, and past studies have found signs that it may be helpful in preventing Alzheimer's disease, as well. Research has indicated that marijuana reduces inflammation in the brain which may contribute to dementia and Alzheimer's, and a recent study found that it also helps strip away the plaque found in the brain of Alzheimer's patients.

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Rosetta will end its mission by crashing into comet on September 30

Rosetta will end its mission by crashing into comet on September 30

The European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission, which involves a probe orbiting Comet 67P (also known as Churyumov-Gerasimenko), will finally be coming to an end after 12 years of study. The space agency has scheduled September 30th as the spacecraft's last, where it will make a controlled crash into the surface of its partnering space rock. Think of it like a viking funeral, but only for a space probe.

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Antarctic ozone layer hole shrinks by 4 million kilometers

Antarctic ozone layer hole shrinks by 4 million kilometers

Scientists at MIT and other locations have been eyeing the hole in the ozone layer since it came to the forefront in the '80s. The fear when the hole in the ozone layer was first discovered was that it might lead to harm for humans around the world since we need the ozone layer to protect us from all sorts of deadly things that come from space. The good news is that scientists have announced that the ozone layer hole has shrunk significantly since 2000.

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Ancient tombs may have served as telescopes for rituals

Ancient tombs may have served as telescopes for rituals

Ancient stone tombs in Portugal may have served as a sort of telescope to enhance one’s ability to see stars for ritualistic purposes. The tombs are 6,000 years old and made of stone, and they feature a peculiarly lengthy but low-height entrance. As well, researchers believe they may have found the particular star these ‘telescopes’ were aimed at: Aldebaran, a bright red star located in the Taurus constellation.

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Ancient pay stub reveals worker was paid with beer

Ancient pay stub reveals worker was paid with beer

A 5,000-year-old clay tablet is the oldest known pay stub in the world, and it has revealed an interesting relationship between one ancient worker and his boss: the worker was paid with beer. The pay stub was discovered in what is now modern day Iraq, and it is written in cuneiform, appearing to be a gibberish of lines and chicken scratch to most of us. A trained eye, though, will see a person with his head leaned toward a bowl and another container with a shape that indicates beer, as well as marks that show how much beer the worker got for his labor.

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Flames and fanfare as NASA’s Mars mission rocket aces testing

Flames and fanfare as NASA’s Mars mission rocket aces testing

As ways to disturb the peace and quiet of the desert go, firing up the most powerful rocket in the world has to be near the top of the list. That was the fun & games had by NASA and Orbital ATK today, testing out the new Space Launch System (SLS) booster that will one day take first uncrewed probes and then astronauts to Mars.

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Dinosaur-age bird wing discovered in amber jewelry market

Dinosaur-age bird wing discovered in amber jewelry market

Bird skin, claws, muscle, and feathers have been discovered in amber dated to nearly a hundred million years ago. Researchers suggest that these bits and pieces of birds show how coloring and arrangement of bird feathers has remained largely the same for a very, very long time. Wing tips is what they have. A very strange (but apparently not entirely uncommon) origin story is what they've got to tell.

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Why this vast helium discovery is being called “life-saving”

Why this vast helium discovery is being called “life-saving”

You might associate helium with party balloons and squeaky voices, but the gas is a whole lot more important: that's why scientists have been so worried in recent years of a helium shortage. Vital for everything from MRI scanners through to essential nuclear energy production systems, helium's usefulness has traditionally stood at odds with its relative rarity.

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Ancient, disguised insects discovered in amber fossils

Ancient, disguised insects discovered in amber fossils

We may not be pulling dinosaur DNA from insects fossilized in amber any time soon, but fossilized insects can still give us a window into the past: a team of researchers at the Chinese Academy of Sciences have documented 39 examples of ancient insects disguising themselves with various items, from general debris to the exoskeletons of dispatched foes. The team, which was led by Bo Wang, had to search through more than 300,000 fossils to find these specimens, which hail from the mid-Cretaceous period.

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Computing without keyboard and mouse – Microsoft’s future concept

Computing without keyboard and mouse – Microsoft’s future concept

Computer users can cut the cords of their mouse and keyboards and move into a cordless world, but by far and large we are still tied to our computers via the mouse and keyboard wires or no. Microsoft researchers see a future where we might not need a mouse and keyboard to interface with our computers and technology and this new world doesn't require you to talk exclusively to your computer either.

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NASA’s Curiosity rover will attempt to collect water sample on Mars

NASA’s Curiosity rover will attempt to collect water sample on Mars

Over the last year, NASA has discovered numerous evidence that liquid water exists on Mars. With signs the red planet once had lakes, and frozen water found on mountains, NASA now wants to try collecting a sample, and plans to use the Curiosity rover to do it. The robot is already located near Mars's Gale Crater, and it will travel to inspect a pair of gullies on the side of Mount Sharp.

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DARPA program seeks ‘rugged drugs’ that don’t expire

DARPA program seeks ‘rugged drugs’ that don’t expire

Much like the food in your fridge and the cleaning supplies in your closet, the drugs — both over the counter and prescription — in your medicine cabinet have an expiration date. While that expiration date isn’t a hard and fast rule in most cases, at least according to past research on the matter, it does mark a time when one can expect the medication to start losing potency, making it difficult to take proper dosages. Thanks to a new synthetic protein recently detailed by DARPA, however, that reality may itself soon be obsolete.

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