research

Researchers say Earth’s core is soft

Researchers say Earth’s core is soft

When I grew up, I was told that our planet's core was made of lava - and that I'd never be able to dig through the planet to get out the other side. I was misinformed. While it still seems that I cannot tunnel through the planet (with the tools I have in my garage), the inner core of our planet Earth is apparently solid. Researchers Associate Professor Hrvoje Tkalčić and PhD Scholar Than-Son Phạm of The Australian National University (ANU) published a paper on the subject this week.

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Jurassic piranha fossils shed light on prehistoric flesh-eating fish

Jurassic piranha fossils shed light on prehistoric flesh-eating fish

A new study from an international team of researchers has detailed a Jurassic piranha-like fish that had long, pointy teeth capable of chomping through flesh. The ancient species is the earliest found example of a fish that ate flesh, ones that were found to attack other fish in the same areas as modern piranhas.

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The biggest organism on Earth is dying

The biggest organism on Earth is dying

It may look like a simple forest, albeit a huge one, but the Pando aspen clone is actually one vast organism, and the bad news is that it's dying. Spread across more than 100 screws in Aspen, the forest - also known as "the Trembling Giant" - is in fact all interconnected by a single root system, and has lasted for thousands of years.

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3.7-billion-year-old rock might not hold evidence of life after all

3.7-billion-year-old rock might not hold evidence of life after all

A few years back some scientists found an ancient rock in Greenland that was about 3.7 billion years old. This ancient rock had roughly triangular-shaped objects inside it that scientists originally thought were microbial fossils. Those structures led the scientists to proclaim that this rock had the oldest evidence of life ever discovered.

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Researchers found a way to monitor Ross Ice Shelf from afar

Researchers found a way to monitor Ross Ice Shelf from afar

Direct study of Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf is difficult because of the extreme conditions at the location. Scientists believe they have found a way for monitoring of changes on the ice shelf from afar. The team has found that the wind blowing across the snow dunes on the Ice Shelf cause the shelf to vibrate.

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MIT scientists invent self-healing polymer that heals using carbon in the air

MIT scientists invent self-healing polymer that heals using carbon in the air

Scientists at MIT have invented a new material that is able to react with the carbon dioxide in the air to heal itself from damage. The material is a polymer that might be used for construction, a repair material, or for protective coatings. MIT's intention can continuously convert the greenhouse gas into a carbon-based material that reinforces itself.

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NASA says another space telescope has entered safe mode

NASA says another space telescope has entered safe mode

Shortly after its announcement regarding Hubble, NASA has revealed that another of its space telescopes has entered safe mode. The reason may be the same that has impacted Hubble: a gyroscope failure. The Chandra X-ray Observatory automatically put itself in safe mode this past Wednesday, with NASA confirming the news today.

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Child vampire burial discovered in ancient Roman baby cemetery

Child vampire burial discovered in ancient Roman baby cemetery

Researchers have discovered the remains of a child at an ancient Roman site that shows signs of a "vampire burial." As with previously discovered sites, these unusual burials include features that indicate the living feared the dead may come back to life and took preventative steps to keep that from happening.

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Insane T-CUP camera snaps 10 trillion frames per second

Insane T-CUP camera snaps 10 trillion frames per second

When scientists at Caltech wanted to be able to capture femtosecond pulses of laser light, they couldn’t; grab an off the shelf camera and just snap away. The researchers had to create a new type of camera that can capture incredibly fast pulses of light in slow motion. What they came up with is called T-CUP.

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E-cig ingredients may be worse for lungs than normal cigarettes

E-cig ingredients may be worse for lungs than normal cigarettes

A study recently published in the American Journal of Physiology warns that some additives and flavors in electronic cigarettes may be as harmful as -- or even worse than -- normal tobacco cigarettes. Researchers found the ingredients impaired lung function and increased lung inflammation, but the effects didn't last long.

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Study finds fish with hook injuries struggle to eat after release

Study finds fish with hook injuries struggle to eat after release

New research out of the University of California, Riverside, highlights a potential issue with catch-and-release fishing, a sport in which anglers catch a fish, but then release it back into the water without killing it. The act of removing the hook, researchers say, may have a serious impact on the fish's future ability to eat.

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Researchers identify part of brain essential to sleep

Researchers identify part of brain essential to sleep

For the millions of people around the world who suffer from problems with sleep, new research could one day help them catch some shut-eye. Researchers have identified what they say is the "sleep switch" for the brain. The new research builds on a discovery made 20 years ago that identified a set of nerve cells believed to be associated with allowing the brain to turn off and sleep.

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