Research

Mars’ hidden water store looks like a mirage

Mars’ hidden water store looks like a mirage

Those who dream of possibly terraforming Mars for human habitation have placed a lot of hope on the Red Planet currently containing water, as it would lend validity to the theory that it could continue to retain water (and an atmosphere) under the right conditions. However, a new study from researchers at both the University of Texas and University Grenoble Alpes, published by Geophysical Research Letters in AGU Journals (American Geophysical Union), suggests that what scientists thought was water may not actually be, well, water.

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Here’s what would really happen if an asteroid was going to hit Earth

Here’s what would really happen if an asteroid was going to hit Earth

If you watched Don't Look Up this Christmas, you might be one of many people wondering about how realistic the danger posited by the movie was. Could Earth really be struck by an asteroid? How would scientists react if they did spot an asteroid heading for us?

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Elon Musk’s brain chip company Neuralink aims for clinical trials

Elon Musk’s brain chip company Neuralink aims for clinical trials

Thinking of Elon Musk usually produces an image of a Tesla or simply a mountain of money, but soon enough, this might change. Musk is the co-founder of Neuralink, a company that produces microchips meant to one day help paralyzed people navigate the world with their brain. The development of the microchips is well underway, and the company has just started recruiting staff to soon begin clinical trials on humans.

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Oxford warns mild COVID can reduce cognitive performance for months

Oxford warns mild COVID can reduce cognitive performance for months

Mild cases of COVID-19 that don't result in obvious "long COVID" symptoms may still trigger memory and attention problems, according to a new study from the University of Oxford. Though participants who'd previously had and recovered from mild COVID were found to have similar test results as the study's control group, there were two areas related to cognitive performance that were noticeably worse.

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This super-strong hybrid particle could upend electronics

This super-strong hybrid particle could upend electronics

Physicists with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have published a new study detailing their discovery of a hybrid particle, one comprised of an electron and phonon combined together in a way that allows them to behave as a single particle. The team refers to this bond between the two particles as "glue," explaining that it is 10 times stronger than any previously discovered hybrid of this kind.

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Cancer-targeting treatment “steps on the gas” to kill tumors

Cancer-targeting treatment “steps on the gas” to kill tumors

Many have heard of immunosuppressive drugs, which are a type of medication that suppresses the immune system, but lesser-known are immunostimulatory drugs, which stimulate the body's immune system. The latter is a potential solution for treating cancerous tumors, as the drugs trigger the immune system to attack the mutated cells. The problem? Ordinarily, such drugs could also cause the immune system to become overstimulated, attacking healthy cells with serious -- sometimes deadly -- consequences.

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A ‘mini’ supermassive black hole find could have huge implications

A ‘mini’ supermassive black hole find could have huge implications

All eyes are currently on NASA's recently successfully deployed James Webb Space Telescope - and rightly so as it could yield scientific breakthroughs and increase our understanding of the universe, its birth and evolution. However, there is another space telescope (and it is not the Hubble) that doesn't quite garner the same level of attention, but continues to yield insights of equally astronomical proportions. NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory was launched onboard the Space Shuttle Columbia in 1999 and is 100 times more powerful than any previous X-ray telescope.

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NASA’s Perseverance rover just choked on a Mars rock

NASA’s Perseverance rover just choked on a Mars rock

NASA's Mars Perseverance Rover has been quite busy of late, moving around on the surface of Mars taking in the sights as well as collecting sample cores from exposed rocks on the planet along with soil samples. Things had been going quite smoothly with the collection of the first five rock cores completed successfully, stored in tubes within the rover for a planned sample collection return mission in the future. However, things have gone a little awry with the collection of the sixth core sample (and seventh sample collection overall).

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The 15 Most Groundbreaking NASA Missions

The 15 Most Groundbreaking NASA Missions

Humankind has yearned to explore space since our ancestors began to study the night sky millennia ago. What we've been able to accomplish in the last 63+ years has taken the dedication, perseverance, and imagination of countless people. While many nations have aided in scores of missions outside of the Earth's atmosphere, NASA has certainly had the lion's share of firsts. Indeed, NASA successfully landed astronauts on the surface of the moon, collaborated with European governments on the exploration of Saturn's largest moon, and developed space telescopes that capture the far reaches of the universe. While this list isn't meant to outline every major accomplishment, it will lend some perspective on what this U.S. space agency has been able to achieve since its creation in 1958 (via History). 

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Meet NASA’s new Chief Scientist

Meet NASA’s new Chief Scientist

NASA has a long and storied record achieving many of the greatest scientific and technological achievements in history. Most recently, it successfully launched and deployed the James Webb Space Telescope which seeks to unlock the secrets of the early universe, including the birth of stars and planets as well as the formation of galaxies. While there are numerous skills and professions involved in making incredibly complex machinery like Webb a reality, at its core, it is a project devoted entirely to scientific discovery. To be named NASA's chief scientist, then, is a tremendous honor and achievement, but also comes with substantial responsibilities.

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Terminally ill U.S. man gets a pig’s heart with a successful transplant

Terminally ill U.S. man gets a pig’s heart with a successful transplant

The organ donor crisis has long inspired the medical fraternity to look for feasible donors from other species. This week, doctors at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) have successfully executed the world's first heterologous heart transplant, placing a genetically-modified pig's heart into a terminally ill human being. Note: This article contains imagery and descriptions of human and animal surgery and xenotransplantation. Some readers may find this content upsetting.

Image: Coryn/Shutterstock

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This Hydrogen Fuel Breakthrough Sounds Sweet

This Hydrogen Fuel Breakthrough Sounds Sweet

Hydrogen-powered Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles (FCEVs) have something of a bad rap despite having some clear advantages over conventional EVs like those made by Tesla. In fact, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has variously called the technology "mind-bogglingly stupid", "a load of rubbish", and "fool cells" (via CNBC). While Musk may have a vested interest in promoting Tesla's preferred battery-based EV technology, he is undoubtedly standing on some solid ground when it comes to questions over FCEV technology that have yet to be satisfactorily addressed.

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