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Voyager 1 fires up thrusters after 37 years

Posted: 02 Dec 2017 06:49 AM PST

A set of thrusters aboard the Voyager 1 spacecraft successfully fired up Wednesday after 37 years without use. Since 2014, engineers have noticed that the thrusters Voyager 1 has been using to orient the spacecraft, called "attitude control thrusters," have been degrading.

Under pressure: Novel technology to model pressure-induced cellular injuries in the brain

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 03:15 PM PST

Brain injuries -- whether caused by trauma, tumors, hemorrhage or developmental anomalies -- often produce elevated intracranial pressure (ICP), which in turn causes cellular injuries in the brain and additional neurological deficits beyond those associated with the initial insult. Little is known about the mechanisms underlying secondary ICP-induced cellular injuries. Researchers have developed a model of ICP-induced brain injury that could help elucidate those mechanisms and uncover novel therapeutics.

Medical note system could boost patients' engagement in their health care

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 03:15 PM PST

Patients could benefit if they are invited to co-produce medical notes, called 'OurNotes,' with their doctors, rather than merely reading them. The practice may also benefit doctors by reducing time spent on documentation, suggests a new report.

Location, location, location: Immunization delivery site matters

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 12:09 PM PST

In vaccination, a certain subpopulation of dendritic cells is vital to triggering the body's adaptive immune system, report researchers. Their findings have important implications for vaccine delivery, as the usual method, intramuscular injection, is likely not the most effective way to target those dendritic cells.

Common male medical condition linked to vascular disease

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 12:09 PM PST

Men who suffer symptoms from varicoceles, enlarged veins in the scrotum, are more likely to develop vascular disease and metabolic disease, such as diabetes, according to a study.

Neutron spectroscopy: New detector module MultiFLEXX increases count rate tenfold

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 09:29 AM PST

The triple axis spectrometer FLEXX at BER II provides a new detector module for user service. It measures many angles and multiple energy transfers simultaneously and thus increases the amount of data measured per hour by about a factor of ten. This enables neutron users to make optimal use of their beam time.

Lung cancers in some African-Americans, European-Americans may have biological differences

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 09:29 AM PST

Differences in the genes expressed in non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) from some African-Americans and European-Americans suggest that there are racial differences in the biology of NSCLC, which could have clinical relevance.

To drop carbon dioxide emissions, look to local transportation and housing

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 09:29 AM PST

Local efforts in the transportation and residential-housing sectors could help the United States meet the greenhouse gas reduction commitment it made as a Paris Climate Accord signatory, according to new research.

Sir Isaac Newton’s Cambridge papers added to UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:47 AM PST

The Cambridge papers of Sir Isaac Newton, including early drafts and Newton's annotated copies of Principia Mathematica -- a work that changed the history of science -- have been added to UNESCO's International Memory of the World Register.

Lightweight, compact VR glasses made possible by large-area microdisplays

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:47 AM PST

Virtual reality (VR) glasses are increasingly popular, but they have usually been heavy and oversized -- until now. Large-area microdisplays are expected to change that, because they make it possible to produce ergonomic and lightweight VR glasses. The new OLED displays now reach very high frame rates and achieve extremely high resolutions with "extended full HD".

Bioprocessing technology: Measuring optimally with spheres

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:47 AM PST

Bio-reactors are the cooking pots of biochemists and bio-technologists, in which pharmaceutical agents, enzymes or nematodes are produced for the purpose of biological pest control. A nutrient solution (such as heat, oxygen, acid or alkali) is used to regulate the pH value and the desired product is formed. The more optimal the conditions are, the greater the yield will be. Researchers have now developed spherical probes to more effectively monitor and streamline the manufacturing process.

Inspecting rotor blades with thermography and acoustic monitoring

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:47 AM PST

Wind turbines have a design life of 20 years. The rotor blades must be regularly inspected at least once every four years to verify their structural integrity. This type of work is performed by industrial climbers. But the problem with inspecting offshore installations is that access is only possible when wind and weather conditions permit. This makes it very difficult to plan inspection visits. In the Thermoflight research project, scientists are working together with industrial and research partners to investigate alternative inspection methods. The use of offshore drones equipped with thermal imaging cameras in combination with acoustic monitoring systems could potentially improve maintenance efficiency and help reduce downtime.

Monitoring security glass panes: Smart alarm system recognizes attempted break-ins

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:47 AM PST

There is a huge selection of glass break detectors on the market. Although these detectors reliably trigger an alarm when window panes break, they do not register all other ways in which burglars can interfere with a pane. To counter this, researchers have created a new type of alarm system that recognizes any attempt to manipulate the window. It registers temperature changes in real time as well as vibrations caused by external interference with the glass, leaving burglars with no chance.

Remains of historic aircraft found

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:46 AM PST

DEDAVE is an innovative autonomous underwater vehicle developed by researchers. Now the deep-diving robot has had its first chance to prove itself in action as it helped hunt down historic test models of a Canadian interceptor aircraft in Lake Ontario. The mission has been a success, with two of the confirmed eight aircraft models already tracked down.

Novel transcriptomic signature of type 2 diabetic islets identified

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:46 AM PST

A research team has identified a novel cluster of dysregulated genes in the pancreatic islets of patients with type 2 diabetes.

Wafer to chip: X-ray imaging for reduced defect rate

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:46 AM PST

Using non-destructive imaging methods, a team of scientists has obtained three-dimensional insights into the interior of crystals. They determine important data about line-shaped defects that largely influence the deformation behavior of crystals. These so-called dislocations impede the production of computer chips. The scientists combine two X-ray methods with a special type of light microscopy.

Metamaterial with a twist

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:46 AM PST

Using 3-D printers for the microrange, researchers have succeeded in creating a metamaterial from cubic building blocks that responds to compression forces by a rotation. Usually, this can only be achieved by transmission using a crankshaft, for instance. The sophisticated design of bars and ring structures and the underlying mathematics are now presented in a new study.

Harmful effects of being overweight underestimated

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:44 AM PST

The harmful effects of being overweight have been underestimated, according to a new study that analyzed body mass index (BMI), health and mortality data in around 60,000 parents and their children, to establish how obesity actually influences risk of death.

Skin pigmentation is far more genetically complex than previously thought

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:40 AM PST

While skin pigmentation is nearly 100 percent heritable, it is hardly a straightforward, Mendelian trait. By working closely with the KhoeSan, a group of populations indigenous to southern Africa, the researchers have found that the genetics of skin pigmentation become progressively complex as populations reside closer to the equator, with an increasing number of genes -- known and unknown -- involved, each making a smaller overall contribution.

Highly efficient photocatalyst capable of carbon dioxide recycling

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:40 AM PST

A research team from Korea has developed titanium dioxide-based photocatalyst with the highest efficiency in the world that converts carbon dioxide into methane. The result is expected to be applied to technologies to reduce and reuse carbon dioxide.

Chick embryos provide valuable genetic data for understanding human development

Posted: 01 Dec 2017 07:40 AM PST

An international collaboration of researchers from Japan, Russia, Spain, and Australia has created the first genome-wide set of avian transcription start sites. Their data have been made available through the web-based, open-access, interactive DNA visualization system. The database and their CAGE-based TSS mapping method are expected to greatly facilitate research on the early development of amniotes, a group of vertebrate animals including the mammals, birds and reptiles.