Enn Original News

Sea temperature changes contributing to droughts
July 19, 2017 07:07 AM - University of Exeter

Fluctuations in sea surface temperature are a factor in causing persistent droughts in North America and around the Mediterranean, new research suggests. 

Krill hotspot fuels incredible biodiversity in Antarctic region
July 6, 2017 07:19 AM - Oregon State University

There are so many Antarctic krill in the Southern Ocean that the combined mass of these tiny aquatic organisms is more than that of the world’s 7.5 billion human inhabitants.

Scientists have long known about this important zooplankton species, but they haven’t been certain why particular regions or “hotspots” in the Southern Ocean are so productive.

Trash-Picking Seagulls Poop Hundreds of Tons of Nutrients
June 22, 2017 07:27 AM - Duke University

At least 1.4 million seagulls feed at landfills across North America, which aside from the nuisance it might pose, is also a threat to the health of nearby waters, a new Duke University study finds.

Human Activity has Polluted European Air for 2000 Years, Study Finds
June 1, 2017 07:20 AM - American Geophysical Union

A new study combining European ice core data and historical records of the infamous Black Death pandemic of 1349-1353 shows metal mining and smelting have polluted the environment for thousands of years, challenging the widespread belief that environmental pollution began with the Industrial Revolution in the 1700s and 1800s.

Handwashing: Cool Water as Effective as Hot for Removing Germs
May 30, 2017 07:13 AM - Robin Lally, Rutgers University

We all know that washing our hands can keep us from spreading germs and getting sick. But a new Rutgers-New Brunswick study found that cool water removes the same amount of harmful bacteria as hot.

“People need to feel comfortable when they are washing their hands but as far as effectiveness, this study shows us that the temperature of the water used didn’t matter,” said Donald Schaffner, distinguished professor and extension specialist in food science.

A Recipe For Concrete That Can Withstand Road Salt Deterioration
May 18, 2017 12:35 PM - Drexel University

Road salt, used in copious helpings each winter to protect them from ice and preserve safe driving conditions, is slowly degrading the concrete they’re made of. Engineers have known for some time that calcium chloride salt, commonly used as deicer, reacts with the calcium hydroxide in concrete to form a chemical byproduct that causes roadways to crumble.

Polluted air can generate power
May 8, 2017 06:35 AM - KU Leuven

Researchers from the University of Antwerp and KU Leuven have succeeded in developing a process that purifies air and, at the same time, generates power. The device must only be exposed to light in order to function.

Leaf litter has slower decomposition rate in warm temperatures than previously thought
May 8, 2017 06:30 AM - Kansas State University

The time it takes for a leaf to decompose might be the key to understanding how temperature affects ecosystems, according to Kansas State University ecologists. 

Not even the Himalayas are immune to traffic smog
May 3, 2017 06:41 AM - Michael Miller, University of Cincinnati

Smog from cars and trucks is an expected health hazard in big cities, but researchers from the University of Cincinnati found pollution from truck exhaust on one of the most remote mountain roads in the world.
 

Flexible, organic and biodegradable: Stanford researchers develop new wave of electronics
May 2, 2017 09:48 PM - Sarah Derouin, Stanford University

As electronics become increasingly pervasive in our lives – from smart phones to wearable sensors – so too does the ever rising amount of electronic waste they create. A United Nations Environment Program report found that almost 50 million tons of electronic waste were thrown out in 2017—more than 20 percent higher than waste in 2015. Troubled by this mounting waste, Stanford engineer Zhenan Bao and her team are rethinking electronics. “In my group, we have been trying to mimic the function of human skin to think about how to develop future electronic devices,” Bao said. She described how skin is stretchable, self-healable and also biodegradable – an attractive list of characteristics for electronics. “We have achieved the first two [flexible and self-healing], so the biodegradability was something we wanted to tackle.”

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