Sci/tech

Ground-Based Camera Takes Sharpest Ever Images Of Stars
September 4, 2007 02:26 PM - University of Cambridge

CAMBRIDGE, UK - A team of astronomers led by Cambridge University have taken pictures of the stars that are sharper than anything produced by the Hubble telescope, at 50 thousandths of the cost. The researchers, from the University of Cambridge and the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), used a technique called “Lucky Imaging” to take the most detailed pictures of stars and nebulae ever produced — using a camera based on the ground.

China to use more non-grain biofuels to replace oil
September 4, 2007 09:07 AM - Reuters

China plans to expand its use of biofuels to reduce its reliance on petroleum, utilizing 2 million tonnes of bioethanol from non-grain feedstocks and 200,000 tonnes a year of biodiesel by 2010, a senior official said on Tuesday. Beijing's plan also seeks to move away from corn, now the feedstock for most Chinese biofuel, amid concerns over supply security and food price inflation.

One man's genes show DNA is still a mystery
September 4, 2007 07:38 AM - Reuters

The first detailed map of a man's genes shows the genetic code is even more complex than anyone thought. For instance, science still cannot pinpoint what makes a person's eyes blue. Initial study of genome entrepreneur Craig Venter's own DNA map shows 4.1 million places where his genetic code is different from the basic "reference" human genome. This is many more than had been expected, including big differences that extend far beyond the single-letter changes that account for much of the variation seen so far.

New Technology: Aircraft In-Wheel Motors Save Fuel, Reduce CO2
September 1, 2007 06:08 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

ASHBURN, Va. - An aerospace company has engineered an electric motor and generator system that eliminate the use of jet engines for taxiing and other ground maneuvers. The technology will potentially save millions in fuel costs and reduce CO2.

Hyundai to Unveil Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle
September 1, 2007 01:16 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

SEOUL, South Korea - Hyundai Motor Corporation will unveil the i-Blue Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle at the 2007 Frankfurt International Motor Show on September 13. The all-new i-Blue platform is tailored to incorporate Hyundai's third-generation fuel cell technology, currently being developed at Hyundai's Eco-Technology Research Institute in Mabuk, Korea.

Scientists At MIT Unraveling The Secrets Of Red Tide
August 31, 2007 06:49 PM - Anne Trafton, MIT

Cambridge, Mass. - In work that could one day help prevent millions of dollars in economic losses for seaside communities, MIT chemists have demonstrated how tiny marine organisms likely produce the red tide toxin that periodically shuts down U.S. beaches and shellfish beds. In the Aug. 31 cover story of Science, the MIT team describes an elegant method for synthesizing the lethal components of red tides. The researchers believe their method approximates the synthesis used by algae, a reaction that chemists have tried for decades to replicate, without success.

Malaria Mosquito's Odour-Sensing Systems Mapped
August 31, 2007 04:57 PM - Michael Malakata, SciDevNet

Vanderbilt University - Scientists have mapped a sensory organ that the principal malaria-carrying mosquito, Anopheles gambiae, uses to hunt down humans. They hope this will help in developing better mosquito attractants that will divert them away from humans and reduce the threat of malaria infection.

Scientists have something to chew on:Ancient yucca chaws yield ancient DNA
August 31, 2007 02:06 PM - Harvard University Gazette

In a groundbreaking study, two Harvard scientists have for the first time extracted human DNA from ancient artifacts. The work potentially opens up a new universe of sources for ancient genetic material, which is used to map human migrations in prehistoric times. Before this, archaeologists could only get ancient DNA from relics of the human body itself, including prehistoric teeth, bones, fossilized feces, or — rarely — preserved flesh. Such sources of DNA are hard to find, poorly preserved, or unavailable because of cultural and legal barriers.

Star Trek Medical Device Uses Ultrasound Could Seal Punctured Lungs
August 31, 2007 10:53 AM - Hannah Hickey , Washington State University

SEATTLE - Engineers at the University of Washington are working with Harborview Medical Center doctors to create new emergency treatments right out of Star Trek: a tricorder type device using high-intensity focused ultrasound rays. This summer, researchers published the first experiment using ultrasound to seal punctured lungs.

New technique detects specific chromosomal damage, may indicate lung cancer risk
August 31, 2007 08:26 AM - American Thoracic Society

A new technique could pave the way toward screening people at risk for lung cancer for the genetic changes that may foreshadow malignancies, researchers from the University of Colorado say. “The most successful way to reduce mortality in cancer is prevention,” said researcher Wilbur A. Franklin, M.D., Professor of Pathology at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. “Our goal would be to develop screening techniques for lung lesions that could enable us to identify precancerous changes.”

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