Sci/tech

Did early Southwestern Indians ferment corn and make beer?
December 6, 2007 08:44 AM - DOE/Sandia National Laboratories

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —The belief among some archeologists that Europeans introduced alcohol to the Indians of the American Southwest may be faulty.

Ancient and modern pot sherds collected by New Mexico state archeologist Glenna Dean, in conjunction with analyses by Sandia National Laboratories researcher Ted Borek, open the possibility that food or beverages made from fermenting corn were consumed by native inhabitants centuries before the Spanish arrived.

Dam the Red Sea and release gigawatts
December 6, 2007 08:39 AM - Inderscience Publishers

50 gigawatts of electrical power could be released by damming the Red Sea

Damming the Red Sea could solve the growing energy demands of millions of people in the Middle East and alleviate some of the region's tensions pertaining to oil supplies through hydroelectric power. Equally, such a massive engineering project may cause untold ecological harm and displace countless people from their homes.

Shuttle carrying Euro science lab prepares to go
December 6, 2007 08:18 AM - Reuters

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) - Launch pad technicians began fueling the U.S. space shuttle Atlantis on Thursday for the start of an 11-day mission to deliver a European laboratory to the International Space Station.

With no technical issues pending and good weather forecast, NASA managers cleared the shuttle for a launch attempt at 4:31 p.m. EST from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

U.N. hails U.S. Senate climate steps
December 6, 2007 05:17 AM - Reuters

NUSA DUA, Indonesia (Reuters) - The United Nations praised on Thursday a step by a U.S. Senate committee to cut greenhouse gas emissions in the world's top carbon emitter even as Washington reaffirmed opposition to caps.

"That's a very encouraging sign from the United States," Yvo de Boer, head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, said at 190-nation U.N. talks in Bali, Indonesia, of a vote by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

Radiation flashes may help crack cosmic mystery
December 5, 2007 12:28 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

Chicago - Faint, fleeting blue flashes of radiation emitted by particles that travel faster than the speed of light through the atmosphere may help scientists solve one of the oldest mysteries in astrophysics.

For nearly a century, scientists have wondered about the origin of cosmic rays—subatomic particles of matter that stream in from outer space. “Where exactly, we don’t know,” said Scott Wakely, Assistant Professor in Physics at the University of Chicago. “They’re raining down on the atmosphere of the Earth, tens of thousands of particles per second per square meter.”

Broccoli compound may ameliorate skin disease
December 5, 2007 12:22 PM - By Megan Rauscher, Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - The natural compound sulforaphane, which is abundant in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables, may have a role in the treatment of epidermolysis bullosa simplex, according to research presented during the annual meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology in Washington, DC.

Epidermolysis bullosa simplex is a genetic condition that causes the skin to become fragile and blister easily from minor injuries or friction, such as rubbing or scratching. The signs and symptoms of the condition vary widely -- blistering may primarily affect the hands and feet and heals, while severe cases involve widespread blistering that can lead to infection, dehydration and may be life-threatening in infants.

Distorted self-image the result of visual brain glitch
December 5, 2007 12:10 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

Los Angeles - Although they look normal, people suffering from body dysmorphic disorder, or BDD, perceive themselves as ugly and disfigured. New imaging research reveals that the brains of these people look normal but function abnormally when processing visual details.

Reported in the December edition of the journal Archives of General Psychiatry, the UCLA findings are the first to demonstrate a biological reason for patients' distorted body image.

 

 

 

 

Safety, Hybrid Technology Rank High As Coolest New Car Features
December 5, 2007 11:44 AM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

CHICAGO  - The automobile industry continues to make great strides, bringing new, creative features to market each year. Whether related to safety, comfort or convenience, carmakers develop a wide variety of new features to attract new-car shoppers. With countless hours behind the wheel of new vehicles, the Cars.com reviewers identified what they consider the 10 most notable features that debuted in 2007.

 

 

 

 

Prius Tops The List As Japanese Cars Continue to Dominate Car-Owner Satisfaction Surveys
December 5, 2007 11:36 AM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

YONKERS, N.Y. - Japanese vehicles continue their domination over domestic and European brands in Consumer Reports' Annual Car Owner Satisfaction Survey. Of the 39 car models that made Consumer Reports' latest Most Satisfying car list, 18 toted Japanese nameplates with 10 of those built by Toyota.

 

For the fourth straight year, the Toyota Prius hybrid was identified by respondents as the most satisfying of any vehicle, with 92 percent of Prius owners indicating they would definitely buy one again. Following closely, were the BMW 335i coupe/convertible and Porsche Boxster, which drew scores of 91 and 90 respectively.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Daimler AG Introduces New, Compact Vehicle to U.S. Market: "Smart fortwo"
December 5, 2007 11:24 AM -

NEW YORK, - They call it, "smart fortwo", the most compact vehicle currently in production, and set to launch in USA, January 2008: 

 

The shortest, most compact automobile currently in production will soon be launched in the world's largest automobile market, when the "smart fortwo" debuts in the United States in January, 2008. Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of Daimler AG will introduce this latest vehicle to the US market at a press briefing in Washington, DC on December 4th. The car starts around $11,500 dollars.

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