• Los Angeles Celebrates Launch of Largest Municipal Solar Program in U.S.

    Los Angeles, a city more often known for its celebrity sightings and Hollywood stars, also shines bright in the solar arena. The City of Angels has dazzled in the last decade with a strong record of sustainability. So much so that on April 19th, local and national government representatives as well as business leaders gathered to celebrate the launch of the city's solar Feed in Tariff (FIT) program (Clean L.A. Solar Program) at the Los Angeles Business Council's (LABC) Sustainability Summit. The program focused on how to harness sustainability programs and regulatory initiatives for job growth. >> Read the Full Article
  • Clownfish helps its anemone host to breathe

    The sight of a clownfish wriggling through the stinging tentacles of its anemone is a familiar and seemingly well-understood one to most people—the stinging anemone provides a protective home for the clownfish who is immune to such stings, and in turn the clownfish chases away any polyp-eating sunfish eyeing the anemone's tentacles for a meal. But recent research has shown that all that clownfish wriggling significantly helps to oxygenate the anemone at night, when oxygen levels in the water are low. >> Read the Full Article
  • Microbubbles

    Microbubbles are bubbles generally smaller than one millimeter in diameter, but larger than one micrometer. They are often used in medical diagnostics as a contrast agent for ultrasound imaging. The microbubbles oscillate and vibrate when a sonic energy field is applied and may reflect ultrasound waves. This distinguishes the microbubbles from surrounding tissues. Microbubbles may also decrease the time and acoustic power of ultrasound required to heat and destroy an embedded target, finds research in BioMed Central's open access journal Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound. If these results can be replicated in the clinic, microbubbles could improve the efficiency of high intensity ultrasound treatment of solid tumors. >> Read the Full Article
  • Jovian Water Source

    Water can be found most anywhere in the solar system planetary bodies. The question is amount and source. Astronomers have finally found direct proof that almost all water present in Jupiter's stratosphere was delivered by comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, which famously struck the planet in 1994. The findings, based on new data from the Herschel space observatory, reveal more water in Jupiter's southern hemisphere, where the impacts occurred, than in the north. Herschel is a European Space Agency mission with important NASA participation. >> Read the Full Article
  • Understanding AC Refrigerant Standards

    Back in 1987, alarm about emissions of ozone layer-depleting chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), and bromine gases led national governments worldwide to sign the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, a United Nations (UN) environmental agreement in which 197 countries and the European Union (EU) pledged to phase out production and use of CFCs, HCFCs and bromine gases. Though revised, more aggressive reduction targets for new refrigerant standards are being met, subsequent developments – rapid industrialization in large emerging market countries and the growing threats and costs of global warming – have complicated matters further. >> Read the Full Article
  • Geochemical Climate Testing

    New test results are providing further evidence that the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide and Earth's surface temperature are inextricably linked. Nearly thirty-four million years ago, the Earth underwent a transformation from a warm and high-carbon dioxide greenhouse state to a lower-CO2, variable climate of the modern icehouse world. Massive ice sheets grew across the Antarctic continent, major animal groups shifted, and ocean temperatures decreased by up to 5 degrees. Various studies of how this drastic change affected temperatures on land have had mixed results. Some show no appreciable terrestrial climate change; others find cooling of up to 8 degrees and large changes in seasonality. Now, a group of American and British scientists have used a new chemical technique to measure the change in terrestrial temperature associated with this shift in global atmospheric CO2 concentrations. >> Read the Full Article
  • Forest conservation could reduce malaria transmission

    Preserving the biodiversity of tropical forests could have the added benefit of cutting the spread of malaria, according to a new study. The finding contradicts the traditional view that clearing native forest for agriculture curbs malaria transmission in the Amazon rainforest. >> Read the Full Article
  • A new tool against illegal logging: tree DNA technology goes mainstream

    The role of tree DNA tracking is increasing in the fight against illegal logging as evidenced by prosecution cases in USA and Germany. Modern DNA technology offers a unique opportunity: you could pinpoint the origin of your table at home and track down if the trees it was made from were illegally obtained. Each wooden piece of furniture comes with a hidden natural barcode that can tell its story from a sapling in a forest all the way to your living room. >> Read the Full Article
  • Superstorm Sandy "Earthquake"

    Earthquakes shake the land obviously. So do explosions and similar events. How about a hurricane? When superstorm Sandy turned and took aim at New York City and Long Island last October, ocean waves hitting each other and the shore rattled the seafloor and much of the United States – shaking detected by seismometers across the country, University of Utah researchers found. >> Read the Full Article
  • Freeway Air Pollution Travels Farther than Previously Thought

    Los Angeles is known not only for its celebrity clientele, but also for its congested roadways and heavy traffic, which consequently has led to severely polluted air, and the title of the "smoggiest city" in the United States. While air quality has improved somewhat in LA, a joint study by UCLA and the California Air Resources Board suggests that nearly a quarter of Angelenos are exposed to noxious plumes of freeway fumes almost every morning, far more people than previously thought. >> Read the Full Article