A snake-like robot designed to examine the inside of one of three melted reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is ready to begin its expedition. Assessing the damage inside the reactors is a crucial step in the decommissioning of the plant, which was badly damaged by a 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Use of a remote-controlled robot is essential, because no humans can go close to the reactor chambers due to fatally high radiation.
New NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope images capture a rare occurrence, as three of Jupiter’s largest moons parade across the giant gas planet’s banded face. Hubble took a string of images of the event which show the three satellites — Europa, Callisto and Io — in action. The planet's four moons can commonly be seen transiting the face of Jupiter. However, seeing three of them transiting at the same time is rare.
The microbes that call the New York City subway system home are mostly harmless, but include samples of disease-causing bacteria that are resistant to drugs — and even DNA fragments associated with anthrax and Bubonic plague. A pathogen map of a city provides a baseline assessment. Repeated sampling could be used for long-term, accurate disease surveillance, bioterrorism threat mitigation, and large-scale health management.
Quick, think of a four-letter name beginning with “N” for a federal agency involved in space science. Though NASA or NOAA would rightfully pop into mind first, crossword puzzle aficionados should know that NIST would be a correct answer as well — because the National Institute of Standards and Technology has been an integral part of readying technology for blastoff for decades.
This image from Sentinel-1A’s radar shows the metropolitan area of Portugal’s capital, Lisbon. Flowing in from the upper-right corner is the Tagus River. Originating in central Spain, the Tagus is the longest river on the Iberian Peninsula, stretching over 1,000 kilometers. The river flows west through Portugal, emptying into the Atlantic Ocean at Lisbon
Scientists have developed an octopus-like robot that can zoom through water with ultra-fast propulsion and acceleration never before seen in man-made underwater vehicles. Cephalopods are capable of high-speed escapes by filling their bodies with water and then quickly expelling it to dart away. Inspired by this, scientists built a deformable robot with a 3-D printed skeleton, no moving parts and no energy storage device.
A team of researchers has developed a low-cost smartphone accessory that can perform a point-of-care test that simultaneously detects three HIV and syphilis infectious disease markers from a finger prick of blood in just 15 minutes. The device replicates, for the first time, all mechanical, optical and electronic functions of a lab-based blood test. Specifically, it performs an ELISA assay.
ESA’s experimental spaceplane, poised for liftoff on Vega, is set to showcase the latest technologies and critical systems to extend Europe’s capability for space exploration. In a world first, Europe will launch and land an unmanned spaceplane that has no wings but instead features an aerodynamic shape that produces the lift to fly through the atmosphere. Flaps and thrusters will autonomously steer it back to a splashdown.
A new online resource will help coastguards, meteorological organizations and scientific communities predict future storm surge patterns. The freely-accessible database has been compiled through the multi-partner, international eSurge project, which was launched in 2011 with the aim of making available observational data to improve the modeling and forecasting of storm surges around the world using advanced techniques and instruments.
For Paul Torrens, wintry weather is less about sledding and more about testing out models of human behavior. Torrens, a geographer at the University of Maryland, studies how snow and icy conditions affect human decisions about transportation. He also studies how these decisions ripple through other infrastructure systems.
Top researchers are using mathematical modelling and heavy computations to understand how the brain can both remember and learn. Ten years ago, when the team of Marianne Fyhn and Torkel Hafting Fyhn cooperated with the Nobel Prize winning team of May-Britt and Edvard Moser at NTNU, they discovered the sense of orientation in the brain.
Scientists have identified a biological clock that provides vital clues about how long a person is likely to live. Researchers studied chemical changes to DNA that take place over a lifetime, and can help them predict an individual's age. By comparing individuals’ actual ages with their predicted biological clock age, scientists saw a pattern emerging.
The release of the film, Still Alice, in September 2014 placed a much-needed light on Alzheimer's disease, a debilitating neurological disease that affects a growing number of Americans each year. More than 5.2 million people in the U.S. are currently living with Alzheimer's. One out of nine Americans over 65 has Alzheimer's, and one out of three over 85 has the disease. For those over 65, it is the fifth leading cause of death.
This 20x photo of three transgenic kidneys cultured together shows colliding, branching collecting duct systems. It won 16th Place in the 2014 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using confocal microscopy.
Devize is cloud-based Monte Carlo simulation software designed to guide engineers through the entire simulation and optimization process. The Web-based application’s workflow allows users to simulate possible outcomes, and results are presented with straightforward explanations.