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Exploring the Colors of the Small Magellanic Cloud -- Courtesy of ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech/STScI – click to enlarge

Colors in the Cloud: Exploring the Colors of the Small Magellanic Cloud

February 27, 2015 3:02 pm | by ESA | News | Comments

Astronomical images often look like works of art. This picture of one of our nearest neighboring galaxies, the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), is certainly no exception! The scene is actually a collaboration between two cosmic artists — ESA’s Herschel space observatory and NASA’s Spitzer space telescope.

Live Long and Prosper, Mr. #Spock! Leonard Nimoy dies at 83

February 27, 2015 2:31 pm | by Lynn Elber, AP Television Writer | News | Comments

Leonard Nimoy, the actor known and loved by generations of Star Trek fans as the pointy...

Supermassive Black Hole Discovered with Mass of 12 Billion Suns

February 27, 2015 11:46 am | by Christian Veillet and Daniel Stolte, Large Binocular Telescope Observatory, University of Arizona | News | Comments

Scientists have discovered the brightest quasar in the early universe, powered by the most...

The Big Melt: Antarctica's Retreating Ice May Re-shape Earth

February 27, 2015 10:48 am | by Luis Andres Henao and Seth Borenstein, Associated Press | News | Comments

From the ground in this extreme northern part of Antarctica, spectacularly white and blinding...

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A 3-D model of the new class of auxetic metamaterials that defy logic and can be used to create better skin grafts and new smart materials. Courtesy of University of Malta

Logic-defying Mathematical Model could lead to Better Skin Grafts, New Smart Materials

February 26, 2015 2:00 pm | by Cassi Camilleri, University of Malta | News | Comments

Pull on a piece of plastic at separate ends; it becomes thinner. So does a rubber band. One might assume tha,t when a force is applied along an axis, materials will always stretch and become thinner. Wrong. Thanks to their peculiar internal geometry, auxetic materials grow wider. After confounding scientists for decades, researchers are now developing mathematical models to explain the unusual behavior of these logic-defying materials

Milorad Marinkovic holds an egg with his bionic arm. Three Austrians have replaced injured hands with bionic ones that they can control using nerves and muscles transplanted into their arms from their legs. The three men are the first to undergo what doct

Three Men First to Get Reconstructed Bionic Hands

February 26, 2015 1:18 pm | by Maria Cheng, AP Medical Writer | News | Comments

Three Austrians have replaced injured hands with bionic ones that they can control using nerves and muscles transplanted into their arms from their legs. The men are the first to undergo what doctors refer to as "bionic reconstruction," which includes a voluntary amputation, the transplantation of nerves and muscles and learning to use faint signals from them to command the hand.

Cardiovascular diseases are the largest cause of death in Europe and responsible for two million deaths per year. According to WHO, they are the number one cause of death in the world, accounting for 30 percent of deaths worldwide and 42 percent in the EU

Novel 3-D Computer Model brings Insight to Cardiovascular Diseases

February 26, 2015 12:56 pm | by Lappeenranta University of Technology, LUT | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a novel three-dimensional, multiscale and multicomponent model of the endothelial cell monolayer, the inner lining of the artery, to identify the cellular mechanisms involved in cardiovascular diseases. New research based on the model is able to identify the main cellular pathways involved in the initiation and progression of the disease.

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Chicago in Winter -- Courtesy of NASA/ESA/Samantha Cristoforetti – click to enlarge

Chicago in Winter

February 26, 2015 9:46 am | News | Comments

From the International Space Station, astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti took this photograph of Chicago and posted it to social media. Crewmembers on the space station photograph the Earth from their unique point of view located 200 miles above the surface as part of the Crew Earth Observations program. Photographs record how the planet is changing over time.

As a flying laboratory, ESA's OPS-SAT will test and validate new techniques in mission control and on-board systems. It will be operated by ESA's European Space Operations Centre as a test and validation resource for over 100 European industrial partners

Flying Software Lab to Test Radically New Experimental Control Systems

February 26, 2015 8:35 am | by Suzanne Tracy, Editor-in-Chief, Scientific Computing and HPC Source | News | Comments

ESA is developing a mini-satellite to test out radically new control systems and techniques and to demonstrate drastically improved mission control capabilities that will arise when satellites can fly more powerful on-board computers. Known as Ops-Sat, it is made up of three CubeSat units with deployable solar panels. Although only 30 cm high, it contains an experimental computer 10 times more powerful than any current spacecraft.

On two separate occasions in March and April 2012, amateur astronomers reported definite plume-like features developing on Mars.

Mystery Mars Plume: Highest Plume ever observed Baffles Scientists

February 25, 2015 2:15 pm | by ESA | News | Comments

Plumes seen reaching high above the surface of Mars have caused a stir among scientists studying the atmosphere on the Red Planet. On two separate occasions in March and April 2012, amateur astronomers reported definite plume-like features developing on the planet. The plumes were seen rising to altitudes of over 250 kilometers on both occasions. By comparison, similar features seen in the past have not exceeded 100 kilometers.

While a member of the audience might have seen a variation on this trick before, the AI can now use psychological and mathematical principles to create lots of different versions and keep audiences guessing. Courtesy of Steven Depolo

Artificial Intelligence Performs Real Magic Tricks

February 25, 2015 11:41 am | by Queen Mary University of London | News | Comments

Researchers gave a computer program the outline of how a magic jigsaw puzzle and a mind-reading card trick work, as well the results of experiments into how humans understand magic tricks. With this information, the system created completely new variants on those tricks which can be delivered by a magician.

Sagittal Brain Slice Showing Cell Nuclei and Purkinije Cells -- Courtesy of Nikon Small World -- 2014 Nikon Small World Honorable Mention -- Click to enlarge

Sagittal Brain Slice Showing Cell Nuclei and Purkinije Cells

February 25, 2015 11:33 am | News | Comments

This 40x photo shows a sagittal brain slice with cell nuclei and Purkinije cells expressing EGFP. It received an honorable mention in the 2014 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using confocal microscopy.

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NWChem molecular modeling software takes full advantage of a wide range of parallel computing systems, including Cascade. Courtesy of PNNL

PNNL Shifts Computational Chemistry into Overdrive

February 25, 2015 8:29 am | by Karol Kowalski, Ph.D., and Edoardo Apra, Ph.D. | Articles | Comments

We computational chemists are an impatient lot. Despite the fact that we routinely deal with highly complicated chemical processes running on our laboratory’s equally complex HPC clusters, we want answers in minutes or hours, not days, months or even years. In many instances, that’s just not feasible; in fact, there are times when the magnitude of the problem simply exceeds the capabilities of the HPC resources available to us.

Hydraulic connections of the Fast Cycle Magnet cable to allow the cooling of the magnet’s conductor (cable in conduit type) with supercritical helium. Courtesy of Maximilien Brice

What to Expect Next from the World’s Largest Particle Accelerator

February 24, 2015 2:37 pm | by Kate Greene, Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory | News | Comments

In March, when researchers flip the switch to the world’s largest, most powerful particle accelerator, scientists from all over the world will be watching. Physicists expect the refurbished, higher-energy Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will build on the 2012 discovery of the Higgs particle and crack open even more mysteries of the universe

Illustration of the orbit of Kepler-432b (inner, red) in comparison to the orbit of Mercury around the Sun (outer, orange). The red dot in the middle indicates the position of the star around which the planet is orbiting. The size of the star is shown to

Astronomers Discover Massive Celestial Body with Extreme Seasons

February 24, 2015 2:03 pm | by Heidelberg University | News | Comments

Two groups of astronomers have independently discovered a rare planet. The celestial body, called Kepler-432b, is one of the most dense and massive planets known so far. The teams report that the planet has six times the mass of Jupiter, but about the same size.

Tsunami impact map provides more precise estimates of the areas that might face tsunami-induced flooding.

Study Maps Major Tsunami Impact on Columbia River

February 24, 2015 12:19 pm | by Oregon State University | News | Comments

Engineers at Oregon State University have completed one of the most precise evaluations yet done about the impact of a major tsunami event on the Columbia River, what forces are most important in controlling water flow and what areas might be inundated.

Astronaut Barry Wilmore -- Courtesy of NASA – click to enlarge

Astronaut Barry Wilmore on First of Three Spacewalks

February 24, 2015 12:09 pm | by NASA | News | Comments

NASA astronaut Barry Wilmore works outside the International Space Station on the first of three spacewalks preparing the station for future arrivals by U.S. commercial crew spacecraft, on February 21, 2015. Fellow spacewalker Terry Virts, seen reflected in the visor, shared this photograph on social media.

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Rube did not build the machines he drew, but his cartoons have become an inspiration to aspiring engineers and scientists across the world. Courtesy of Jeff Kubina

A Comically Involved, Complicated Invention, Laboriously Contrived to Perform a Simple Operation

February 24, 2015 10:34 am | by Suzanne Tracy, Editor-in-Chief, Scientific Computing and HPC Source | Blogs | Comments

Of course, I’m talking about the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest! This annual international competition challenges teams of students from middle school to college-age to build the most elaborate and hilarious contraption that successfully achieves the task at hand. This year’s contest is already off and running. The 2015 Task: Erase a Chalkboard.

A laser pulse is split into two paths: circularly polarized pump (blue) and linearly polarized probe (red). The pump’s path length is adjustable using a delay stage so that the relative arrival time between the pump and probe can be adjusted. After the pr

New Spin on Spintronics: Radiation-resistant Material May Enable Devices in Harsh Environments

February 23, 2015 4:01 pm | by American Institute of Physics (AIP) | News | Comments

A team of researchers is exploring new materials that could yield higher computational speeds and lower power consumption, even in harsh environments. Most modern electronic circuitry relies on controlling electronic charge within a circuit, but this control can easily be disrupted in the presence of radiation. Electronics that use spintronics may offer an alternative that is robust even in radiation-filled environments.

An artist concept of NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission. Courtesy of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center

MAVEN Completes First Deep Dip of Martian Atmosphere

February 23, 2015 3:46 pm | by NASA | News | Comments

NASA’S Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution has completed the first of five deep-dip maneuvers designed to gather measurements closer to the lower end of the Martian upper atmosphere. The 16-mile altitude difference may not seem like much, but it allows scientists to make measurements down to the top of the lower atmosphere. At these lower altitudes, the atmospheric densities are more than 10 times what they are at 93 miles.

Professor Aviad Frydman, a member of Bar-Ilan University’s Department of Physics, directed a study that describes a new method for conducting Higgs physics experiments.

Regular Lab Observes Higgs Mode in Superconducting Materials

February 23, 2015 12:37 pm | by Bar-Ilan University | News | Comments

The Nobel Prize-winning discovery of the Higgs boson — the “God particle” believed responsible for all the mass in the universe — took place in 2012 at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. But, more than 50 years ago, the first hint of Higgs was inspired by the study of superconductors. Now, a research team has closed a circle, by reporting the first-ever observations of the Higgs mode in superconducting materials.

Ant Carrying its Larva

February 23, 2015 12:10 pm | News | Comments

This 5x photo of an ant carrying its larva received an honorable mention in the 2014 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using reflected light and focus stacking.

Stephen Jones is Product Manager, Strategic Alliances at NVIDIA.

Powering a New Era of Deep Learning

February 20, 2015 12:42 pm | by Stephen Jones, NVIDIA | Blogs | Comments

GPU-accelerated applications have become ubiquitous in scientific supercomputing. Now, we are seeing increased adoption of GPU technology in other computationally demanding disciplines, including deep learning, one of the fastest growing areas in the machine learning and data science fields

In this composite image of the Teacup Galaxy, the green colors show the starlight, the blue colors show the gas and the red/yellow colors show the radio emission. The bright yellow blobs in the center of the image show where the radio “jets,” launched by

Supermassive Black Hole Explosively Heating, Blasting Gas around Galaxy Core

February 20, 2015 12:15 pm | by National Radio Astronomy Observatory | News | Comments

Astronomers using the NSF's Very Large Array found surprisingly energetic activity in what they otherwise considered a "boring" galaxy, and their discovery provides important insight on how supermassive black holes can have a catastrophic effect on the galaxies in which they reside

Model of ion (Cl) collision with atomically thin semiconductor (MoSe2). Collision region is shown in blue and zoomed in; red points show initial positions of Cl. The simulation calculates the energy loss of the ion based on the incident and emergent veloc

Algorithm Enables Simulation of Ultrafast Processes

February 20, 2015 12:07 pm | by Rachel Berkowitz, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory | News | Comments

Researchers have developed a new algorithm which increases the small time step required by ultrafast phenomena from about one attosecond to about half a femtosecond. This allows them to simulate ultrafast phenomena for systems of around 100 atoms.

Conichalcite pseudomorph after azurite -- Courtesy of Nikon Small World -- 2014 Nikon Small World Honorable Mention -- Click to enlarge

Mineral Close-up: Conichalcite Pseudomorph after Azurite

February 20, 2015 11:41 am | News | Comments

This 6x photo of a pseudomorph of conichalcite after azurite received an honorable mention in the 2014 Nikon Small World Photomicrophotography Competition, which recognizes excellence in photography with the optical microscope, and was taken using transmitted light.

In this April 25, 1979, file photo, Dr. Ernest Sternglass, a professor of radiological physics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, talks about the dosimeters worn by workers and newsmen during the crisis at Three Mile Island, in Pittsburgh

Physicist whose Work Helped the World to See Armstrong's Historic First Steps Dies

February 20, 2015 8:42 am | by AP | News | Comments

Physicist Ernest Sternglass, whose research helped make it possible for the world to see the first moon walk, has died at age 91 of heart failure. His research helped lead to a sensitive television camera tube that captured low-light lunar action during the 1969 moon landing and U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong's historic first steps.

Another myth is that scientists look like this. U.S. Army RDECOM/Flickr, CC BY-SA

Seven Myths about Scientists Debunked

February 19, 2015 2:07 pm | by Jeffrey Craig and Marguerite Evans-Galea, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute | Articles | Comments

As scientific researchers, we are often surprised by some of the assumptions made about us by those outside our profession. So we put together a list of common myths we and our colleagues have heard anecdotally regarding scientific researchers.

Earth’s magnetosphere is depicted with the high-energy particles of the Van Allen radiation belts (shown in red) and various processes responsible for accelerating these particles to relativistic energies indicated. The effects of an interplanetary shock

Solar Storm Produces Ultrarelativistic, Killer Electrons in Just Seconds

February 19, 2015 2:05 pm | by Jennifer Chu, MIT | News | Comments

In October 2013, an explosion on the sun’s surface sent a supersonic blast wave of solar wind out into space. This shockwave tore past Mercury and Venus, blitzing by the moon before streaming toward Earth. The shockwave struck a massive blow to the Earth’s magnetic field, setting off a magnetized sound pulse around the planet.

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