Scientists have mapped quantum tornadoes that swirl within tiny droplets of liquid helium, which confirms that helium nanodroplets are in fact the smallest possible superfluidic objects and opens new avenues to study quantum rotation.
Superfluid helium has long captured scientist's imagination since its discovery in the 1930s. Unlike normal fluids, superfluids have no viscosity, a feature that leads to strange and sometimes unexpected properties such as crawling up the walls of containers or dripping through barriers that contained the liquid before it transitioned to a superfluid.
By Peter Gwynne, Inside Science
Why don't we suffocate whenever we try to take a breath? An international team of scientists has used quantum mechanics – the science that usually deals with events at the level of the ultra-small – to solve this human-sized mystery.
Quantum mechanics has long proved its value in understanding such phenomena as the behavior of electrons and in classifying subatomic particles. But in recent years theorists have increasingly shown how it applies to all facets of life, large and small.-->
Next year, American consumers will finally be able to purchase fuel cell cars and they are zero-emissions vehicles but, like current electric cars, not really, since the cars will run on hydrogen made from natural gas.
If you capture a hummingbird on high-speed video and slow it down, their wings thrum like helicopter blades as they hover near food. Their hearts beat 20 times a second and their tongues dart 17 times a second to slurp from a feeding station.
the NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases scientists have found that Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection in marmosets closely mimics the severe pneumonia experienced by people infected with MERS-CoV, giving researchers the best animal model yet for testing potential treatments.
They used marmosets after predicting in computer models that the animals could be infected with MERS-CoV based on the binding properties of the virus.
New measurements of atomic-scale magnetic behavior in iron-based superconductors are challenging conventional wisdom about superconductivity and magnetism.
Water is abundant and so is sunlight, and using them to create hydrogen makes sense for a cleaner energy future, where biological systems powered by sunlight can manufacture hydrogen to use as fuel.
The way that plants produce hydrogen by splitting water has been poorly understood but answers are getting closer. A research team created a protein which, when exposed to light, displays the "electrical heartbeat" that is the key to photosynthesis.
The system uses a naturally-occurring protein and does not need batteries or expensive metals, meaning it could be affordable in developing countries.
Alzheimer's disease can be slowed and some of its symptoms curbed by punicalagin, a natural compound, found in pomegranate, according to a study in Molecular Nutrition and Food Research.
Alzheimer's affects up to 44.4 million people globally.
The two-year project headed by University of Huddersfield scientist Dr. Olumayokun Olajide also found that the painful inflammation that accompanies illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis and Parkinson's disease could be reduced.
Humans don't want to live above the West Antarctic ice sheet but microbes can certainly live below it, according to a new study. Even half a mile below it.
The waters and sediments of a lake 2,600 feet beneath the surface of the West Antarctic ice sheet support "viable microbial ecosystems", according to recent results. Given that more than 400 subglacial lakes and numerous rivers and streams are thought to exist beneath the Antarctic ice sheet, such ecosystems may be widespread and may influence the chemical and biological composition of the Southern Ocean, the vast and biologically productive sea that encircles the continent.
The first direct observations of how facets form and develop on platinum nanocubes reveals that a nearly 150 year-old scientific law describing crystal growth breaks down at the nanoscale.
The researchers behind a new study used transmission electron microscopes and an advanced high-resolution, fast-detection camera to capture the physical mechanisms that control the evolution of facets – flat faces – on the surfaces of platinum nanocubes formed in liquids.
Understanding how facets develop on a nanocrystal is critical to controlling the crystal's geometric shape, which in turn is critical to controlling the crystal's chemical and electronic properties.
Researchers have developed a new process which will greatly simplify the process of sorting plastics in recycling plants by enabling automated identification of polymers and facilitating rapid separation of plastics for re-use.
Thanks to effective vaccination, polio is nearly eradicated and only a few hundred people are stricken worldwide each year.
But researchers in PNAS have reported alarming findings: a mutated virus was able to resist the vaccine protection to a considerable extent in the Congo in 2010. The pathogen could also potentially have infected many people in Germany.
Most consumers have an idea of their favorite pizza and it may have nothing at all to do with taste. The imagery on television commercials is gooey cheese stretching from the pie to the slice.
Marketers have always known that cheese matters and now science is backing that up. Writing
in the Journal of Food Science, scholars went beyond the standard trope of having golden cheese with that dark toasted-cheese color scattered in distinct blistery patches across the surface and a bit of oil glistening in the valleys and honed in on the various aspects that impact the total pizza experience.
WASHINGTON, August 21, 2014 — Diabetes affects nearly 10 percent of the U.S. population. Among the biggest complaints of diabetics: constant finger pricking to test blood glucose levels. Fortunately, research published in ACS Chemical Biology reports the development of a protein that could lead to less pain and more accurate results for diabetes patients. In the American Chemical Society's (ACS') newest Breakthrough Science video, Sylvia Daunert, Ph.D., shows off her "designer protein" that could eventually allow diabetics to check their blood sugar from their iPhones. The video is available at http://youtu.be/x51o8p8j8Z0.
Fungal infections that have been sickening HIV/AIDS patients in Southern California for decades literally grow on trees. For that discovery, we can thank a 13-year-old girl who spent the summer gathering soil and tree samples from areas around Los Angeles hardest hit by infections of the fungus named Cryptococcus gattii (CRIP-to-cock-us GAT-ee-eye).
Cryptococcus, which encompasses a number of species including C. gattii, causes life-threatening infections of the lungs and brain and is responsible for one third of all AIDS-related deaths.
The study found strong genetic evidence that three tree species -- Canary Island pine, Pohutukawa and American sweetgum -- can serve as environmental hosts and sources of these human infections.
The vast reservoir of carbon stored in Arctic permafrost is gradually being converted back to carbon dioxide (CO2) after entering the freshwater system in a process thought to be controlled largely by microbial activity, but a new study concludes that sunlight, not bacteria, is the key to triggering release of CO2 from Arctic soils.
Since climate change could affect when and how permafrost is thawed, which begins the process of converting the organic carbon into CO2, it is vital to know what is happening due to man's impact, what is due to solar cycles and what is due to natural microbes.