Earth

UT Arlington researchers develop new transparent nanoscintillators for radiation detection

UT Arlington researchers develop new transparent nanoscintillators for radiation detection

A University of Texas at Arlington research team says recently identified radiation detection properties of a light-emitting nanostructure built in their lab could open doors for homeland security and medical advances.

Cause of California drought linked to climate change

Cause of California drought linked to climate change

The atmospheric conditions associated with the unprecedented drought in California are very likely linked to human-caused climate change, researchers report.

Climate scientist Noah Diffenbaugh of Stanford University and colleagues used a novel combination of computer simulations and statistical techniques to show that a persistent region of high atmospheric pressure over the Pacific Ocean--one that diverted storms away from California--was much more likely to form in the presence of modern greenhouse gas concentrations.

Nitrogen fingerprint in biomolecules could be from early sun

Nitrogen fingerprint in biomolecules could be from early sun

Chemical fingerprints of the element nitrogen vary by extremes in materials from the molecules of life to the solar wind to interstellar dust. Ideas for how this great variety came about have included alien molecules shuttled in by icy comets from beyond our solar system and complex chemical scenarios.

Causes of California drought linked to climate change

Causes of California drought linked to climate change

The atmospheric conditions associated with the unprecedented drought currently afflicting California are "very likely" linked to human-caused climate change, Stanford scientists say.

In a new study, a team led by Stanford climate scientist Noah Diffenbaugh used a novel combination of computer simulations and statistical techniques to show that a persistent region of high atmospheric pressure hovering over the Pacific Ocean that diverted storms away from California was much more likely to form in the presence of modern greenhouse gas concentrations.

Climate detectives reveal handprint of human caused climate change in Australia

Climate detectives reveal handprint of human caused climate change in Australia

Australia's hottest year on record in 2013 along with the accompanying droughts, heat waves and record-breaking seasons of that year was virtually impossible without the influence of human-caused global warming.

New research from ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science (ARCCSS) researchers and colleagues, over five different Australian papers in a special edition of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society (BAMS), has highlighted the powerful influence of global warming on Australia's climate.

Greenland Ice Sheet more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought

Greenland Ice Sheet more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought

A new model developed by researchers at the University of Cambridge has shown that despite its apparent stability, the massive ice sheet covering most of Greenland is more sensitive to climate change than earlier estimates have suggested, which would accelerate the rising sea levels that threaten coastal communities worldwide.

Tree killers, yes, fire starters, no: Mountain pine beetles get a bad rap, study says

MADISON, Wis. — Mountain pine beetles get a bad rap, and understandably so. The grain-of-rice-sized insects are responsible for killing pine trees over tens of millions of acres in the Western U.S. and Canada over the last decade.

But contrary to popular belief, these pests may not be to blame for more severe wildfires like those that have recently swept through the region. Instead, weather and topography play a greater role in the ecological severity of fires than these bark-boring beetles.

Glaciers in the Grand Canyon of Mars?

Boulder, Colo., USA – For decades, planetary geologists have speculated that glaciers might once have crept through Valles Marineris, the 2000-mile-long chasm that constitutes the Grand Canyon of Mars. Using satellite images, researchers have identified features that might have been carved by past glaciers as they flowed through the canyons; however, these observations have remained highly controversial and contested.

Ocean acidification could lead to collapse of coral reefs

An expedition from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Carnegie Institute of Science has measured a roughly 40% reduction in the rate of calcium carbonate deposited in Australia's Great Barrier Reef in the last 35 years — a scenario that could damage the reef framework and endanger the entire coral ecosystem.

Avoid skunky beer this Oktoberfest with the help of chemistry

Oktoberfest is here, and that means beer. And there's nothing worse than reaching for a cold one, taking that first sip and realizing your beer's been skunked: chemicals have reacted to form compounds that cause an awful, bitter taste.

This week, Reactions explains why beers get skunky, and what you can do to keep your brews from going bad.