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U.N. climate report warns of increased risk to crops

March 31, 2014 1:12 pm | by MIT Technology Review | Comments

Crop yields are expected to decline due to climate change faster than scientists thought.A few years ago scientists thought climate change wouldn’t cause much harm to overall food production until temperatures in a region rose by three to four degrees Celsius compared to current levels....

A breakthrough in creating invisibility cloaks, stealth technology

March 31, 2014 12:45 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Controlling and bending light around an object so it appears invisible to the naked eye is the theory behind fictional invisibility cloaks. It may seem easy in Hollywood movies, but is hard to create in real life because no material in nature has the properties necessary to bend light in such a way....

A robot walks into a bar

March 31, 2014 12:41 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

The image of a joke-telling robot, that can tailor its repartee while performing a stand-up comedy routine, has won the overall prize in a national science photography competition organised by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)....


Researchers develop device that simulates gastro-intestinal tract

March 31, 2014 12:38 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A breakthrough in drug testing developed by a University of Huddersfield lecturer could lead to cheaper, more effective medicines. Dr Hamid Merchant is a member of the team that has created a device which accurately simulates the gastro-intestinal tract and how it absorbs medication....

Never say never in the nano-world

March 31, 2014 12:27 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Objects with sizes in the nanometer range, such as the molecular building blocks of living cells or nanotechnological devices, are continuously exposed to random collisions with surrounding molecules. In such fluctuating environments the fundamental laws of thermodynamics...

Another Apple-Samsung skirmish heads to court

March 31, 2014 12:22 pm | by MARTHA MENDOZA, AP National Writer | Comments

The fiercest rivalry in the world of smartphones is heading back to court this week in the heart of the Silicon Valley, with Apple and Samsung accusing each other, once again, of ripping off designs and features. The trial will mark the latest round in a long-running series of lawsuits between the two tech giants....


Diamonds are an oil's best friend

March 31, 2014 12:18 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

A mixture of diamond nanoparticles and mineral oil easily outperforms other types of fluid created for heat-transfer applications, according to new research by Rice University. Rice scientists mixed very low concentrations of diamond particles (about 6 nanometers in diameter) with mineral oil....

Helmholtz Prize for the 'new' ampere

March 31, 2014 12:16 pm | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Quantum standards for the electrical units the volt and the ohm have been available for more than two decades. However, for the electrical base unit of the international system of units (SI) the ampere, such a "new" quantum standard is still lacking....


US Supreme Court could limit software patents

March 31, 2014 12:09 pm | by Sam Hananel - Associated Press - Associated Press | Comments

The Supreme Court appears willing to make it tougher to approve patents for computer software in a case that is being closely watched by technology companies. But the justices on Monday struggled to come up with a middle ground that would recognize true inventions as opposed to those that simply...

New Zealand physicists split and collide ultracold atom clouds

March 31, 2014 11:32 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Physicists at New Zealand's University of Otago have pushed the frontiers of quantum technology by developing a steerable 'optical tweezers' unit that uses intense laser beams to precisely split minute clouds of ultracold atoms and to smash them together....

What will climate policy mean for coal?

March 31, 2014 11:25 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Limiting climate change to 2°C means shutting down coal power plants - an unpopular proposition for coal power companies. But a new study shows that delaying climate policies could prove even worse for power plant owners. Coal power plants are a major source of greenhouse gas emissions....

Major breakthrough in stem cell manufacturing technology

March 31, 2014 11:19 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Scientists at The University of Nottingham have developed a new substance which could simplify the manufacture of cell therapy in the pioneering world of regenerative medicine. Cell therapy is an exciting and rapidly developing area of medicine in which stem cells have the potential to repair human tissue....

'Cosmic barometer' could reveal violent events in universe's past

March 31, 2014 11:15 am | by EurekAlert! | Comments

Exploding stars, random impacts involving comets and meteorites, and even near misses between two bodies can create regions of great heat and high pressure. Researchers from Imperial College London have now developed a method for analysing the pressure experienced by tiny samples of organic material....


More than 1,000 satellites are flying overhead

March 31, 2014 11:11 am | by MALCOLM RITTER, AP Science Writer | Comments

The spotting of ocean debris by satellites during the search for the lost Malaysian airliner has drawn attention to those orbiting platforms. A primer on what's in orbit, with help from Nicholas Johnson, who retired Thursday as NASA's chief scientist for orbital debris....


Amazon says no plans to offer free video service

March 31, 2014 11:08 am | by Associated Press | Comments

Amazon says it has no plans to offer a free streaming media service, addressing speculation ahead of a media event in New York next Wednesday. Spokeswoman Sally Fouts said Thursday that Amazon runs ads ahead of movie and game trailers, but the company has no plans to offer a free streaming media service....


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