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A new approach to rechargeable batteries - (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) A new battery technology developed at MIT, based on a metal-mesh membrane and electrodes made of molten sodium, could open the way for more intermittent, renewable power sources on the grid....
Feed Source: www.eurekalert.org

Researchers reveal how microbes cope in phosphorus-deficient tropical soil - (DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory) A team led by the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has uncovered how certain soil microbes cope in a phosphorus-poor environment to survive in a tropical ecosystem. Their novel approach could be applied in other ecosystems to study various nutrient limitations and inform agriculture and terrestrial biosphere modeling....
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How climate change weakens coral 'immune systems' - (Ohio State University) Researchers at The Ohio State University and their colleagues have demonstrated how two separate effects of climate change combine to destabilize different populations of coral microbes -- that is, unbalance the natural coral 'microbiome.'...
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Study may improve strategies for reducing nutrient runoff into Mississippi River - (University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences) Every summer, the Gulf of Mexico is flooded with excess nitrogen and phosphorus from wastewater treatment plants and farm fields along the Mississippi River basin. And every summer, those nutrients create a 'dead zone' in the Gulf. To address the issue, the US Environmental Protection Agency formed a task force and required 12 states to develop strategies to reduce agricultural runoff....
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Swansea University research helps break ground to clean up land - (Swansea University) Researchers at Swansea University's Complex Flow Lab have been exploring the intricate shapes that emerge when air is injected into soil. Published in Physical Review Applied, these findings could one day be used to speed up the decontamination of industrial brownfield sites?which the United Kingdom currently has over 400,000 hectares of....
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Biomarkers helped solving the mystery of 500-million-year-old macroorganisms - (Lomonosov Moscow State University) A postgraduate student of the Faculty of Geology of MSU, working with an international scientific group, participated in chemical analysis of biomarkers -- compounds that remained after the decomposition of organic remains of the genus Beltanelliformis. These organisms populated the Earth in the Ediacaran period (about 575-541 million years ago), and their position on the evolutionary tree was unknown. The obtained data showed that Beltanelliformis were colonies of cyanobacteria....
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Global temperature targets will be missed within decades unless carbon emissions reversed - (University of Southampton) In their latest paper, published in the February issue of Nature Geoscience, Dr Philip Goodwin from the University of Southampton and Professor Ric Williams from the University of Liverpool have projected that if immediate action isn't taken, the earth's global average temperature is likely to rise to 1.5C above the period before the industrial revolution within the next 17-18 years, and to 2.0C in 35-41 years if the carbon emission rate remains at its present-day value....
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Forest fire risk assessment using hotspot analysis in GIS - (Bentham Science Publishers) This research identified and prioritized forest fire hotspots, highlighted the shortage of fire stations within the identified hotspots and suggested the suitable locations for new fire stations in Brunei Muara district....
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Seabed mining could destroy ecosystems - (University of Exeter) Mining on the ocean floor could do irreversible damage to deep-sea ecosystems, says a new study of seabed mining proposals around the world....
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Breakthrough 1,000 degree C solar to get first commercial trial - (SolarPACES) A new solar technology is twice as efficient, cutting the cost of solar thermal energy, by raising operating temperatures to 1,000C, almost twice the 565C molten salt temperature in current concentrated solar power (CSP) tower plants....
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Double trouble: Moisture, not just heat impacts sex of sea turtle hatchlings - (Florida Atlantic University) Male sea turtles are disappearing and not just in Australia. FAU researchers found that 97 to 100 percent of hatchlings in southeast Florida have been female since 2002. They are the first to show why and how moisture conditions inside the nest in addition to heat affect the development and sex ratios of turtle embryos, using a novel technique they developed to estimate sex ratios with a male-specific, transcriptional molecular marker Sox9....
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New fuel cell technology runs on solid carbon - (DOE/Idaho National Laboratory) Advancements in a fuel cell technology powered by solid carbon could make electricity generation from coal and biomass cleaner and more efficient, according to a paper published this week. Innovations in the anode, the electrolyte and the fuel allow the fuel cell to utilize more carbon, operate at lower temperatures and show higher maximum power densities than earlier direct carbon fuel cells (DCFCs). The results appear in this week's edition of Advanced Materials....
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Vaccines not protecting farmed fish from disease - (University of Waterloo) The vaccines used by commercial fish farmers are not protecting fish from disease, according to a new study....
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Siberian scientists learned how to reduce harmful emissions from HPPs - (Siberian Federal University) A team of scientists from Siberian Federal University (SFU) and their colleagues from Novosibirsk and the Netherlands modeled the process of coal burning in HPP boilers and found out which type of fuel produced less harmful emissions. The study was published in Fuel journal....
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Making fuel cells for a fraction of the cost - (University of California - Riverside) In a paper published today in Small, researchers at the University of California, Riverside, describe the development of an inexpensive, efficient catalyst material for a type of fuel cell called a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC), which turns the chemical energy of hydrogen into electricity and is among the most promising fuel cell types to power cars and electronics....
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New metal-semiconductor interface for brain-inspired computing - (University of Groningen) One of the big challenges in computer architecture is integrating storage, memory and processing in one unit. This would make computers faster and more energy efficient. University of Groningen physicists have taken a big step towards this goal by combining a niobium doped strontium titanate (SrTiO3) semiconductor with ferromagnetic cobalt. At the interface, this creates a spin-memristor with storage abilities, paving the way for neuromorphic computing architectures. The results were published in Scientific Reports....
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Pathway opens to minimize waste in solar energy capture - (ARC Centre of Excellence in Exciton Science) Researchers at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Exciton Science have made an important discovery with significant implications for the future of solar cell material design....
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Climate engineering, once started, would have severe impacts if stopped - (Rutgers University) Facing a climate crisis, we may someday spray sulfur dioxide into the upper atmosphere to form a cloud that cools the Earth, but suddenly stopping the spraying would have a severe global impact on animals and plants, according to the first study on the potential biological impacts of geoengineering, or climate intervention....
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Heat loss from the Earth triggers ice sheet slide towards the sea - (Aarhus University) In North-East Greenland, researchers have measured the loss of heat that comes up from the interior of the Earth. This enormous area is a geothermal 'hot spot' that melts the ice sheet from below and triggers the sliding of glaciers towards the sea....
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Crows 'hooked' on fast food - (University of St. Andrews) Biologists at the universities of St. Andrews and Edinburgh have discovered why some crows 'craft' elaborate hooked tools out of branched twigs....
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Kicking an old can of worms -- the origin of the head in annelids - (Royal Ontario Museum) Researchers at the Royal Ontario Museum and the University of Toronto have described an exceptionally well-preserved new fossil species of bristle worm called Kootenayscolex barbarensis. Discovered from the 508-million-year-old Marble Canyon fossil site in the Burgess Shale in Kootenay National Park, the new species helps rewrite our understanding of the origin of the head in annelids, a highly diverse group of animals which includes today's leeches and earthworms....
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Radioactivity from oil and gas wastewater persists in Pennsylvania stream sediments - (Duke University) More than seven years after Pennsylvania officials requested that the disposal of radium-laden fracking wastewater into surface waters be restricted, a new Duke study finds that high levels of radioactivity persist in stream sediments at three disposal sites. Radioactivity at these sites is 650 times higher than at unaffected sites upstream. The contamination comes from conventional, or non-fracked, oil and gas wastewater, which, under current state regulations, can still be treated and discharged into streams....
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Avangrid, UMass Lowell to collaborate on clean energy - (University of Massachusetts Lowell) A new research partnership between Avangrid, its subsidiary Central Maine Power and UMass Lowell will expand the use of clean-energy technology -- in hydropower, wind energy, power grids, energy storage, data science and more -- benefiting consumers, students and the environment....
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Conserving our biodiversity: Priorities for well-connected protected areas - (European Commission Joint Research Centre) The Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Commission's science and knowledge service, has measured progress and shortfalls in the connectivity of protected areas in countries across the world, identifying the main priorities to sustain or improve connectivity in each country....
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Climate change linked to more flowery forests, FSU study shows - (Florida State University) New research from a Florida State University scientist has revealed a surprising relationship between surging atmospheric carbon dioxide and flower blooms in a remote tropical forest....
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