Week in Science (28 Mar – 3 Apr 2021)

Science News related to New Auroral Feature on Jupiter, New Type of Ancient Crater Lake on Mars, Ultra-Thin Terahertz Source, Warning System for Self-Driving Cars, Next-Generation Biofuel, Kirigami-Style Fabrication for New 3D Nanostructures, Deep Learning to Improve Air Quality Forecasts, Holographic Endoscopes, First X-Rays from Uranus, Composition of 70 Percent of Our Universe, Laser-Cooling Antimatter, Antarctic Glacier’s Tipping Point


Note: None of the news bits (and cover picture) given here are written/owned by NewAnced's authors. The links on each of the news bits will redirect to the news source. Content given under each headline is a basic gist and not the full story.

1. Scientists Discover A New Auroral Feature on Jupiter


Source: Southwest Research Institute 29 Mar 2021


The SwRI-led Ultraviolet Spectrograph (UVS) orbiting Jupiter aboard NASA’s Juno spacecraft has detected new faint aurora features, characterized by ring-like emissions, which expand rapidly over time. SwRI scientists determined that charged particles coming from the edge of Jupiter’s massive magnetosphere triggered these auroral emissions.

2. Researchers Discover New Type of Ancient Crater Lake on Mars


Source: Brown University 30 Mar 2021


Researchers have discovered a previously unknown type of ancient crater lake on Mars that could reveal clues about the planet’s early climate. The research team describes an as-yet unnamed crater with some puzzling characteristics. The crater’s floor has unmistakable geologic evidence of ancient stream beds and ponds, yet there’s no evidence of inlet channels where water could have entered the crater from outside, and no evidence of groundwater activity where it could have bubbled up from below.

3. Scientists Develop Ultra-Thin Terahertz Source


Source: University of Sussex 30 Mar 2021


Physicists have developed an extremely thin, large-area semiconductor surface source of terahertz, composed of just a few atomic layers and compatible with existing electronic platforms. The thin layers can be placed on top of existing objects and devices, meaning they are able to place a terahertz source in places that would have been inconceivable otherwise, including everyday object such as a teapot or even a work of art – opening up huge potential for anti-counterfeiting and ‘the internet of things’ - as well as previously incompatible electronics, such as a next generation mobile phone.


Original written by: Alice Ingall

4. New Early Warning System for Self-Driving Cars


Source: Technical University of Munich (TUM) 30 Mar 2021


A team of researchers has developed a new early warning system for vehicles that uses artificial intelligence to learn from thousands of real traffic situations. A study of the system was carried out in cooperation with the BMW Group. The results show that, if used in today’s self-driving vehicles, it can warn seven seconds in advance against potentially critical situations that the cars cannot handle alone – with over 85% accuracy.

5. Shining, Colored LED Lighting on Microalgae for Next-Generation Biofuel


Source: American Institute of Physics 30 Mar 2021


As ethanol, biodiesel, and other biofuels continue to present challenges, such as competing with food security or lacking the technology for more efficient and low-cost production, microalgae are gaining momentum as a biofuel energy crop. In a new study, researchers showed how a combination of monochromatic red and blue LED illumination on one type of microalga can enhance its growth and increase the biosynthesis of critical components, such as lipids, for microalgae feedstock development.

6. Kirigami-Style Fabrication May Enable New 3D Nanostructures


Source: Penn State 30 Mar 2021


A new technique that mimics the ancient Japanese art of kirigami may offer an easier way to fabricate complex 3D nanostructures for use in electronics, manufacturing and health care. Kirigami enhances the Japanese art form of origami, which involves folding paper to create 3D structural designs, by strategically incorporating cuts to the paper prior to folding. The method enables artists to create sophisticated three-dimensional structures more easily.


Original written by: Jamie Oberdick

7. Scientists Turn to Deep Learning to Improve Air Quality Forecasts


Source: Penn State 30 Mar 2021


Air pollution from the burning of fossil fuels impacts human health but predicting pollution levels at a given time and place remains challenging, according to a team of scientists who are turning to deep learning to improve air quality estimates. Results of the team’s study could be helpful for modelers examining how economic factors like industrial productivity and health factors like hospitalizations change with pollution levels.


Original written by: Matthew Carroll

8. Using Holographic Endoscopes to Observe Distant Objects


Source: American Institute of Physics 30 Mar 2021


Scientists are developing tools to observe the biological machinery in in vivo animal models to be able to understand and better treat severe brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and many other conditions. Holographic endoscopes attracted researchers’ interest because of their potential to conduct minimally invasive observations inside the human body.

9. First X-Rays from Uranus Discovered


Source: Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics 31 Mar 2021


Astronomers have detected X-rays from Uranus for the first time, using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. This result may help scientists learn more about this enigmatic ice giant planet in our solar system. In the new study, researchers used Chandra observations taken in Uranus in 2002 and then again in 2017. They saw a clear detection of X-rays from the first observation, just analyzed recently, and a possible flare of X-rays in those obtained fifteen years later.

10. New Study Sows Doubt About the Composition of 70 Percent of Our Universe


Source: University of Copenhagen - Faculty of Science 31 Mar 2021


Researchers the world over have long believed that 70 percent of the universe is composed of dark energy, a substance that makes it possible for the universe to expand at an ever-increasing rate. But in a new study, researchers tested a model which suggests that the universe’s expansion is due to a dark substance with a kind of magnetic force. Should the model stand, it means that dark energy simply doesn’t exist, according to the researchers.

11. Scientists Successfully Laser-Cool Antimatter for The First Time


Source: Swansea University 31 Mar 2021


Scientists have demonstrated laser cooling of antihydrogen atoms for the first time. The groundbreaking achievement produces colder antimatter than ever before and enables an entirely new class of experiments, helping scientists learn more about antimatter in future.

12. Evidence of Antarctic Glacier’s Tipping Point Confirmed for First Time


Source: Northumbria University 31 Mar 2021


Researchers have confirmed for the first time that Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica could cross tipping points, leading to a rapid and irreversible retreat which would have significant consequences for global sea level. Their study shows that the glacier has at least three distinct tipping points. The third and final event, triggered by ocean temperatures increasing by 1.2C, leads to an irreversible retreat of the entire glacier.


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