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Melting of Arctic sea ice providing food for creatures: scientists say

US News - Wed, 04/05/2017 - 03:39

Melting of sea ice in the Arctic region is providing more and more food for a range of creatures in the region, a new research revealed.

In a recent study, researchers found massive blooms of phytoplankton growing under the Arctic Sea. Experts have linked the blooms to increasing global temperatures and melting of ice. However, they also find that the development is ensuring more food for local creatures/

Heidi Louise Sorensen explained that melted ponds create a little ecosystem beneath the surface of water. Algae and other microorganisms provide food for several marine creatures, which live at or near the seabed.

Speaking on the topic, Sorensen added, “Given that larger and larger area of melt ponds is being formed in the Arctic, we can expect the release of more and more food for creatures in the polar sea.”

Sorensen, a Ph.D. student at the University of South Denmark, and other researchers from Aarhus University, made the discovery after studying the growing phenomenon of the melting of sea ice and melt ponds in the region.

Typically, phytoplankton can not grow under the ice as ice blocks sunlight from reaching the water below. But, increasing global temperatures have caused an unprecedented melting of ice in the Arctic Sea, allowing sunlight to enter the water below and massive blooms of phytoplankton to grow.

General: Environment

Online images depict Galaxy S8 Plus prototypes with dual camera setups

US News - Tue, 04/04/2017 - 03:55

A short video and a couple of images swirling around the web are depicting a number of Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus prototypes with dual camera setups.

The leaked video and images apparently corroborating some older reports that suggested that the Korean manufacturer had plans to integrate two main lenses into the rear of its newest flagship smartphone.

Those previous reports, which began appearing in late August, were promptly dismissed by several industry insiders who eventually ended up being correct as both the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8 Plus smartphones were launched with single-lens main camera setups.

Nevertheless, the video and images depicting numerous Galaxy S8 Plus prototypes featuring dual camera setups continue to swirl the web. However, the handsets shown in the images are not particularly as eye-catching as the official devises look like.

Unlike conventional camera systems, dual camera setups allow original equipment makers to enhance on the imaging capabilities of their devices without fitting a smartphone with a large camera bump. Some smartphone makers like Huawei and LG are already utilizing this technology.

Technology: TechnologyCompanies: Samsung

Astronaut Peggy Whitson breaks spacewalking record for women

US News - Sun, 04/02/2017 - 06:11

NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson recently set a new spacewalking record for women in space as she along with a fellow astronaut ventured outside the International Space Station (ISS) for the second time within a week.

Whitson and Expedition 50 Commander Shane Kimbrough set out at 7:29 a.m. EDT and spent more than 7 hours working outside the space station.

They outfitted a recently relocated docking module to ready it for arrival of commercial crew spacecraft in 2018. The pair upgraded a computer relay box, connected power & data cables to Pressurized Mating Adapter 3, and covered the lately vacated CBM port PMA-3.

Despite the success of the mission, the spacewalk was not all triumphs as the pair accidentally lost some apparatus in the vacuum of space.

Four hours and 23 minutes into the spacewalk, Whitson broke the record for cumulative time spent by any woman in spacewalking. She broke the previously set record of NASA astronaut Suni Williams, who spent a total of 50 hours and 40 minutes in spacewalking.

After completing her most recent spacewalk, Whitson shattered that record, racking up 53 hours and 22 minutes in total.

Companies: NASAGeneral: Science NewsPeople: Peggy Whitson

Fang blenny fish’s venom may help develop new painkillers

US News - Sun, 04/02/2017 - 04:31

A new study by a team of Australian and British scientists has suggested that tiny fanged fish called blennies’ unusual venom could be used to produce new painkillers.

The fang blenny has two huge canines jutting out of the lower jaw. Members of this species use their venom to put off attackers; and not to kill their preys.

Associate Prof. Bryan Fry of University of Queensland's School of Biological Sciences Venom Evolution Lab led a team of researchers who conducted a series of experiments on lab mice and found that the venom is painless.

The venom of the fearless 1.5-3- inch swimmers just numbs potential predators; rather than triggering pain in their bodies.

Sharing their findings, the researchers reported, “The fish injects other fish with opioid peptides that act like heroin or morphine, inhibiting pain rather than causing it. The venom causes the bitten fish to become slower in movement and dizzy by acting on their opioid receptors.”

The findings of the new study were detailed in the most recent edition of the journal Current Biology.

General: Science NewsResearchRegion: Australia

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