A healthy mix of philosophical awe and ridiculous humor~This blog contains the following (Click each for the link!):
James, 23, Oklahoma, Clinical Lab Chemistry Tech, Part-Time Panda
It’s alive! Buried deep in the Siberian permafrost scientists found a ‘giant virus’ that has been asleep for 30,000 years. Named Pithovirus sibericum, it contains 500 genes and was revived in the lab. The researchers are now trying to assess if ancient viruses such as this one could pose a threat for humans. via Science Alert/fb
Let’s hope this wasn’t the stupidest thing we’ve ever done.
there are about 16046540210 movies that explain exactly why this could be the stupidest thing we’ve ever done
A beautifully animated description of what we know about the creation of the Universe, so far.
We can see most of the how, though who knows how long this can last. Does the universe build in enough time for the beings that study it, to reveal why it happened? We’ll see I guess. :D
This lamp absorbs 150 times more CO2 than a tree
It’s still in the “so crazy it just might work” stage, but these microalgae-powered lamps, invented by French biochemist Pierre Calleja, could absorb a ton of carbon from the air every year. That’s as much as 150 to 200 trees. [x]
YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND. This is ingenious.
The design is a light bulb surrounded by a glass casing. The glass is filled with (water based) media and microalgae. The top is permeable to gasses so that gas exchange can occur. All of the wiring is linked to the grid underground.
Since the light source is inside, it gets scattered and “dimmed” by the water and algae. This makes it less glaringly bright and scatters the light wider, which is good for a street light. It is not longer white light as well, which helps make it easier on the eyes while still providing light.
At the same time, it provides the light for photosynthesis in the algae, so they are continuously exchanging CO2 for O2, not just in the day. It also provides a source of heat, which helps keep the algae from going dormant during cold weather (as in the snowy picture above).
And notice how I did not specify permeability - that’s because NOx’s (NO and NO2) are also permeable and can be used as nitrogen sources to microalgae. In fact, algae are relatively low maintenance. As autotrophs, they don’t require super complex media, not does it really need to be changed/added to. (I’m actually fairly certain that there would still be algae in these tanks a year later; it may need to be cleaned or something, but there would be some living algae.)
and they’re so pretty too
*how to spawn demons: a beginner’s guide to chemistry
It is important for scientists to be aware of what our discoveries mean, socially and politically. It’s a noble goal that science should be apolitical, acultural, and asocial, but it can’t be, because it’s done by people who are all those things.
A binary star is a star system consisting of two stars orbiting around their common center of mass. The brighter star is called the primary and the other is its companion star or secondary.
Binary stars are often detected optically, in which case they are called visual binaries. Many visual binaries have long orbital periods of several centuries or millennia and therefore have orbits which are uncertain or poorly known. They may also be detected by indirect techniques, such as spectroscopy (spectroscopic binaries) or astrometry (astrometric binaries). If a binary star happens to orbit in a plane along our line of sight, its components will eclipse and transit each other; these pairs are called eclipsing binaries, or, as they are detected by their changes in brightness during eclipses and transits, photometric binaries.
The first GIF shows an artist’s impression of an eclipsing binary star system. As the two stars orbit each other they pass in front of one another and their combined brightness, seen from a distance, decreases.
Algol, known colloquially as the Demon Star, is a bright star in the constellation Perseus. It is one of the best known eclipsing binaries, (2nd GIF) although Algol is actually a three-star system (Beta Persei A, B, and C) in which the large and bright primary Beta Persei A is regularly eclipsed by the dimmer Beta Persei B.
The second animation was assembled from 55 images of the CHARA interferometer in the near-infrared H-band, sorted according to orbital phase.
Image credit: ESO/CHARA
I read the entire thing and now I’m crying and paranoid as fuck
Absolutely amazing read omg
look at this shit eating grin. this man thinks he has posed an unanswerable question to evolutionary biologists that will shake the very foundation of the theory of evolution to its core when any 14-year-old can tell you that we literally did not evolve from monkeys. amazing
Exciting news from the BBC: A man fitted with a bionic arm has regained his sense of ‘feel’.
Dennis Aabo, who lost his left hand in a firework accident nearly a decade ago, said the hand was “amazing”.
In laboratory tests he was able to tell the shape and stiffness of objects he picked up, even when blindfolded.
Although still in trial phase the success of this project is promising.
It will undoubtedly be very expensive, well beyond the means of most patients. And artificial hands still lack the precision and dexterity of the real thing.
The super-functioning bionic hand of science fiction films remains the stuff of fiction.
And 24 brief thoughts on the showdown.
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GE scientists are developing superhydrophobic surfaces to keep ice off of aviation equipment and wind turbines. The Slow Mo Guys captured this footage with their Phantom Flex camera on a recent trip to GE Global Research.
Water’s like NOPE NOPE NOPE
OH before I go to bed I should convey to you all the weirdest fact I learned today
I learned that when a caterpillar is metamorphosing into a butterfly within the cocoon, it is not, as I previously assumed, slowly growing wings and little antennae and whatever else. If we open a cocoon, apparently what we find is that the caterpillar has actually dissolved into a shapeless goo, from which the butterfly will be formed.
From which the butterfly is formed.
You can, of course, go the philosophical route with this: are they, then, the same creature, pre- and post- this complete reconstitution of the self? If the very brain, the nervous system, has been completely reassembled, how do we identify this as in any way the same?
So here’s the kicker.
Apparently one scientist figured he’d test this out by training a bunch of caterpillars to react negatively to a specific scent, which they would normally not react negatively to. This was all done prior to the cocoon stage.
And these butterflies. These post-goo, completely remade selves? They reacted negatively to the scent, too.
Top 5 misconceptions about evolution: A guide to demystify the foundation of modern biology.
Here is an infographic to help inform citizens. From my experience most people who misunderstand evolution are actually misinformed about what science is and how it operates. That said, here are five of the biggest barriers faced when one explains evolution - I have faced these and they are documented in the literature.
I hope you can build on my work and improve the communication between the scientists and the public.
Want to do more? If you want to donate to the cause of science education I suggest the National Center for Science Education http://ncse.com, your local university, or an equivalent organization. Volunteering at schools and inviting scientists into classrooms are two ways to encourage an informed society. Attend hearings if school boards start questioning evolution’s role in public curriculum. Raise a storm if anyone tries to ban science. Plus, it never hurts to reblog a well made evolution post.
Thank you followers for all your support!
Highly evolved infographic there.
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