Humans have been observing sunspots for over 2,000 years, but never has it been as simple as this. Thanks to NASA's new iPhone app, watching for intense bursts of magnetic radiation is as easy as playing Plants vs. Zombies or checking out the Yelp! review of the closest taco truck.
In a dangerous legacy of the world's deadliest conflict, 150,000 World War Two-era sea mines litter the Baltic Sea. The danger these bombs pose to a proposed gas pipeline has prompted Russia to hire the British firm Bactec International to clear the sea of unexploded ordnance. And for Bactec, that means it's time to bring out the robots.
Producing a biofuel cheap enough to compete at the pump with oil has remained as elusive as a ghost on the walls of Elsinore castle. But this week, two Danish companies announced they had developed enzymes capable of breaking down cellulose into ethanol cheaply enough to produce $2-a-gallon gas.
Australia has hosted a wide range of weird creatures, from rabid wombats to Yahoo Serious. And now, the Australian government wants to see what other interesting critters are hiding out on that island. To that end, they are funding a series of expeditions to the outback that the Environment Minister has labeled "Bush Blitz".
Much like your four-year-old nephew, RNA can only read three-letter combinations. Called codons, these three DNA-base-pair groups form the phrases that RNA translates into the 21 amino acids that underlie all life. But now, University of Cambridge researcher Jason Chin has engineered more literate RNA, capable of reading codons composed of four base pairs. This expands the possible number of codons from 64 to 320, and opens the door for a whole new line of artificial amino acids.
Until the LHC finally gets up to full speed, Brookhaven National Lab's Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) remains the world's most powerful heavy ion smasher. And on Monday, they showed off some of that power by announcing that a recent collision resulted in the hottest matter ever recorded.
As the Northeast and South brace for yet another day of record snow fall, thousands of Americans are struggling with ways to deal with treacherous road conditions. Thankfully, some intrepid Russian DIYers have a plan: convert your car to use tank treads.
Gadget lovers are nothing if not fickle, always ditching their older tech for pretty young things. And recently, all the attention on the iPhone and Google's Android OS has made Microsoft seem a bit like Norma Desmond, wandering around the ruins of the Redmond campus muttering "I AM big, it was the platforms that got small."
But now, with the revelation of Windows Phone Series 7, Microsoft is once again ready for its closeup.
For those who want to start saving the planet at home, lighting presents a vexing paradox. While incandescent bulbs are wildly inefficient, compact fluorescent bulbs contain hazardous chemicals. With funding from the Department of Energy, RTI International claims to have solved the problem with the invention of nanofiber bulbs more efficient than regular lights, and more environmentally sound than fluorescent bulbs.