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+ - March 20 solar eclipse to fade 35,000 MW of electricity from European grid->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Europeans on March 20 will witness a full solar eclipse and as that happens, a whopping 35,000 MW of solar energy will gradually fade from Europe’s electrical system before being re-injected into the system. According to European Network of Transmission System Operators of Electricity (ENTSO-E) European transmission system operators (TSOs) have been preparing for the March 20 solar eclipse for several months now. ENTSO-E has been busy evaluating the risk involved and mulling steps to mitigate them with the aim of bringing the risk of an incident back to the security level equal to that of a standard operating day."
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+ - New theory could explain how life began on Earth; has nothing to do with God->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Jeremy England, a young researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has put forward a new physics theory that could hold the key to answering the question of how life began on our planet. The theory holds the potential of putting God ‘on the ropes’ as it claims that life began out of a necessity and wasn’t accidental. Jeremy has essentially derived a mathematical formula that he believes holds the key to answering the essential difference between living and non-living objects. Jeremy derived the formula from already established physics – the second law of thermodynamics. The new formula indicates that when a group of atoms is driven by an external source of energy (like the sun or chemical fuel) and surrounded by a heat bath (like the ocean or atmosphere), it will often gradually restructure itself in order to dissipate increasingly more energy. This, he claims, could mean that under certain conditions matter inexorably acquires the key physical attribute associated with life. “You start with a random clump of atoms, and if you shine light on it for long enough, it should not be so surprising that you get a plant,” England said."
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+ - British scientists working on 'Star Wars' bionic hand->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Scientists in the UK are working on a new prosthetic limb that could pave way for a bionic hand similar to the one used by Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker. The project is being led by scientists at Newcastle University and includes researchers from various UK varsities including Leeds, Essex, Keele, Southampton and Imperial College London. Researchers are aiming to develop an electronic device that is capable of connecting to the neural network of a human and establish a two-way communications with the brain."
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+ - Stephen Hawking: Aggression has potential of destroying human civilization->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Aggression is one human failing that celebrity scientist Stephen Hawking would like to correct as it holds the potential of destroying human civilisation and even wipe humans off the planet. Hawking expressed his views while escorting Adaeze Uyanwah — London’s Official Guest of Honour — around London's Science Museum. Uyanwah asked Hawking what human shortcomings he would alter, and which virtues he would enhance if this was possible. To this he replied: "The human failing I would most like to correct is aggression. It may have had survival advantage in caveman days, to get more food, territory, or partner with whom to reproduce, but now it threatens to destroy us all. A major nuclear war would be the end of civilization, and maybe the end of the human race.""
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+ - New contender in mass extinction theories - Dark Matter->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "There have been many theories that claim to put forward reasons behind mass extinction of dinosaurs, but none have implicated the role of dark matter until now. A new research claims that Earth's infrequent yet predictable path around and through Milky Way's disc may have a direct and significant effect on geological and biological phenomena occurring on Earth. The research adds that dark matter may perturb the orbits of comets and lead to additional heating in the Earth's core, both of which could be connected with mass extinction events. In his research published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, New York University Biology Professor Michael Rampino analyzed the pattern of the Earth's passes through the Galactic disc and found that these disc passages seem to correlate with times of comet impacts and mass extinctions of life. The famous comet strike 66 million ago that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs is just one example, he notes."
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+ - Journal Nature to offer double-blind peer review starting March->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "One of the top science journals, Nature, will be offering double-blind peer review starting March in a bid to eliminate personal biases, such as those based on gender, seniority, reputation and affiliations. Nature notes that peer-review process alternatives are proposed often and some researchers have even advocated use of open peer review wherein the identity of the authors and reviewers are known. Open peer review process supporters argue that such a method with increased transparency will limit bias. But a recent study involving 4000 researchers has shown that 76 per cent researchers agree to effectiveness of double-blind peer review as compared to just 20 per cent who are in favour of open review."
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+ - Researchers eye new Leukemia cure through simulation of blood development

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Researchers at the University of Cambridge and Microsoft Research have joined hands to develop a computer model that provides for the first time a comprehensive simulation of development of blood cells paving way for better understanding of the control mechanisms that keep blood production normal while also paving way for new treatments for leukemia and lymphoma. The research is published in journal Nature [paywalled]."

+ - World most dangerous toy 'Gilbert Atomic Energy Lab' goes on display at museum->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "The Gilbert Atomic Energy Lab — dubbed as the world's most dangerous toy — has gone on display at the Ulster Museum in Northern Ireland. The toy has earned the title of most dangerous toy because it includes four types of uranium ore, three sources of radiation, and a Geiger counter that enables parents to measure just how contaminated their child had become. The Gilbert Atomic Energy Lab was only available between 1951 and 1952 and was the most elaborate atomic energy educational kit ever produced. The toy was one of the most costly toy of the time retailing at $50 — said to be equivalent to $400 today."
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+ - Mars One outs final tally of 100 candidates for one-way trip to the red planet->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "The Mars One project has picked its 100 candidates out of the initial 202,586 applicants for its next round of Mars One Astronaut Selection Process which will ultimately see around 40 undertake a one-way trip to Mars to set up a colony on the red planet. 50 men and 50 women make up the 100 candidates with 39 from the Americas, 31 from Europe, 16 from Asia, 7 from Africa, and 7 from Oceania."
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+ - Humanity at risk; scientists highlight 12 global threats->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "We know of many risks that threaten human existence on our planet, but scientists over at Oxford University have for the first time identified 12 global risks that threaten our existence. Not only have the researchers drawn up a list of risks that threaten our civilisation, they have for the first time provided a structured overview of key events related to the 12 risks and have tried to provide initial rough quantifications for the probabilities of these impacts. The risks include Extreme climate change; nuclear war; ecological catastrophe; global pandemic; global system collapse; major asteroid impact; supervolcano; synthetic biology; nanotechnology; artificial intelligence; uncertain risks; and Future Bad Global Governance."
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+ - Interstellar's team provide insights on black hole in new paper->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "The work done by Interstellar’s visual effects team is now more than just mere science fiction as their work could find use in providing new insights into the powerful effects of black holes. In a paper published in Classical and Quantum Gravity, the team has described an innovative computer code that was used to generate the movie’s iconic images of the wormhole, black hole and various celestial objects and explained how the code has led them to new science discoveries."
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+ - Our oceans are being fed 8.8m tons of plastic annually, alarming study finds->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "According to a new study that tracked marine debris from its source, 8.8 million tons of plastic ends up in the world oceans annually. Plastic waste is a global problem and until now there wasn't a comprehensive study that highlighted how much plastic waste was making it to the oceans. Latest study by researchers over at University of Georgia claim that if all the plastic waste being dumped to oceans is accounted for, it will be equivalent of five grocery bags full of plastic debris dotting each foot of coastline around the world."
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+ - ESA complete spaceplane test flight; IXV safely returns to Earth->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "The European Space Agency (ESA) has successfully completed the first test flight of its Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle (IXV), as planned, wherein it saw the wingless spaceplane land in one piece in the Pacific Ocean. A Vega VV04 rocket took the IXV to an altitude of 340 km from where it separated and continued up to 412 km. Reentering from this suborbital path, it recorded a vast amount of data from more than 300 advanced and conventional sensors. According to ESA the spaceplane few east around the globe during its descent and finally landed safely in the the Pacific Ocean west of the Galapagos Islands at about 15:20 GMT"
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+ - Researchers design bionic leaf capable of converting sunlight into liquid fuel->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Artificial leaf created waves the moment it was announced by Daniel Nocera back in 2011 and his latest research, published in PNAS, involves utilising hydrogen from this artificial leaf, carbon dioxide from another source and feeding it to bacterium Ralstonia eutropha to create liquid fuel. The new system involves using the “artificial leaf” to split water into hydrogen and oxygen; carbon dioxide from another source and a bacterium Ralstonia eutropha engineered to convert carbon dioxide plus hydrogen into the liquid fuel isopropanol."
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+ - ESA all set to launch, test re-entry of its wingless space plane IXV->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "European Space Agency (ESA) has revealed its preparedness for the launch of its experimental “space plane” dubbed Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle (IXV) on Wednesday. ESA’s car-sized, wingless vessel is being tested for re-entry and could build a platform on which design of future reusable spacecraft are based on. IXV will be launched on Vega flight VV04 at 13:00 GMT (14:00 CET) for a suborbital flight to test technologies and critical systems for Europe’s future automated reentry systems from Kourou, French Guiana, 11 February 2015."
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