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Environment - Physics - 29.11.2016
Simulations for More Efficient Power Stations
Simulations for More Efficient Power Stations
In most cases, electricity is produced when water is heated and transformed into vapour. Vapour bubbles in the water play a decisive role in this process by collecting in a layer at a heated wall.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 15.11.2016
Antarctic Snowscapes for Predicting the Weather
Antarctic Snowscapes for Predicting the Weather
EPFL scientists measured for the first time - at centimeter resolutions - how the snowscape of Antarctic ice in the sea changed, before and after a blizzard. This data will help build better weather models for the South Pole and the world's climate. EPFL scientists provided the first detailed measurements of how a blizzard affects snow cover on an Antarctic ice floe.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 24.10.2016
Preferentially Earth-sized planets with lots of water
Preferentially Earth-sized planets with lots of water
Computer simulations by astrophysicists at the University of Bern of the formation of planets orbiting in the habitable zone of low mass stars such as Proxima Centauri show that these planets are most likely to be roughly the size of the Earth and to contain large amounts of water.

Life Sciences - Environment - 24.10.2016
Researching phytoplankton in zero gravity
Researching phytoplankton in zero gravity
Swiss researchers have used a parabolic flight to investigate the effects of weightlessness on biological and physical processes. On board was an experiment from ETH Zurich designed to understand the influence of gravity on the migratory behaviour of aquatic microorganisms. A high-flying and unusual experiment: 'We were able to test an important hypothesis: changes in relative gravity, which routinely occur in aquatic environments due to turbulence, have a significant impact on the behaviour of microorganisms,' reports Roman Stocker after the second Swiss zero-g research flight.

Environment - 19.10.2016
From trees to paper: how Swiss wood impacts the environment
From trees to paper: how Swiss wood impacts the environment
Wood has a largely favourable environmental effect. A study of the National Research Programme "Resource Wood" recommends using wood more widely as a source of energy and as a building material.

Life Sciences - Environment - 05.10.2016
Hydraulics is a key driver of microbial life in streams and rivers
Hydraulics is a key driver of microbial life in streams and rivers
A new study has found that hydraulics determines microbial lifestyles along streams and rivers, with important implications for river health, biodiversity, and water quality. In streams and rivers, bacteria, algae, and other microorganisms form tight-knit communities that feed the ecosystem, drive its biodiversity, and purify its water.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 29.09.2016
Swiss space research reaches for the sky
Swiss space research reaches for the sky
The Rosetta mission is coming to an end, but the next expeditions across our solar system are ready for lift-off, carrying with them a number of state-of-the-art devices made in Switzerland.

Life Sciences - Environment - 20.09.2016
Fish Against Monster Worms
Fish Against Monster Worms
Eunice aphroditois, also known as the Bobbit worm, buries its long body deep in the sand, leaving only its powerful jaws protruding above the surface. It uses these to grab hold of unsuspecting prey and drag it down into its burrow within a fraction of a second. Biologists from Basel University have taken a closer look at the gruesome hunter and its prey and noticed a fascinating behavioral pattern: prey fish defend themselves against the monstrous worm by attacking it with water jets and forcing it to retreat.

Life Sciences - Environment - 12.09.2016
Ground squirrels use the sun to hide food
Ground squirrels use the sun to hide food
Jamie Samson and Marta Manser from the Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental 1Studies at UZH studied colonies of Cape ground squirrels ( Xerus inauris ) in the wild at the Kalahari Research Center in South Africa. The diurnal rodents temporarily store their food reserves in several hiding places.

Environment - 05.09.2016
New simulations of wind power generation
New simulations of wind power generation
ETH researcher Stefan Pfenninger and his colleague Iain Staffell from Imperial College London have developed new multi-decade simulations of wind power production in Europe. In doing so, they have uncovered significant distortions in the data used in the past, and have produced fresh simulations of wind power output with country-specific corrections.

Environment - Physics - 25.08.2016
An effective and low-cost solution for storing solar energy
An effective and low-cost solution for storing solar energy
25.08.16 - Solar energy can be stored by converting it into hydrogen. But current methods are too expensive and don't last long. Using commercially available solar cells and none of the usual rare metals, researchers at EPFL and CSEM have now designed a device that outperforms in stability, efficiency and cost.

Health - Environment - 10.08.2016
A Breakthrough in Combating Malaria with Odour-Baited Trap for Mosquitoes
A Breakthrough in Combating Malaria with Odour-Baited Trap for Mosquitoes
The use of a newly-developed mosquito trap incorporating human odour has resulted in a 70% decline in the population of the most significant malaria mosquito on the Kenyan island of Rusinga. In the following, the number of malaria infections declined by 30% according to a «Lancet»-study published today.

Environment - Astronomy / Space Science - 03.08.2016
For your next swim: Lake Geneva forecasts now online
For your next swim: Lake Geneva forecasts now online
A new web service provides real-time information and forecasts of water temperature and surface water currents.

Agronomy / Food Science - Environment - 27.07.2016
Two neonicotinoid insecticides may have inadvertent contraceptive effects on male honey bees
Two neonicotinoid insecticides may have inadvertent contraceptive effects on male honey bees
Male honey bees, called drones, can be affected by two neonicotinoid insecticides by reducing male honey bee lifespan and number of living sperm. Both insecticides are currently partially banned in Europe. Researchers from Bern, Switzerland, together with partners from Thailand and Germany, call for more thorough environmental risk assessments of these neonicotinoids.

Environment - 06.07.2016
A micro winery? that makes wine continuously
A micro winery? that makes wine continuously
An American professor, working in collaboration with EPFL, is developing a miniature device for producing wine non-stop and testing different fermentation processes.

Environment - 01.07.2016
A new tool to ensure the safety of injecting CO2 underground
A new tool to ensure the safety of injecting CO2 underground
01.07.16 - Sequestering carbon dioxide underground is likely to play a key role in meeting reduction targets set at the IPCC conference in Paris last year.

Life Sciences - Environment - 30.06.2016
Jasmonate-deficient tobacco plants attract herbivorous mammals
Jasmonate-deficient tobacco plants attract herbivorous mammals
Media releases, information for representatives of the media Media Relations (E) Tobacco plants which lack the hormones responsible for nicotine production are feasted on by rabbits and other mammals. Coyote tobacco (Nicotiana attenuata) produces a potent neurotoxic substance: nicotine. The production of nicotine is regulated by plant hormones called jasmonates.

Environment - Innovation - 22.06.2016
Energy research in a vertical
Energy research in a vertical
In the district of the future, favors amongst neighbors will go much further than lending a lawnmower or giving some sugar for baking.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 16.06.2016
Global ethane concentrations rising
Global ethane concentrations rising
Measurements at 49 sites all over the world show that, since 2010, long-declining global atmospheric ethane concentrations are on the uptick again in the Northern Hemisphere. The new study by an international team of researchers concluded that the rise was most likely largely due to greater oil and gas production in the US.

Environment - 14.06.2016
The causes of soil consumption
The causes of soil consumption
The soil is still under threat from urban sprawl. Small municipalities with little planning capacity and more easily accessible conurbations in particular are doing little to counter the issue. Researchers from the National Research Programme "Sustainable Use of Soil as a Resource" (NRP 68) have analysed the reasons for this by surveying Swiss municipalities.