news 2018

Computer Science Jul 16
Your torso is more intuitive - and more precise - than joysticks for piloting drones, both simulated and real, according to a recent study by EPFL scientists. Work is already underway to implement this new body-machine-interface technology for search and rescue with drones. Imagine piloting a drone using the movements of your torso only and leaving your head free to look around, much like a bird.
History Jul 12
History

Since the 16th century, Basel has been home to a mysterious papyrus. With mirror writing on both sides, it has puzzled generations of researchers.

Life Sciences Jul 12
Life Sciences

When a cell divides, its constituents are usually evenly distributed among the daughter cells. UZH researchers have now identified an enzyme that guarantees that cell constituents that are concentrated in organelles without a membrane are properly distributed.

Transport Jul 12
Transport

The one ideal asphalt for all conditions does not exist: climatic conditions, traffic frequencies and loads place different demands on the pavement.

Physics Jul 11
Physics

X-rays aid better understanding of electron mobility in a modern transistor The electronics industry expects a novel high-performance transistor made of gallium nitride to offer considerable advantages over present-day high-frequency transistors.


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Computer Science / Telecom - Innovation / Technology - 16.07.2018
Forget joysticks, use your torso to pilot drones
Your torso is more intuitive - and more precise - than joysticks for piloting drones, both simulated and real, according to a recent study by EPFL scientists. Work is already underway to implement this new body-machine-interface technology for search and rescue with drones. Imagine piloting a drone using the movements of your torso only and leaving your head free to look around, much like a bird.

History / Archeology - Literature / Linguistics - 12.07.2018
Mystery of the Basel papyrus solved
Mystery of the Basel papyrus solved
Since the 16th century, Basel has been home to a mysterious papyrus. With mirror writing on both sides, it has puzzled generations of researchers. A research team from the University of Basel has now discovered that it is an unknown medical document from late antiquity. The text was likely written by the famous Roman physician Galen.

Transport - Innovation / Technology - 12.07.2018
Tailor-made asphalt
Tailor-made asphalt
The one ideal asphalt for all conditions does not exist: climatic conditions, traffic frequencies and loads place different demands on the pavement. Another challenge: preparing old asphalt so that it can be used for new pavements. Thanks to Empa researchers, the design of the ideal asphalt for every type of road has finally become easier.

Life Sciences - Medicine / Pharmacology - 12.07.2018
New control of cell division discovered
New control of cell division discovered
When a cell divides, its constituents are usually evenly distributed among the daughter cells. UZH researchers have now identified an enzyme that guarantees that cell constituents that are concentrated in organelles without a membrane are properly distributed. Their discovery opens up new opportunities for the treatment of cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, aging processes and viral infections.

Physics / Materials Science - Chemistry - 11.07.2018
On the path to new high-performance transistors
On the path to new high-performance transistors
X-rays aid better understanding of electron mobility in a modern transistor The electronics industry expects a novel high-performance transistor made of gallium nitride to offer considerable advantages over present-day high-frequency transistors. Yet many fundamental properties of the material remain unknown.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Life Sciences - 11.07.2018
Measuring the Effects of Drugs on Cancer Cells
Measuring the Effects of Drugs on Cancer Cells
A new approach established at the University of Zurich sheds light on the effects of anti-cancer drugs and the defense mechanisms of cancer cells. The method makes it possible to quickly test various drugs and treatment combinations at the cellular level. Cancer cells are cells over which the human body has lost control.

Life Sciences - Environment - 11.07.2018
Drones survey African wildlife
Drones survey African wildlife
In collaboration with a nature reserve in Namibia, researchers are developing a new approach to counting animals: combining drone flights and automated image analysis. A new technique developed by Swiss researchers enables fast and accurate counting of gnu, oryx and other large mammals living in wildlife reserves.

Physics / Materials Science - Chemistry - 10.07.2018
A step closer to single-atom data storage
A step closer to single-atom data storage
Physicists at EPFL used Scanning Tunneling Microscopy to successfully test the stability of a magnet made up of a single atom. Despite the rise of solid-state drives, magnetic storage devices such as conventional hard drives and magnetic tapes are still very common. But as our data-storage needs are increasing at a rate of almost 15 million gigabytes per day, scientists are turning to alternative storage devices.

Life Sciences - Medicine / Pharmacology - 10.07.2018
Every Person Has a Unique Brain Anatomy
Every Person Has a Unique Brain Anatomy
Like with fingerprints, no two people have the same brain anatomy, a study by researchers of the University of Zurich has shown. This uniqueness is the result of a combination of genetic factors and individual life experiences. The fingerprint is unique in every individual: As no two fingerprints are the same, they have become the go-to method of identity verification for police, immigration authorities and smartphone producers alike.

Agronomy / Food Science - 10.07.2018
The Impact of Diet on Health: Biomarkers Open the Way to New Discoveries
The Impact of Diet on Health: Biomarkers Open the Way to New Discoveries
Bern, 10.07.2018 - Do you remember what and how much you ate three days ago? This question, which people often struggle to answer accurately, must be addressed by researchers studying the influence of diet on our health. Agroscope has recently identified molecules indicative of dairy and soy product consumption in the blood and urine samples of volunteers taking part in nutritional studies.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Physics / Materials Science - 09.07.2018
Smart Nanoparticles keep immunotherapy focused on cancer
Smart Nanoparticles keep immunotherapy focused on cancer
MIT and EPFL researchers have developed a highly targeted and non-toxic method for battling cancer through immunotherapy. Their nanoparticle gel acts only on immune cells surrounding the tumor, without affecting the rest of the body. Immunotherapy is a highly promising and innovative approach to battling cancer that works by enlisting the body's natural defenses to attack cancer cells.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Life Sciences - 09.07.2018
Identification of a new cell type regulating antibody responses
Identification of a new cell type regulating antibody responses
Identification of a new cell type regulating antibody responses A study by the research group of Prof. Sanjiv Luther at the Department of Biochemistry has identified a new fibroblast cell type

Medicine / Pharmacology - Physics / Materials Science - 09.07.2018
Fight against viruses: The origin of specific immune cells revealed
Fight against viruses: The origin of specific immune cells revealed
Within the immune system, so called plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) play a relevant role in the protection against viral infections. However, pDCs have also been associated with auto immune syndromes. In the current , a research team of the University of Basel could finally solve the puzzle about of their origin.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Chemistry - 04.07.2018
New small molecules for the treatment of autoinflammatory diseases
New small molecules for the treatment of autoinflammatory diseases
EPFL scientists have discovered two small-molecule compound series that can effectively block a central pathway of the innate immune system, offering a promising new way for treating autoinflammatory diseases. The innate immune system is the first line of defense, with cells that quickly identify "foreign" motifs from viruses and bacteria and mount up a counterattack to eliminate them.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Physics / Materials Science - 03.07.2018
Dust is in the air
Dust is in the air
Current legal limits for fine dust in the air are based on the mass and size of the particles. For health effects, however, not only the amount of dust is decisive, but also its chemical composition. Empa researchers have now compared the noxious potential of particulate matter in Switzerland and in China.

Physics / Materials Science - 02.07.2018
Making opaque materials totally transparent
Making opaque materials totally transparent
EPFL researchers have found a way to make materials that are normally opaque to sound waves completely transparent. Their system involves placing acoustic relays at strategic locations so that sound waves can propagate at a constant amplitude - regardless of what may lie in their path. This method could eventually be used to make it possible to hide objects like submarines.

Medicine / Pharmacology - Life Sciences - 02.07.2018
Loss of Cilia Leads to Melanoma
Melanomas are one of the most aggressive types of tumors in humans. Despite remarkable success with new forms of treatment such as immunotherapies, there are still many melanoma patients who cannot be cured or who later suffer a recurrence of the disease following successful treatment. An in-depth understanding of the tumor's biology is thus essential for developing novel therapeutic approaches.

Chemistry - Mechanical Engineering - 29.06.2018
Cleaner emissions thanks to sponge-like structure
Cleaner emissions thanks to sponge-like structure
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI in Villigen, Switzerland, have developed a new catalytic converter for cleaning emissions from natural gas engines. In contrast to previous catalytic converters, it is very active even at low temperatures and remains that way over a long period of time.

Medicine / Pharmacology - 28.06.2018
Blood Pressure Medication can be detrimental in Old Age
Blood Pressure Medication can be detrimental in Old Age
Old and frail patients have an increased mortality risk and increased memory problems when their blood pressure is lowered too much through medication. This is what has been discovered by researchers in a large-scale study - thus relativising the official recommendations for antihypertensive medications.

Astronomy / Space Science - Innovation / Technology - 26.06.2018
How to find signs of life in space
How to find signs of life in space
A series of new papers, that lay out strategies to search for signs of life beyond our solar system, assume that the detection of atmospheric signatures of a few potentially habitable planets may possibly come before 2030. Three years ago, NASA has gathered researchers from around the world to support and accelerate techniques to answer the question: Are we alone?
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