News 2019


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Results 81 - 100 of 291.


Environment - 05.06.2019
Extreme heat to hit one third of the african urban population
Extreme heat to hit one third of the african urban population
An international team of researchers has combined demographic projections and climate scenarios across Africa for the first time. Their results reveal the number of people who will potentially be exposed to extreme temperatures. Climate change, population growth and urbanisation are instrumental in increasing exposure to extreme temperatures.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 04.06.2019
A combination of insecticides and mite weakens honeybees
A combination of insecticides and mite weakens honeybees
Today, scientists of the Institute of Bee Health of the University of Bern and the honeybee research association COLOSS have published an article in the peer-reviewed journal Scientific Reports that shows a synergistic time-lag interaction between the parasitic mite Varroa destructor and neonicotinoid insecticides reducing survival of winter honeybees, Apis mellifera.

Environment - Chemistry - 04.06.2019
Floating power plants
Floating power plants
Huge floating solar islands on the ocean that produce enough energy to enable CO2-neutral global freight traffic - what sounds like "science fiction" researchers from ETH Zurich, the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), Empa, the Universities of Zurich and Bern and the Nowegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim have now calculated for the first time, as they write in the latest issue of the journal "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" (PNAS).

Materials Science - Physics - 04.06.2019
New material with magnetic shape memory
New material with magnetic shape memory
Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and ETH Zurich have developed a new material whose shape memory is activated by magnetism. It retains a given shape when it is put into a magnetic field. It is a composite material consisting of two components. What is special about the new material is that, unlike previous shape-memory materials, it consists of a polymer and droplets of a so-called magnetorheological fluid embedded in it.

Life Sciences - Environment - 03.06.2019
"Copying & pasting" a gene allows stickleback to live in freshwater habitats
Darwin himself recognised the principle of adaptive radiation as being an important process in evolution. This principle says that, in a competitive situation, individuals in a species will search for new niches, where their populations adapt to environmental conditions through natural selection. This means that a single original species can fan out and evolve into numerous species with different niches.

Physics - Chemistry - 03.06.2019
Exposing modern forgers
Exposing modern forgers
Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a process that can provide conclusive evidence with regard to modern fakes of paintings, even in cases where the forger recycled older canvases. This verification process requires less than 200 micrograms of paint. Art forgeries have been around since ancient times.

Life Sciences - Physics - 30.05.2019
A new mechanism for accessing damaged DNA
A new mechanism for accessing damaged DNA
UV light damages the DNA of skin cells, which can lead to skin cancer. But this process is counteracted by the DNA repair machinery, acting as a molecular sunscreen. It has been unclear, however, how repair proteins work on DNA tightly packed in chromatin, where access to DNA damage is restricted by protein packaging.

Materials Science - 29.05.2019
Desired deformation
Desired deformation
Since last week there is a unique wooden building in the Remstal near Stuttgart: a tower made of self-formed spruce boards. The method, which has been developed at Empa and ETH Zurich, uses the natural swelling and shrinking of wood under the influence of moisture and thus enables a new and unexpected architecture for the construction with the renewable and sustainable resource of wood.

Life Sciences - Agronomy / Food Science - 29.05.2019
Chimpanzees Catch and Eat Crabs
Chimpanzees Catch and Eat Crabs
Chimpanzees have a mainly vegetarian diet, but do occasionally eat meat. Researchers at the University of Zurich have now shown for the first time that chimpanzees also eat crabs. In the rainforest of Guinea, the researchers observed how chimpanzees regularly fish for crabs. “Our study is the first evidence showing that non-human apes regularly catch and eat aquatic fauna,” says Kathelijne Koops, researcher at the Department of Anthropology at the University of Zurich.

Physics - Mathematics - 28.05.2019
Researchers crack an enduring physics enigma
Researchers crack an enduring physics enigma
Researchers from EPFL have found the mechanism that lies behind a mysterious physics phenomenon in fluid mechanics: the fact that turbulence in fluids spontaneously self-organizes into parallel patterns of oblique turbulent bands - an example of order emerging spontaneously from chaos. In so doing, they solved a problem that had stumped generations of physicists.

Environment - 28.05.2019
Domino Effect of Species Extinctions Also Damages Biodiversity
Domino Effect of Species Extinctions Also Damages Biodiversity
The mutual dependencies of many plant species and their pollinators mean that the negative effects of climate change are exacerbated. As UZH researchers show, the total number of species threatened with extinction is therefore considerably higher than predicted in previous models. Global climate change is threatening biodiversity.

Life Sciences - Health - 27.05.2019
Music helps to build the brains of very premature babies
Music helps to build the brains of very premature babies
Researchers from UNIGE and HUG demonstrate how music specially composed for premature infants strengthens the development of their brain networks and could limit the neurodevelopmental delays that often affect these children.    In Switzerland, as in most industrialized countries, nearly 1% of children are born "very prematurely", i.e. before the 32nd week of pregnancy, which represents about 800 children yearly.

Physics - 27.05.2019
A new theory of thermal conductivity
A new theory of thermal conductivity
Researchers have developed a new theory for heat conduction that can finally describe and predict the thermal conductivity of any insulating material. This new formulation will let scientists make accurate predictions of thermal conductivity in a range of materials for critical engineering applications - from electronics to lasers to waste-heat recovery.

Psychology - Life Sciences - 27.05.2019
Altered Brain Activity in Antisocial Teenagers
Teenage girls with problematic social behavior display reduced brain activity and weaker connectivity between the brain regions implicated in emotion regulation. The findings of an international study carried out by researchers from the University of Zurich and others now offer a neurobiological explanation for the difficulties some girls have in controlling their emotions, and provide indications for possible therapy approaches.

Materials Science - Physics - 23.05.2019
Producing electricity at estuaries using light and osmosis
Producing electricity at estuaries using light and osmosis
Researchers at EPFL are working on a technology to exploit osmotic energy - a source of power that's naturally available at estuaries, where fresh water comes into contact with seawater. In a laboratory experiment, the team reproduced the real-world conditions that occur where rivers meet the sea (pH and salt concentration) and showed that, by shining light on a system comprising salt, water and a membrane three atoms thick, it was possible to optimize electricity production.

Media - 23.05.2019
Information and language in news impact prejudice against minorities
Researchers at the Institute of Psychology show how news about immigrants and language describing immigrants shape prejudice against immigrants and other social minorities, as part of the project «Immigrants in the Media». For instance, nouns used for describing the ethnicity of immigrants enhance prejudice against immigrants more than adjectives.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 23.05.2019
Source of new CFC emissions discovered
Source of new CFC emissions discovered
Since 2013, annual emissions of the banned chlorofluorocarbon CFC-11 have increased by around 7,000 metric tons from eastern China, according to a new study by an international team of scientists including Empa researchers, published in «Nature» today. The new discovery follows a finding in 2018 that emissions of this very important ozone-depleting substance had increased.

Health - Life Sciences - 23.05.2019
New way to eliminate cancer stem cells in prostate cancer
New way to eliminate cancer stem cells in prostate cancer
Tumor stem cells from prostate cancer. The coloring with different fluorochromes highlights the extensive network of mitochondria (red/green) surrounding the cell nuclei (blue). A study by investigators at the Institute of Oncology Research (IOR, affiliated to USI Universitą della Svizzera italiana) reveals a new way to eliminate cancer stem cells (CSC) in prostate tumours and enhance treatment efficacy.

Life Sciences - 22.05.2019
A role for gene activators in 3D nuclear organization
A role for gene activators in 3D nuclear organization
From yeast to man, the genome is partitioned into subnuclear compartments, with active euchromatin spatially separated from silent heterochromatin, which is often found at the nuclear periphery. This spatial distribution correlates with gene expression and contributes to cell-type integrity. In a study published in Nature, the Gasser group showed that the sequestration of a strong gene activator, CBP/p300, regulates the spatial organization of inactive domains.

Physics - Chemistry - 22.05.2019
The geometry of an electron determined for the first time
The geometry of an electron determined for the first time
Physicists at the University of Basel are able to show for the first time how a single electron looks in an artificial atom. A newly developed method enables them to show the probability of an electron being present in a space. This allows improved control of electron spins, which could serve as the smallest information unit in a future quantum computer.