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Results 41 - 60 of 113.


Environment - 19.08.2019
Cows Influence Plant Composition of Pastures
Cows Influence Plant Composition of Pastures
Angus, or Scottish Highland: not all cows are the same when it comes to a preference for different shrub, herbaceous and grass species. Research work carried out by Agroscope with the Universities of Heidelberg and Göttingen in Germany shows that cattle breed influences the botanical composition of pasture.

Life Sciences - Environment - 16.08.2019
Humans May Have Had Key Role in Cave Bear Extinction
Humans May Have Had Key Role in Cave Bear Extinction
Humans may have played a substantial role in the extinction of the European cave bear at the end of the last ice age. These findings of a study with the involvement of the University of Zurich suggest a drastic cave bear population decline starting around 40,000 years ago. Where in Europe did different populations of cave bears live and how they did they migrate during the Late Pleistocene? This is the topic that Verena Schünemann from the Institute of Evolutionary Medicine at the University of Zurich and a team of researchers investigated.

Health - Environment - 15.08.2019
Heatwaves Increase Emergency Admissions to Swiss Hospitals
Heatwaves Increase Emergency Admissions to Swiss Hospitals
Numerous studies have shown that heat increases mortality rates. 1,2 In Switzerland, for example, the hot summer of 2015 caused around 800 additional deaths. 3 Only a few studies, however, have investigated the effects of heatwaves on morbidity and hospital admissions. Researchers from the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) recently conducted a detailed analysis of emergency hospital admissions in Switzerland during the three heatwaves between June and August 2015 in a study commissioned by the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

Environment - 15.08.2019
Pesticides Transformation products pollute groundwater
Pesticides Transformation products pollute groundwater
13 substances were detected for the first time in groundwater, 15 were found in concentrations above 100 ng/L. This is the threshold value for pesticides under the Water Protection Ordinance. The researchers are particularly targeting metabolites of chlorothalonil, a product used against fungal attack in cereal, vegetable, wine and ornamental plant cultivation.

Chemistry - Environment - 29.07.2019
A catalyst for sustainable methanol
A catalyst for sustainable methanol
Scientists at ETH Zurich and oil and gas company Total have developed a new catalyst that converts CO2 and hydrogen into methanol. Offering realistic market potential, the technology paves the way for the sustainable production of fuels and chemicals. The global economy still relies on the fossil carbon sources of petroleum, natural gas and coal, not just to produce fuel, but also as a raw material used by the chemical industry to manufacture plastics and countless other chemical compounds.

Environment - Materials Science - 29.07.2019
Unravelling corrosion
Unravelling corrosion
ETH researchers have succeeded in elucidating how and at what rate steel corrodes in a variety of porous materials. Their findings help enable the breakthrough of new, environmentally friendly types of cement. The rate at which steel corrodes in concrete or other porous materials is crucial to a large number of technological applications, such as underground pipelines or steel-reinforced concrete bridges.

Environment - 26.07.2019
Next-gen membranes for carbon capture
Next-gen membranes for carbon capture
EPFL chemical engineers have developed a new class of high-performance membranes for carbon capture that greatly exceed current targets. A major greenhouse gas, CO2 produced from burning fossil fuels is still mostly released into the atmosphere, adding to the burden of global warming. One way to cut down on it is through a carbon capture: a chemical technique that removes CO2 out of emissions ("postcombustion"), preventing it from entering the atmosphere.

Environment - History / Archeology - 24.07.2019
The climate is warming faster than it has in the last 2,000 years
The climate is warming faster than it has in the last 2,000 years
In contrast to pre-industrial climate fluctuations, current, anthropogenic climate change is occurring across the whole world at the same time. In addition, the speed of global warming is higher than it has been in at least 2,000 years. That's according to two studies from the University of Bern. Many people have a clear picture of the "Little Ice Age" (from approx. 1300 to 1850).

Environment - Earth Sciences - 24.07.2019
Volcanoes shaped the climate before humankind
Volcanoes shaped the climate before humankind
Five large volcanic eruptions occurred in the early 19th century. They caused cooling and - as a study led by the University of Bern shows - to drying in the monsoon regions and glaciers growing in the Alps. The study shows that the pre-industrial climate was not constant: if one takes this cold period as the starting point for current global warming, the climate has already warmed up more than assumed in the current discussions.

Environment - 15.07.2019
A new technique to concentrate a fertilizer produced from wastewater
A new technique to concentrate a fertilizer produced from wastewater
Two EPFL Master's in Environmental Engineering students have developed a novel method for recovering nitrogen from wastewater. For their semester project, they adapted a system typically used to concentrate fruit juice and tested it out at the Yverdon-les-Bains wastewater treatment plant in Vaud.  For their semester project, Océane Hames and Lucas Ott, two Master's students in Environmental Engineering at EPFL, chose to focus on the Yverdon-les-Bains wastewater treatment plant.

Environment - Materials Science - 12.07.2019
5000 tons of plastic released into the environment every year
5000 tons of plastic released into the environment every year
In order to estimate for the first time the exact extent of plastic pollution in Switzerland, the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) has mandated Empa researchers to calculate how much plastic gets into the environment. Empa has analyzed the seven most frequently used types of plastic. According to the study, more than 5000 tons of plastic are discharged into the environment every year.

Environment - 04.07.2019
How trees could save the climate
How trees could save the climate
Around 0.9 billion hectares of land worldwide would be suitable for reforestation, which could ultimately capture two thirds of human-made carbon emissions. The Crowther Lab of ETH Zurich has published a study in the journal Science that shows this would be the most effective method to combat climate change.

Innovation - Environment - 04.07.2019
The future energy system and
The future energy system and "Power-to-X"
In a joint research project involving five Swiss Competence Centers for Energy Research (SCCERs), scientists from the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI), Empa, ETH Zurich, the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), the Rapperswil University of Applied Sciences (HSR), the University of Geneva and the University of Lucerne have drawn up a White Paper entitled "Power-to-X" for the Swiss Federal Energy Research Commission (CORE).

Environment - Politics - 04.07.2019
Trade agreements only partly shift environmental burden onto poorer countries
Trade agreements only partly shift environmental burden onto poorer countries
Is trade liberalisation shifting environmental burden from industrialised countries to poorer ones' This question was investigated by a research team at ETH Zurich led by Thomas Bernauer. In particular, they analysed whether, and if so how, commerce driven by free trade agreements is transferring environmental impacts from industrialised countries to poorer ones.

Environment - Innovation - 03.07.2019
The energy system of the future and Power-to-X
The energy system of the future and Power-to-X
In a joint research project of five Swiss competence centres for energy research, scientists have prepared a white paper on "Power-to-X" for consideration by the Swiss Federal Energy Research Commission (CORE). The goal of the white paper is to gather together the most important insights available on Power-to-X technologies.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 03.07.2019
Influence in absentia
Influence in absentia
The preferred food of pike in shallow lakes in Denmark and Sweden is roach. Seven in ten fish found by researchers in the stomachs of pike were roach - and the numbers tended to be even higher in wintertime. The roach that pike ate in lakes with tributary or outflowing rivers were, admittedly, smaller during the winter, and became somewhat thinner as winter went on.

Environment - Civil Engineering - 03.07.2019
AI-designed heat pumps consume less energy
AI-designed heat pumps consume less energy
Researchers at EPFL have developed a method that uses artificial intelligence to design next-generation heat-pump compressors. Their method can cut the pumps' power requirement by around 25%. In Switzerland, 50-60% of new homes are equipped with heat pumps. These systems draw in thermal energy from the surrounding environment - such as from the ground, air, or a nearby lake or river - and turn it into heat for buildings.

Environment - Innovation - 25.06.2019
Engineering heat out of metro tunnels
Engineering heat out of metro tunnels
Researchers at EPFL have precisely quantified convection heat transfer in rail tunnels. Using the new model, they estimated how much energy Lausanne could save by fitting the future M3 metro line with a geothermal heat-recovery system, in what would be a world first. Heat transfer happens in various ways in rail tunnels.

Materials Science - Environment - 21.06.2019
Perovskite solar cells tested for real-world performance - in the lab
Perovskite solar cells tested for real-world performance - in the lab
Researchers bring diurnal and seasonal variations into the lab to test the performance of perovskite solar cells under realistic conditions. It was only ten years ago that metal-halide perovskites were discovered to be photovoltaic materials. Today, perovskite solar cells made are almost as efficient as the best conventional silicon ones, and there is much hope that they will become a highly efficient and low-cost alternative, as they can be manufactured by rather simple and fast methods like printing.

Environment - Life Sciences - 20.06.2019
Software to protect the world's most endangered species
Software to protect the world's most endangered species
By combining genetic and environmental databases, researchers at EPFL are seeking to help biologists identify more accurately the animal and plant species most exposed to climate change, in order to develop appropriate conservation methods. Northern Morocco is home to a type of sheep that has a specific gene, developed over thousands of years of evolution.