Friday, April 17, 2015

Dogs are man's best friend thanks to bonding hormone, research shows

Scientists have found that dogs and owners experience surges in oxytocin, a hormone responsible for maternal caring, when they look into each other’s eyes

A rush of hormone that helps people bond could explain why humans and dogs have been best friends for thousands of years, say researchers in Japan.
The scientists found that dog owners experienced a surge of oxytocin when their pets gazed into their eyes, a dramatic effect that was mirrored in the animals themselves. 

Mercury-orbiting U.S. spacecraft heading for a crash landing

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - A NASA spacecraft that made surprising discoveries of ice and other materials on Mercury will make a crash landing into the planet around April 30, scientists said on Thursday.
The Mercury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging, or Messenger, probe has been circling the innermost planet of the solar system for more than four years, the first close-up studies of Mercury since NASA’s Mariner 10 spacecraft made three flybys in the mid-1970s.

Telegram for you: for good communications, leaky cables are best

That’s Maths: The ideas of Oliver Heaviside, a controversial figure, paved the way to better telegraphy

In Wicklow town, an obelisk commemorates Robert Halpin, a master mariner born at the nearby Bridge Tavern. Halpin, one of the more important mariners of the 19th century, “helped to make the world a global village” by connecting continents withsubmarine telegraph cables.
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National cat survey: the results are not all black and white

Every country has a top cat, and for the island of Ireland, that cat is mostly black with mixed patches of white.
This colour is the most common in each of the four provinces, but the value of this information goes far beyond colour. If we know a cat’s fur colour, we also know itsgenetic background.
The identification of the most common feline comes from a national survey of cat colour organised by The Irish Times in collaboration with a geneticist based at Trinity College Dublin.

Scientists find key to 'turbo-charging' immune system to kill all cancers

A protein which ‘turbo-charges’ the immune system so that it can fight off any cancer or virus has been discovered by scientists.
In a breakthrough described as a ‘game-changer’ for cancer treatment, researchers at Imperial College found a previously unknown molecule which boosts the body’s ability to fight off chronic illnesses.
Scientists at Imperial College London, who led the study, are now developing a gene therapy based on the protein and hope to begin human trials in three years.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The 6 Most Fascinating Studies on Consciousness

Measuring things like love, intuition, and consciousness has always been a controversial subject in science.
However, it hasn’t stopped people from trying. We spoke to Christie Marie Sheldon, one of the world’s leading energy healers, about how far science has gone towards understanding the nature of human consciousness.

Nikola Tesla
“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”

“Concerning matter, we have been all wrong.
What we have called matter is energy,
whose vibration has been so lowered
as to be perceptible to the senses.
There is no matter.”
- Quote attributed to Albert Einstein

Thursday, April 9, 2015

A link between physics, maths and the Mayans Prof Werner Nahm’s work in blending a rigorous mathematical discipline with theories about how the universe formed has had an international impact, and he is also an authority on Mayan texts

Renaissance man” seems a fair enough description for someone who can readBabylonian cuneiform writing, speak Mandarin Chinese, translate texts from the Mayan civilisation and also manage to be an expert on mathematical physics.
Prof Werner Nahm of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies has managed all of these feats. Like any great scientist, his driving force him is curiosity.

Lopsided ice on the moon points to past shift in poles

THE WOODLANDS, TEXAS—What little ice remains on Mercury and Mars is mostly confined to the planets’ poles, as one would expect, because the sun shines the least in those regions. Not so on the moon. Much of the moon’s ice, which lurks beneath the surface, is found in an area 5.5° away from the north pole and in a matching region 5.5° from the south pole, scientists announced here this week at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. The data suggest that in the past, the moon’s axis of rotation—and hence its poles—shifted.
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World’s Largest Single Marine Reserve Created in Pacific

British Prime Minister David Cameron's government announced the creation of the world’s largest contiguous ocean reserve on Wednesday, setting aside 322,000 square miles (830,000 square kilometers) around the remote Pitcairn Islands in the South Pacific for special protection
Read More at National Geographic

NSF unveils plan to make scientific papers free

The National Science Foundation (NSF) released a long-anticipated policy that will require its grantees to make their peer-reviewed research papers freely available within 12 months of publication in a journal. The agency is not creating its own public archive of full-text papers, but instead will send those searching for papers to publishers’ own websites.
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Help find 52-Hertz, dubbed the loneliest whale in the world

VANCOUVER – The story of 52-Hertz, named the “loneliest whale in the world”, has captivated people everywhere.
Believed to be a hybrid whale, a cross between a blue and a fin whale, 52-Hertz is named due to the unusual frequency of his voice. Most whales communicate with each other at lower frequencies, but 52-Hertz is on a frequency all his own.
Scientists believe he has been swimming in the ocean alone for decades, calling out for other whales to answer him, and getting no response.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Badgers like to steer clear of cattle, satellite tracking shows

Not even badgers are safe from the prying eyes of Big Brother.
Zoologists from Trinity College Dublin are using GPS tracking technology in Co Wicklow to follow the animals’ night time activities.
The monitoring has discovered they travel long distances and appear to avoid contact with cattle where possible.

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