A 2011 Chevy Volt owned by someone other than my parents. Credit: flickr/NRMA New Cars Whenever Scientific American posts an article about electric cars, we see comments along the lines of "electricity comes from burning fossil fuels, so electric cars don't really reduce your carbon footprint, and the electricity is more expensive than gas anyway," possibly with more expletives.
One of the biggest barriers to advances in nanotechnology has manipulating objects at such a small scale. Scientists can make balls, rods and tubes that are only billionths of a meter in size—and have developed techniques to get them to self assemble in different patterns—but tweaking the structure of individual nano-scale particles without breaking them down has proved problematic.A technique for creating more flexible nanotubules that pulsate in response to temperature changes could help make these materials easier to work with and reveal new uses for them, according to a team of scientists from Korea's Seoul National University, Japan's Nagoya University and China's Harbin Institute of Technology.
Image courtesy of Andrew Martin Bumblebees, it turns out, don't bumble. Using tiny radar tracking devices, motion-activated cameras and artificial flowers, scientists have learned how the bees themselves quickly learn the best routes to take when they go foraging from flower to flower.
Bedrich Benes, an associate professor of computer graphics at Purdue University It seems the future of 3-D printing is limited only by one's imagination.
Image of fresh Pacific oyster courtesy of ©Guofan Zhang, photo by Tao Liu The world of the mollusk genome is now our oyster, as researchers have now sequenced the genetic code of this hearty (and delicious) shellfish, revealing it to be even more complex and adaptable than previously imagined.The new genome provides insights how oysters manage to cope with a dynamic habitat and how they build their shells.
New smartphones from Apple, Nokia, Samsung and others are poised to hit the market in time for the holiday buying season. Come January there will be a lot of obsolete gadgets looking for new homes.
Image courtesy of iStockphoto/GOSPHOTODESIGN NEW YORK CITY—More than 30 million of the Americans classified as obese or extremely obese might benefit from surgery that reconstructs the stomach to accommodate less food.
Artist's conception of a Neandertal's feather decorations. Image: Antonio Monclova GIBRALTAR—Jordi Rosell removes a thumbnail-size piece of reddish-tan bone from a sealed plastic bag, carefully places it under the stereomicroscope and invites me to have a look.
Mitt Romney wants to fund energy research and development, but not the “green energy” research that Barack Obama has favored. That’s the clear takeaway from his answers to the 14 questions posed to the two candidates by Scientific American and ScienceDebate.org.
Source: League of Women Voters We have passed the halfway point in our weekly examination of the 14 top science questions that President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney need to address as part of their quests to lead the United States for the next four years.
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