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The scorching destruction of Australia’s Black Summer bushfires between 2019 and 2020 provided an ominous glimpse of fire’s reach in our hotter, dryer world, and the impact of the unprecedented inferno is still being measured.   Just weeks ago, scientists observed that the amount of smoke spewed from the blaze into the atmosphere rivaled that
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Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are basically everywhere, powering everything from smartphones to notebooks, earbuds to gaming devices, and so much more. But while the convenience of this ubiquitous (and Nobel Prize-winning) battery chemistry has radically changed the way we use and charge portable technology, lithium-ion is far from perfect.   The performance of lithium-ion batteries degrades
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Archaeologists have found a “Lost Golden City” that’s been buried under the ancient Egyptian capital of Luxor for the past 3,000 years, the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities announced Thursday (April 8).    The city, historically known as “The Rise of Aten,” was founded by Amenhotep III (ruled 1391-1353 BCE), the grandfather of Tutankhamun, or King Tut.
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A bacterium that dwells deep underground, living off chemical reactions triggered by radioactive decay, has been doing so unchanged for millions of years, new research has found.   A genetic analysis of microbes of the species Candidatus Desulforudis audaxviator (CDA) collected from three different continents has revealed that the bacterium has barely evolved since they were
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Earth’s transition to permanently hosting an oxygenated atmosphere was a halting process that took 100 million years longer than previously believed, according to a new study. When Earth first formed 4.5 billion years ago, the atmosphere contained almost no oxygen. But 2.43 billion years ago, something happened: Oxygen levels started rising, then falling, accompanied by massive
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Even after a year of coronavirus lockdowns and shutdowns, global emissions of greenhouse gases are still increasing at an unrelenting rate.  Today, according to initial measurements from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), global levels of carbon dioxide emissions are higher than they have been at any given time in the past 3.6 million years.
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The results from one of the most hotly-anticipated experiments in particle physics are in, and they could be about to fulfill every researcher’s wildest dreams: They maybe, perhaps, could break physics as we know it.   Evidence taken from the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory near Chicago appears to point to a minuscule subatomic particle known as the muon wobbling
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Trekking out to my research sites near North Carolina’s Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, I slog through knee-deep water on a section of trail that is completely submerged. Permanent flooding has become commonplace on this low-lying peninsula, nestled behind North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The trees growing in the water are small and stunted. Many are
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While some blue-green algae (or more accurately – cyanobacteria) are critical to us for their nitrogen-fixing abilities, others can also become dangerous pests of our own making.   Climate change and agricultural run-off are causing a once normal environmental process to spiral out of control more often, and a new study has shown that a particularly dangerous toxin
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Nobody ever said parenting was easy, but depending on circumstances, some people can find it much harder than others. In recent years researchers have begun to recognize ‘parental burnout‘ – a condition in which exhausted parents become overwhelmed by their role as primary carers, potentially leading to emotional distance from their children, parental ineffectiveness, neglect,
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In a time when flaunting your best self on social media has become a norm, narcissistic traits seem to be everywhere.  In today’s slang, off-putting behaviors like entitlement, superiority and self-congratulating are known as ‘flexing’. Such traits might be more common these days, but being narcissistic is still seen as a pathological personality trait, akin to
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The day has finally come. Scientists have finally created synthetic mucus molecules that exhibit the structure and function of the real deal. Far from being a slime crime, though, it’s a discovery that could help scientists devise new treatments for infectious diseases, according to the research team behind the breakthrough.   Slippery, slimy, and oozy,