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  News From the National Science Foundation
The National Science Foundation (NSF) — For more information about NSF and its programs, visit www.nsf.gov

NSF Funded News

Key: Meeting M      Journal J      Funder F

Showing releases 126-150 out of 949.

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Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Optica
A sharper focus for plasmonic lasers
Lehigh University researcher Sushil Kumar and his group have demonstrated that it is possible to induce plasmonic lasers to emit a narrow beam of light by adapting a technique called distributed feedback. They have experimentally implemented a scheme for terahertz plasmonic lasers that emit radiation at extremely long wavelengths (approximately 100 microns). Their results have been published today in an article in Optica, the journal of the Optical Society of America.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Lori Friedman
lof214@lehigh.edu
610-758-3224
Lehigh University

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
11th ACM on Asia Conference on Computer and Communications Security
Your smartwatch is giving away your ATM PIN
Wearable devices can give away your passwords, according to new research. In the paper 'Friend or Foe?: Your Wearable Devices Reveal Your Personal PIN' scientists from Binghamton University and the Stevens Institute of Technology combined data from embedded sensors in wearable technologies, such as smartwatches and fitness trackers, along with a computer algorithm to crack private PINs and passwords with 80-percent accuracy on the first try and more than 90-percent accuracy after three tries.
National Science Foundation, United States Army Research Office

Contact: Yan Wang
yanwang@binghamton.edu
607-777-4835
Binghamton University

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Atmospheric Environment
Bees' ability to forage decreases as air pollution increases
Air pollutants interact with and break down plant-emitted scent molecules, which insect pollinators use to locate needed food, according to a team of researchers led by Penn State. The pollution-modified plant odors can confuse bees and, as a result, bees' foraging time increases and pollination efficiency decreases. This happens because the chemical interactions decrease both the scent molecules' life spans and the distances they travel.
National Science Foundation

Contact: A'ndrea Elyse Messer
aem1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security
It's automatic: CMU smartphone app manages your privacy preferences
A field study suggests a personalized privacy assistant app being developed at Carnegie Mellon University can simplify the chore of setting privacy permissions for your smartphone apps. That's a task that requires well over a hundred decisions, an unmanageable number for the typical user.
National Science Foundation, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Air Force Research Laboratory

Contact: Byron Spice
bspice@cs.cmu.edu
412-268-9068
Carnegie Mellon University

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Chemical trail on Titan may be key to prebiotic conditions
Cornell scientists have uncovered a chemical trail that suggests prebiotic conditions may exist on Saturn's moon, Titan.
John Templeton Foundation, National Science Foundation

Contact: Daryl Lovell
dal296@cornell.edu
607-592-3925
Cornell University

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Genetics
'Omics' data improves breast cancer survival prediction
Precise predictions of whether a tumor is likely to spread would help clinicians and patients choose the best course of treatment. But current methods fall short of the precision needed. New research reveals that profiling primary tumor samples using genomic technologies can improve the accuracy of breast cancer survival predictions compared to clinical information alone. The study was published in the journal GENETICS, a publication of the Genetics Society of America.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, American Cancer Society, University of Alabama at Birmingham-Comprehensive Cancer Center

Contact: Cristy Gelling
cgelling@thegsajournals.org
412-478-3537
Genetics Society of America

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Chemical Communications
Synthesis of complex molecules displaying potential biological and catalytic activity
Nagoya Institute of Technology researchers recently used the catalytic Mannich reaction to synthesize vicinal tetrasubstituted chiral imidazolines from non-activated starting materials for the first time.
Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research on Innovative Areas 'Advanced Molecular Transformations by Organocatalysts' from MEXT

Contact: Kuniaki Shiraki
nitechura@adm.nitech.ac.jp
81-527-357-424
Nagoya Institute of Technology

Public Release: 6-Jul-2016
Pediatrics
For kids with asthma, hospital care is comparable for Medicaid and non-Medicaid patients
Children covered by Medicaid and equally sick children not covered by Medicaid received essentially similar asthma treatment in a given pediatric hospital, according to a new study. In a national sample, researchers analyzed hospital practice patterns by comparing inpatient costs, lengths of stay and use of the intensive care unit.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, National Science Foundation

Contact: John Ascenzi
Ascenzi@email.chop.edu
267-426-6055
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
Astrobiology
Lush Venus? Searing Earth? It could have happened
It may not have taken much in the early solar system to set Earth and Venus on very different paths, according to Rice University researchers and their colleagues. A new paper points the way toward what scientists should consider as they seek habitable planets elsewhere in the galaxy.
National Science Foundation

Contact: David Ruth
david@rice.edu
713-348-6327
Rice University

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
BMC Evolutionary Biology
Eye of the beetle: How the Emerald Ash Borer sees may be key to stopping it
This iridescent jewel beetle, responsible for the death of more than 50 million ash trees in the United States, has blazed an absolute path of destruction west since its discovery in Michigan in 2002. Recently the pest has been detected in Colorado, and just this spring it was confirmed in Nebraska and Texas. Researchers at BYU have been doing more than just watching the migration patterns--they've been studying the creature in hopes of helping to slow it.
NSF/Division of Environmental Biology

Contact: Todd Hollingshead
toddh@byu.edu
801-422-8373
Brigham Young University

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
Nature Nanotechnology
Integrated trio of 2-D nanomaterials unlocks graphene electronics applications
Titled 'An integrated Tantalum Sulfide--Boron Nitride--Graphene Oscillator: A Charge-Density-Wave Device Operating at Room Temperature,' the paper describes the development of the first useful device that exploits the potential of charge-density waves to modulate an electrical current through a 2-D material. The new technology could become an ultralow power alternative to conventional silicon-based devices, which are used in thousands of applications from computers to clocks to radios.
National Science Foundation, Semiconductor Research Corporation Nanoelectronic Research Initiative, Semiconductor Research Corporation, Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, others

Contact: Sarah Nightingale
sarah.nightingale@ucr.edu
951-827-4580
University of California - Riverside

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
American Journal of Botany
Learning about the hummingbirds and the bees in floral diversity
The floral diversity and repeated shifts in pollination have inspired a series of scientists to study adaptive evolution in the genus. But until now many of the species relationships have been unresolved and hampered by the very thing that makes studying the genus so appealing. The rapid speciation and evolutionary radiation that makes studying adaptation in these groups so interesting have also meant the species relationships have been difficult to resolve -- until now.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Richard Hund
rhund@botany.org
314-577-9557
Botanical Society of America

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
Psychological Science
Study: How we explain things influences what we think is right
New research focuses on a fundamental human habit: When trying to explain something (why people give roses for Valentine's Day, for example), we often focus on the traits of the thing itself (roses are pretty) and not its context (advertisers promote roses). In a new study, researchers found that people who tend to focus on 'inherent traits' and ignore context also are more likely to assume that the patterns they see around them are good.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Diana Yates
diya@illinois.edu
217-333-5802
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
Bulletin of the American Journal of Natural History
Ostrich relative lived in North America 50 million years ago
The new species is named Calciavis grandei -- with 'calci' meaning 'hard/stone,' and 'avis' from the Latin for bird, and 'grandei' in honor of famed paleontologist Lance Grande who has studied the fossil fish from the same ancient North American lake for decades.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Steven Mackay
smackay@vt.edu
540-231-5035
Virginia Tech

Public Release: 5-Jul-2016
Nature
Penn chemists establish fundamentals of ferroelectric materials
Chemists from the University of Pennsylvania are enabling the next generation of research into ferroelectric materials. In a new study, published in Nature, they demonstrate a multiscale simulation of lead titanate oxide that provides new understanding about what it takes for polarizations within these materials to switch.
National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research, US Department of Energy, Carnegie Institution for Science

Contact: Evan Lerner
elerner@upenn.edu
215-573-6604
University of Pennsylvania

Public Release: 4-Jul-2016
Nature Communications
From climate killer to fuels and polymers
Researchers have discovered a catalyst that performs highly selective conversion of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide into ethylene -- an important source material for the chemical industry. In the journal Nature Communications, a team headed by Prof Dr Beatriz Roldan Cuenya from Ruhr-Universitšt Bochum describes how plasma-treated copper can be used for this purpose. The researchers have also decoded the mechanism underlying the improved behavior of the plasma treated catalyst.
Federal Ministry of Education and Research, German Research Foundation, National Science Foundation

Contact: Raffaela Römer
raffaela.roemer@uv.rub.de
Ruhr-University Bochum

Public Release: 4-Jul-2016
Nature Geoscience
Expanding Antarctic sea ice linked to natural variability
The recent trend of increasing Antarctic sea ice extent -- seemingly at odds with climate model projections -- can largely be explained by a natural climate fluctuation, according to a new study led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: David Hosansky
hosansky@ucar.edu
303-497-8611
National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Public Release: 1-Jul-2016
Researcher pursues new applications for 'hot' electrons
Three years after his discovery of porous gold nanoparticles -- gold nanoparticles that offer a larger surface area because of their porous nature -- a University of Houston researcher is continuing to explore the science and potential applications.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jeannie Kever
jekever@uh.edu
713-743-0778
University of Houston

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Physical Review B
Jupiter on a bench
Earlier this year, in an experiment about five-feet long, Harvard University researchers say they observed evidence of the abrupt transition of hydrogen from liquid insulator to liquid metal. It is one of the first times such a transition has ever been observed in any experiment.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy, Stockpile Stewardship Academic Alliance Program, NASA/Earth and Space Science Fellowship Program

Contact: Leah Burrows
lburrows@seas.harvard.edu
617-496-1351
Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Grade-school students teach a robot to help themselves learn geometry
NYU, ASU, and Carleton U. researchers create rTAG, a tangible learning environment that utilizes teachable agent framing, together with a physical robotic agent to get students away from the traditional computer monitor, keyboard, and mouse.
National Science Foundation, CAPES Foundation, Ministry of Education of Brazil, Brasília

Contact: Christopher James
christopher.james@nyu.edu
212-998-6876
New York University

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Science
Climate change's effect on Rocky Mountain plant is driven by sex
For the valerian plant, higher elevations in the Colorado Rocky Mountains are becoming much more co-ed. And the primary reason appears to be climate change.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Tom Vasich
tmvasich@uci.edu
949-824-6455
University of California - Irvine

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Science
Study finds that plant growth responses to high carbon dioxide depend on symbiotic fungi
Research by an international team of environmental scientists from the United Kingdom, Belgium and United States, including Indiana University, has found that plants that associate with one type of symbiotic fungi grow bigger in response to high levels of carbon dioxide, or CO2, in the atmosphere, but plants that associate with the other major type of symbiotic fungi do not.
US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation

Contact: Kevin Fryling
kfryling@iu.edu
812-856-2988
Indiana University

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Renewable Energy
New technology could improve use of small-scale hydropower in developing nations
Engineers have created a new computer modeling package that people anywhere in the world could use to assess the potential of a stream for small-scale, 'run of river' hydropower, an option to produce electricity that's of special importance in the developing world.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kendra Sharp
Kendra.sharp@oregonstate.edu
541-737-5246
Oregon State University

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Journal of the American Chemical Society
Wireless, wearable toxic-gas detector
Tim Swager and other MIT researchers developed wearable, wireless sensors, based on carbon nanotubes, that can detect toxic gases and can be worn by soldiers to detect hazardous chemical agents.
National Science Foundation, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

Contact: Sarah McDonnell
s_mcd@mit.edu
617-253-8923
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Public Release: 30-Jun-2016
Science
Scientists observe first signs of healing in the Antarctic ozone layer
Scientists have found the first 'fingerprints of healing' for the Antarctic ozone hole. The September ozone hole has shrunk by more than 4 million square kilometers since 2000, when ozone depletion was at its peak.
National Science Foundation, and US Department of Energy

Contact: Sarah McDonnell
s_mcd@mit.edu
617-253-8293
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Showing releases 126-150 out of 949.

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