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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

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Showing releases 26-50 out of 793.

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Public Release: 27-Aug-2014
Nature
Detecting neutrinos, physicists look into the heart of the sun
Using one of the most sensitive neutrino detectors on the planet, an international team of physicists including Andrea Pocar, Laura Cadonati and doctoral student Keith Otis at the University of Massachusetts Amherst report in the current issue of Nature that for the first time they have directly detected neutrinos created by the 'keystone' proton-proton fusion process going on at the sun's core.
National Science Foundation, Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics

Contact: Edward Blaguszewski
edblag@admin.umass.edu
413-545-0444
University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Public Release: 27-Aug-2014
Astrophysical Journal Letters
What lit up the universe?
New research from UCL shows we will soon uncover the origin of the ultraviolet light that bathes the cosmos, helping scientists understand how galaxies were built. The study published today in the Astrophysical Journal Letters by UCL cosmologists Dr. Andrew Pontzen and Dr. Hiranya Peiris, together with collaborators at Princeton and Barcelona universities, shows how forthcoming astronomical surveys will reveal what lit up the cosmos.
Royal Society, National Science Foundation, Science and Technology Facilities Council, European Research Council

Contact: Rebecca Caygill
r.caygill@ucl.ac.uk
020-310-83846
University College London

Public Release: 27-Aug-2014
Nature
Flexing the brain: Why learning tasks can be difficult
Learning a new skill is easier when it is related to an ability we already have. For example, a trained pianist can learn a new melody easier than learning how to hit a tennis serve. Scientists from the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition -- a joint program between Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh -- have discovered a fundamental constraint in the brain that may explain why this happens.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Burroughs Wellcome Fund

Contact: Shilo Rea
shilo@cmu.edu
412-268-6094
Carnegie Mellon University

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Journal of Royal Society Interface
New technology may identify tiny strains in body tissues before injuries occur
Researchers at Washington University in St. Louis have developed algorithms to identify weak spots in tendons, muscles and bones prone to tearing or breaking. The technology, which needs to be refined before it is used in patients, one day may help pinpoint minor strains and tiny injuries in the body's tissues long before bigger problems occur.
NIH/National Institute on Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Science Foundation

Contact: Jim Dryden
jdryden@wustl.edu
314-286-0110
Washington University School of Medicine

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Sorting cells with sound waves
Researchers from MIT, Pennsylvania State University, and Carnegie Mellon University have devised a new way to separate cells by exposing them to sound waves as they flow through a tiny channel.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Science
Composition of Earth's mantle revisited
Research published recently in Science suggested that the makeup of the Earth's lower mantle, which makes up the largest part of the Earth by volume, is significantly different than previously thought. This should shed light on unexplained seismic phenomena.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy, NNSA

Contact: Tona Kunz
630-252-5560
DOE/Argonne National Laboratory

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Researching fundamental rhythms of life
Casey Diekman, assistant professor of mathematical sciences at New Jersey Institute of Technology, is helping to gain greater insight into the biological clock that sets the pace for daily life.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Tanya Klein
973-596-3433
New Jersey Institute of Technology

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Environmental Science and Technology
Trash burning worldwide significantly worsens air pollution
Unregulated trash burning around the globe is pumping far more pollution into the atmosphere than shown by official records. A new study led by NCAR estimates that more than 40 percent of the world's garbage is burned in such fires, with emissions that can substantially affect human health and climate.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Chameleon: Cloud computing for computer science
To help investigate and develop a promising cloud computing future, the National Science Foundation has announced a new $10 million project to create a cloud computing testbed called Chameleon, an experimental testbed for cloud architecture and applications. This testbed will enable the academic research community to develop and experiment with novel cloud architectures and pursue new, architecturally enabled applications of cloud computing, specifically for the computer science domain.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Faith Singer-Villalobos
faithsinger@austin.rr.com
512-232-5771
University of Texas at Austin, Texas Advanced Computing Center

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
National Science Review
Bombarded by explosive waves of information, scientists review new ways to process and analyze Big Data
Big Data presents information-bombarded society with the potential for new levels of scientific discovery, but also delivers challenges to data scientists. While holding promise to detect intricate population patterns, Big Data's massive sample size and high dimensionality introduce unique hurdles to processing this information. Scientists at Princeton University and at Johns Hopkins state that to meet these challenges, it is urgent to develop more robust statistical and computational methods, and a more advanced computing architecture.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Jianqing Fan
jqfan@princeton.edu
Science China Press

Public Release: 26-Aug-2014
Journal of Clinical Investigation
New estrogen-based compound suppresses binge-like eating behavior in female mice
Researchers at the USDA/ARS Children's Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital found that the hormone estrogen can specifically trigger brain serotonin neurons to inhibit binge eating in female mice in a report today in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, American Diabetes Association

Contact: Glenna Picton
picton@bcm.edu
713-798-4710
Baylor College of Medicine

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
The Plant Cell
Researchers find boron facilitates stem cell growth and development in corn
The eastern half of the United States is plagued by boron deficient soil and corn and soybean farmers are required to supplement their soil with boron; however, little is known about the ways in which corn plants utilize the essential nutrient. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri have found that boron plays an integral role in development and reproduction in corn plants. Understanding how corn uses the nutrient can help farmers improve crop yields.
National Science Foundation, US Department of Energy

Contact: Jeff Sossamon
sossamonj@missouri.edu
573-882-3346
University of Missouri-Columbia

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Endocrinology
Exposure to toxins makes great granddaughters more susceptible to stress
According to a new study by researchers from The University of Texas at Austin and Washington State University, male and female rats are affected differently by ancestral exposure to a common fungicide, vinclozolin. Female rats whose great grandparents were exposed to vinclozolin become much more vulnerable to stress, becoming more anxious and preferring the company of novel females to familiar females.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Marc Airhart
mairhart@austin.utexas.edu
512-232-1066
University of Texas at Austin

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Tilted acoustic tweezers separate cells gently
Precise, gentle and efficient cell separation from a device the size of a cell phone may be possible thanks to tilt-angle standing surface acoustic waves, according to a team of engineers.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

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

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Developmental Science
Learning by watching, toddlers show intuitive understanding of probability
Most people know children learn many skills simply by watching people around them. Without explicit instructions youngsters know to do things like press a button to operate the television and twist a knob to open a door. Now researchers have taken this further, finding that children as young as age two intuitively use mathematical concepts such as probability to help make sense of the world around them.
James S. McDonnell Foundation, National Science Foundation

Contact: Molly McElroy
mollywmc@uw.edu
206-221-1684
University of Washington

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Rice University computer scientists receive NSF grant to develop cloud-computing tools
A National Science Foundation grant of $1.2 million funds the development of new cloud computing resources by computer scientists at Rice University.
National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Journal of Family Psychology
Expectant parents' play with doll predicts later parenting behavior
Having expectant parents role-play interacting with an infant using a doll can help predict which couples may be headed for co-parenting conflicts when their baby arrives.
National Science Foundation, NIH/National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Contact: Sarah Schoppe-Sullivan
schoppe-sullivan.1@osu.edu
614-688-3437
Ohio State University

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Psychological Science
Anticipating experience-based purchases more enjoyable than material ones
To get the most enjoyment out of our dollar, science tells us to focus our discretionary spending on trips over TVs, on concerts over clothing, since experiences tend to bring more enduring pleasure than do material goods. New research shows that the enjoyment we derive from experiential purchases may begin before we even buy. The findings are published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
National Science Foundation, John Templeton Foundation

Contact: Anna Mikulak
amikulak@psychologicalscience.org
202-293-9300
Association for Psychological Science

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Robotics: Science and Systems Conference
'Robo Brain' will teach robots everything from the Internet
Robo Brain -- a large-scale computational system that learns from publicly available Internet resources -- is currently downloading and processing about 1 billion images, 120,000 YouTube videos, and 100 million how-to documents and appliance manuals. The information is being translated and stored in a robot-friendly format that robots will be able to draw on when they need it.
National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research, Army Research Office, Google, Microsoft, Qualcomm, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, National Robotics Initiative

Contact: Syl Kacapyr
vpk6@cornell.edu
607-255-7701
Cornell University

Public Release: 25-Aug-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
A long childhood feeds the hungry human brain
A study helps to solve the long-standing mystery of why human children grow so slowly compared with our closest animal relatives.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Erin White
ewhite@northwestern.edu
847-491-4888
Northwestern University

Public Release: 24-Aug-2014
Nature Geoscience
'Just right' plant growth may make river deltas resilient
Research by Indiana University geologists suggests that an intermediate amount of vegetation -- not too little and not too much -- is most effective at stabilizing freshwater river deltas.
National Science Foundation, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

Contact: Steve Hinnefeld
slhinnef@iu.edu
812-856-3488
Indiana University

Public Release: 21-Aug-2014
UW-Madison chosen for federally funded cloud computing research
Cloud computing, which allows users of technology to tap into remote, shared infrastructure and services, is a major facet of today's world. The University of Wisconsin-Madison has been chosen to be part of a National Science Foundation-funded project called CloudLab -- a joint effort of university and industry teams for the development of cloud infrastructure and fostering the high-level research that it supports.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Jennifer A. Smith
jensmith@cs.wisc.edu
608-262-0620
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Public Release: 21-Aug-2014
Advanced Materials
ORNL scientists uncover clues to role of magnetism in iron-based superconductors
New measurements of atomic-scale magnetic behavior in iron-based superconductors are challenging conventional wisdom about superconductivity and magnetism.
US Department of Energy Office of Science, National Science Foundation

Contact: Morgan McCorkle
mccorkleml@ornl.gov
865-574-7308
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Public Release: 21-Aug-2014
Biomedical Optics Express
Laser device may end pin pricks, improve quality of life for diabetics
Princeton University researchers have developed a way to use a laser to measure people's blood sugar, and, with more work to shrink the laser system to a portable size, the technique could allow diabetics to check their condition without pricking themselves to draw blood.
Wendy and Eric Schmidt Foundation, National Science Foundation, Daylight Solutions Inc., Opto-Knowledge Systems

Contact: John Sullivan
js29@princeton.edu
609-258-4597
Princeton University, Engineering School

Public Release: 21-Aug-2014
University of Houston receives $3.3 million grant to promote women in STEM fields
The University of Houston has received a $3.3 million grant from the National Science Foundation to increase the number of women faculty in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, as well as to ensure they have opportunities to move into leadership roles.
National Science Foundation

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

Showing releases 26-50 out of 793.

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