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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 726-750 out of 862.

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Public Release: 30-Jun-2014
Journal of Computational Physics
19th century math tactic gets a makeover -- and yields answers up to 200 times faster
A relic from long before the age of supercomputers, the 169-year-old math strategy called the Jacobi iterative method is widely dismissed today as too slow to be useful. But thanks to a curious, numbers-savvy Johns Hopkins engineering student and his professor, it may soon get a new lease on life.
National Science Foundation, Office of Naval Research

Contact: Phil Sneiderman
prs@jhu.edu
443-997-9907
Johns Hopkins University

Public Release: 30-Jun-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
WSU researchers chart an ancient baby boom
Washington State University researchers have sketched out one of the greatest baby booms in North American history, a centuries-long 'growth blip' among southwestern Native Americans between 500 to 1300 A.D. It was a time when the early features of civilization -- including farming and food storage -- had matured to where birth rates likely 'exceeded the highest in the world today,' the researchers write in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Tim Kohler
tako@wsu.edu
509-335-2698
Washington State University

Public Release: 29-Jun-2014
Nature Neuroscience
Noninvasive brain control
MIT engineers have now developed the first light-sensitive molecule that enables neurons to be silenced noninvasively, using a light source outside the skull.
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Human Frontiers Science Program, IET A. F. Harvey Prize, MIT McGovern Institute, New York Stem Cell Foundation, National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, others

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

Public Release: 29-Jun-2014
Nature Climate Change
Study finds Emperor penguin in peril
An international team of scientists studying Emperor penguin populations across Antarctica finds the iconic animals in danger of dramatic declines by the end of the century due to climate change. Their study, published today in Nature Climate Change, finds the Emperor penguin 'fully deserving of endangered status due to climate change.'
CIRES Visiting fellowships, WHOI Unrestricted funds, Grayce B. Kerr Fund, National Science Foundation

Contact: WHOI Media Office
media@whoi.edu
508-289-3340
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Public Release: 29-Jun-2014
Nature Photonics
Single-pixel 'multiplex' captures elusive terahertz images
In an effort that advances attempts to generate images using terahertz light waves, researchers from Boston College, Duke University and the University of New Mexico report in Nature Photonics that they've developing a single-pixel 'multiplex' device that uses boutique metamaterials to capture images in the terahertz realm, which scientists say could play a crucial role in future medical and security imaging initiatives.
Office of Naval Research, National Science Foundation, DOE/Sandia National Laboratories

Contact: Ed Hayward
ed.hayward@bc.edu
617-552-4826
Boston College

Public Release: 29-Jun-2014
Nature Chemical Biology
Marine bacteria are natural source of chemical fire retardants
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have discovered a widely distributed group of marine bacteria that produce compounds nearly identical to toxic man-made fire retardants.
National Science Foundation, NIH/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Contact: Scott LaFee
slafee@ucsd.edu
619-543-6163
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 27-Jun-2014
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition
Monkeys also believe in winning streaks, study shows
Humans have a well-documented tendency to see winning and losing streaks in situations that, in fact, are random. But scientists disagree about whether the 'hot-hand bias' is a cultural artifact picked up in childhood or a predisposition deeply ingrained in the structure of our cognitive architecture.
National Science Foundation, Brain and Behavioral Research Foundation

Contact: Susan Hagen
susan.hagen@rochester.edu
585-276-4061
University of Rochester

Public Release: 27-Jun-2014
Genome Biology
Scientists identify new pathogenic and protective microbes associated with severe diarrhea
Diarrhea is a major cause of childhood mortality in developing countries and ranks as one of the top four causes of death among young children in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. In a finding that may one day help control diarrhea, researchers have identified microorganisms that may trigger diarrheal disease and others that may protect against it. These microbes were not widely linked to the condition previously. The research results appear today in Genome Biology.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, National Science Foundation, National Insitututes of Health, The Wellcome Trust

Contact: Tom Ventsias
tomvent@umiacs.umd.edu
301-405-5933
University of Maryland

Public Release: 27-Jun-2014
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Are conservatives more obedient and agreeable than their liberal counterparts?
Why do conservatives appear to have an affinity for obeying leadership? And why do conservatives perceive greater consensus among politically like-minded others? Two studies publishing in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin shed light on these questions.
National Science Foundation, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada

Contact: Jennifer Santisi
press@spsp.org
202-524-6543
Society for Personality and Social Psychology

Public Release: 26-Jun-2014
Nano Letters
Let there be light: Chemists develop magnetically responsive liquid crystals
University of California, Riverside chemists have constructed liquid crystals with optical properties that can be instantly and reversibly controlled by an external magnetic field. The research opens the door to display applications relying on the instantaneous and contactless nature of magnetic manipulation -- such as signage, posters, writing tablets, and billboards. Requiring no electrodes, the liquid crystals have applications in anti-counterfeit technology and optical communication devices for controlling the amplitude, phase, polarization, propagation direction of light.
National Science Foundation, US Army Research Laboratory

Contact: Iqbal Pittalwala
iqbal@ucr.edu
951-827-6050
University of California - Riverside

Public Release: 26-Jun-2014
Science
Sequencing electric eel genome unlocks shocking secrets
For the first time, the genome of the electric eel has been sequenced. This discovery has revealed the secret of how fishes with electric organs have evolved six times in the history of life to produce electricity outside of their bodies.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Layne Cameron
layne.cameron@cabs.msu.edu
517-353-8819
Michigan State University

Public Release: 26-Jun-2014
PLOS ONE
Controlling movement with light
MIT neuroscientists inhibit muscle contractions by shining light on spinal cord neurons.
Human Frontier Science Program, National Science Foundation

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

Public Release: 26-Jun-2014
Science
Ancient ocean currents may have changed pacing and intensity of ice ages
In a new study in Science, researchers find that the deep ocean currents that move heat around the globe stalled or even stopped about 950,000 years ago, possibly due to expanding ice cover in the north. The slowing currents increased carbon dioxide storage in the ocean, leaving less in the atmosphere, which kept temperatures cold and kicked the climate system into a new phase of colder but less frequent ice ages, they hypothesize.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kim Martineau
kmartine@ldeo.columbia.edu
646-717-0134
The Earth Institute at Columbia University

Public Release: 26-Jun-2014
Science
Scientists find the shocking truth about electric fish
Scientists have found how the electric fish evolved its jolt. Writing June 27, 2014, in the journal Science, a team of researchers led by Michael Sussman of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Harold Zakon of the University of Texas at Austin and Manoj Samanta of the Systemix Institute in Redmond, Wash., identifies the regulatory molecules involved in the genetic and developmental pathways that electric fish have used to convert a simple muscle into an organ capable of generating a potent electrical field.
National Science Foundation, W. M. Keck Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Michael Sussman
msussman@wisc.edu
608-262-8608
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
New technology to treat sepsis, a global killer
Engineers are developing a new technology that they believe could revolutionize the treatment and prevention of sepsis. This 'hidden killer' in the United States actually kills more people every year than AIDS, prostate cancer and breast cancer combined.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Adam Higgins
adam.higgins@oregonstate.edu
541-737-6245
Oregon State University

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Advanced Materials
Carbon-fiber epoxy honeycombs mimic the material performance of balsa wood
Materials scientists at Harvard SEAS have developed cellular composite materials of unprecedented light weight and stiffness.
BASF, National Science Foundation

Contact: Paul Karoff
karoff@seas.harvard.edu
617-496-0450
Harvard University

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Biological Chemistry
UMN research uncovers structure, protein elements critical to human function and disease
New structures discovered within cilia show a relationship between certain proteins and juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. The discovery, made at the University of Minnesota, was named paper of the week in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, and sheds new light on the microstructure of cilia.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Characterization Facility, UMN

Contact: Caroline Marin
crmarin@umn.edu
612-624-5680
University of Minnesota Academic Health Center

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Angewandte Chemie International Edition
Stanley Miller's forgotten experiments, analyzed
Stanley Miller, the chemist whose landmark experiment published in 1953 showed how some of the molecules of life could have formed on a young Earth, left behind boxes of experimental samples that he never analyzed. The first-ever analysis of some of Miller's old samples has revealed another way that important molecules could have formed on early Earth.
National Science Foundation, NASA

Contact: Brett Israel
brett.israel@comm.gatech.edu
404-385-1933
Georgia Institute of Technology

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Proceedings of the Royal Society A
Mathematical models explain how a wrinkle becomes a crease
Wrinkles, creases and folds are everywhere in nature, from the surface of human skin to the buckled crust of the Earth. They can also be useful structures for engineers. Wrinkles in thin films, for example, can help make durable circuit boards for flexible electronics. A new mathematical model developed by researchers from Brown University could help engineers control the formation of wrinkle, crease, and fold structures in a wide variety of materials. It may also help scientists understand how these structures form in nature.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Kevin Stacey
kevin_stacey@brown.edu
401-863-3766
Brown University

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition Annual Conference
Carnegie Mellon method automatically cuts boring parts from long videos
Smartphones, GoPro cameras and Google Glass are making it easy for anyone to shoot video anywhere. But, they do not make it any easier to watch the tedious videos that can result. Carnegie Mellon University computer scientists, however, have invented a video highlighting technique that can automatically pick out the good parts.
National Science Foundation, Google, Office of Naval Research, US Air Force Office of Scientific Research

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

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
Nature
Study links Greenland ice sheet collapse, sea level rise 400,000 years ago
A new study suggests that a warming period more than 400,000 years ago pushed the Greenland ice sheet past its stability threshold, resulting in a nearly complete deglaciation of southern Greenland and raising global sea levels some four to six meters.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Anders Carlson
acarlson@coas.oregonstate.edu
541-737-3625
Oregon State University

Public Release: 25-Jun-2014
PLOS ONE
Lowering toxicity of new HIV drugs predicted to improve life expectancy
While bringing new drugs to market is important for increasing life expectancy in younger people with HIV, lowering the toxicity of those drugs may have an even greater health impact on all HIV patients, a University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health analysis reveals.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Allison Hydzik
hydzikam@upmc.edu
412-647-9975
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

Public Release: 24-Jun-2014
Nature Scientific Reports
UT Arlington nanoparticles could provide easier route for cell therapy
UT Arlington physics researchers may have developed a way to use laser technology to deliver drug and gene therapy at the cellular level without damaging surrounding tissue. The method eventually could help patients suffering from genetic conditions, cancers and neurological diseases.
National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Traci Peterson
tpeterso@uta.edu
817-272-9208
University of Texas at Arlington

Public Release: 24-Jun-2014
Next generation internet will arrive without fanfare, network architects say
UMass Amherst's Arun Venkataramani is the lead architect for one of the many research teams funded by the National Science Foundation who are now developing and testing next-generation hardware, software and applications to address difficult, systemic shortcomings of the old Internet. He and colleagues at UMass Amherst recently received a two-year, $1.35 million NSF grant for the next phase of the MobilityFirst project.
National Science Foundation

Contact: Janet Lathrop
jlathrop@admin.umass.edu
413-545-0444
University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Public Release: 24-Jun-2014
Nature Communications
Metal particles in solids aren't as fixed as they seem, new memristor study shows
In work that unmasks some of the magic behind memristors and 'resistive random access memory,' or RRAM -- cutting-edge computer components that combine logic and memory functions -- researchers have shown that the metal particles in memristors don't stay put as previously thought.
Air Force Office of Scientific Research, US Department of Energy, National Science Foundation

Contact: Nicole Casal Moore
ncmoore@umich.edu
734-647-7087
University of Michigan

Showing releases 726-750 out of 862.

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From the "Birth of the Internet" to "Jellyfish Gone Wild", these in-depth, Web-based reports explore the frontiers of science and engineering.