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Writer Fuel: Are “Unparticles” Pushing the Universe Apart?

galaxies - deposit photos

The ever-accelerating expansion of the universe may be driven by a mysterious form of matter called “unparticles,” which do not obey the Standard Model of particle physics, a new theoretical paper suggests. Scientists widely acknowledge that the universe is expanding, though the cause of that expansion remains elusive. One of the most popular proposed explanations … Read more

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Writer Fuel: New Optical Disc Can Hold 15,000 DVDs Worth of Information

Petabit Scale Optical Disc - Deposit Photos

Scientists have developed a new type of optical disc that can increase information storage capacity to the “petabit” level — 125 terabytes of data, or the combined storage capacity of about 15,000 DVDs. Optical discs, such as DVDs and Blu-ray discs, are durable and inexpensive. A standard single-layer Blu-ray disc can store 25 gigabytes. By … Read more

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Writer Fuel: New DNA-Infused Computer Chip Blurs Line Between Biological and mechanical

scientist removes a snippet of DNA from a double helix - deposit photos - CRISPR

Scientists have created a new biocomputing chip that makes calculations using a DNA substrate, including mathematical operations essential to artificial intelligence (AI) training and big data processing. Researchers described the new biocomputing platform Oct. 19, 2023, in the journal PLOS One. DNA is known as the blueprint for life and encodes genetic information, like data … Read more

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Writer Fuel: We Have Taste Receptors Throughout Our Bodies

taste - woman laying down tasting a strawberry - deposit photos

Most of the cell types in your body appear in many places — for example, humans have photoreceptors throughout our nervous systems, not just our eyes. So it seems strange that taste receptors would only be found on the tongue. Turns out, you actually have taste receptors throughout your body; you just can’t taste what … Read more

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Writer Fuel: NASA’s Astroid-Slamming Mission Changed the Shape of Its Target

NASA DART Mission

Scientists have discovered that the target asteroid of NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) may have been reshaped by the impact. A new investigation into the collision’s aftermath revealed that the asteroid, which is the smaller component of a binary asteroid system, exhibits a loose “rubble-pile” composition. DART slammed into the moonlet Dimorphos, which orbits … Read more

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Writer Fuel: How Can We Help Mars-Bound Astronauts Deal With Stress?

Mars colony - deposit photos

Within the next few decades, NASA aims to land humans on the Moon, set up a lunar colony and use the lessons learned to send people to Mars as part of its Artemis program. While researchers know that space travel can stress space crew members both physically and mentally and test their ability to work … Read more

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Writer Fuel: Meet the Minimoons

mini moons - deposit photos

The solar system holds many secrets that scientists are still trying to unravel. To help shed light on these mysteries, researchers are turning to space rocks of all kinds that may hold clues to the lost story of our solar system’s past. This approach is already bearing fruit: In October 2023, NASA’s OSIRIS REx mission … Read more

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Writer Fuel: This Black Hole devours a Sun’s Worth of Matter Every Day

black hole - deposit photos

Scientists have spotted the brightest and fastest-growing quasar ever seen — a monster black hole that’s devouring a sun’s-worth of material every day. The brightly burning object, named J0529-4351, weighs between 17 billion and 19 billion solar masses and is located 12 billion light-years from Earth — meaning it dates to a time when the … Read more

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Writer Fuel: Scientists Use “Ice Printing” to Create Scaffold for Constructing Blood Vessels

A 3D-printed ice template (left) was used a scaffolding to later grow cells (right) in a blood vessel-like structure. (Image credit: Image courtesy of Feimo Yang.)

Scientists are working to build blood vessels from human cells using tiny ice sculptures — these frigid 3D forms twist and branch like real arteries and can be used as temporary scaffolds that later get melted away, to be replaced by living cells. The researchers demonstrated the first step of this blood-vessel-building process in a … Read more

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Writer Fuel: Scientists Discover Four Guant Seamounts, Thanks to Gravitational Anomalies

The tallest of the newly discovered seamounts is more than 8,000 feet tall. (Image credit: Schmidt Ocean Institute)

Researchers have discovered four gigantic seamounts towering above the seafloor surrounding South America after detecting “gravitational anomalies” given off by the massive underwater mountains. The tallest rises more than 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) from the seafloor, making it three times taller than the world’s tallest building Scientists aboard the Schmidt Ocean Institute’s Falkor (too) research … Read more