Understanding the microscopic structure of a material is key to understanding how it functions and its functional properties. Advances in fields like materials science have increasingly pushed abilities to determine these features to even higher resolutions. One technique for imaging at nanoscale resolution, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), is one example of promising technology in this area. Scientists recently found a way to harness the power of TEM to measure the structure of a material at the highest possible resolution—determining the 3-D position of every individual atom.
Ice cores offer a window into the history of Earth’s climate. Layers of ice reveal past temperatures, and gases trapped in bubbles reveal past atmospheric composition. The oldest continuous ice core so far comes from Dome C in East Antarctica and extends back 800,000 years.
Some of the boxes stacked inside anthropologist Molly Zuckerman’s laboratory contain full bones—a skull, a jaw, or a leg. Others contain only plastic bags of bone fragments that Zuckerman describes as “grit.”
The annual federal report on toxic material emissions from industrial sites across the country gains widespread media attention and serves as a reminder of the potential environmental impacts of industrial activities.
The atmosphere of Rosetta’s comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is far from homogeneous. In addition to sudden outbursts of gas and dust, daily recurring phenomena at sunrise can be observed. In these, evaporating gas and entrained dust are concentrated to form jet-like structures. A new study, led by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Germany and published in the journal Nature Astronomy, now identifies the rugged, duck-shaped structure of the comet as the main cause of these jets. Not only do concave regions collimate gas and dust emissions similar to an optical lens, the complex topography also provide some areas of the surface with more sunlight than others.
Astronomers have discovered a special kind of neutron star for the first time outside of the Milky Way galaxy, using data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile.
Engineers working with NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover have been hard at work testing a new way for the rover to drill rocks and extract powder from them. This past weekend, that effort produced the first drilled sample on Mars in more than a year.
Imagine only knowing 15 people in the world, and as you discover more people, your knowledge expands. Scientists studying our galaxy face something similar as they make discoveries that build our understanding of the universe.
Southwest Research Institute scientists integrated NASA’s New Horizons discoveries with data from ESA’s Rosetta mission to develop a new theory about how Pluto may have formed at the edge of our solar system.
Astronomers are one step closer to understanding a mysterious class of optically faint galaxies thanks to deep radio observations with the Green Bank Telescope, reveals a poster presented today at the Canadian Astronomical Society Annual Meeting in Victoria, British Columbia.