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Environment - Microtechnics - 19.05.2022
A drone for ultrafast transitions between air and water
A drone for ultrafast transitions between air and water
A new robot is capable of switching from an underwater drone to an aerial vehicle in less than one second. The robot also features a suction disc inspired by the remora fish, which enables it to hitchhike on wet or dry moving objects to significantly reduce its power consumption. It is designed for biological and environmental monitoring in marine ecosystems such as surveying ocean pollution in the open sea as the scientist of Beihang University, Imperial College London and Empa point out in a new study published in Science Robotics.

Environment - Materials Science - 19.05.2022
Low-cost battery-like device absorbs CO2 emissions while it charges
Low-cost battery-like device absorbs CO2 emissions while it charges
Researchers have developed a low-cost device that can selectively capture carbon dioxide gas while it charges. Then, when it discharges, the CO2 can be released in a controlled way and collected to be reused or disposed of responsibly. We found that that by slowly alternating the current between the plates we can capture double the amount of CO2 than before Alexander Forse The supercapacitor device, which is similar to a rechargeable battery, is the size of a two-pence coin, and is made in part from sustainable materials including coconut shells and seawater.

Environment - Astronomy / Space Science - 19.05.2022
Satellite Monitoring of Biodiversity Moves Within Reach
Satellite Monitoring of Biodiversity Moves Within Reach
Global biodiversity assessments require the collection of data on changes in plant biodiversity on an ongoing basis. Researchers from the universities of Zurich and Montréal have now shown that plant communities can be reliably monitored using imaging spectroscopy, which in the future will be possible via satellite.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 19.05.2022
Mycorrhizal fungi: heroes of a hidden biodiversity
Thursday, May 19, 2022 — The wood wide web has been a hot topic among biologists in recent years. Trees and plants are interconnected and not only share information, they also support each other by passing on signals or food. They do this by means of mycorrhizal fungi that live in symbiosis with the roots.

Transport - Environment - 19.05.2022
How a cognitive bias is blocking the rise of electric cars
How a cognitive bias is blocking the rise of electric cars
A team from the University of Geneva shows that underestimating battery autonomy is a major psychological barrier to buying an electric car. What are the barriers to the adoption of electric cars? Although the main financial and technological obstacles have been removed, their market share still needs to increase.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 18.05.2022
Study explores concentrations of microplastics in the Rhine floodplains near Langel in Cologne
Microplastics accumulate in the Rhine meadows at Langel-Merkenich / topography and flooding determine local concentrations of particles in the soil Microplastics can be deposited in river floodplains and transported to deeper soil horizons. Local topography, flood frequency, and soil characteristics are responsible for the amount of plastic particles deposited and their possible transport into deeper soil.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 18.05.2022
Organic farming or flower strips - which is better for bees?
Organic farming or flower strips - which is better for bees?
Research team including Göttingen University assess the efficiency of agri-environmental measures from different perspectives How effective environmental measures in agriculture are for biodiversity and wild bee populations depends on various factors and your perspective. This is shown by agroecologists from the University of Göttingen, Germany and the Centre for Ecological Research in Vácrátót, Hungary.

Environment - 18.05.2022
Urban greenery: not only trees are important
Scientists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) conducted a multi-year empirical study to assess the impact of trees on city temperatures. Taking the city of Würzburg as an example, the researchers showed that vegetation cover of approximately 40 percent is needed to bring about lower summer temperatures.

Environment - Health - 18.05.2022
Smartphone addiction and the secrets of killer whale diets
Smartphone addiction and the secrets of killer whale diets
Environment Lower-income populations will be hardest hit by heat waves Unlocking the secrets of killer whale diets and their role in climate change Unlocking the secrets of killer whale diets and their role in climate change Killer whale populations are invading the Arctic, causing significant disruptions to an ecosystem already deeply affected by climate change.

Environment - Health - 18.05.2022
Erratic temperatures causing more deaths than heatwaves: study
A new study has attributed 1.75 million deaths per year to fluctuating temperatures. It is the first to quantify the number of deaths associated with unstable temperatures. It found temperature variability had similar impacts to air pollution on global mortality. Deaths as a result of temperature variability accounted for 3.4% of all deaths globally between 2000 and 2019.

Innovation - Environment - 17.05.2022
Toys and furniture from popcorn
Toys and furniture from popcorn
Forest scientists at Göttingen University develop environmentally friendly products from renewable raw materials Forest scientists at the University of Göttingen have long been researching sustainable and efficient processes to make products from popcorn granulate. There are many uses for these products: from packaging to insulating panels for building insulation .

Earth Sciences - Environment - 17.05.2022
New findings on the global cooling of 1627 BC
New findings on the global cooling of 1627 BC
An interdisciplinary study, in which the University of Bern played a major role, sheds new light on two extreme volcanic events and a subsequent global cooling in antiquity. With the help of a highly precise analysis of volcanic ash and sulphur in ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica, it became clear that the global cooling around 1627 BC was not attributable to the Thera volcano in Santorini, as previously assumed, but to a volcano in distant Alaska.

Life Sciences - Environment - 17.05.2022
Dust catchers: Biological crusts influence the climate
Dust catchers: Biological crusts influence the climate
A surface layer of bacteria, fungi and lichen amongst others reduces the amount of dust stirred up into the atmosphere When bacteria, fungi, mosses, lichens and algae combine on dry land, they form so-called biological soil crusts. These cover about twelve percent of the total global land surface, and up to one third of the surface in dry areas.

Environment - Life Sciences - 17.05.2022
Overgrazing alters the ecosystem irreversibly
Overgrazing alters the ecosystem irreversibly
Research team including Göttingen University identifies limit based on microbiology functions The Tibetan plateau is of particular importance for a number of reasons: as a grazing ecosystem, as a carbon store, to initiate the monsoon climate, and to ensure a supply of drinking water. With low to moderate grazing, dead and living roots of the wild sedge plants that are widespread there protect the soil from degradation, meaning the gradual loss of ecosystem functions due to erosion.

Life Sciences - Environment - 16.05.2022
Newly discovered enzyme breaks down PET plastic in record time
Research finding from Leipzig could help make biological recycling more commercially viable Plastic bottles, punnets, wrap - such lightweight packaging made of PET plastic becomes a problem if it is not recycled. Scientists at Leipzig University have now discovered a highly efficient enzyme that degrades PET in record time.

Life Sciences - Environment - 16.05.2022
Chimpanzees combine calls to form numerous vocal sequences
Chimpanzees combine calls to form numerous vocal sequences
Evidence of structured vocal sequences in wild chimpanzee communication provides insights into human language evolution Compared to the complex use of human language, the way animals communicate with each other appears quite simple. How our language evolved from such a simple system, remains unclear.

Environment - 14.05.2022
The Lancet Journal rates Valčncia as one of the best cities in the world for supporting health and sustainability
A monographic published by the prestigious journal The Lancet analysed the urban design, transport, sustainability and other quality of life indicators of 25 cities of the world. In this publication Valčncia rated as one of the best cities in urban policies and support for health and sustainability.

Environment - 13.05.2022
Hot spots for migratory birds
Hot spots for migratory birds
New research with the participation of the University of Valencia highlights the areas of Europe and North Africa in which the construction of wind farms or power lines can increase the risk of death of migratory birds. The western Mediterranean coast of France, southern Spain, and the Moroccan coast, among the main areas of vulnerability.

Environment - 13.05.2022
Satellite images reveal dramatic loss of global wetlands over past two decades
Satellite images reveal dramatic loss of global wetlands over past two decades
This data can help identify coastal areas most impacted - and therefore in need of protection Thomas Worthington Global change and human actions are driving rapid changes to tidal wetlands - tidal marshes, mangroves and tidal flats - worldwide. However, ecosystem restoration and natural processes are playing a part in reducing total losses.

Environment - Earth Sciences - 12.05.2022
Algae reveal clues about climate changes over millions of years
Göttingen scientists identify and investigate algae which register sea water temperatures of the warmest months Organisms adjust their cell walls according to environmental conditions such as temperature. Some adaptations involve changes in lipids which may still be preserved long after the rest of the organisms has been degraded.
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