Scientists witnessed a neutron star mashup for the first time – and it transformed our understanding of the universe

October 16, 2017 by  
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For the first time, scientists have detected gravitational waves stemming from the crash of two ultra-dense neutron stars – and the event has spawned a new era of astronomy known as “multi-messenger astronomy.” It is believed that cataclysmic events such as these generated at least half of the gold in the Universe. Though astronomers have witnessed ripples in the fabric of space in time before (created by objects moving in the Universe), this is the first time in history the event was detectable by regular light telescopes. As a result, researchers have gained new insight into massive cosmic collisions. A neutron star is the burnt-out core of a massive star that ran out of fuel , blew up and died. Typically 20 kilometers (12 miles) in diameter, a neutron star is radioactive and has a mass slightly more dense than the sun in our solar system. Reportedly, a handful of neutron star material weighs as much as Mount Everest ! When two neutron stars combine, they spiral around each other, growing closer and closer over time. The spinning intensifies until the two objects revolve around each other several times per second. Then, a forceful impact takes place and a gargantuan gravitational wave is emitted into the Universe at the speed of light. On August 18th, astronomers witnessed the remains of a neutron star mash-up, which traveled 130 million light years before it was seen by Earthly detectors. The phenomena resulted in dozens of scientific papers being published in top academic journals. As Phys.org reports, the observation also solved several physics riddles – including how much of the universe’s gold , platinum, mercury and other heavy elements were formed. Related: Einstein’s gravitational wave theory proven by the sound of two black holes colliding Said co-discoverer Benoit Mours of France’s CNRS research institute, “We witnessed history unfolding in front of our eyes: two neutron stars drawing closer, closer… turning faster and faster around each other, then colliding and scattering debris all over the place.” Days before the highly-anticipated event, three different gravitational wave observatories based around the world picked up gravitational waves. Astronomers worked together to locate the area where the merger occurred. After narrowing it down to a very small patch in the southern sky, the US-based Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) mobilized the rest of the astronomy community, reports The Verge. Within hours, thousands of astronomers searched the sky , eventually spotting the explosive leftovers of the neutron star mashup. Telescopes witnessed newly-forged material in the fallout. This confirmed that “maybe half, maybe more, of the heavy elements in the Universe are actually produced by this kind of collision,” said physicist Patrick Sutton, a member of LIGO. “This is a revolution in astronomy, of having thousands of astronomers focus on one source for weeks and having this collaboration unravel in seconds, in hours, then days, and weeks,” said Vicky Kalogera, an astrophysicist at Northwestern University and a LIGO collaborator. “For us, that’s the Holy Grail.” The development comes two years after the first gravitational wave was detected (also by LIGO). For the past century, astronomers have been trying to figure out how to detect the ripples, which were predicted by Albert Einstein in his theory of general relativity . Via Phys , The Verge Images via Robin Dienel/Carnegie Institution for Science , NSF LIGO Sonoma State University / A. Simonnet , Tony Piro, Carnegie Institution for Science

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Scientists witnessed a neutron star mashup for the first time – and it transformed our understanding of the universe

This framework could help measure climate action in cities

July 24, 2017 by  
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The mission of the Gold Standard Foundation is to show that projects meant to mitigate global warming can go hand in hand with sustainable development.

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This framework could help measure climate action in cities

New biodegradable semiconductor could make e-waste a thing of the past

May 8, 2017 by  
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50 million tons of electronics are expected to be trashed this year, according to a United Nations Environment Program report . A Stanford University team was concerned over the escalating epidemic of e-waste , so they created a semiconductor – a component in most of our electronics – that can actually be broken down with a weak acid such as vinegar. Nine Stanford researchers, joined by one scientist from Hewlett Packard Labs and two engineers from the University of California, Santa Barbara , set out to rethink electronics. Engineer Zhenan Bao, who heads up the Bao Research Group at Stanford, said they found inspiration from human skin . Skin stretches, can heal itself, and is ultimately biodegradable . The researchers wanted to take these characteristics and apply them to electronics. Related: INFOGRAPHIC: The dangerous untold story of e-waste They created a flexible polymer able to decompose. Postdoctoral fellow Ting Lei said it’s the first ever “semiconductive polymer that can decompose.” But that’s just one part of a semiconductor. The team also designed a degradable electronic circuit and a biodegradable substrate material. They used iron – a nontoxic, environmentally friendly product – instead of the gold usually used for electronic components. They made a paper-like substrate with cellulose ; the transparent substrate allows the semiconductor to adhere to rough or smooth surfaces, like onto an avocado as seen in the picture above or on human skin. The semiconductor could even be implanted inside a body. According to Stanford, “When the electronic device is no longer needed, the whole thing can biodegrade into nontoxic components.” The team envisions a number of uses for their semiconductors, like in wearable electronics . They could be made into patches allowing people to track their blood pressure, for example, or could be dropped via plane into a forest to survey the landscape, and eventually they would biodegrade instead of littering the environment . The journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America published the research online the beginning of May. Via Stanford University and New Atlas Images via Stanford University/Bao lab

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New biodegradable semiconductor could make e-waste a thing of the past

8 Father’s Day Gift Ideas That Truly Pay It Forward

June 7, 2016 by  
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It’s hard to believe Father’s Day is here. If you’re like me, you struggle to find that perfect gift for the pops in your life. I suppose it’s because most men don’t require much, leaving us with few ideas to really knock their gold toe socks off….

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8 Father’s Day Gift Ideas That Truly Pay It Forward

Artist Buries $16k Worth of Gold Bullion that People Can Find and Keep

September 2, 2014 by  
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Yarr, if it’s gold you be seeking, to England you should go: a German artist has buried $16,000 worth of gold bullion in the sand of the Outer Harbour beach in Folkestone, which people can come and search for this Thursday as part of the Folkestone Triennial . As part of an art project entitled Folkestone Digs , Michael Sailstorfer has buried the 30 bars of gold bullion under the sand of the beach as part of a participatory art project which he hopes will attract many people to the area at low tide on Thursday, Sept. 4 to search for it. “It’s about people coming to the beach and digging and possibly finding hidden treasure,” Triennial curator, Lewis Biggs told The Guardian . “Some people will get lucky, some people will not get lucky – and that’s life.” Read the rest of Artist Buries $16k Worth of Gold Bullion that People Can Find and Keep Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Art , Artist , beach , buillion , buries , Folkestone , GOLD , michael , project , sailstorfer , situations , triennial

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Artist Buries $16k Worth of Gold Bullion that People Can Find and Keep

16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet

April 29, 2013 by  
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In the battle to beat cancer, everyone is looking the elusive silver bullet. In this case, the bullet may actually be made of gold, and it has been developed by a 16-year-old. Indian-born Arjun Nair has been awarded a $5,000 prize from the Ottawa headquarters of the National Research Council of Canada for his work as part of the 2013 Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada (SBCC). Using the experimental method of Photothermal therapy (PTT), the nanobullet he devised would inject cancer-killing gold particles to seek out and destroy the harmful cells. Read the rest of 16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 17-agg , antiobiotic , arjun nair , canada , cancer , cells , david cramb , GOLD , high school , India , Laser , nanoparticle , photothermal therapy , ptt , sanofi biogeneius challenge canada , tumor , univeristy of calgary        

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16-Year-Old Creates Cancer-Killing Nanoparticle Bullet

NL Architects Dream Up a Supermarket Topped with a Lush Park for China

April 29, 2013 by  
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Read the rest of NL Architects Dream Up a Supermarket Topped with a Lush Park for China Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , china , eco design , green architecture , Green Building , green design , green roof grocery store , green roof market , green roof super market , grocery store , market , nl architects , sanya , super market , Super Market Sanya Lake Park , Sustainable Building , sustainable design , underground grocery store        

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NL Architects Dream Up a Supermarket Topped with a Lush Park for China

Andy Ruben: Breaking out of the big-box

November 23, 2012 by  
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How does an executive from Walmart — the gold standard for selling stuff — end up co-founding a company aimed at facilitating sharing instead of buying? Here's the inside story of his all-consuming passion. 

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Andy Ruben: Breaking out of the big-box

Scientists Discover New Technique To Change the Color of Gold Without Using Chemicals

November 4, 2012 by  
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Photo by  Shutterstock Researchers at the  University of Southampton  have developed a new way to alter the color of gold—or just about any metal—  without  chemically altering it. The technique involves “nano-patterning” — etching the metal’s surface with patterns of specific shape and depth, which manipulates the wavelengths that are visible to the human eye. The technique could deliver valuable economic and environmental benefits, and it could be harnessed to manufacture jewelry and to make banknotes and documents more difficult to forge. READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: eco jewelry , eco-fashion , GOLD , gold color , green fashion , green jewelry , Jewelry , nano-patterning , University of Southampton

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Scientists Discover New Technique To Change the Color of Gold Without Using Chemicals

Golden Glory is a Gilded Temporary Art Pavilion in Germany

May 23, 2012 by  
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Read the rest of Golden Glory is a Gilded Temporary Art Pavilion in Germany Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Art , bicycle capital of Germany , culture , eco design , germany , gilded pavilion , GOLD , golden glory , green design , Modulorbeat , Muster , sustainable design , temporary construction , temporary design , Urban design

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Golden Glory is a Gilded Temporary Art Pavilion in Germany

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