Max Planck Society

Squabbling meerkats make better decisions

Conflicting interests within a group can lead to better collective decisions – if you're a social animal such as a meerkat – according to new research by a team of biologists and political scientists ...

Dec 06, 2013
5 / 5 (2) 2 | with audio podcast

Oldest hominin DNA sequenced

Using novel techniques to extract and study ancient DNA researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, have determined an almost complete mitochondrial genome sequence ...

Dec 04, 2013
4.8 / 5 (29) 2 | with audio podcast

Home computers discover gamma-ray pulsars

The combination of globally distributed computing power and innovative analysis methods proves to be a recipe for success in the search for new pulsars. Scientists from the Max Planck Institutes for Gravitational ...

Nov 26, 2013
5 / 5 (12) 0 | with audio podcast

ISON comet has lost individual fragments

One or more chunks could have split off from the nucleus of comet ISON in recent days. Two wing-like structures in the gaseous environment of the comet, which have been photographed by a team of scientists ...

Nov 21, 2013
5 / 5 (7) 0 | with audio podcast

Comet ISON unfolds its wings

(Phys.org) —One or more fragments may have detached from comet ISON in the past days, as two wing-shaped features in the comet's atmosphere suggest. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Solar System ...

Nov 19, 2013
4.5 / 5 (8) 3 | with audio podcast

Seeing a photon without absorbing it

Light is of fundamental importance. It allows us to see the world around us and record pictures of our environment. It enables communication over long distances through optical fibers. All current methods ...

Nov 14, 2013
4.8 / 5 (34) 4 | with audio podcast

Cosmic oddball

Some bodies have a very disturbing effect on the order in the solar system - P/2013 P5 is one of them. With several clearly visible tails, it may look like a comet, but orbits around the Sun within the asteroid ...

Nov 13, 2013
4 / 5 (4) 3

The secret of short stems

The normal height to which plants grow is a critical trait. In the wild Arabidopsis thaliana uses the same genetic changes in the biosynthesis of the growth factor gibberellin to cut its size in half as fo ...

Nov 12, 2013
4 / 5 (4) 0 | with audio podcast