Ants provide clues to why biodiversity is higher in the tropics

It's a puzzle that has confounded biologists for centuries: the earth's tropical regions are home to an enormous variety of plant and animal species, but as you travel north or south, away from the equator, the level of diversity ...

Symbiotic plankton: providers or parasites?

Out at sea, a scientist holds a plankton sample up to the light and observes the shimmering contents. This sparkling spectacle is caused by thousands of microscopic organisms living at the sea surface, their intricate, crystalline ...

Bright future for solar cell technology

New all-inorganic perovskite solar cells tackle three key challenges in solar cell technology: efficiency, stability, and cost.

Rapamycin resolves genetic defects in yeast

Scientists at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) have taken one step closer to potential cures for several human genetic diseases, and the answers have been found in the humble cells ...

Polarization has strong impact on electrons, study shows

The movement of thousands of electrons underlies electronics. Yet, ubiquitous as electrons are, the particulars of their behavior continue to stump physicists. One phenomenon has proven especially puzzling: how electrons ...

New math bridges holography and twistor theory

The modern-day theoretical physicist faces a taxing uphill climb. "As we learn more, reality becomes ever more subtle; the absolute becomes relative, the fixed becomes dynamical, the definite is laden with uncertainty," writes ...

Nanomushroom sensors—one material, many applications

A small rectangle of pink glass, about the size of a postage stamp, sits on Professor Amy Shen's desk. Despite its outwardly modest appearance, this little glass slide has the potential to revolutionize a wide range of processes, ...

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