ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Welcome to the Saturday edition of “ScienceDaily” from Hawaii Science Digest.

Views expressed in this science and technology news summary are those of the reporters and correspondents.

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Accessed on 13 April 2019, 1525 UTC.

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ScienceDaily: Top Science News

Earliest life may have arisen in ponds, not oceans

Posted: 12 Apr 2019 08:50 AM PDT

Primitive ponds may have provided a suitable environment for brewing up Earth’s first life forms, more so than oceans, a new study finds. Researchers report that shallow bodies of water, on the order of 10 centimeters deep, could have held high concentrations of what many scientists believe to be a key ingredient for jump-starting life on Earth: nitrogen.


Psychologists find smiling really can make people happier

Posted: 12 Apr 2019 06:47 AM PDT

Smiling really can make people feel happier, according to a new article. A team of psychologists combined data from 138 studies testing more than 11,000 participants and found that facial expressions have a small impact on our feelings.


CRISPR-Cas3 innovation holds promise for disease cures, advancing science

Posted: 11 Apr 2019 02:25 PM PDT

Scientists have used a new type of gene editing CRISPR system for the first time in human cells – a major advance in the field.


I feel you: Emotional mirror neurons found in the rat

Posted: 11 Apr 2019 08:52 AM PDT

Researchers have found that the rat brain activates the same cells when they observe the pain of others as when they experience pain themselves. In addition, without activity of these ‘mirror neurons,’ the animals no longer share the pain of others. Finding the neural basis for sharing the emotions of others is an exciting step towards understanding empathy.


Ice Ages occur when tropical islands and continents collide

Posted: 11 Apr 2019 08:52 AM PDT

Earth’s steady state is warm and balmy, but half a dozen times over the past billion years, the planet developed ice caps and glaciers. Researchers have now amassed evidence that these cold snaps occurred when tectonic activity propelled continents headlong into volcanic island arcs in the tropics, uplifting ophiolites that rapidly absorbed carbon dioxide, cooling Earth. Once collisions stopped, CO2 again built up from volcanic eruptions and a runaway greenhouse effect warmed the planet.


World’s fastest hydrogen sensor could pave the way for clean hydrogen energy

Posted: 11 Apr 2019 07:18 AM PDT

Hydrogen is a clean and renewable energy carrier that can power vehicles, with water as the only emission. Unfortunately, hydrogen gas is highly flammable when mixed with air, so very efficient and effective sensors are needed. Now, researchers present the first hydrogen sensors ever to meet the future performance targets for use in hydrogen powered vehicles.


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Until next time,

Russ Roberts (the daily update). (backup/alternate website).

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