By Warren CornwallMar. 21, 2019 , 2:00 PM THE NATIONAL SEA SIMULATOR IN TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA—The rush starts at sunset, just before the first tiny pearls of egg and sperm rise from chunks of coral resting in tanks here at this sprawling marine science center. Figures scurry past in the fading light, their red headlamps casting a lurid glow. The thrum of pumps and gurgle of water drown out the cicadas trilling on a sweltering November evening. Researchers huddle around the tanks, their lights turning the pools into pink lanterns as they watch for signs of spawning. Amid the controlled chaos, coral geneticist Madeleine van Oppen stands like a coach directing her team. A doctoral student from Van Oppen's lab at the University of Melbourne in Australia approaches with an update. One species of coral appears ready to spawn sooner than expected. "That's not helpful," Van Oppen declares. She strides to a large aquarium, reaches in up to her elbows, and lifts out a basketball-size … [Read more...] about Researchers embrace a radical idea: engineering coral to cope with climate change
Red sea research center
Peggy’s data were a bit of a shock.From an anchored vantage point in an expanse of the southeastern Bering Sea west of Alaska, Peggy, or mooring M2, had monitored conditions in the water for 25 years. A line of sensors extended down more than 70 meters to where Peggy was tethered to the seafloor, collecting information on temperature, salinity and other properties of the water.Most years, the waxing and waning of floating sea ice follows a consistent seasonal pattern that is reflected in Peggy’s data. By November, sea ice migrates in through the Bering Strait or forms in some parts of the Bering Sea. As a by-product of the sea ice formation, a large mass of cold, salty water begins to pool near the seafloor. In the spring, phytoplankton bloom, and by early summer, the sea ice begins to melt away. The cold pool, however, lingers through the summer. With an average temperature just below zero degrees Celsius — a few degrees colder than the surrounding water — … [Read more...] about What happens when the Bering Sea’s ice disappears?
A flexible, lightweight and robust salinity sensor that can be attached to aquatic animals for long-term monitoring of their habitat has been developed by a multidisciplinary team at KAUST. The team created a sensor that accurately records salinity even after long-term submersion. The sensor can form the basis of a marine animal monitoring device that records multiple underwater habitat parameters, the researchers say. Located on the shores of the Red Sea, KAUST has a research focus on this ecologically rich and economically important ecosystem. Electrical engineer Jürgen Kosel is working with marine scientist Carlos Duarte from the Red Sea Research Center to develop monitoring devices as part of KAUST’s Sensor Initiative. “As engineers, our group aspires to furnish the marine research scientists with new technologies tailored to their needs,” Kosel says. One important parameter is shifting ocean salinity, which can impact the health of marine organisms, but also … [Read more...] about Lasers, Graphene Form Tailor-Made Marine Sensors
This is the story of the ultimate cult: a wired, high-tech, designer-drug, billion-dollar army of New Age zealots, focused around the leadership of a blind and bearded madman, armed with weapons of mass destruction. Like scenes of an apocalyptic future in a cyberpunk novel, this story is also the stuff of nightmares. Cultists wired electrodes to their heads while chanting ancient mantras and logging on to computer nets. Methamphetamine, LSD, and truth serum - the product of homemade laboratories equipped with the latest gear - ran through their veins. Those same labs worked at refining enough chemical and biological weapons to kill millions. Other cultists attempted to build a nuclear bomb while massive facilities were built to manufacture handguns and explosives. All this activity went toward preparing for - and then unleashing - Armageddon. In 1984, guru Shoko Asahara had a one-room yoga school, a handful of devotees, and a dream: world domination. A decade later, Aum Supreme Truth … [Read more...] about Aum’s Shoko Asahara and the Cult at the End of the World
By Wire Services | Mercury News, Bay Area News Group PUBLISHED: October 7, 2018 at 10:31 pm | UPDATED: October 8, 2018 at 5:12 am By Chris Mooney & Brady Dennis | The Washington Post The world stands on the brink of failure when it comes to holding global warming to moderate levels, and nations will need to take “unprecedented” actions to cut their carbon emissions over the next decade, according to a landmark report by the globe’s top scientific body studying climate change. With global emissions showing few signs of slowing and the United States – the world’s second-largest emitter of carbon dioxide – rolling back a suite of Obama-era climate measures, the prospects for meeting the most ambitious goals of the 2015 Paris agreement look increasingly slim. To avoid racing past warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) over preindustrial levels would require a “rapid and far reaching” transformation of human … [Read more...] about UN report on climate change: Drastic action needed to stop catastrophe