MI weekly selection #551

Source: NASA

Europe’s heat waves may start with Arctic melting

Meltwater from Arctic ice could be setting off recent hot, dry summers in Europe by changing ocean currents and air circulation. A resulting “cold blob” of water in the North Atlantic Ocean could intensify European winter storms and their westerly winds, creating a barrier of warm ocean water that allows dry, hot air to hover over Europe in the summer, which researchers determined using a combination of data from satellites, buoys and weather stations.

Full Story: Science

Post-menopausal whales feed and care for daughters’ offspring

Menopause may have evolved in five species of toothed whales to remove competition for mates between grandmothers and their daughters, allowing the grandmothers to help feed and care for daughters’ offspring, says research in Nature that supports the live-long hypothesis that human menopause lengthens total life span but not reproductive life span.

Full Story: USA Today

New Zealand site may help interpret formations in Africa

Geologically young rocks on the seafloor off New Zealand’s coast may offer clues to interpreting ancient geological formations in southern Africa’s Barberton Greenstone Belt. Researchers suggest the two sites contain similarities. A better understanding about the remote African rocks may provide insight on Earth’s early years, the researchers write.

Full Story: The Conversation

Fast solid-state battery electrolyte

A solid-state battery electrolyte made of ordered sulphide and iodide ions could conduct lithium ions as quickly as the liquid electrolytes in lithium-ion batteries, providing safer, faster rechargeable energy. The electrolyte, devised using crystal structure prediction tools and AI, has a hexagonal and cubic-close-packed structure that allows lithium ions to move in three dimensions.

Full Story: Physics World

ML detects traces of early stage cancer

Machine learning that analyses repetitive genetic sequences in cancerous tissue and in cell-free DNA predicted early stage lung and liver cancers. The technology could be used as a noninvasive way to detect cancer or monitor treatment response.

Full Story: Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology

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