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Science Illustrated Issue 60

Science Illustrated delivers natural science, break through discoveries and an understanding of the world for the entire family. Packed with stunning photography and in-depth editorial it’s a visually spectacular gateway to the world looking into the beginning of life to distant objects in the universe.

Nextmedia Pty Ltd
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8 Issues


access_time3 min.
to break the rules, first learn the rules

You might ask: why bother trying to figure out if there’s a multiverse? What’s the point? How can the knowledge there are other universes sort-of-but-not-really-but-sort-of outside our universe, ever be useful? Why spend the money on this?And the answer is: because we don’t know. Research into apparent esoterica like way-out cosmology and brane theory and superstrings, are all in the domain of what we call “pure science”. It’s knowledge for the sake of knowledge.Maybe it’s just part of the human condition. Way back in March 1923, British mountaineer George Mallory famously cut right to the core of the matter. When asked by the New York Times, why he wanted to climb Mount Everest, he famously replied: “Because it’s there.”Of course, he later disappeared on that mountain, and may not even…

access_time1 min.
how much does a single cell weigh?

How much does a living cell weigh? Scientists can now answer this question very accurately by means of a new cell scale. The scale is so tiny that it can be placed directly under a microscope to weigh a cell, while you study the processes in the cell interior. The scale includes an extremely thin arm, which captures a cell. The arm is induced to oscillate using laser, and by measuring its oscillations with and without the cell, the weight can be calculated with an accuracy of trillionths of a gram. Cells usually weigh 2-3 nanograms. ■…

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off florida, corals grow on… telegraph poles?

If a branch of a coral reef breaks off, it can grow into a new reef. The principle is used by scientists to grow new coral reefs to help endangered reefs. Small fragments of coral are placed on tree-like structures, which are tethered to the ocean floor off Florida, US. After 6-9 months, the fragments have grown large enough to be removed from the trees and “glued” to coral reefs, which are under restoration. In perfect conditions, coral grows very quickly, and it may be possible to save some reefs. ■…

access_time2 min.
dna robot eliminates tumours

MEDICINE Cancer tumours depend on blood supply. Without blood, they will wither and die. So, scientists from the US Arizona State University and the Chinese National Center for Nanoscience and Technology have developed a robot designed to eliminate tumours by blocking the blood supply.The robot was created by means of a special method, which shapes DNA strands as required by the scientists. In this case, they created a tube-shaped structure, which contains the thrombin enzyme. The enzyme exists naturally in the body, ensuring that blood can coagulate – such as in wound healing. The tiny DNA robots are injected into the blood stream to flow with the blood about the body, until they find the target that they are designed to react to. Cancer cells liberate a specific protein, which does not…

access_time8 min.
science update

(NASA)SHOOTING STAR · Jupiter's north poleNine Storms Reveal the Interior of JupiterThe Juno probe is still orbiting Jupiter in a path which allows us a view of the poles. This picture shows the planet’s north pole, where a large cyclone is surrounded by eight smaller storms. Studies of how deep into the atmosphere the storms reach can provide new knowledge about Jupiter’s unknown interior.The orange and red painting on the rock was made by Neanderthals long before modern humans came to Europe. (PEDRO SAURA)The Neanderthals were early humans, who lived in Europe and spread to Asia. They became extinct some 40,000 years ago.Cave Paintings Made By NeanderthalsARCHAEOLOGY New datings of cave paintings in Spain have turned an old discussion about the Neanderthals upside down. The major question was whether some of…

access_time2 min.
new method can read your mind

The test subjects had their brain activity measured by means of EEG, as they were observing faces in the display.BRAIN By feeding a computer data about brain activity, Canadian scientists have managed to tell when their test subjects are looking at a face and when they are not.The electric activity in the brain changes rapidly, when we see a human face, as shown by experiments from the University of Toronto Scarborough, Canada. In one experiment, test subjects looked at a flickering display, as their brain waves were measured with EEG. Suddenly, the flickering was replaced by a picture of a face, and immediately, the brain waves changed to produce a new pattern. As soon as the face disappeared from the display, the brain activity turned back to the original state. The…