• Nuclear Waste Recycled for Diamond Battery Power

    A team of physicists and chemists hope to recycle radioactive material directly from a former nuclear power plant in Gloucestershire, U.K., to generate ultra-long-lasting power sources.

  • Researcher Tests “Vaccine” Against Hate

    Amid a spike in violent extremism around the world, a communications researcher is experimenting with a novel idea: whether people can be “inoculated” against hate with a little exposure to extremist propaganda, in the same manner vaccines enable human bodies to fight disease.

  • Edible “Security Tag” Protects Drugs from Counterfeit

    Manufacturing prescription drugs with distinct markings, colors, shapes or packaging isn’t enough to protect them from counterfeiting, DEA reports have shown. Researchers are aiming to stump counterfeiters with an edible “security tag” embedded into medicine. To imitate the drug, a counterfeiter would have to uncrack a complicated puzzle of patterns not fully visible to the naked eye.

  • Before We Rush to Rebuild after Fires, We Need to Think about Where and How

    Public support for rebuilding in the same disaster affected places is often high. But as fire-fighting agencies are aware, our bushfires are increasing in size, intensity and duration, and a warming climate will continue to worsen these factors. We need to start being more strategic about where we rebuild homes and facilities lost to fire, and how.

  • The Prospects of Climate Engineering

    Climate engineering may offer a last-ditch technological solution to catastrophic climate change, but who makes the decisions on which solutions to implement, and who the beneficiaries will be? Once we start fiddling with the Earth’s fundamental processes, where will it end?

  • Tropical Cyclones Causing Billions in Losses Dominate 2019 Natural Catastrophe Picture

    Natural catastrophes cause overall losses of $150 billion, with insured losses of about $52 billion. Severe typhoons in Japan cause the year’s biggest losses. Hurricane Dorian, the strongest hurricane of the year, devastates the Bahamas, but the U.S. mainland was largely spared. Humanitarian tragedy caused by cyclones in Mozambique, with more than 1,000 deaths.  – Better protection is urgently needed

  • Climate Change will Take Increasingly Heavier Toll on People’s Welfare, Security: Experts

    The World Economic Forum has just issued its annual Global Risk Report, based on input from more than 750 global experts and decision-makers, who were asked to rank their biggest concerns in terms of likelihood and impact on the welfare and security of people around the world. For the first time in the survey’s 10-year outlook, the top five global risks in terms of likelihood are all related to the environment: intensification of extreme weather events; failure of climate mitigation and adaptation; increasing human-induced damage to the environment; ecosystem collapse; growing vulnerability of more people to natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, and geomagnetic storms.

  • On A Hotter Planet, We Are All Australians

    Warm the human body by 7 degrees Fahrenheit and death ensues. David Spratt writes that on the Paris Agreement emissions trajectory, the entire world is heading for around 7 degrees Fahrenheit of warming once system feedbacks are included. The Lancet wrote: “Without immediate and efficient climate action, catastrophic bushfires will become a common disaster and might destroy the future of Australia and possibly of humanity.” Spratt says: “On a hotter planet, we are all Australians, one way or another. And the fire season is far from over.”

  • DHS S&T, BIRD Foundation Announce Awards for Advanced Homeland Security Technologies

    The Israel – U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation the other day announced three awards for collaborative projects totaling $2.3 million to develop advanced technologies for the homeland security mission.

  • The Heat Human Activity Has Added to World’s Oceans in the Past 25 Years Is Equivalent to 3.6 Billion Hiroshima-Size Bombs

    The Hiroshima atom-bomb exploded with an energy of about 63,000,000,000,000 Joules. The amount of heat mankind has put in the world’s oceans in the past 25 years equals to 3.6 billion Hiroshima atom-bomb explosions. A new analysis shows the world’s oceans were the warmest in 2019 than any other time in recorded human history, especially between the surface and a depth of 2,000 meters. The new studyalso concludes that the past ten years have been the warmest on record for global ocean temperatures, with the past five years holding the highest record.

  • 2019: 2nd Wettest Year on Record for U.S.; $14 Billion Climate Disasters

    It was another year of record-making weather and climate for the U.S. in 2019, which was the second wettest behind 1973. Fourteen billion-dollar disasters that struck the U.S. last year included Hurricane Dorian, historic flooding and severe storms.

  • Countering Hate Speech by Detecting, Highlighting “Help Speech”

    Researchers have developed a system that leverages artificial intelligence to rapidly analyze hundreds of thousands of comments on social media and identify the fraction that defend or sympathize with disenfranchised minorities such as the Rohingya community. Human social media moderators, who couldn’t possibly manually sift through so many comments, would then have the option to highlight this “help speech” in comment sections.

  • Things Are about to Get a Lot More Confusing for Cybercriminals

    While cyberdeception is not totally new as a way to fend off cybercriminals – researchers have been looking into this technique for a few years now – researchers are now taking a unique approach: using cognitive science to inform how to deceive attackers effectively.

  • The Costs of Closing Germany’s Nuclear Power Plants

    Many countries have phased out production of nuclear energy because of concerns related to nuclear waste and the risk of nuclear accidents. A new study explores Germany’s decision, after the 2011 Fukushima accident, to replace nuclear power with fossil-fuel power generation, finding that the switch to fossil fuel-fired power resulted in considerable increases in pollution at an estimated annual social cost of about $12 billion.

  • Could Invisible Aliens Really Exist among Us? An Astrobiologist Explains

    Life is pretty easy to recognize. It moves, it grows, it eats, it excretes, it reproduces. Simple. In biology, researchers often use the acronym MRSGREN (Movement, Respiration, Sensitivity, Growth, Reproduction, Excretion, and Nutrition) to describe it. It stands for movement, respiration, sensitivity, growth, reproduction, excretion and nutrition. But Helen Sharman, Britain’s first astronaut and a chemist at Imperial College London, recently said that alien lifeforms that are impossible to spot may be living among us. How could that be possible?