The lightest solid material

Micro Lattice

Scientists from the University of California have developed a new metallic “micro-lattice” material and they claim that it is the lightest solid material on earth. This “micro-lattice” material has a density of 0.9 mg/cm3. The number might not mean something to you but it means that is about 100 times lighter than Styrofoam. It is so light that if you put it on a dandelion it will not damage it at all (picture). It is basically 99.99 percent air and 0.01 percent nickel-phosphorous tubes that are interconnected. The material has a wall thickness of 100 nm, about 1000 times thinner than a human hair. This is very impressive, scientists still creating smaller, thinner and lighter materials but I think they are touching the limits.

Black Holes

Stars like humans and everything else die. When a huge star dies (supernova explosion) it does not disappear completely but a dense core remains. If the mass of that remaining core is at least three times more than the mass of our sun, gravity is the winner force, star collapses and a black hole is born. There are billions black holes in the universe and it is believed that they can be divided into two categories. “Stellar mass” black holes which are 10-25 as massive as the Sun and “Supermassive” black holes which are millions of times as massive as the sun. If the small ones have so strong gravitational field, then I can only imagine how strong is the gravitational field of the big ones, which are millions of times as massive as the small ones.

Lab-Grown Blood in Our Veins


Scientists on Pierre and Marie Curie University grow red blood cells, lab-grown blood. They recently had their first successful transfusion into human’s veins. This is a huge step to science because in the future we will not have to worry about blood transfusion as we will have unlimited artificial blood to keep us alive. In addition, some kinds of artificial blood don’t need refrigeration to stay fresh and usable. This will be very helpful in remote areas and in case of a natural disaster. After a natural disaster, hospitals require an enormous amount of blood and artificial blood is a great solution. I am glad that scientists are finding new ways to keep us alive, this gives us hope for a better future.

How to calm your baby

Babies cry, it is an annoying fact. A baby cries for any reason. This reason can be food, boredom, cold, anything. The trick is to find that reason and make it calm. Some babies calm when you give them a toy, some others when you take them to the park, some of them if you put them in front of the T.V. Did you try music? It works on many babies, the only tricky part is to find the genre that your baby likes. They might like different type of music in different situations, like we do. I didn’t believe it when I watched the following video but then I tried it on my nephew. I couldn’t believe how effective this was. Please don’t put death metal or anything that is barely a music. I recommend something light like classic music, Muse, Dream Theater, R.E.M. and Pink Floyd. Leave a comment if that worked for you.

Google.Org – Enhanced Geothermal Systems

Everyone with internet connection knows Google and use at least one of its services. How many of you know, an organization which spends millions of dollars in research and funding. They characterize it as a technology-driven philanthropy. One of the projects of is the Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) and a new study about EGS was conducted by SMU Geothermal Laboratory. EGS produces electricity by exploiting the heat and energy from hot rock beneath the surface of the earth. From the data they gathered, they estimate that with EGS they can generate about 3.000.000 megawatts for the continental U.S.

Quantum Levitation – Quantum Trapping

I couldn’t have a category science (even in news) and not posting this one. Quantum Levitation, it is amazing. The video is from Association of Science – Technology Centers (ASTC) 2011. The group that shows this is the superconductivity group from Tel-Aviv university (school of physics and astronomy). It shows a superconductor locked in a magnetic field. I have watched this video three times and then I searched more and I have found the next video which is even cooler.

Earthquakes alter earth’s gravity

According to scientists, big earthquakes can (slightly) change the gravity under the affected area. This is happening because powerful earthquakes alter the mass distribution of the Earth. Japan’s earthquake, with 9 magnitude, is one of them since it is the 5th strongest ever recorded. Don’t worry, the change from that one is about 2 millionth of a gal when the average earth gravity is about 980 galileos. Over the last few years we had many strong earthquakes and some of them are in the top 10 of all times.

Alcohol makes you sick

Alcohol consumption has many effects and most of them are negative. If you consume (large quantities of) alcohol you already know by experience that your reflexes are slowing down and you can’t do many things efficiently like walking and driving. But these are not the only negative effects, alcohol also worsen the effects of disease and impair the ability of your body to fight off viral infection. According to a new study from University of Massachusetts Medical School shows that alcohol modulates the anti-viral and inflammatory functions of monocytes. Alcohol impairs the anti-viral immune response (including Hepatitis C (HCV) and HIV), especially in the liver.

Gamers are on fire

After the announcement that gamers with the use of Foldit have found protein folding patters which helped the research for AIDS and HIV now gamers helped the discovery of two new planets. The two planets are exoplanets orbiting distant start. Gamers have found the planets playing Planet Hunters. Planet Hunters is a (browser) game which is product of the collaboration between Yale University and the Zooniverse. The lightcurves on the game are from the NASA’s Kepler mission and all of them are released to public.

Solve Puzzles in the Name of Science


Scientists were trying to solve the mystery behind a protein which is the key for the development of AIDS. They were trying for a decade without any results and then a company decided (2008) to create a game named “Foldit”. Foldit is an online game where users fold proteins and create different shapes according to some basic rules. Gamers managed to decipher the structure of that key protein in three weeks and now the research for AIDS and HIV has a bright future