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Researchers have developed an easier, cheaper approach to break down a class of long-lasting chemicals known as Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs). These substances are broadly utilized in merchandise similar to firefighting foams, waterproof garments and nonstick cookware. However they don’t break down underneath typical environmental circumstances, and present disposal strategies usually require excessive pressures and temperatures above 1,000 °C. The strategy targets an oxygen-containing chemical group to in the end break PFASs down into innocent merchandise. “That is the primary time I’ve seen a degradation mechanism the place I assumed, ‘This might truly make a distinction,’” says environmental chemist Shira Joudan.
The subsequent technology of COVID-19 vaccines is on its means, however these pictures might be trying to sit at an already crowded desk. Alongside the acquainted requirements — mRNA and protein vaccines based mostly on the spike protein from the ancestral model of SARS-CoV-2 — might be new choices, together with mRNA vaccines with spike sequences from each the ancestral virus and Omicron variants. The vary of selections, a lot of which might be obtainable at completely different instances, has left people wondering which vaccines to take, and when. “These are arduous questions, and there are not any actual proper solutions,” says paediatrician Kathryn Edwards. Nature requested specialists what proof is available to assist make the choice.
An enormous complicated of greater than 500 standing stones has been found in southern Spain during an archaeological survey of a plot of land earmarked for an avocado plantation. “That is the most important and most various assortment of standing stones grouped collectively within the Iberian peninsula,” says archaeologist José Antonio Linares. The oldest of the megaliths — which embody stone circles, mounds and tombs — had been most likely positioned in the course of the sixth or fifth millennium bc.
Options & opinion
Science author Riley Black describes the bittersweet feeling of encountering fossilized remains of dinosaurs and different superb creatures lengthy since extinct. “The fossil document teaches us to be grateful with what we’ve been given,” she writes. “I’m each pleased they’re right here and unhappy they’re gone, unlucky to have arrived on Earth so late and fortunate to be simply on time.”
“There isn’t a means in heck I may ever see a butterfly wing. And but right here you made a tactile of a butterfly wing, and I used to be in a position to measure the width and size. That was a loopy expertise,” says chemist Matthew Guberman-Pfeffer, who’s a part of a crew of researchers that has developed a quick and easy way to 3D print tactile versions of scientific figures and data that can be interpreted by visually impaired scientists. On this Q&A, a few of the researchers behind the know-how talk about the way it may assist to make science extra inclusive.
Reference: Science Advances paper
The latest short story for Nature’s Futures sequence offers with a case of interstellar journey gone flawed.
For many years, scientists have debated whether or not protons have ‘intrinsic attraction’, which means they comprise elementary particles generally known as attraction quarks. Now, utilizing machine studying to comb by way of enormous quantities of experimental knowledge, a crew has proven evidence that the charm quark can be found within a proton, which may have vital ramifications within the seek for new physics.
Nature Podcast | 22 min listen
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