Press Releases

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Water was crucial to the rise of life on Earth and is also important to evaluating the possibility of life on other planets. Identifying the original source of Earth’s water is key to understanding how life-fostering environments come into being and how likely they are to be found elsewhere. New work found that much of our Solar System’s water likely originated as ices that formed in interstellar space. 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

A team has, for the first time, discovered how to produce ultra-thin "diamond nanothreads" that promise extraordinary properties, including strength and stiffness greater than that of today's strongest nanotubes and polymer fibers. Such exceedingly strong, stiff, and light materials have an array of potential applications, everything from more-fuel efficient vehicles or even the science fictional-sounding proposal for a “space elevator.” 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Gallium arsenide, GaAs, a semiconductor composed of gallium and arsenic is well known to have physical properties that promise practical applications. In the form of nanowires and nanoparticles, it has particular potential for use in the manufacture of solar cells and optoelectronics in many of the same applications that silicon is commonly used. But the natural semiconducting ability of GaAs requires some tuning in order to make it more desirable for use in manufacturing these types of products.  

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Audio
New modeling studies demonstrate that most of the stars we see were formed when unstable clusters of newly formed protostars broke up. These protostars are born out of rotating clouds of dust and gas, which act as nurseries for star formation. Rare clusters of multiple protostars remain stable and mature into multi-star systems. The unstable ones will eject stars until they achieve stability and end up as single or binary stars. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Audio 
A team of researchers working on a Carnegie expedition in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef has documented that coral growth rates have plummeted 40 percent since the mid-1970s. The scientists suggest that ocean acidification may be playing an important role in this perilous slowdown. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Audio
Quasars are supermassive black holes that live at the center of distant massive galaxies. They shine as the most luminous beacons in the sky across the entire electromagnetic spectrum by rapidly accreting matter into their gravitationally inescapable centers. New work from Carnegie solves a quasar mystery that astronomers have been puzzling over for 20 years. It shows that most observed quasar phenomena can be unified with two simple quantities: one that describes how efficiently the hole is being fed, and the other that reflects the viewing orientation of the astronomer. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Video
A team of scientists led by Carnegie's Jacqueline Faherty has discovered the first evidence of water ice clouds on an object outside of our own Solar System. Water ice clouds exist on our own gas giant planets--Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune--but have not been seen outside of the planets orbiting our Sun until now. Their findings are published by The Astrophysical Journal Letters. Video produced and directed by Brian Patrick Abbott.

Monday, September 8, 2014

The General Motors Corporation is presenting a $5,000.00 award to Carnegie’s BioEYES K-12 educational program on September 11, 2014, to deliver a two-week environmental curriculum, Your Watershed, Your Backyard. The event will start at 11: 45 AM, at GM’s Baltimore Operations, 10301 Philadelphia Rd., White March, MD.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Audio
New work has for the first time elucidated the atomic structures of the bacterial prototype of sugar transporters, termed “SWEET” transporters, found in plants and humans. These bacterial sugar transporters are called SemiSWEETs, because they are just half the size of the human and plant ones. The findings have potential practical applications for improving crop yields as well as for addressing human diseases such as diabetes. 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Dr. Matthew P. Scott joins the Carnegie Institution for Science as its 10th president September 1, 2014. Scott was Professor of Developmental Biology, Genetics, Bioengineering, and Biology at the Stanford University School of Medicine. He spent nearly 24 years at Stanford. The Carnegie board of trustees announced his appointment in May.