Wednesday, April 6, 2011 - 1:57pm
Under pressure: germanium
Although its name may make many people think of flowers, the element germanium is part of a frequently studied group of elements, called IVa, which could have applications for next-generation computer architecture as well as implications for fundamental condensed matter physics. New research reveals details of the element’s transitions under pressure. Their results show extraordinary agreement with the predictions of modern condensed matter theory.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008 - 4:32pm
Carnegie’s Alan Cutler receives James H. Shea Award for Science Writing
The National Association of Geoscience Teachers has awarded the 2008 James H. Shea Award to science writer Alan Cutler at the Carnegie Institution. The Shea Award is given annually. Other winners of the Shea Award include Science magazine writer Richard Kerr, Pulitzer Prize winner John McPhee, and Stephen Jay Gould.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - 9:54am
Scientists Tackle the Carbon Conundrum
Scientists, including Carnegie's Anna Michalak, have developed a new, integrated, ten-year science plan to better understand the details of Earth’s carbon cycle. It identifies new research areas such as the role of humans as agents and managers of carbon cycling and climate change, the direct impact of greenhouse gases on ecosystems including changes to plant and animal diversity and ocean acidification, the need to address social concerns, and how best to communicate results to the public and decision makers.
Friday, January 25, 2008 - 11:13am
Earth’s getting “soft” in the middle
A new study suggests that material in part of the lower mantle has unusual electronic characteristics that make sound propagate more slowly, suggesting that the material there is softer than previously thought.
Monday, June 15, 2009 - 8:18am
Advance in understanding cellulose synthesis
Cellulose makes up plant cell walls, gives plants shape and form and is a target of renewable, plant-based biofuels research. But how it forms, and thus how it can be modified to design energy-rich crops, is not well understood. Now a study led by researchers at Plant Biology has discovered that the underlying protein network that provides the scaffolding for cell-wall structure is also the traffic cop for delivering critical growth-promoting molecules where needed.
Monday, February 27, 2012 - 4:51pm
Amoeba may offer key clue to photosynthetic evolution
The major difference between plant and animal cells is the photosynthetic process, which converts light energy into chemical energy. When light isn’t available, energy is generated by breaking down carbohydrates and sugars, just as it is in animal and some bacterial cells. Two cellular organelles are responsible for these two processes: the chloroplasts for photosynthesis and the mitochondria for sugar breakdown. New research from Carnegie’s Eva Nowack and Arthur Grossman has opened a window into the early stages of chloroplast evolution.
Monday, April 5, 2010 - 1:27pm
For Stem Cells, Practice Makes Perfect
Multipotent stem cells have the capacity to develop into different types of cells by reprogramming their DNA. In a new study, researchers from the Carnegie Institution for Science have found that reprogramming is imperfect in the early stages of differentiation, with some genes turned on and off at random. As cell divisions continue, the stability of the differentiation process increases by a factor of 100.
Wednesday, January 28, 2009 - 3:00pm
Spectacular Heating of Planet Observed
Here on Earth we worry about our planet's atmosphere warming by a few degrees on average over the next century, and even weather fronts bring temporary changes in temperature of no more than tens of degrees. Now astronomers writing in the January 29 Nature
report on an extra-solar planetary system where global warming is taken to a spectacular extreme: a 700 degree rise in a few hours.
Monday, May 9, 2011 - 4:26pm
Consumption, carbon emissions, and international trade
Accurately calculating the amount of carbon dioxide emitted in the process of producing and bringing products to our doorsteps is nearly impossible, but still a worthwhile effort, two Carnegie researchers claim in a commentary published online this week. The Global Ecology department’s Ken Caldeira and Steven Davis commend the work of industrial ecologist Glen Peters and colleagues, published in the same journal late last month, and use that team’s data to do additional analysis on the disparity between emissions and consumption in different parts of the world.
Friday, November 22, 2013 - 2:23pm
Acid raid, ozone depletion contributed to ancient extinction
Around 250 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, there was a mass extinction so severe that it remains the most traumatic known species die-off in Earth’s history. Some researchers have suggested that this extinction was triggered by contemporaneous volcanic eruptions in Siberia. New results from a team including Director of Carnegie's Department of Terrestrial Magnetism Linda Elkins-Tanton show that the atmospheric effects of these eruptions could have been devastating.
Wednesday, December 19, 2012 - 12:08pm
Closest Sun-like star may have planets
An international team of scientists, including Carnegie’s Paul Butler, has discovered that Tau Ceti, one of the closest and most Sun-like stars, may have five planets. At a distance of twelve light years and visible with a naked eye in the evening sky, Tau Ceti is the closest single star with the same spectral classification as our Sun. Its five planets are estimated to have masses between two and six times the mass of the Earth--making it the lowest-mass planetary system yet detected.
Monday, November 25, 2013 - 4:19pm
Ancient Minerals: Which Gave Rise to Life?
Life originated as a result of natural processes that exploited early Earth’s raw materials. Scientific models of life’s origins almost always look to minerals for such essential tasks as the synthesis of life’s molecular building blocks or the supply of metabolic energy. But this assumes that the mineral species found on Earth today are much the same as they were during Earth’s first 550 million years—the Hadean Eon—when life emerged. A new analysis of Hadean mineralogy challenges that assumption.
Thursday, April 12, 2012 - 6:12pm
Probing hydrogen under extreme conditions
How hydrogen--the most abundant element in the cosmos--responds to extremes of pressure and temperature is one of the major challenges in modern physical science. Moreover, knowledge gleaned from experiments using hydrogen as a testing ground on the nature of chemical bonding can fundamentally expand our understanding of matter. New work from Carnegie scientists has enabled researchers to examine hydrogen under pressures never before possible.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009 - 7:18am
Carnegie’s Christopher Field To Receive Heinz Award
Palo Alto, CA— Christopher Field, director of the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Global Ecology, has been awarded a prestigious Heinz award. The awards were established by Teresa Heinz in 1993 to honor her late husband, U.S. Senator John Heinz, by recognizing “extraordinary achievements of individuals in the areas of greatest importance to him.”
Monday, January 30, 2006 - 12:01pm
Hot-Spring Bacteria Flip a Metabolic Switch
Scientists at the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Plant Biology have found that photosynthetic bacteria living in scalding Yellowstone hot springs have two radically different metabolic identities...
Monday, March 17, 2008 - 9:44am
Controlling a sea of information
Curators at one of the world’s most widely used biological databases, The Arabidopsis Information Resource, or TAIR, have joined forces with the journal Plant Physiology, to solve the “flood of information” dilemma.