A team of astronomers led by University of Michigan’s Ian Roederer and including Carnegie’s Erika Holmbeck have identified the widest range of elements yet observed in a star beyond our own Sun. Their findings are published in The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series. The researchers identified 65 elements in the star, which is called HD 222925. Of these, 42 are from the bottom of the periodic table. Their identification will help astronomers understand one of the main methods by which the universe’s heavy elements were created—rapid neutron capture process.

Marilyn Fogel

Marilyn Louise Fogel, an isotope geochemist whose work touched on a broad scope of subjects ranging from astrobiology to paleoecology and climate change to human health, died Wednesday after a prolonged battle with ALS. She was 69.

The photosynthetic alga Chlamydomonas. Purchased from Shutterstock.

A team led by current and former Carnegie plant biologists has undertaken the largest ever functional genomic study of a photosynthetic organism. Their work, published in Nature Genetics, could inform strategies for improving agricultural yields and mitigating climate change.

3D projection of an Arabidopsis root tip. Credit: Dave Ehrhardt

The Plant Cell Atlas partnered with Futurum Careers to create an educational brochure for high school-aged students, which highlights its efforts and the importance of plant science to our society.

Algae growing in a body of water, purchased from Shutterstock.

Algae have a superpower that help them grow quickly and efficiently. New work led by Carnegie’s Adrien Burlacot lays the groundwork for transferring this ability to agricultural crops, which could help feed more people and fight climate change. Their findings are published in Nature.

New work from an international team led by Carnegie’s Alexander Goncharov synthesized a new material composed of six nitrogen atoms in a ring, bringing scientists one step closer to creating a long-theorized, pure-nitrogen solid that could revolutionize energy storage and propulsion.

An overhead view of Carnegie's Broad Branch Road campus.

Independent scientific research institutions are at an inflection point, argue Carnegie President Eric D. Isaacs and Salk Institute President Fred H. Gage in a joint essay in Issues in Science and Technology, a quarterly magazine published by Arizona State University and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Shishaldin Volcano courtesy of Daniel Rasmussen

New work from a Smithsonian-led team, including Carnegie’s Diana Roman, revealed what could be the most-important factor controlling the depth at which magma is stored under a volcano, upending long-held theories about the molten material’s upward journey through the Earth’s crust. Their findings—which could inform the creation of detailed models that more accurately forecast volcanic eruptions—are published in Science.

Forest image purchased from Shutterstock

New powerhouse scientific talent with broad expertise ranging from marine and freshwater biogeochemistry to terrestrial ecosystem science to climate change adaptation and mitigation are burnishing the already sterling reputation of Carnegie’s Department of Global Ecology for addressing the most urgent questions surrounding the sustainability of the Earth System.

Guided diamond nanothread synthesis illustrated by Samuel Dunning

As hard as diamond and as flexible as plastic, highly sought-after diamond nanothreads would be poised to revolutionize our world—if they weren’t so difficult to make. Recently, a team of scientists led by Carnegie’s Samuel Dunning and Timothy Strobel developed an original technique that predicts and guides the ordered creation of strong, yet flexible, diamond nanothreads, surmounting several existing challenges.  The innovation will make it easier for scientists to predict and synthesize the nanothreads—an important step toward applying the material to practical problems in the future.

Probing planetary interiors. Courtesy: Kalliopi Monoyios

https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.2114424119The physics and chemistry that take place deep inside our planet are fundamental to the existence of life as we know it. But what forces are at work in the interiors of distant worlds, and how do these conditions affect their potential for habitability? New work led by Carnegie’s Earth and Planets Laboratory uses lab-based mimicry to reveal a new crystal structure that has major implications for our understanding of the interiors of large, rocky exoplanets. 

Marilyn Fogel

Isotope geochemist Marilyn Fogel, who spent 33 years as a Staff Scientist Carnegie’s former Geophysical Laboratory—now part of the Institution’s Earth and Planets Laboratory—has been chosen to receive the Geochemical Society’s highest honor, the Victor Moritz Goldschmidt Award, in recognition to her numerous and varied contributions to the field.

Nuclear power cooling towers image purchased from Shutterstock.

Nuclear power generation can play a crucial role in helping the world reach a key goal of zero carbon emissions by the middle of the century, especially in countries with low wind resources, according to new work in Nature Energy from Lei Duan and Ken Caldeira of the Carnegie’s Department of Global Ecology.

Artist's conception by Navid Marvi

The gut microbiome is an ecosystem of hundreds to thousands of microbial species living within the human body. These populations affect our health, fertility, and even our longevity. But how do they get there in the first place? New collaborative work led by Carnegie’s William Ludington reveals crucial details about how the bacterial communities that comprise each of our individual gut microbiomes are acquired. These findings, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, have major implications for treatments such as fecal transplants and probiotic administration.

Plant Physiology cover art

Plant science will be crucial for solving many of society’s most-pressing challenges—including climate change, food security, and sustainable energy—but what are the outstanding mysteries that plant researchers need to solve to pave the way for this progress? A new special-focus issue of Plant Physiology edited by Carnegie’s Sue Rhee, Julia Bailey-Serres of UC Riverside, Kenneth Birnbaum of NYU, and Marisa Otegui of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, offers an overview how one initiative—the Plant Cell Atlas—is approaching these fundamental research inquiries and advancing the field.

David Spergel

Simons Foundation President and astrophysicist David Spergel has been elected a member of the Carnegie Science Board of Trustees. The Carnegie Science Board is composed of leaders in business, the sciences, education, and public service. It oversees Carnegie’s operations and high-level implementation of our institutional mission.

Professor Andrew Fabian OBE FRS is a Professor in the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Cambridge, where he leads the Insitute's X-Ra

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