Earth

Generally speaking, "flue gas" refers to any gas coming out of a pipe, exhaust, chimney etc as a product of combustion in a fireplace, oven, furnace, boiler, or steam generator. But the term is more commonly used to describe the exhaust vapors exiting the flues of factories and powerplants. Iconic though they may be, these flue gases contain significant amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2), which is a major greenhouse gas contributing to global warming.

HANOVER, N.H. - December 11, 2019 - Tropical glaciers in Africa and South America began their retreat simultaneously at the end of the last ice age about 20,000 years ago, according to a Dartmouth study.

The finding of synchrony in ice retreat across the global tropics clarifies how the low latitudes transformed during one of Earth's most extreme climate change events and can help current-day predictions of our own climate future.

A new study in the journal PLOS ONE says Glacier National Park's iconic mountain goats are in dire need of air conditioning.

Researchers from the University of Montana, Glacier National Park, and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) found that mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus) in Glacier National Park seek out patches of snow in the summertime to reduce heat stress. When they do, breathing rates went down, a behavioral strategy that results in less energy expended.

QUT researchers have used a combination of virtual reality (VR), aerial thermal-imaging and ground surveys to build a better statistical model for predicting the location of koalas and, ultimately, protecting their habitat.

INFORMS Journal Operations Research New Study Key Takeaways:

Increasing quality transparency in the short-term typically improves social welfare and reduces inequality among patients.

Increasing transparency in the long-term can decrease social welfare and increase inequality.

The best solution is to target public reporting to specific patient populations and incentivize hospitals.

ANN ARBOR--What could Azteca ants in coffee farms in Mexico have in common with leopards' spots and zebras' stripes?

After two decades of analyzing the rise, spread and collapse of Azteca ant colonies in a coffee farm in Mexico, University of Michigan researchers have proven that the ant distributions follow a pattern named after chemist Alan Turing, who first described it in 1952, that is said to explain leopards' spots and other patterns in nature.

Accurately reconstructing the relationships between different species requires analyzing the sequences of a judiciously selected, and preferably large, sample of different genes. Hybrid capture with high-throughput sequencing, or Hyb-Seq, is a powerful tool for obtaining those gene sequences, but must be calibrated for each group analyzed to ensure an informative sample of genes are sequenced. Researchers must take a variety of considerations into account when selecting which genes to sequence, and the choices made in gene sampling can affect the outcome of the analysis.

Underground fiber-optic cables, like those that connect the world through phone and internet service, hold untapped potential for monitoring severe weather, according to scientists at Penn State.

Researchers turned miles of cables under the University Park campus into thousands of virtual sensors capable of detecting tiny seismic events caused by thunder echoing down from the sky during a storm in April.

Sharks play a critical role in keeping oceans healthy, balancing the food chain and ensuring species diversity. However, the demand for shark derivatives has led to their exploitation, often without appropriate management strategies in place. In an assessment of Pacific Panama fisheries published in Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, scientists from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and collaborating institutions provide a baseline to develop regulations for shark conservation.

The UK's first citizen science project focusing on solitary, ground-nesting bees has revealed that they nest in a far broader range of habitats than previously thought.

There are approximately 250 species of solitary bee in the UK, but far less is known about these important pollinators compared to honeybees or bumblebees.

Mountaineers and winter sports enthusiasts know the dangers of frostbite -- the tissue damage that can occur when extremities, such as the nose, ears, fingers and toes, are exposed to very cold temperatures. However, it can be difficult to get treated quickly in remote, snowbound areas. Now, researchers reporting in ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering have developed a convenient gel that could be sprayed onto frostbite injuries when they occur, helping wounds heal.

If you want to know how climate change and hypoxia -- the related loss of oxygen in the world's oceans -- affect fish species such as the economically important Baltic cod, all you have to do is ask the fish.

Those cod, at least, will tell you that hypoxia is making them smaller, scrawnier and less valuable.

The sweeping extent to which increasing 40Hz "gamma" rhythm power in the brain can affect the pathology and symptoms of Alzheimer's disease in mouse models has been surprising, even to the MIT neuroscientists who've pioneered the idea. So surprising, in fact, they can't yet explain why it happens.

Tropical Storm Belna weakened after it made landfall in northwestern Madagascar, and infrared imagery from NASA showed how the area of strong storms within had diminished. Cold cloud top temperatures can tell forecasters if a tropical cyclone has the potential to generate heavy rainfall, and that is exactly what NASA's Aqua satellite found on Dec. 10 over a much smaller area than was occurring on Dec. 9.

For years, aquatic researchers have sought an easy way to determine when wild fish are under stress. Now University of Guelph researchers have shown for the first time that a key stress hormone, cortisol, accumulates in fish scales slowly and remains there for weeks.

The finding means measuring cortisol levels in scales could offer a simple, minimally invasive glimpse into fish well-being, allowing scientists to better understand how they are coping with agricultural, industrial or biodiversity changes.