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News from the Lab (news.myScience.ch)

  • News from the Lab’ is a selection of scientific works that are significant or interesting for a broad readership. 
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Environment



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Environment - Life Sciences - 25.02.2020
Eat or be eaten
Eat or be eaten
Biodiversity increases the efficiency of energy use in grasslands Plants obtain their energy from the sun. Other beings rely on eating to survive. Yet how does the energy flow inside ecosystems function and are there differences between ecosystems with many species in comparison to those with few species' Researchers have now examined these questions using a holistic approach by evaluating data gathered through a large-scale biodiversity experiment.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 17.02.2020
First research results on the
First research results on the "spectacular meteorite fall" of Flensburg
Planetologists from Münster University show that the meteorite contains minerals that formed under the presence of water on small planetesimals in the early history of our solar system. A fireball in the sky, accompanied by a bang, amazed hundreds of eyewitnesses in northern Germany in mid-September last year.

Environment - Life Sciences - 30.01.2020
Biological diversity as a factor of production
Biological diversity as a factor of production
Relationship between the economic value of our ecosystems and biodiversity Can the biodiversity of ecosystems be considered a factor of production? A group of researchers under the direction of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) are studying the economic benefits that farmers and foresters can obtain by focusing on several species instead of just one.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 22.01.2020
Digital Fertilization
Digital Fertilization
Algorithms and sensors for sustainable and future-proof agriculture European Union Directives stipulate a reduction in nitrate levels in groundwater. Digital techniques developed by researchers at the TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan under the aegis of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have proved useful in achieving this goal.

Environment - 09.01.2020
Using sea-level rise to define climate targets
Using sea-level rise to define climate targets
One major consequence of global warming is the rising sea level. A study conducted at Universität Hamburg's Cluster of Excellence for climate research CLICCS now shows: if we assume that sea-level rise is the most critical effect of climate change, then it is not only more sensible, but also less expensive, to set a maximum limit for sea-level rise that corresponds to the two-degree target, rather than a temperature-based target.

Life Sciences - Environment - 10.12.2019
A love of parasites
A love of parasites
Broomrape, rattle, dodder. It's not only the wonderful-sounding names that these plants have in common - it's also the way they live, because they do so at the expense of other plants, robbing them of water and nutrients in order to secure their own existence. And, in doing so, they have exerted a fascination on Dr. Susann Wicke, an associate professor at the University of Münster.

Environment - Life Sciences - 14.11.2019
How Multiple Factors of Global Change Affect Soil
Scientists at Freie Universität Berlin study effects of multiple global change factors / Findings published in latest issue of "Science" No 343/2019 from Nov 14, 2019 A team of ecologists at Freie Universität Berlin studied soil and how it was affected by multiple factors of global change. The team led by Matthias Rillig conducted laboratory experiments that examined the effects of up to ten factors of global change by randomly adding an increasing number of such factors.

Environment - Life Sciences - 30.10.2019
Insect decline more extensive than suspected
Insect decline more extensive than suspected
Compared to a decade ago, today the number of insect species on many areas has decreased by about one third. This is the result of a survey of an international research team led by scientists from the Technical University of Munich (TUM). The loss of species mainly affects grasslands in the vicinity of intensively farmed land - but also applies to forests and protected areas.

Environment - Agronomy / Food Science - 17.10.2019
Biodiversity Improves Crop Production
Biodiversity Improves Crop Production
10/17/2019 Around 20 percent of the world's agricultural areas yields less than it did 20 years ago. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization FAO, humans are the culprit: we have not done enough to protect biodiversity. In many respects, nature is an outstanding service provider for agriculture.

Environment - 26.08.2019
How Plants Measure Their CO2 Uptake
How Plants Measure Their CO2 Uptake
08/26/2019 Plants face a dilemma in dry conditions: they have to seal themselves off to prevent losing too much water but this also limits their uptake of carbon dioxide. A sensory network assures that the plant strikes the right balance. When water is scarce, plants can close their pores to prevent losing too much water.

Life Sciences - Environment - 25.07.2019
Poisonous grasses: new study provides reassurance
Poisonous grasses: new study provides reassurance
07/25/2019 Stories of mass poisoning incidents of livestock due to toxic grasses made headlines especially overseas. Animal ecologists from Würzburg have studied whether this hazard is also lurking on German pastures. "Dangerous Pastures: Deadly Grass Puts Horses at Risk" - Such dire warnings on the websites of horse owners and horse lovers may cause people to see their environment in a whole new light.

Environment - Life Sciences - 18.07.2019
How climate change disrupts relationships
How climate change disrupts relationships
07/18/2019 Plants rely on bees for pollination; bees need plants to supply nectar and pollen. Scientists from the University of Würzburg have studied how climate change affects these mutualistic interactions.

Environment - Computer Science / Telecom - 16.07.2019
Tracking down climate change with radar eyes
Tracking down climate change with radar eyes
"The Arctic is a hotspot of climate change," explains Prof. Florian Seitz of the German Geodetic Research Institute at the Technical University of Munich (TUM). "Due to rising temperatures, the glaciers of Greenland are receding. At the same time sea ice is melting. Every year, billions of liters of meltwater are released into the ocean." The enormous volumes of fresh water released in the Arctic not only raise the sea level, they also have the potential to change the system of global ocean currents - and thus, our climate.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 12.07.2019
New Findings on Early Bombardment of the Earth and Moon and Their Development
Freie Universität Researchers Contribute to International Study Published in Nature No 215/2019 from Jul 12, 2019 How did the Earth evolve from a fireball about 4.5 billion years ago to a habitable world? The key to this question lies in the early history of our planet, when the bombardment with cosmic bodies slowly declined.

Environment - 02.07.2019
The secret of mushroom colors
The secret of mushroom colors
In nature, specific colors and patterns normally serve a purpose: The eye-catching patterns of the fire salamander convey to its enemies that it is poisonous. Red cherries presumably attract birds that eat them and thus disperse their seed. Other animals such as chameleons use camouflage coloring to protect themselves from discovery by predators.

Environment - Life Sciences - 01.07.2019
Scientists alarmed by bark beetle boom
Scientists alarmed by bark beetle boom
Bark beetles are currently responsible for killing an unprecedented number of trees in forests across Europe and North America. Researchers are therefore urging to step up research into bark beetles - also in view of climate change. "Bark beetles lay waste to forests" - "Climate change sends beetles into overdrive" - "Bark beetles: can the spruce be saved?": These newspaper headlines of the past weeks covered the explosive growth of bark beetle populations and its devastating impact on timberlands.

Environment - 13.06.2019
Bitcoin causing CO2 emissions comparable to Hamburg
Although Bitcoin is a virtual currency, the energy consumption associated with its use is very real. For a Bitcoin transfer to be executed and validated, a mathematical puzzle must be solved by an arbitrary computer in the global Bitcoin network. The network, which anyone can join, rewards the puzzle solvers in Bitcoin.

Life Sciences - Environment - 21.05.2019
Microbial Systems Open a New Chapter in Biosphere Research
A New Study from Freie Universität Berlin in Cooperation with the University of Virginia No 139/2019 from May 21, 2019 In a recent study, biologists from Freie Universität Berlin and the University of Virginia (USA) examine ideas about closed ecological systems and how to further develop them. The goal of the study is to establish concepts that will make it possible to conduct experiments with self-sustaining ecosystems.

Environment - Astronomy / Space Science - 14.05.2019
EUMETSAT, Japanese space agency to cooperate on greenhouse gas monitoring
EUMETSAT and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) today signed an agreement which will result in the agencies working closely together to monitor greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere. Mr Kazuo Tachi, on behalf of the Direc tor General of JAXA's Space Technology Directorate 1 Ryoichi Imai, and EUMETSAT Director-General Alain Ratier signed the agreement at a ceremony at EUMETSAT's Darmstadt headquarters today.

Environment - 26.04.2019
Wax helps plants to survive in the desert
Wax helps plants to survive in the desert
04/26/2019 The leaves of date palms can heat up to temperatures around 50 degrees Celsius. They survive thanks to a unique wax mixture that is essential for the existence in the desert. In 1956, the Würzburg botanist Otto Ludwig Lange observed an unusual phenomenon in the Mauritanian desert in West Africa: he found plants whose leaves could heat up to 56 degrees Celsius.
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