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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 - Earth Sciences - 22.04.2021
Plant provenance influences pollinators
Plant provenance influences pollinators
Insect decline is one of the greatest challenges facing our society. As a result of the destruction of many natural habitats, bees, bumblebees, butterflies, beetles and the like find less and less food. As a consequence, they are barely able to fulfil their role as pollinators of wild and cultivated plants.

Life Sciences - Environment - 31.03.2021
Analysis of ancient bones reveals Stone Age diet details
Fish was not on the menu of the hunter-gatherers of southern Europe 27,000 years ago. Surprisingly, people on the Iberian Peninsula in the Late Gravettian period mostly ate plants and land animals such as rabbits, deer and horses. An international team of researchers has been able to determine this for the first time on the basis of an isotope study of human fossils from the Serinyà caves in Catalonia.

Environment - Life Sciences - 24.03.2021
How Grasslands respond to climate change
How Grasslands respond to climate change
Effects of CO2 increase were already apparent in the past century The rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration and concurrent climate change has led to yield reductions of grass-rich grassland vegetation in the past century. This observation was made by researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) who, working jointly with colleagues from Rothamsted (U.K.), conducted a study on the world's oldest permanent ecological experiment there.

Economics / Business - Environment - 18.03.2021
Planning tool for cargo bike logistics
Planning tool for cargo bike logistics
Research team explores potential for package delivery Cargo bikes could play a much bigger role in urban package delivery. This conclusion was reached in a study based on the cities of Munich and Regensburg, where around one seventh of delivery-related CO2 emissions could be reduced. The research team has developed a planning tool to help companies and municipalities identify the potential for cargo bikes in city districts.

Environment - 08.03.2021
Unique sensor network for measuring greenhouse gases
Unique sensor network for measuring greenhouse gases
MUCCnet allows quantification of urban greenhouse gas emissions Munich is home to the world's first fully automated sensor network for measuring urban greenhouse gas emissions based on ground-based remote sensing of the atmosphere. It has been developed by scientists in the group of Jia Chen, Professor of Environmental Sensing and Modeling at the Technical University of Munich (TUM).

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 08.03.2021
Ideal for Analysing Planetary Atmospheres
Ideal for Analysing Planetary Atmospheres
By analysing signals from the star Gliese 486, an international research team has discovered a hot rocky exoplanet with remains of a planetary atmosphere. Due to its characteristics, it is ideally suited for testing future observational methods of studying distant planetary atmospheres. The discovery of Gliese 486b, as the new planet has been named, was made possible by the CARMENES instrument.

Astronomy / Space Science - Environment - 05.03.2021
Glowing hot super-Earth nearby
Glowing hot super-Earth nearby
Research team with Göttingen University participation plans to test atmospheric models of the rocky planet In the past two and a half decades, astronomers have discovered thousands of exoplanets made of gas, ice and rock. Only a few of them are Earth-like. Studying their atmospheres with the instruments currently available is a major challenge.

Earth Sciences - Environment - 01.03.2021
Understanding the Spatial and Temporal Dimensions of Landscape Dynamics
Heidelberg geoinformation scientists develop new computer-based method to analyse topographic changes The Earth's surface is subject to continual changes that dynamically shape natural landscapes. Global phenomena like climate change play a role, as do short-term, local events of natural or human origin.

Life Sciences - Environment - 18.02.2021
Wolves prefer to feed on the wild side
Wolves prefer to feed on the wild side
Research team studies feeding behaviour of wild predators in Mongolia When there is a choice, wolves in Mongolia prefer to feed on wild animals rather than grazing livestock. This is the discovery by a research team from the University of Göttingen and the Senckenberg Museum Görlitz. Previous studies had shown that the diet of wolves in inland Central Asia consists mainly of grazing livestock, which could lead to increasing conflict between nomadic livestock herders and wild predatory animals like wolves.

Materials Science - Environment - 18.02.2021
Three Forward-Looking Research Fields Dominate Battery Research
Smartphones and laptops constantly in use, smart building technology, the expansion of renewable energies, networked charging stations for electric cars or the debate surrounding air taxis: sustainable, safe and efficient batteries are the basis of our lives as well as paving the way for the future.

Environment - 15.02.2021
Record sunshine during first COVID-19 lockdown largely caused by unusual weather
Exceptional weather conditions were mainly responsible for high solar radiation, not the aerosol reduction due to the shutdown of industry and reduced traffic in the first lockdown / International research team continues to develop climate simulations that take into account influences of the COVID-19 pandemic Dry and cloudless weather was mainly responsible for the unusually high solar irradiance in western Europe during the spring of 2020, not the reduction in aerosol emissions due to the first lockdown.

Environment - 04.02.2021
Forests of the world in 3D
Forests of the world in 3D
Research team led by the University of Göttingen analyses complexity of forest structure Primeval forests are of great importance for biodiversity and global carbon and water cycling. The three-dimensional structure of forests plays an important role here because it influences processes of gas and energy exchange with the atmosphere, whilst also providing habitats for numerous species.

Environment - 02.02.2021
Flower diversity may mitigate insecticide effects on wild bees
Flower diversity may mitigate insecticide effects on wild bees
Research team led by the University of Göttingen emphasizes the benefits of diversifying flower resources A higher diversity of flowering plants increases the breeding success of wild bees and may help compensate for the negative effects of insecticides. This is what researchers from the Universities of Göttingen and Hohenheim, as well as the Julius Kühn Institute, have found in a large-scale experimental study.

Environment - Life Sciences - 01.02.2021
"Living Fossil" in the Namib Has Different Subspecies
A family of Welwitschia already inhabited Earth 112 million years ago. A research team in the Department of Biology at Universität Hamburg has now used short DNA sequences to discover that the only still-living species of Weltwitschia mirabilis has different subspecies. The findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Environment - Materials Science - 29.01.2021
Climate-Relevant Exchange Processes between Atmosphere and Ocean
Climate-Relevant Exchange Processes between Atmosphere and Ocean
Environmental physicist Bernd Jähne from Heidelberg University is pursuing a new approach to exploring the processes that ensue with the exchange of climatically relevant gases and volatiles between the atmosphere and the ocean. To this end, the scientist will use two imaging measurement procedures for experiments in the Heidelberg Aelotron, a wind-wave tank.

Environment - 29.01.2021
How is human behaviour impacting wildlife movement?
How is human behaviour impacting wildlife movement?
Research team with Göttingen University calls for -anthropogenic resistance- to be considered in conservation and sustainability planning For species to survive in the wild, maintaining connectivity between populations is critical. Without -wildlife corridors-, groups of animals are isolated, unable to breed and may die out.

Chemistry - Environment - 29.01.2021
Synthesizing valuable chemicals from contaminated soil
Researchers of Mainz University use electrolysis to produce dichloro and dibromo compounds in a safer and more environmentally friendly manner / Results published in Science 29 January 2021 Scientists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and ETH Zurich have developed a process to produce commodity chemicals in a much less hazardous way than was previously possible.

Environment - 27.01.2021
How do human behaviors impact wildlife movements?
How do human behaviors impact wildlife movements?
Researchers call for incorporation of human behaviors in conservation planning to ensure sustainable landscapes for wildlife and people. In a Perspective piece published today in One Earth journal, an international team including Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin researchers Arash Ghoddousi and Tobias Kuemmerle introduce the term 'anthropogenic resistance' to better recognize and estimate the impacts of human behaviors on wildlife movements.

Health - Environment - 26.01.2021
Street trees close to the home may reduce the risk of depression
Street trees close to the home may reduce the risk of depression
Researchers show positive effect of urban nature on mental health Daily contact with trees in the street may significantly reduce the risk of depression and the need for antidepressants . This is the result of a study by researchers at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), Leipzig University (UL), and the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, recently published in the journal .

Environment - Astronomy / Space Science - 20.01.2021
Oldest Carbonates in the Solar System
Oldest Carbonates in the Solar System
A meteorite that fell in northern Germany in 2019 contains carbonates that are among the oldest in the solar system; it also evidences the earliest presence of liquid water on a minute planet. The high-resolution Heidelberg Ion Probe - a research instrument at the Institute of Earth Sciences at Heidelberg University - provided the measurements.
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