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Showing posts from January 18, 2017

Hemp hits new high as building material on Dutch bridge

By Jim Drury EINDHOVEN, Netherlands (Reuters) - While plenty of cannabis goes up in smoke in coffee shops around the Netherlands, Dutch researchers have found a new use for it - as an environmentally friendly building material to rival cement or steel. "Actually it's the first 'bio-based' bridge in the world, as far as we know," said Rijk Blok, an assistant professor of structural design at the Eindhoven University of Technology. The hemp and flax fibers are combined in a resin that is stuck to a core made of polylactic acid, a polymer also made of plant material, to form the span of the 14-metre (46-foot) bridge over a stream on the university campus.

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World temperatures hit new high in 2016 for third year in a row

By Alister Doyle OSLO (Reuters) - World temperatures hit a record high for the third year in a row in 2016, creeping closer to a ceiling set for global warming with extremes including unprecedented heat in India and ice melt in the Arctic, U.S. government agencies said on Wednesday. The data, supported by findings from other organisations, was issued two days before the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, who questions whether climate change has a human cause. Average surface temperatures over land and the oceans in 2016 were 0.94 degrees Celsius (1.69 degrees Fahrenheit) above the 20th-century average of 13.9C (57.0F), according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).


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Well, That Sucks: Vampire Bats Found Drinking Human Blood

Unlike mythical vampires, vampire bats do not prey on humans — or do they? Scientists have found the first evidence of vampire bats supping on human blood. Diphylla ecaudata, also known as the hairy-legged vampire bat, inhabits forests in northeastern Brazil and is one of three species of vampire bats that feed only on blood.


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Goodnight, Colo! Oldest Gorilla in the US Dies in Sleep

At her death, Colo, the first gorilla to be born in captivity, had outlived the average gorilla by 20 to 30 years, according to her keepers. In her long time on Earth, Colo became the matriarch of a huge gorilla family, having lived to see the birth of three children, 16 grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren, according to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, where she lived. "Colo touched the hearts of generations of people who came to see her and those that cared for her over her long lifetime," Tom Stalf, president and CEO of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, said in a statement.


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Europe's oncologists back biosimilar versions of cancer drugs

(Reuters) - Europe's leading association of oncologists has thrown its weight behind cheaper copycat versions of biotech cancer drugs that have lost patent protection, saying they are effective and affordable. Off-patent chemical medicines have for decades been copied with precision and sold as cheap generic versions, but drug regulators have only over recent years embraced copycat versions of complex biological drugs, known as biosimilars. "Biosimilars are must-have weaponry in financially sustaining healthcare systems on a global scale as well as significantly improving outcomes for an increasing number of patients throughout Europe and the rest of the world," ESMO President Professor Fortunato Ciardiello said in a statement.

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Turtle the Size of 2 Earths: Stunning Sunspot Revealed in New Radio Images

The sprawling ground-based telescope is more usually used to probe radio waves released by some of the universe's most distant galaxies. In this case, though, it picked up waves released by the sun's chromosphere, which is the area just above the surface you see in visible light. Images returned by detecting radio waves at 2.5 and 3 millimeters show conditions at two different chromosphere depths — and the new views could lend more insight into the sun's physics.


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Study finds global warming could steal postcard-perfect days

WASHINGTON (AP) — Global warming is going to steal away some of those postcard-perfect weather days in the future, according to a first-of-its-kind projection of nice weather.


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