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March 27, 2013
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Your World of Science News

  Top Story 
  • Studies suggest speed of light in a vacuum may not be constant
    The speed of light in a vacuum has always been a constant measurement, but two studies suggest that it may vary slightly. In the first study, a research team at University of Paris-Sud concluded that the speed of light and other constants are "observable parameters of the quantum vacuum." The second paper suggests that the speed of light is dependent on the charge of the particles in the vacuum, rather than their masses. The Christian Science Monitor (3/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Implementing A District-Wide Science Success
Veteran education leader Mike Dillon has helped his school district continue on a steady path of success in science. The Smithsonian’s Science and Technology Concepts program and kits, available through Carolina Biological, have ensured that an entire district maintains a culture of high academic achievement. Read the case study.
  Science in the News 
  • Study provides insight into why males may care for others' offspring
    Male animals are more likely to care for offspring that isn't theirs, so long as the caretaking doesn't interfere with their own reproduction and the likelihood of infidelity is low. The analysis of several animal studies, published in the journal PLoS Biology, found that taking care of other offspring is more common than believed, but was also dependent on whether the male's mate had been faithful or not. It was found that cuckolded males were 12% less likely to look after their offspring than other males. (3/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study examines the benefits of a bumblebee's flexible wings
    Bumblebees are able to get a boost in the air from a flexible joint in their wings, allowing them to carry more pollen, according to research published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. Scientists examined how wing flexibility benefit the insects and found that without the joint's flexibility, bees could carry 8.6% less weight. Now blog (3/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Rise of crocodiles stemmed from mass extinction, study says
    The extinction of nearly half the Earth's species 201 million years ago may have given rise to an ancestor of the crocodile, according to a study published in the journal Biology Letters. Researchers say volcanic activity or a large meteor between the Triassic and Jurassic eras killed off nearly all archosaurs that were crocodile-like, known as pseudosuchia. The only one that survived was the crocodylomorph -- the ancestor to today's crocodiles and alligators. (3/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study: Chelation treatment does not improve heart health
    Chelation therapy did not reduce risk of second heart attack or stroke in adult heart attack patients when compared with placebo treatment, according to a study in the Journal of American Medical Association. "This evidence and information should serve to dissuade responsible practitioners from providing or recommending chelation therapy for patients with coronary disease and should discourage patients with previous (heart attack) from seeking this therapy with the hope of preventing subsequent cardiovascular events," experts wrote in one of two accompanying editorials. Reuters (3/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • SpaceX cargo capsule returns from visit to space station
    A spacecraft owned by Space Exploration Technologies has returned from its voyage to the International Space Station full of supplies and research from the station. The Dragon cargo ship, which reached the station earlier this month, is part of a $1.6 billion contract with NASA that includes a total of 12 cargo runs between Earth and the space station. Reuters (3/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Funding Watch 
  • Research teams get $9M federal contract to study citrus disease
    The Department of Agriculture has handed out a $9 million research contract to various teams across the nation to study citrus greening disease, which is ravaging the U.S. citrus industry. The University of Arizona, in partnership with Washington State University, will receive about $1 million; the rest of the funds will be split among teams in California, Florida and Texas. Arizona Daily Star (Tucson) (3/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Sigma Xi News 
  • Join us for the 2013 Science Across Borders meeting
    Sigma Xi cordially invites you to attend a two-day science meeting on June 4 and 5 in Lausanne, Switzerland. The meeting will bring together students, professional scientists, Sigma Xi members and the public. There will be various feature sessions including Science and Development; Science and Diplomacy; and Science, Technology and Peace Building. Learn more and register. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Subscribe to American Scientist magazine
    Are you taking advantage of everything Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society has to offer? American Scientist is the premier interdisciplinary magazine for science and research. Act now and receive a one-year subscription for only $30. Subscribe today. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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--Albert Camus,
French author, journalist and philosopher

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