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The race is on to optimize solar energy's performance. More efficient silicon photovoltaic panels, dye-sensitized solar cells, concentrated cells and thermodynamic solar plants all pursue the same goal: to produce a maximum amount of electrons from sunlight. Those electrons can then be converted into electricity to turn on lights and power your refrigerator.
There was an understandable amount of skepticism when Amazon announced its grand plans for delivery drones last year. But if the last twelve months are any indication, Jeff Bezos and his fellow tech heavyweights are actually kinda serious about the potential of unmanned aerial vehicles.
Related: Facebook says its internet drones will be the size of 747s and fly for years
Traditionally robots have been big, powerful, metallic objects that might weld doors onto cars in a factory," Wood says. "The robots we explore are dramatically different, some on a new, micro-sized scale, others made of soft rather than rigid materials.
Related: Robot Octopus Swims Faster Than Ever
Different palaeolithic populations around the world might have developed a crucial toolmaking skill independently. This conclusion, based on the analysis of hundreds of artefacts from a recently excavated archaeological site in Armenia, weakens a long-held theory that Stone Age people in Eurasia learnt sophisticated techniques from migrating African tribes.
Related: Prehistoric Stone Tools Evolved Independently Within Local Populations, Say Researchers
Neanderthals' capabilities are still hotly debated. Some argue that before modern humans replaced them, Neanderthals showed cultural capabilities similar to those of modern humans, while others make a case that these similarities only appear once Neanderthals came in contact with modern humans. "The new data from Willendorf clearly shows that modern humans were present in what is now Austria while Neanderthals still occupied other regions of Europe suggesting that the two species met, and may have exchanged mates and ideas", explains Philip Nigst. "This means the changes in the material culture of some of the last Neanderthal groups are most probably related to direct or indirect contact with modern humans".
Astronomers have detected water vapour in the atmosphere of a planet that orbits a star far beyond our solar system.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is potentially wading into hot water next month when it hosts a meeting set up by Nobelist Luc Montagnier to discuss his controversial research on what has become known as "the memory of water."
Related: Think You Know Everything About Water? Well, You Don’t
The Mars Orbiter Mission, or MOM, was intended mostly to prove that India could succeed in such a highly technical endeavor — and to beat China. As Mr. Modi and others have noted, India’s trip to Mars, at a price of $74 million, cost less than “Gravity,” the Hollywood movie. NASA’s almost simultaneous — and far more complex — mission to Mars cost $671 milliony.
Related: How India Mounted the World’s Cheapest Mission to Mars
Mars has welcomed a new robotic visitor from Earth.
Looking across the Mars landscape presents a bleak image: a barren, dry rocky view as far as the eye can see. But scientists think the vista might once have been quite different. It may have teemed with water and even been hospitable to microbial life. What changed?
Altruism has posed a puzzle for psychologists and evolutionary biologists for centuries. Why is it that humans will help others even to their own detriment?
Native tribes from the U.S. and Canada signed a treaty Tuesday establishing an inter-tribal alliance to restore bison to areas of the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains where millions of the animals once roamed.
The National Geographic Society announced a major expansion Monday of its campaign to help protect the planet's most species-rich marine areas, with a goal of convincing governments to officially safeguard more than 770,000 square miles (two million square kilometers) of ocean.
Related: U.S. Creates Largest Protected Area in the World, 3X Larger Than California
Two of the rarest birds of prey in England, which had been satellite tagged, have vanished in unexplained circumstances, conservationists say.
A mysterious butterfly-shaped cloud spotted over St. Louis last week was built from actual butterflies, the National Weather Service said.
Brazilian researchers in Rio de Janeiro have released thousands of mosquitoes infected with bacteria that suppress dengue fever.
The Amazon is being fertilised by the remains of ancient fish from Africa.
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