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NEWS RELEASES - via EurekAlert!

New technique could make captured carbon more valuable

( DOE/Idaho National Laboratory) Carbon capture could help coal plants reduce emissions if economic challenges can be overcome. Turning captured carbon into a useable product is one solution. Scientists have developed an efficient process for turning captured carbon dioxide into syngas that can be used to make fuels and chemicals. Results were published Dec. 14 by Green Chemistry. "For the first time it was demonstrated that syngas can be directly produced from captured CO2," the researchers wrote.

First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

( University of Texas at Austin) UT researchers successfully constructed a first-of-its-kind chemical oscillator that uses DNA components. DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Computational strategies overcome obstacles in peptide therapeutics development

( University of Washington Health Sciences/UW Medicine) Recently developed computational strategies could help realize the promise of peptide-based drugs. Researchers were able to sample the diverse landscape of shapes that peptides can form as a guide for designing the next generation of stable, potent, selective drugs. They compiled a library of peptide scaffolds upon which drug candidates might be designed. Their methods also can be used to design additional custom peptides with arbitrary shapes on demand.

Salt Lake City to host cutting-edge linguistic research in January

( Linguistic Society of America) Research presentations on transgender identities, the #yesallwomen twitter campaign, the rootedness of Appalachian English, and the many others provided below are among the highlights of the upcoming Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America (LSA), to be held in Salt Lake City, Utah from Jan. 4-7, 2018.

Vanderbilt researchers win an R&D100 Award for MultiWell MicroFormulator

( Vanderbilt University) A team of Vanderbilt University scientists and engineers led by Professor John P. Wikswo has won an R&D 100 Award for their MultiWell MicroFormulator.

The spirit of innovation

( University of California - Santa Barbara) UCSB optical engineer Daniel J. Blumenthal named a 2017 fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.

Computer systems predict objects' responses to physical forces

( Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Presenting their work at this year's Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems, Prof. Josh Tenenbaum and one of his students, Jiajun Wu, are co-authors on four papers that examine the fundamental cognitive abilities that an intelligent agent requires to navigate the world: discerning distinct objects and inferring how they respond to physical forces.

National MagLab's latest magnet snags world record, marks new era of scientific discovery

( Florida State University) The Florida State University-headquartered National High Magnetic Field Laboratory has shattered another world record with the testing of a 32-tesla magnet -- 33 percent stronger than what had previously been the world's strongest superconducting magnet used for research and more than 3,000 times stronger than a small refrigerator magnet.

Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live

( Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard) A novel approach published in Science by a collaborative team of researchers from the Wyss Institute, Arizona State University, and Autodesk for the first time enables the design of complex single-stranded DNA and RNA origami that can autonomously fold into diverse, stable, user-defined structures.

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

( Georgia Institute of Technology) Can companies rely on the results of one or two scientific studies to design a new industrial process or launch a new product? In at least one area of materials chemistry, the answer may be yes -- but only 80 percent of the time.

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