David Shiffman • Blogging • December 13, 2016
Earlier this week, I announced that I have officially earned my Ph.D.! I am hoping to use this occassion to raise funds for a variety of environmental causes. If you’re able to help, I’ve created a JustGive.org campaign that allows you to donate to my favorite environmental and human rights causes in honor of my graduation. Any amount helps! Thanks in advance.
Andrew David Thaler • Monday Morning Salvage •
Flotsam (what we’re obsessed with right now)
- Mr. Trashwheel, who has the best social media game in town. How can anyone compete with a garbage-eating floating waterwheel who’s Reddit AMA is this on point?
David Shiffman • Thursday Afternoon Dredging • December 8, 2016
Cuttings (short and sweet):
- Rays chew. Who knew? From this paper by Kolmann and friends
From Kolmann and friends 2016, “Always chew your food. Freshwater stingrays use mastication to process insect prey.” Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
- Follow Dr. Leanne Currey @LeanneMCurrey, a postdoc working on the Global FinPrint project, on twitter! Follow her for great videos of sharks and other marine life approaching baited underwater video stations around the world.
- Our friends at the Fisheries Blog surveyed their readers about their peer review habits. Do these results match your experience?
Kersey Sturdivant • climate change, Fun Science Friday, Natural Science, Open Science, Science • December 2, 2016
Science brings us many wonderful things (honestly if you enjoy the benefits of the modern era, go out and hug a scientist). One of humanities age old desires is the ability to convert something invaluable, or a nuisance, into something desirable. The old midas touch if you will. Recently some scientist stumbled onto the process of converting CO2, a primary culprit of anthropogenic climate change, into alcohol… though not the kind you drink, the kind that humanity could use as fuel.
(Photo credit: Getty + Space Images)
Producing fuel from CO2 is huge because it lets us take a nuisance compound, and converts it into a productive one. This was accomplished by scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee by using common materials (copper and carbon), but arranging them with nanotechnology. The researchers were attempting to find a series of chemical reactions that could turn CO2 into a useful fuel, such as ethanol. They figured they would go from CO2 to methanol, and then work out the logistics of going from methanol to ethanol, when they realized the first step in their process managed to do it all by itself. Science for the win!
David Shiffman • Thursday Afternoon Dredging • December 1, 2016
Cuttings (short and sweet):
How a sawfish uses its saw, from Wueringer and friends (2012), the function of the sawfish saw, Current Biology