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Latest Mathematical & Physical Sciences News

ZAP! Spacecraft discovers Saturn’s moon Hyperion is charged

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Cassini spacecraft received the equivalent of a 200 volt electric shock from the electrostatically charged surface of Saturn’s moon, Hyperion, confirming that objects in the outer Solar System can have charged surfaces, according to UCL research.

Head of NASA visits UCL Academy

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Charles Bolden & Geraldine Davies

Charles Bolden, the head of NASA, visited UCL Academy on Thursday 9 October 2014.

The visit, which was arranged by UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory, saw Bolden share his experience of leading four space shuttle missions and his own personal journey as an African-American growing up in the segregated south to 200 Academy students.

3D model shows survival strategies of bacteria

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Bacteria are particularly ingenious when it comes to survival strategies. They often create a biofilm to protect themselves from a hostile environment, for example during treatment with antibiotics, and scientists have unravelled the secrets of how they do this with a new 3D model. 

Project to support state school students to study STEM at university celebrates biggest year yet

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in2science students

108 school students from low income backgrounds have been given a step up towards studying STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects at university, thanks to in2ScienceUK, a project founded by UCL PhD student Rebecca McKelvey and marked this week at a celebration evening at UCL for students and scientist mentors.

Sloths: life in the evolutionary fast lane

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Today’s sloths might be known as slow, small animals, but their ancestors developed large body sizes at an amazing rate, according to an evolutionary reconstruction published today in BMC Evolutionary Biology. The fast rate of change suggests that factors such as environmental conditions, or competition with other species must have strongly favoured the bigger sloths, before they died out.

UCL Academy student wins place at UCL

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Brahim Mansour

UCL Academy student Brahim Mansour has become the first-ever pupil at the UCL-sponsored school to be accepted for a place at UCL.

Dark Energy Survey kicks off second season cataloguing deep space

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Dark Energy Survey

UCL scientists are set to continue investigations into why expansion of the universe is speeding up, having already secured high quality early data.

School pupils experience space science at UCL

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School pupils experience space science at UCL

A group of secondary school students have designed their own space missions during a new week-long work experience programme at the UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory (MSSL).

National Student Survey: improvement in student satisfaction

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Students at UCL

Student satisfaction at UCL has risen by 2%, according to the latest National Student Survey (NSS) results.

Pairing old technologies with new for next generation electronic devices

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UCL scientists have discovered a new method to efficiently generate and control currents based on the magnetic nature of electrons in semi-conducting materials, offering a radical way to develop a new generation of electronic devices.

UCL scientists honoured by Royal Society

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Ivan Parker, Rachel McKendry, Andrea Sella

The outstanding achievements of three UCL scientists have been recognised by The Royal Society, the UK’s national Academy of science, in this year’s Awards and Prizes announcement.

Reef built by animals 550 million years ago discovered

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Researchers fossil hunting in Namibia

Newly found fossils show animals built living reefs twenty million years earlier than previously thought.

Climate scientists need professional body, says UCL policy commission

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Time for Change Report

Climate scientists need to establish a professional body to help define their roles, values and practices to satisfy society’s needs, and to provide guidance to improve their training and development, according to a report published today by the UCL Policy Commission on the Communication of Climate Science. 

Queen’s Birthday Honours for the UCL community

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David Fish

A number of people from the UCL community have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Hunt for extraterrestrial life gets massive methane boost

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Extrasolar planet HD189733b rises from behind its star. Is there methane on this planet? (Credit: ESA)

A powerful new model to detect life on planets outside of our solar system, more accurately than ever before, has been developed by UCL researchers.

New Quantum Science & Technology Institute opens at UCL

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UCL is today inaugurating a new Quantum Science & Technology Institute (UCLQ). The new institute will coordinate and support research into quantum science and technology across UCL, helping to develop this fast-advancing field of research.

Statistical analysis unveils the hidden patterns in Eurovision voting

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Voting for the Eurovision Song Contest has been scrutinised by statistics experts at UCL and Imperial College London, who have found that musical talent is unlikely to be the only element that wins scores – but that the contest is not ‘stitched up’ at the UK’s expense. 

Scientists develop world’s first light-activated antimicrobial surface that also works in the dark

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Samples of silicone with the various dyes infused

Researchers at UCL have developed a new antibacterial material which has potential for cutting hospital acquired infections.

UCL researchers set to take their research to parliament

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SET for Britain group

Sixteen researchers from around UCL have been shortlisted to present their research to a panel of expert judges and over 100 MPs in this year’s SET for Britain competition.

Safer and more sustainable materials for manufacturing

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A £10.3 million grant has been awarded to researchers today by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to find safer, more sustainable materials for manufacturing.

Quantum mechanics explains efficiency of photosynthesis

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Light-gathering macromolecules in plant cells transfer energy by taking advantage of molecular vibrations whose physical descriptions have no equivalents in classical physics, according to the first unambiguous theoretical evidence of quantum effects in photosynthesis published today in the journal Nature Communications.

ALMA spots supernova dust factory 160,000 light years away

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UK scientists have used the ALMA telescope to help capture the remains of a recent supernova - or exploding star – that is brimming with freshly formed dust 160,000 light years from Earth.

ESA’s Billion Star Surveyor: UCL’s contribution

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Gaia payload module

On Thursday 19 December at 09:12 GMT, a satellite designed to unlock the secrets of the birth and evolution of the Milky Way Galaxy will be launched by the European Space Agency.

Research Images as Art/Art Images as Research: winners announced

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Muscle Fibres of the Heart

A striking image showing the spiral structure of heart muscle fibres in minute detail is the overall winner of this year’s Research Images as Art/Art Images as Research competition, run by the UCL Graduate School.

Astronomers discover first noble gas molecules in space

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Crab Nebula

Noble gas molecules have been detected in space for the first time in the Crab Nebula, a supernova remnant, by astronomers at UCL.

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