Mercedes Concerned Over Warranty Costs For EQC

Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 7, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News 17 photos Mercedes-Benz EQC Battery, Powertrain & Range Explained: Video In attendance at the vehicle’s launch in Sweden, Schaefer made clear that the concern centered mostly on the vehicle’s batteries which are to be constructed at its facility in Kamenz. While the automaker has built its own batteries in the past, most notably for its Smart ForTwo Electric Drive vehicles, the scale of production of the Mercedes EQC is expected to be significantly higher.Although the executive expressed confidence in the automaker’s own factories, saying “I’m not worried about the production plants in Bremen and Beijing. I know their capability, and they have proven they can ramp up in lightning speed,” he seemed slightly less confident in suppliers for battery components. Said he of his concerns,It’s the supply chain behind the doors of Kamenz. There are hundreds of components that have to come together from various new suppliers, Tier 2 and Tier 3, which are in the background, and we have to see their performance.If all goes according to plan, sometime after beginning production in Germany, the all-electric crossover will commence manufacture at its facility in Beijing, China. It will then begin arriving in European showrooms around the middle of 2019, while prospective buyers in the United States will have to wait until 2020 to take delivery.The Mercedes EQC is equivalent to the GLC in the automaker’s line and will feature all-wheel drive and the ability to sprint to 60 miles per hour in 4.9 seconds from a dead stop. The company poured cold water on its original U.S. range estimation of “up to 200 miles” and now says it will give a more accurate figure closer to its rollout on these shores. We calculate EQC owners can expect 222 miles of range from its 80 kWh (usable) battery, which is a similar distance as its premium crossover competitors.Mercedes-Benz EQC Source: Electric Vehicle News Will slowly ramp up production to reduce riskThe Mercedes-Benz executive in charge of production and supply chain management, Markus Schaefer, says the company will slowly ramp-up production of the recently revealed Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 4MATIC after it begins early next year at its plant in Bremen, Germany. The move is meant to reduce the risk of warranty work and ensure its customers have a great ownership experience.More on Mercedes EQC Mercedes Now Says 200-Mile Range Estimate For EQC Isn’t Correct Watch First Look At Mercedes-Benz EQC By Autogefühl Source: Automotive News read more

Tesla TSLA stock is back up after a few disastrous trading days

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Tesla investors get some kind of reprieve today as Tesla’s stock (TSLA) is back up over $300 per share over hope about Model 3 demand in Europe.It’s a welcome change after a few disastrous trading days on the market for Tesla. more…The post Tesla (TSLA) stock is back up after a few disastrous trading days appeared first on Electrek.last_img

Gas vs Electric Cars The Cost Of Fueling An Electric Car Video

first_imgSource: Electric Vehicle News Australian-based automotive publication and YouTube channel Drive.com.au aims to help consumers with vehicle buying decisions. The channel recently published a series of educational videos, including the above. Let’s take a look at the details.Drive makes it abundantly clear that the plug-in hybrid and all-electric cars will save you substantially in terms of fuel costs. But, you have to be careful about when you charge your EV.For example, based on Australia’s average gas and electricity prices, it will set you back $942 to gas up an Audi A1 Sportback for a year (15,000 km). A Toyota Prius hybrid will cost about $762. Fueling a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV with a mix of gas and electricity costs around $533 per year, while charging a BMW i3s for a year comes in at $694.However, here’s the kicker. If you charge the i3s at peak hours, it could cost a whopping $1,195 per year. Conversely, if you charge during non-peak times, the electricity will only cost you $409 per year. This fluctuation is monumental compared to the little variation in prices at the gas pump.How much have you saved by going electric? Share your story with us in the comment section below.Video Description via Drive.com.au on YouTube:Petrol Cars VS Electric Cars, The Cost Of Owning An Electric Car | Drive.com.auEVs save you on fuel costs, but what are the other costs of owning an electric car? We breakdown the cost of fuel vs electricity for a full year of car ownership. Two Bit da Vinci: Electric Motors vs Gas Engines Find Out How Much It Costs To Charge Tesla Model 3 Investigating Electric Car Myths & Facts: Video How much will it cost to drive an electric car for a year?Yes, EVs are more expensive than gas cars. Thankfully, that statement will not be true into the future. However, fuel costs for an electric car are significantly less than the cost to gas up. Still, your savings depend on a critical variable.Related Content: Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 4, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

Porsche Taycan owners will get three years of free charging on Electrify

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Porsche today announced a deal with Electrify America, VW’s EV charging network born out of the Deiselgate settlement with the U.S. government, to provide upcoming Taycan owners with “three years of charging at Electrify America public stations across the country.” more…The post Porsche Taycan owners will get three years of free charging on Electrify America’s network appeared first on Electrek.last_img

Electric Car Sales In UK Doubled In January 2019 PHEVs Disappoint

first_img Every Tenth BMW Sold In UK Was Electrified In 2018 More from UK Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on February 5, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News As it turns out, the alternatively fuelled vehicles increased by 26.3%, which is far better than 8.5% for plug-ins – could the clients see more potential in hybrids? On the other hand, gasoline cars increased by 7.3%, while diesel decreased by 20.3% year-over-year.Plug-in Electric Car Registrations in the UK – January 2019 British market continues to grow despite the PHEV sales decrease.In January, the overall plug-in electric market in the UK increased by 8.5% to 3,602 new registrations at a market share of over 2.2%. Total registrations decreased by 1.6% to 161,013.The single-digit growth was basically the result of a superb increase of all-electric cars, by 110% – the highest growth rate for several years, while the plug-in hybrids drag the plug-in segment down.1,334 BEVs (up 110% year-over-year)2,268 PHEVs (down 15.5% year-over-year)center_img UK’s Go Ultra Low: 2018 Was Seventh Consecutive Year Of Growth Source: Electric Vehicle News 90% Of Electric Car Owners Won’t Return To Gaslast_img read more

Watch Tesla Model 3 Take On BMW M5 F10 In Drag Race

first_img Watch Tesla Model 3 Drag Race Audi RS7: Video Watch World’s Most Epic Tesla Race: Model S, 3, X & Roadster Source: Electric Vehicle News Model 3 versus M5 and it ends in a photo finish.The Tesla Model 3 is back out on the strip against a strong challenger in the form of the BMW M5 F10.More Tesla Racing Action Without saying which car wins, we will point out that this is for sure the closest race yet featuring the Model 3 Performance. It’s literally right down to the wire.Can the Tesla Model 3 take down the BMW M5 in a drag race? Or is the heavy-hitting gasser too much for the electric Tesla? Watch the video to find out.Here are the specs for a stock BMW M5 F10, which does have power figures that far exceed the Model 3:Engine SpecificationPower (kW)  412 kWHorsepower  560 hpHorsepower  552 – 553 bhpRev. at Max Power  6000 – 7000Torque  680 NmTorque (lb-ft)  502 lb-ftRev. at Max Torque  1500 – 5750And some figures for the Tesla Model 3 Performance version, as featured in the video:Telsa Model 3 Performance specs:450 horsepower471 lb-ft of torque Watch Tesla Model S Race Dodge Demon: Video Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on February 8, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle Newslast_img read more

BikeEXIF Reveals Gorgeous Custom Zero Motorcycle

first_imgSource: Electric Vehicle News Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on February 18, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News Custom bikes don’t have to be all welded metal to be pretty.OK, I’ll admit it. I have a serious soft spot for well-crafted custom motorcycles. Generally, though, the bones of custom bikes you see were born in the 70s or 80s all low-tech and metal, carburetors and steel frames. A custom electric is a bit of a shock, if you will, but the more I think about it the more I should not be surprised. Motorcycle customization as an art form has been around since motorcycles have been around, so creating unique artwork out of an electric bike is just the natural progression of the craft.More E-Bikes Fuller Moto Working On Zero-Based Electric Cafe Racer Instead of a welder, a dead-blow hammer and an English wheel, the folks at Huge Moto in San Francisco started this Zero FXS build with CAD files from Zero. And what they’ve come up with is a gem. Instead of the boxy visual stumbling blocks and wide blank expanses that grace so many current electric motorcycle designs, this one manages to be swoopy with clean, continuous, beautiful lines while keeping its minimalist roots. Huge Moto machined the pieces of this build not out of steel and aluminum but ABS plastic, keeping its weight down, its materials modern, and the entire thing beautiful and interesting.Since Zero commissioned the build, it did not want the frame or the motor altered at all. That meant a chopper was out of the question, but a modern custom build often means more functionality not less. The San Francisco shop upgraded the rear end with a Fox racing shock, and pulled both wheels in favor of custom-laced Sun rims. No word on fork internals but dollars to doughnuts those were gutted too, in favor of upgrades or emulators.The Zero FXS comes in two flavors, one of which goes 50 miles on a charge, and the other 100. The larger capacity bike starts around $10K. Stock, even the bike with the bigger battery doesn’t top 300 lbs curb weight, and the mods on this custom build no doubt bring that number down some. Here we go loving BikeEXIF even more, for sharing this with us. What a gorgeous little package of hope for the future!Photo Credits: BikeEXIFSources: BikeEXIF, Huge Moto, Zero Motorcycles Second Zero SR/F Teaser Speaks Volume Zero Teaser Confirms High-Performance SR/F Modellast_img read more

Watch BMW M2 Chase A Tesla Model 3 On Nurburgring Video

first_imgCan a BMW M2 keep up with a Tesla Model 3?Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img

Watch Porsche Taycan zip through Goodwood racetrack

first_imgSource: Charge Forward Porsche is bringing prototypes of the Taycan, its first all-electric car, to a few racetracks around the world ahead of its official launch.We now get to see the electric car zip through the Goodwood racetrack. more…Subscribe to Electrek on YouTube for exclusive videos and subscribe to the podcast.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V1zk7Eb8r-s&list=PL_Qf0A10763mA7Byw9ncZqxjke6Gjz0MtThe post Watch Porsche Taycan zip through Goodwood racetrack appeared first on Electrek.last_img read more

SecondGeneration Nissan LEAF Lands In Australia

first_imgThe new Nissan LEAF starts late in Australia, but is prepared with a dealer network and charging infrastructure providers.Source: Electric Vehicle Newslast_img

Weil and VE Close 3 Billion Egyptian Oil Deal Joint Venture

first_img Remember me Password Lost your password? Not a subscriber? Sign up for The Texas Lawbook.center_img Username Houston-based Apache Corporation sold one-third of its Egyptian oil and gas business to Sinopec, Asia’s largest oil refining and petrochemical enterprise . . .You must be a subscriber to The Texas Lawbook to access this content.last_img

Combining natural cures with biomedical devices improves bone health growth

first_img Source:https://news.wsu.edu/2018/05/02/curcumin-improves-bone-healing/ May 4 2018A WSU research team is bringing together natural medical cures with modern biomedical devices in hopes of bringing about better health outcomes for people with bone diseases.In this first-ever effort, the team improved bone-growing capabilities on 3D-printed, ceramic bone scaffolds by 30-45 percent when coated with curcumin, a compound found in the spice, turmeric. They have published their work in the journal, Materials Today Chemistry.The work could be important for the millions of Americans who suffer from injuries or bone diseases like osteoporosis.Human bone includes bone forming and resorbing cells that constantly remodel throughout our lives. As people age, the bone cell cycling process often doesn’t work as well. Bones become weaker and likely to fracture. Many of the medicines used for osteoporosis work by slowing down or stopping the destruction of old bone or by forming new bone. While they may increase bone density, they also create an imbalance in the natural bone remodeling cycle and may create poorer quality bone.Turmeric has been used as medicine for centuries in Asian countries, and curcumin has been shown to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and bone-building capabilities. It can also prevent various forms of cancers. However, when taken orally as medicine, the compound can’t be absorbed well in the body. It is metabolized and eliminated too quickly.Led by Susmita Bose, Herman and Brita Lindholm Endowed Chair Professor in the School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, the researchers encased the curcumin within a water-loving polymer, a large molecule, so that it could be gradually released from their ceramic scaffolds. The curcumin increased the viability and proliferation of new bone cells and blood vessels in surrounding tissue as well as accelerated the healing process.Related StoriesEarly exposure to antacids could put infants at risk for bone fractures during childhoodStudy discusses beneficial effects of antibody therapy that targets sclerostinStudy reveals dual effects of new osteoporosis therapy on bone tissueBose hopes that the work will lead to medicines that naturally create healthier bone without affecting the bone remodeling cycle.”In the end, it’s the bone quality that matters,” she said.The researchers are continuing the studies, looking at the protein and cellular level to gain better understanding of exactly how the natural compound works. They are also working to improve the process’ efficiency and control. The challenge with the natural compounds, said Bose, is that they are often large organic molecules.”You have to use the right vehicle for delivery,” she said. “We need to load and get it released in a controlled and sustained way. The chemistry of vehicle delivery is very important.”In addition to curcumin, the researchers are studying other natural remedies, including compounds from aloe vera, saffron, Vitamin D, garlic, oregano and ginger. Bose is focused on compounds that might help with bone disorders, including those that encourage bone growth or that have anti-inflammatory, infection control, or anti-cancer properties.Starting with her own health issues, Bose has had a longtime interest in bridging natural medicinal compounds with modern medicine. That interest increased after she had her children.”As a mother and having a chemistry background, I realized I didn’t want my children to be exposed to so many chemicals for every illness,” Bose said. “I started looking at home remedies.”To her students, she always emphasizes healthy living as the best way to guarantee the best health outcomes, including healthy eating, proper sleep, interesting hobbies, and exercise.last_img read more

MRI and blood test combination results in improved prostate cancer diagnosis

first_imgJul 20 2018New research from Karolinska Institutet shows that the blood test Stockholm3 together with magnetic resonance imaging and targeted prostate biopsies may lead to a significant decrease in the number of biopsy procedures and diagnoses of harmless disease. The study is published in European Urology.The study compares traditional detection of prostate cancer with a novel practice using a blood test, the Stockholm3 test, in combination with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and targeted prostate biopsies.More men get a correct diagnosis and treatmentThe results show that the suggested diagnostic strategy decreased the number of biopsy procedures with 38 per cent and the number of men getting a diagnose with harmless disease by 42 per cent. At the same time, the number of men diagnosed with potentially harmful cancer increased with 10 per cent. The study was performed in collaboration with Swedish (Stockholm) and Norwegian (Oslo, Tönsberg) urology practices and includes 532 men.”We show that a combination of the Stockholm3 test and targeted prostate biopsies might increase the number of men with potentially dangerous disease that get a diagnosis. At the same time, we can spare many men from unnecessary prostate biopsies. This means that more men get a correct diagnosis and treatment, and that we can decrease unnecessary discomfort and risks, says Tobias Nordström, researcher at the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet and urologist at Danderyd Hospital.Need for improved diagnosisIn the European Union, prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer among men, with around 365,000 new cases yearly and 77,000 men dying from prostate cancer. Current practice includes a so called PSA test and systematic prostate biopsies where 10-12 samples are taken from the prostate. The PSA test has been controversial because it only poorly differentiates between lethal and harmless prostate cancer.Related StoriesLiving with advanced breast cancerStudy: Nearly a quarter of low-risk thyroid cancer patients receive more treatment than necessaryBacteria in the birth canal linked to lower risk of ovarian cancerThe Stockholm3 test is an alternative test method that combines five biomarkers, over 100 genetic markers and clinical data such as age, previous biopsies and family history of prostate cancer to better assess the risk of potentially harmful prostate cancer.”The current study confirms our previous findings showing the value of the Stockholm3 test as part of the diagnosis of prostate cancer. Studies of this type have been requested by the National Board of Health and Welfare in Sweden,” says Tobias Nordström.The research was funded by the Swedish Cancer Society, the Swedish Research Council, the Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, The Strategic Research Programme in Cancer at Karolinska Instituet (StratCan), Karolinska Institutet och The Swedish e-Science Research Centre (SeRC).The Stockholm3 test was developed by researchers at Karolinska Institutet in collaboration with Thermo Fisher Scientific. Professor Henrik Grönberg, lead author of this study, has patent applications for the Stockholm3 test licensed to Thermo Fisher Scientific, and might receive royalties from sales related to these patents. Co-author Martin Eklund is named on some of these patent applications.Source: https://ki.se/en/news/combination-of-blood-test-and-imaging-improves-detection-of-prostate-cancerlast_img read more

Harvard scientists end 40yearquest for elusive identity of hearing protein

first_img Source:https://hms.harvard.edu/news/hearing-molecule Aug 23 2018Scientists at Harvard Medical School say they have ended a 40-year-quest for the elusive identity of the sensor protein responsible for hearing and balance.The results of their research, reported Aug. 22 in Neuron, reveal that TMC1, a protein discovered in 2002, forms a sound- and motion-activated pore that allows the conversion of sound and head movement into nerve signals that travel to the brain-;a signaling cascade that enables hearing and balance.Scientists have long known that when the delicate cells in our inner ear detect sound and movement, they convert them into signals. Where and how this conversion occurs has been the subject of intense scientific debate. No more, the authors say.”The search for this sensor protein has led to numerous dead ends, but we think this discovery ends the quest,” said David Corey, co-senior author on the study and the Bertarelli Professor of Translational Medical Science at Harvard Medical School.”We believe our findings settle that issue for good and yield definitive proof that TMC1 is the critical molecular sensor that converts sound and motion into electrical signals the brain can understand,” said co-senior author Jeffrey Holt, Harvard Medical School professor of otolaryngology and of neurology at Boston Children’s Hospital. “It is, indeed, the gatekeeper of hearing.”The researchers say their findings lay the groundwork for precision-targeted therapies to treat hearing loss that occurs when the TMC1 molecular gate is malformed or missing.Hearing loss is the most common neurologic disorder affecting more than 460 million people worldwide.”To design optimal treatments for hearing loss, we need to know the molecules and their structures where disease-causing malfunctions arise, and our findings are an important step in that direction,” Holt said.The senses-;vision, touch, taste, pain, smell and hearing-;help animals navigate the world and survive in it. The conversion of sensory input into signals that travel to the brain for analysis and interpretation is central to this process.The “molecular converters” for most senses have been identified. The one for hearing, however, remained elusive, partly due to the hard-to-access anatomical location of the inner ear-;within the densest bone of the human body-;and partly because of the comparatively few auditory cells available for retrieval, dissection and imaging. The human retina has a hundred million sensory cells, compared with a precious few 16,000 in the human inner ear.As far back as the 19th century, scientists knew that cells located in the inner ear-;called hair cells for the bristle-like tufts that line their surface-;played a role in hearing. The stage was set in the late 1800s by Swedish physician and anatomist Gustaf Retzius, who described in detail the structure and cellular makeup of the inner ear.The basics of signal propagation from the inner ear to the brain were elucidated in the 1970s. Scientists demonstrated that proteins in the membranes of hair cells could open, allowing the influx of electrically charged ions such as calcium and potassium. Once inside the cell, those ions initiate signal transmission to the brain.Following the 2002 discovery of the TMC1 gene, research into its role languished for nearly a decade. In 2011, a team led by Holt demonstrated that TMC1 was required for auditory transduction in hair cells. The finding sparked a vigorous debate about the exact role TMC1 played: Was it a central character or part of the supporting cast? That debate has now been put to rest, Holt said.Related StoriesUMD researchers connect a protein to antibody immunity for the first timeSorting protein in neurons protects against neurodegenerative disordersHinge-like protein may unlock new pathways for cystic fibrosis treatmentIn an initial set of experiments, the research team found that TMC1 proteins assemble in pairs to form sound-activated pores, or ion channels. Given that most ion-channel proteins form clusters of three to seven units, TMC1’s minimalistic pairing was a surprise. It also offered a helpful clue into its structure.Next, to map out the molecular architecture of the TMC1 protein, the scientists turned to computer predictive modeling. Such models work by predicting the most probable arrangement of a protein’s building blocks based on the configuration of a close relative with a known structure. The algorithm revealed that TMC1’s closest relative with known structure was a protein known as TMEM16.Each protein’s function is determined by its structure-;the specific sequence and arrangement of amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. TMEM16’s amino acid arrangement yielded a possible amino acid model for TMC1.But to verify the accuracy of the model and to pinpoint the precise location of the sound-activated pores, the researchers had to take their model out of the digital realm and into the real world of living hair cells of mice. Substituting 17 amino acids-;one at a time-;the researchers gauged whether and how each single substitution altered the cells’ ability to respond to sound and allow the flow of ions.Of the 17 amino acid substitutions, 11 altered the influx of ions, and five did so dramatically, reducing ion flow by up to 80 percent, compared with nonmodified cells. One particular substitution blocked calcium influx completely, a finding that confirmed the precise location of the pore that normally allows calcium and potassium influx to initiate signal transmission.This approach, Corey said, was akin to what an engineer might do to figure out how each part of an engine works.”Hair cells, like car engines, are complex machines that need to be studied as they are running,” Corey said. “You can’t figure out how a piston or a spark plug works by itself. You have to modify the part, put it back in the engine and then gauge its effect on performance.”TMC1 is found in mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles-;a sign of evolutionary conservation at work.”The fact that evolution has conserved this protein across all vertebrate species underscores how critical it is for survival,” Holt said.The ability to hear a sound and distinguish its meaning as a threat or a mere nuisance, for example, is crucial for biologic survival-;think hearing the sound of a bear approaching in the woods. But among many higher species, hearing is also important for social bonding and interaction-;think recognizing different voices or changes in voice patterns and intonation. The exquisitely complex ability to detect changes in intonation begins with the opening of a tiny molecular gate in TMC1.”We now know that TMC1 forms the pore that enables sound detection in animals ranging from fish to birds to humans,” Corey said. “It is truly the protein that lets us hear.”last_img read more

Greening the food pyramid

Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Advice about a healthy diet might soon take the planet itself into account. The next version of Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the major nutrition report from the government agencies that brought you the food pyramid, seems likely to contain advice about sustainable food choices. The prospect is already generating controversy.Every 5 years, a new set of dietary advice comes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). It usually boils down to what your parents told you about eating a balanced diet. In 2010, the guidelines tried something new, switching from a food pyramid to a plate (and, for the first time, specifically urging Americans to eat more fish and less pizza). The changes are based on a review of recent research findings by outside scientists, whose recommendations are turned into guidelines by agency scientists and officials.At an advisory panel meeting today, scientists discussed why it matters how the food you eat is produced. A subcommittee on food sustainability and safety, chaired by Miriam Nelson, a nutritionist at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, presented its preliminary conclusions. “Promoting more sustainable diets will contribute to food security for present and future generations by conserving resources,” the subcommittee found. “This approach should be encouraged across all food sectors.” Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe In addition, sustainability could also encourage people to eat a diet richer in grains, fruits, and vegetables. “Research shows that, with young adults, a green message can be a real motivating factor,” Nelson said at the meeting, which was webcast but not open to the public. “It could be used as another messaging tool.”The subcommittee reviewed the scientific literature, finding 15 peer-reviewed studies of dietary patterns, health, and environmental sustainability. These studies looked at how replacing meat and dairy with plant-based foods can have a positive impact on greenhouse gas emissions, energy, water, and biodiversity. All the studies showed that higher consumption of animal products inflicted more damage on the environment. “We’re finding remarkable consistency here,” Nelson said at the meeting.It’s not clear how detailed the sustainability advice will be. Nelson hinted that the subcommittee might stick to simply recommending a more plant-based diet and not go as far as preferring organic food. The subcommittee is reviewing the evidence on grass-fed versus corn-fed beef. It’s also considering advice about the most sustainable way to increase fish consumption, with input from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries.Some conservative groups have objected to the inclusion of sustainability in the dietary guidelines. “Sustainable food systems and environmental protection may be important, but these issues don’t belong in discussions of healthy eating,” wrote Jeff Stier of the National Center for Public Policy Research, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C., in an op-ed in The Des Moines Register today.Stier also objects to the recent appointment of Angela Tagtow to lead the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, which is responsible for USDA’s involvement in the dietary guidelines. Tagtow, who began on 14 July, was a fellow at the Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture and then started Environmental Nutrition Solutions, a company that aims to establish sustainable food systems. “This isn’t nutrition,” Stier wrote. “This is code language for politically charged activism.”Either way, it seems to be a sign that USDA is interested in including sustainability in its dietary guidelines.The advisory committee is scheduled to hand its recommendations over to USDA and HHS this fall. The official guidelines will come out a year later. The United States would not be the first country to have federal advice on sustainable diet. Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands issued recommendations between 2009 and 2011. Email Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country read more

Video Tomato ancestor evolved 50 million years ago near Antarctica

first_imgThe tomato on your sandwich traces its history to a plant that evolved near Antarctica more than 50 million years ago, according to a study published today in Science. Researchers found two fossils compressed into 52.2-million-year-old Patagonian stone, which showcased the flattened silhouettes of ancient lantern fruit. The remains resemble modern-day members of the Solanaceae or nightshade family, which includes tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers, eggplants, and tobacco. The fossils looked like two unique nightshade relatives in particular: ground cherries and tomatillos (the stuff salsa verde is made of), both of which are veiled in a papery husk. Veins of the husk are visibly detailed on the fossils, and scientists were even able to identify compacted remnants of the berry, which turned to coal during the fossilization process. At the time the plant—now christened Physalis infinemundi—thrived, South America would have been close to Antarctica and Australia during the ancient supercontinent Gondwana’s final stages of separation. Today, the site where the fossils were found, Laguna del Hunco in Argentina, is dry and desolate, but in the Eocene epoch (56 million to 33.9 million years ago), the area was near the shore of a caldera lake and had a much more tropical climate. Because of the lakeside locale, researchers suspect that the inflated husk could have served as a flotation device.last_img read more

Watch a shapeshifting robot extend its tentacle

first_img Many robots are inspired by animals, but now scientists have developed one that takes a cue from fungi. Engineers have designed a soft robot that moves by extending an artificial tendril into its surrounding environment, they report today in Science Robotics. Researchers were inspired by root growth in plants and fungi. This tubelike robot can grow up to 72 meters in length and extends by filling a thin plastic membrane with air from a pneumatic pump. Though it may look like a very long newspaper bag, the bot has a few tricks up its sleeve. By inflating specialized “control chambers” strategically placed throughout the membrane, the robot can not only move through its environment, but manipulate objects as well. Like the T-1000 from Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the bot can contort itself to fit through holes and form tools, such as hooks and antennas. The robot has many applications—from bringing water to hazardous areas for firefighting to tunneling through the ground during search and rescue operations—but it might be a while before we see those in action. Watch a shape-shifting robot extend its tentacle By Andrew WagnerJul. 19, 2017 , 2:00 PMlast_img read more

What dogs see when they smell something

first_imgPetra Jahn What dogs ‘see’ when they smell something By Virginia MorellMar. 5, 2018 , 3:15 PMcenter_img A dog searching for a lost child is typically given an item of clothing to smell. But what does that scent “look” like? To find out, scientists tested 48 dogs, half of which had special police or rescue training. In a laboratory room, the scientists slid each dog’s favorite toy across the floor to a hiding place, while the dog waited in another room. One researcher then brought the dog to the testing room and pointed at the starting point of the odor trail and told the dog, “Look for it! Bring it!” In one trial, the dog found either its favored toy or—surprise!—a different item. Many of the surprised dogs continued searching for the toy used to lay the scent trail—an indication that they had a mental representation of what they expected to find, the scientists report today in the Journal of Comparative Psychology. Both family dogs and working dogs scored about the same on the tests, confirming previous studies showing that education doesn’t necessarily improve a dog’s performance. Previous studies have shown that horses have mental images of their owners and other horses—based on the sounds of their voices and whinnies. But scientists know little about how smell and cognition are linked in animals that rely heavily on smell—such as dogs, elephants, and rats. Now, we have a better idea at least for our pooches: They picture what they’re searching for.last_img read more

Bigger better bird tree of life will soon fly into view

first_img By Elizabeth PennisiApr. 16, 2018 , 2:35 PM Email A better family tree would help researchers better place turacos, such as this Knysna turaco from South Africa, on its branches. Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Bigger, better bird tree of life will soon fly into view Daniel J. Field center_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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The $1.42 million effort will be the first to include DNA data from the more than 10,500 known bird species to establish how they are all related. But it will not be the final word—another project seeking to sequence the full genomes of every avian species will follow if enough funding can be raised. OpenWings “will be a huge improvement over what we have now,” says Harvard University evolutionary biologist Scott Edwards. But, “Ultimately, OpenWings will be a stepping stone to the grand tree that the whole genomes [will generate].”  In 2014, biologists published an avian tree based on the sequences of whole genomes of about 40 species. Another team published a different tree in 2015 after comparing a subset of the avian genome in hundreds of species. These phylogenies help researchers looking at the evolutionary histories of specific avian traits or the story of birds overall. But some researchers who specialize in building trees were not satisfied. “The current need for large phylogenies and the high priority placed on them by high impact journals can result in shortcuts, wherein large-scale phylogenetic trees are cobbled together from disparate existing sources, even taxonomy, but often without hard data behind the placement of many species,” Harvard evolutionary biologist Gustavo Bravo and his colleagues wrote on 30 January in PeerJ. “The question is how far do you compromise?” Edwards adds.So even though some of the leaders of the 2014 avian tree effort launched the Bird 10,000 Genomes (B10K) Project, aiming to eventually sequence the whole genomes of all 10,560 bird species and from there build “the grand tree,” some bird researchers decided not to wait. Led by Brian Smith at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City and Brant Faircloth at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, they are taking a cheaper, faster route with the OpenWings Project. The U.S. National Science Foundation–funded effort will tap extensive museum collections as much as possible, instead of freshly caught bird samples, and will sequence about 5000 short pieces of the DNA, focusing on regions that are very highly conserved among all birds. The group plans to release data on an ongoing basis, rather than waiting for the project’s publication, so other researchers can make use of it. The OpenWings tree will give “us a better understanding of the process of [bird] diversification and can potentially give us the information we need to move forward in understanding vertebrate diversification,” Faircloth says.But how good a tree will it be? “I don’t think [OpenWings] is going to solve well enough their goal of generating an accurate tree, says B10K leader Erich Jarvis, a neurogenomicist at The Rockefeller University in New York City. In the 2014 work, he and his colleagues compared trees built from just the conserved DNA regions OpenWings will also examine to those arising from whole-genome comparisons and found inaccuracies in the former. He argues that whole genomes will not only provide more data for building trees, but will also enable researchers to study the evolution of regulatory sequences, transposable elements, and other aspects of the genome that are not covered with OpenWings sequencing. Once a genome is finished, no more sequencing of that species’s DNA will be ever needed, he argues.Jarvis worries that OpenWings will dampen enthusiasm and slow support for B10K, which could cost up to $150 million for high quality, so-called reference genomes, and still isn’t fully funded. Furthermore, Jarvis is concerned about using up rare samples. Some birds, such as species endemic to Borneo, are very hard to find and collect, and there’s a chance the two projects may wind up competing for DNA from the few samples gathered. Edwards does not think that’s a big problem, however, and says B10K needs better DNA than can be retrieved from the museums specimens that OpenWings plans to use. Faircloth hopes his team will not use any of the samples used in the B10K project, as having DNA sequence from multiple individuals of the same species can be useful. With help from the Chinese sequencing giant BGI, B10K has already sequenced to some degree the genomes of more than 300 birds, with representatives for each family and subfamily. But additional support is required to go much further, Jarvis says. “I don’t want people to get the impression that once OpenWings is finished that we are finished [with bird DNA studies],” he adds.last_img read more

Gorillas have developed humanlike social structure controversial study suggests

first_img A bold claim about gorilla societies is drawing mixed reviews. Great apes, humans’ closest evolutionary relatives, were thought to lack our social complexity. Chimpanzees, for example, form only small bands that are aggressive toward strangers. But based on years of watching gorillas gather in food-rich forest clearings, a team of scientists has concluded the apes have hierarchical societies similar to those of humans, perhaps to help them exploit rich troves of food.The finding, reported in the current issue of the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, challenges the prevailing notion that such sophisticated societies evolved relatively recently, after humans split from chimpanzees. Instead, these researchers say, the origins of such social systems extend at least as far back as the common ancestor of humans and gorillas, but were lost in chimpanzees.The group has presented “a pretty convincing case for a hierarchical social structure in gorillas,” says Richard Connor, a cetacean biologist and expert on dolphin society at the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth. But because other primates that are not great apes—notably baboons, geladas, and colobine monkeys—show similar hierarchies, he’s not surprised they have turned up in gorillas, too. Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! 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Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*)center_img Young gorillas from different families may become friends when their groups meet to dine in the wild. Wildlife Conservation Society By Virginia MorellJul. 17, 2019 , 12:45 PM Gorillas spend most of their time in dense forests, travel great distances to a new home spot daily, and are slow to get used to observers, making their social lives hard to study. But western gorillas in the Republic of Congo gather periodically at swampy clearings in the forests to feed primarily on the highly abundant vegetation, but also on favorite and rare foods such as certain fig trees that produce massive amounts of fruit only every 3 to 5 years, says Robin Morrison, a zoologist at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom and the study’s lead author.By stationing themselves near the Mbeli Bai clearing in the Republic of Congo’s Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, she and her colleagues gained an intimate view of gorilla social connections from 2010 to 2015. They added to their observations similar data collected by others in 2001–02 at the Lokoué clearing in Odzala-Kokoua National Park in the Republic of Congo. By analyzing the frequency and duration of social interactions among the hundreds of gorillas that gathered at each site, the scientists discovered a multitiered hierarchy. Family units were nested inside larger social units in a pattern strikingly similar to modern human societies. At both sites, individual gorillas spent time not only with their immediate families, but also with an average of 13 extended family members—for example, cousins, aunts, and grandparents.Even more surprising, each ape interacted with some 39 other gorillas to whom they weren’t related. Sometimes, younger males gathered in “all-male bachelor groups,” Morrison said in a press statement, comparing the overall gatherings to dynamics in a village. Her team’s analysis revealed that more than 80% of the close associations were between more distantly related—or even unrelated—silverbacks, as dominant male gorillas are called. Gorillas “clearly had preferences,” she said.“If we think of these associations in a human-centric way, the time spent in each other’s company might be analogous to an old friendship,” she added. The ability to form friendships and cooperate with unrelated individuals is considered integral to the evolution of humans’ “social brains.”Kim Hill, an evolutionary anthropologist at Arizona State University in Tempe, rejects such parallels to humans. “[T]he extreme social brain hypothesis doesn’t claim other primates don’t form hierarchically increasing groupings,” Hill wrote in an email to Science. “It focuses on the size of the largest human groupings.” Humans recognize and remember details about more than 1000 individuals, he notes, whereas the “highest level groups in the gorillas are not even as big as large chimp communities.” Morrison agrees that ape societies are not comparable to those of humans at the highest social tiers, but she says her group’s discovery reveals that some elements of our multitiered systems are older than previously believed.Connor, for his part, doubts that foraging drove the emergence of these complex social associations. More likely, he says, these “are based on cooperative defense”—as they are in other primate societies and in dolphins. Morrison says she’ll watch for evidence of that as she continues to monitor the gorilla gatherings.last_img read more