US opens first bid for offshore wind energy

The race to harness the power of North Atlantic winds is on.

On Tuesday the Interior Department unveiled plans for the nation's first auction of offshore wind leases. It's more good news for the US wind industry, which installed a record capacity in 2012, and received a one-year extension on the federal tax credits driving much of the industry's growth.

The latest artificial heart: Part cow, part machine

A new kind of artificial heart that combines synthetic and biological materials as well as sensors and software to detect a patient’s level of exertion and adjust output accordingly is to be tested in patients at four cardiac surgery centers in Europe and the Middle East. If the “bioprosthetic” device, made by the Paris-based Carmat, proves to be safe and effective, it could be given to patients waiting for a heart transplant.

‘Extinct’ frog is last survivor of its lineage

In 1996, after four decades of failed searches, the Hula painted frog became the first amphibian to be declared extinct by an international body - a portent of the crisis that now threatens the entire class. But it seems that reports of the creature’s death had been greatly exaggerated.

Indigenous knowledge is a form of science - don’t ignore it

It is time to stop discounting traditional expertise and make use of this vast and valuable resource, argues Indian scientist Suman Sahai.

Science and technology have always been an important part of growth and development plans. But accepted 'scientific expertise' is Western, standardised and homogenous. From this viewpoint, the vast body of scientific expertise developed in diverse societies and cultures is discounted and ignored.

Long-lasting ancient concrete had a small carbon footprint

The chemical secrets of a concrete Roman breakwater that has spent the last 2,000 years submerged in the Mediterranean Sea have been uncovered by an international team of researchers led by Paulo Monteiro of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)'s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), a professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of California, Berkeley.

Are your grades written in your genes?

A study published on Thursday in Science reports that certain gene variants can affect how long someone stays in school.

In the first study from the Social Science Genetic Association Consortium, the investigators searched for correlations between more than two million of the genetic variants known to occur in humans and how much schooling an individual completed. They searched for the associations in more than 125,000 people from the United States, Australia and Western Europe, the vast majority of which were at least 30 years old and so were likely finished with their schooling.

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