Raised eyebrows? Wrinkled nose? Curled up corners of the lips? Most people looking at such expressions would immediately recognize surprise, disgust or happiness. Scientists have known for some time that people tune in to specific facial movements as they read another person’s emotions. Now researchers at Ohio State University in Columbus have identified which part of the brain accomplishes this...
07:00 AM, May 24, 2016
Brain & Behavior
Readability Score: 8.1
PHOENIX, Ariz. — A new tongue-controlled computer mouse would allow someone with no working arms or legs to use a computer. With such a device, people with even severe physical handicaps might navigate cyberspace. The new mouse system was unveiled last week by its designer, a Canadian teen.More than 250,000 Americans alone have spinal cord injuries, according to experts at the University of...
12:00 PM, May 23, 2016
Technology & Engineering, Body & Health
Readability Score: 7.9
Absolute zero (noun, “AB-so-loot ZEE-ro”)This is the coldest possible temperature. It is zero on the kelvin scale, which is also -273.15° Celsius (-459.67° Fahrenheit). The temperature of a sample depends on how quickly the atoms or molecules in it are moving relative to each other. What we call ice is water molecules moving very slowly, in a matrix. Water molecules moving very quickly become...
07:00 AM, May 23, 2016
Readability Score: 8.5
While Cristina Costantini didn't become a scientist, she's used the skills she gained through science fairs to become an award-winning investigative journalist. She was an Intel ISEF 2004 and 2005 finalist.Competing in science fairs doesn’t mean you’ll end up as a scientist, Cristina said. "But those skills will be with you for a long time. They help in ways we don’t even understand in middle and...
07:00 AM, May 23, 2016
Polar bears are excellent long-distance swimmers. Some can travel for days at a time, with only very short rest stops on ice flows. But even polar bears have their limits. Now a study finds they are swimming longer distances in years with the least amount of Arctic sea ice. And that worries Arctic researchers.Swimming a long time in cold water takes a lot of energy. Polar bears can tire and lose...
07:00 AM, May 23, 2016
Readability Score: 6.4
ATLANTA, Ga. — Midnight Terror Cave has a name that really fits. Grim discoveries there are shedding light on a long tradition of child sacrifices. They happened long, long ago.Researchers have often emphasized that human sacrifices in ancient Central American and Mexican civilizations targeted adults. Clearly, however, not all were adults. In fact, these rituals occurred so long ago that no one...
07:00 AM, May 22, 2016
Readability Score: 7.3
When David Mackay, Chief Astronaut Test Pilot with Virgin Galactic, asked how many people in the audience would want to go to space if it was affordable, commercialized, and safe, everyone raised their hands.At the So, You Want to Be an Astronaut? symposia at Intel ISEF, this writer and everyone in attendance was ready to sign up. Mackay attended the French test pilot school EPNER and became a...
07:00 AM, May 20, 2016
PHOENIX, Ariz. —Superstorm Sandy slammed into the Eastern United States 3.5 years ago. It pummeled New York City with hurricane-force winds. In some places, the gales drove rising tides much farther onshore than normal. That wind-driven water, or storm surge, caused a lot of flooding, especially in the region’s subway system. Now, two teens have invented a device that could help prevent future...
12:00 PM, May 20, 2016
Technology & Engineering
Readability Score: 7.1
Male peacocks know how to twerk it to attract peahens.During mating season, the flamboyant males really put on a show. Each will raise his iridescent train, shake his wings and vibrate his fan. Such displays can go on for hours.A group of researchers wanted to break down the basic biomechanics of this shimmy show. It is known as “rattling.” The team included Roslyn Dakin. She is at biologist at...
09:30 AM, May 20, 2016
Readability Score: 7.2
PHOENIX, Ariz. — People are constantly releasing new pollutants into the watery environment. Some may be bits of plastic we can see. Others may be chemicals that wash down the drain or get flushed down the toilet. We may not see those chemicals, but three teens have shown that some polluting wastes can harm freshwater organisms, such as water fleas. But even these can play important roles in...
12:00 PM, May 19, 2016
Environment & Pollution, Pollution, Ecosystems, Young Scientists
Readability Score: 6.8