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Latest Durham University Stories

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2011-02-25 07:45:00

Scientists said Thursday that a mud volcano in Indonesia is responsible for displacing more than 13,000 families, and shows no sign of stopping for the better part of the next quarter century, as it continues to emit flammable gas through a deepening lake of sludge. Underground pressure means the volcano -- located in Sidoarjo, East Java -- could continue to gush out gray mud until 2037, when volumes will become small and insignificant, according to a computer model. But gas will continue...

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2011-02-09 11:24:36

Countries need to increase co-operation over conservation to protect birds and other wildlife in an era of climate change, according to a new continental-scale study. Experts have established a new conservation index to help policy-makers to deal with the effects of climate change on birds in Africa, and it could assist governments across the world to protect wildlife areas and help species as climate change forces them to move to new areas. It is the first categorization of protected areas...

2010-12-14 13:39:51

Early years initiatives for pre-school children are not delivering improvements in language and numeracy development, according to leading education experts. Experts, conducting one of the largest surveys to date of the development of 117,000 children starting primary school in England over eight years, found that despite a raft of early years' initiatives, such as 'Sure Start', basic levels of development in early reading, vocabulary and maths have remained largely unchanged. Researchers...

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2010-11-25 08:24:11

Large predators are much more vulnerable than smaller species to environmental changes, such as over-hunting and habitat change, because they have to work so hard to find their next meal, according to a new study. Scientists matched studies of predator populations to the abundance of their prey and found that the largest species, such as lions, tigers or polar bears, had much greater declines in population due to diminishing food supplies than smaller species, such as weasels or badgers. The...

2010-10-14 13:25:04

Oil recovery using carbon dioxide could lead to a North Sea oil bonanza worth £150 billion ($ 240 billion) "“ but only if the current infrastructure is enhanced now, according to a new study published today by a world-leading energy expert. A new calculation by Durham University of the net worth of the UK oil field shows that using carbon dioxide (CO2) to enhance the recovery from our existing North Sea oil fields could yield an extra three billion barrels of oil over the next 20...

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2010-06-30 06:25:00

Many of the Milky Way's ancient stars are remnants of other smaller galaxies torn apart by violent galactic collisions around five billion years ago, according to researchers at Durham University, who publish their results in a new paper in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Scientists at Durham's Institute for Computational Cosmology and their collaborators at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics, in Germany, and Groningen University, in Holland, ran huge...

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2010-06-14 07:06:40

New research by astronomers in the Physics Department at Durham University suggests that the conventional wisdom about the content of the Universe may be wrong. Graduate student Utane Sawangwit and Professor Tom Shanks looked at observations from the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) satellite to study the remnant heat from the Big Bang. The two scientists find evidence that the errors in its data may be much larger than previously thought, which in turn makes the standard model of...

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2010-06-04 09:25:00

The Yangtze River in China is 40 million years older than was previously thought, according to new research. A study of minerals by a team led by Durham University reveals that the Yangtze River began to cut the Three Gorges area around 45 million years ago, making it much older than previously believed. The Yangtze River, the third-longest river in the world, has played a central role in the development of Chinese culture, and the Three Gorges, which separate the Sichuan Basin in the west...

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2010-05-24 09:40:00

A collaboration between the University of Leeds, Durham University and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is looking at "Ëœprinting' pills to order, to create safer and faster-acting medicines. It should also bring new drugs to market faster, so patients can benefit more quickly from medical advances. The research, led by Dr Nik Kapur from the University's Faculty of Engineering, is set to revolutionize a process which has remained unchanged for over a thousand years. GSK has developed a way of...

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2010-05-19 07:50:23

Thousands of people who are partially-sighted following stroke or brain injury could gain greater independence from a simple, cheap and accessible training course which could eventually be delivered from their mobile phones or hand-held games consoles, according to a new study. The new research has found that a computer-based technique developed and assessed by Durham University improved partially-sighted people's ability to 'see' better. It may eventually improve and broaden the portfolio of...


Word of the Day
negawatt
  • A unit of saved energy.
Coined by Amory Lovins, chairman of the Rocky Mountain Institute as a contraction of negative watt on the model of similar compounds like megawatt.