Faculty undergrads discover hidden textual content on medieval manuscript through UV imaging

Rochester Institute of Expertise college students found misplaced textual content on 15th-century manuscript leaves utilizing an imaging system they developed as freshmen.

A web page from a 15th-century medieval manuscript seems to comprise hidden textual content that’s solely seen underneath UV gentle. The invention is because of the efforts of a staff of undergraduate college students at Rochester Institute of Expertise, who constructed their very own multispectral imaging system as a part of a category challenge and managed to finish it regardless of the continued pandemic.

It isn’t unprecedented to uncover beforehand hidden texts on historical manuscripts. In 2016, a world staff of scientists developed a way for “just about unrolling” a badly broken historical scroll discovered on the western shore of the Lifeless Sea, revealing the primary few verses from the E-book of Leviticus. Equally, in 2019, we reported that German scientists used a mixture of cutting-edge physics strategies to just about “unfold” an historical Egyptian papyrus, a part of an intensive assortment housed within the Berlin Egyptian Museum. Their evaluation revealed {that a} seemingly clean patch on the papyrus truly contained characters written in what had turn into “invisible ink” after centuries of publicity to gentle.

And earlier this yr, we reported on a brand new evaluation utilizing multispectral imaging displaying that 4 Lifeless Sea Scroll fragments housed on the College of Manchester within the UK—beforehand presumed to be clean—had readable textual content written in carbon-based ink, together with elements of characters and dominated traces. One fragment specifically confirmed the remnants of 4 traces of textual content, consisting of about 15 letters. Just one phrase, Shabbat (Sabbath), was readable, however primarily based on the evaluation, Joan Taylor of King’s Faculty London thought the textual content associated to the passages in Ezekiel 46:1-3.

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Problem accepted: Inventing a believable far-flung future for ST: Discovery S3

Sonequa Martin-Green plays Michael Burnham in the third season of <em>Star Trek: Discovery</em>, which is set over 900 years in the future from the first two seasons.

Enlarge / Sonequa Martin-Inexperienced performs Michael Burnham within the third season of Star Trek: Discovery, which is about over 900 years sooner or later from the primary two seasons. (credit score: CBS All Entry)

Star Trek: Discovery began out as a prequel to the unique sequence, set roughly 10 years earlier than Captain Kirk and his crew took over the USS Enterprise and boldly went the place no man had gone earlier than. However we’re now in uncharted territory with ST: Disco S3, which rocketed the ship and her crew over 900 years into the long run. That posed a substantial inventive problem to remain true to the ethos of the franchise whereas reimagining its future—a problem going through not simply the writers, however sequence prop grasp Mario Moreira and science marketing consultant Erin MacDonald as nicely.

(Some spoilers for S2 and the primary 5 episodes of S3 under.)

The sequence stars Sonequa Martin-Inexperienced as Michael Burnham, an orphaned human raised on the planet Vulcan by none aside from Sarek (James Frain) and his human spouse, Amanda Grayson (Mia Kirshner)—aka, Spock’s (Ethan Peck) dad and mom. So she is Spock’s adoptive sister. As I’ve written beforehand, the S2 season-long arc concerned the mysterious appearances of a “Purple Angel” and a rogue Starfleet AI referred to as Management that sought to wipe out all sentient life within the universe.

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Three scientists win Nobel Physics Prize for groundbreaking black gap work

Image of the night sky above Paranal, Chile, on July 21, 2007, showing the galactic center of the Milky Way. The laser creates a guide-star for the telescope.

Enlarge / Picture of the evening sky above Paranal, Chile, on July 21, 2007, exhibiting the galactic middle of the Milky Manner. The laser creates a guide-star for the telescope. (credit score: European Southern Observatory/Y. Beletsky)

The 2020 Nobel Prize in physics has been awarded to Roger Penrose “for the invention that black gap formation is a strong prediction of the final concept of relativity.” He shares it with Reinhard Genzel and Andrea Ghez “for the invention of a supermassive compact object on the centre of our galaxy.”

Penrose, the Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Arithmetic on the College of Oxford, will obtain half of the 10 million Swedish kronor (greater than US$1.1 million) prize cash. He helped solidify the theoretical basis for black gap physics within the 1960s by offering the seminal mathematical proof that black holes have been a direct consequence of basic relativity.

Genzel is performing director of the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics in Germany and a professor on the College of California, Berkeley, whereas Ghez is a professor on the College of California, Los Angeles. They’ll every obtain one-quarter of the prize cash. Genzel and Ghez every lead astronomy teams which have mapped the orbits of stars closest to the middle of our Milky Manner—a area referred to as Sagittarius A*—giving us one of the best proof to this point that there’s a supermassive black gap at our galaxy’s middle. That work was aided immeasurably by the event of superior adaptive optics instruments to counter the distorting results of the Earth’s ambiance.

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This tiny copy of Woman With a Pearl Earring is “painted” with gentle

An illustration of how millions of nanopillars were used to control both the color and intensity of incident light, projecting a faithful reproduction of Johannes Vermeer's <em>Girl With a Pearl Earring</em>.

Enlarge / An illustration of how tens of millions of nanopillars had been used to manage each the colour and depth of incident gentle, projecting a trustworthy copy of Johannes Vermeer’s Woman With a Pearl Earring. (credit score: T. Xu/Nanjing College)

Scientists have fabricated tiny “nanopillars” able to transmitting particular colours of sunshine, at particular intensities, which maintain promise for improved optical communication and anti-counterfeit measures for forex. For proof of idea, they determined to digitally reproduce Dutch grasp Johannes Vermeer’s well-known portray Woman With a Pearl Earring—simply painted in gentle as an alternative of pigment. They mentioned their work in a current paper printed within the journal Optica.

“The standard of the copy, capturing the refined shade gradations and shadow particulars, is just outstanding,” stated co-author Amit Agrawal, a researcher with the Nationwide Institute of Science and Know-how (NIST). “This work fairly elegantly bridges the fields of artwork and nanotechnology.”

Nature abounds with examples of structural shade. The brilliant colours in butterfly wings do not come from any pigment molecules however from how the wings are structured, for example. The scales of chitin (a polysaccharide frequent to bugs) are organized like roof tiles. Primarily, they kind a diffraction grating, besides photonic crystals solely produce sure colours, or wavelengths, of sunshine whereas a diffraction grating will produce all the spectrum, very like a prism 

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Peer inside a mummified cat from historical Egypt, courtesy of high-res 3D X-rays

Scientists have digitally unwrapped three mummified animals from ancient Egypt using Micro CT scanning. Above: Digital unwrapping of a mummified cat's head, likely a strangled kitten.

Enlarge / Scientists have digitally unwrapped three mummified animals from historical Egypt utilizing Micro CT scanning. Above: Digital unwrapping of a mummified cat’s head, seemingly a strangled kitten. (credit score: Swansea College)

The traditional Egyptians mummified animals in addition to people, mostly as votive choices to the gods obtainable for buy by guests to temples. A lot of these mummified stays have survived however are in such a fragile state that researchers are loath to disturb the stays to study extra about them. Now an inter-disciplinary staff of scientists has managed to digitally “unwrap” three specimens—a mummified cat, chook, and snake—utilizing a high-resolution 3D X-ray imaging method, basically enabling them to conduct a digital postmortem, in accordance with a brand new paper printed within the journal Scientific Reviews.

Learning fragile historical artifacts with cutting-edge imaging expertise confers a strong benefit on archaeological evaluation. As an example, in 2016, a global staff of scientists developed a way for “just about unrolling” a badly broken historical scroll discovered on the western shore of the Useless Sea, revealing the primary few verses from the e book of Leviticus. The so-called En Gedi scroll was recovered from the ark of an historical synagogue destroyed by hearth round 600 CE.

In 2019, we reported that German scientists used a mix of cutting-edge physics methods to just about “unfold” an historical Egyptian papyrus, a part of an in depth assortment housed within the Berlin Egyptian Museum. Their evaluation revealed {that a} seemingly clean patch on the papyrus really contained characters written in what had change into “invisible ink” after centuries of publicity to gentle. And earlier this 12 months, we reported that scientists had used multispectral imaging on 4 supposedly clean Useless Sea Scrolls and located the scrolls contained hidden textual content, more than likely a passage from the e book of Ezekiel.  

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How “St. Elmo’s fireplace” might assist defend plane from lightning strikes

A passenger jet is gloriously silhouetted by a lightning storm.

Enlarge / MIT scientists suppose the corona discharge generally known as “St. Elmo’s fireplace” might assist cut back the danger of plane being struck by lightning throughout thunderstorms. (credit score: Anton Petrus/Getty Pictures)

{The electrical} phenomenon generally known as St. Elmo’s fireplace manifests throughout sturdy thunderstorms as a flash of blue mild, often on the ideas of electrically conductive constructions like cellular phone towers, phone poles, and ship masts—which is the way it obtained its identify, in honor of the patron saint of sailors, St. Erasmus of Formia. On the bottom, St. Elmo’s fireplace glows extra brightly in windy situations as a result of the wind helps additional electrify the encircling air.

However MIT scientists have found that wind has the alternative impact on ungrounded constructions similar to airplane wings and turbine blades, in keeping with a current paper within the Journal of Geophysical Analysis: Atmospheres. They found this whereas investigating the opportunity of utilizing St. Elmo’s fireplace to regulate {the electrical} cost of an plane, thereby serving to defend it from lightning strikes.

St. Elmo’s fireplace isn’t a kind or lightning; it is primarily a steady electrical spark generally known as a corona discharge, just like the glow of a neon signal. The friction that builds up in storm clouds offers rise to an electrical area extending to the bottom. If it is sturdy sufficient, the friction breaks aside surrounding air molecules, ionizing the air to supply a plasma (charged fuel). All the surplus electrons knock the plasma molecules into an excited state, which then emit photons to supply that telltale glow. The colour of the glow will depend on the kind of fuel being ionized. Since Earth’s environment is primarily made up of nitrogen and oxygen, the glow takes on a blue or violet hue.

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Lest we overlook: Mark 75 years of the atomic bomb with the Ars watch checklist

Ars marks the 75th anniversary of the nuclear bomb with a look at how the complicated legacy of this world-altering event has been reflected in film and television.

Enlarge / Ars marks the 75th anniversary of the nuclear bomb with a have a look at how the difficult legacy of this world-altering occasion has been mirrored in movie and tv. (credit score: Movie collage by Aurich Lawson)

This 12 months marks the 75th anniversary of the primary atomic bomb. Simply earlier than dawn on July 16, 1945, in a secluded spot in a central New Mexican desert, a prototype bomb nicknamed “Gadget” was hoisted to the highest of a 100-foot tower and detonated. The blast vaporized the metal tower and produced a mushroom cloud rising to greater than 38,000 ft. The warmth from the explosion melted the sandy soil across the tower right into a mildly radioactive glassy crust now often known as “trinitite.” And the shock wave broke home windows so far as 120 miles away.

After the Trinity check, Richard Feynman recalled discovering his colleague, Robert Wilson, sitting despondently amid the celebration. “It is a horrible factor that we made,” Feynman remembered him saying. Hans Bethe famously noticed, “The physicists have identified sin. And this can be a information which they can’t lose.” It is typically mentioned that physicists grew to become so intent on the mental problem of constructing an atomic bomb that they overlooked the profound implications of what they had been creating.

These implications grew to become all too clear on August 6, 1945, when a gun-triggered fission bomb dubbed “Little Boy” fell on Hiroshima, killing an estimated 70,000 to 130,000 individuals. Three days later, the implosion-triggered “Fats Man” was dropped on Nagasaki, including one other 45,000 human casualties. The US gained the warfare however at a horrific price. The world has been haunted by the prospect of a devastating nuclear apocalypse ever since—and so has TV and the flicks. So to mark this somber event, we have compiled a watch checklist of movies and exhibits that we really feel finest mirror the difficult legacy of the atomic bomb.

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Evaluate: Rosamund Pike is riveting as Marie Curie in uneven biopic Radioactive

Rosamund Pike stars as Marie Curie within the movie Radioactive, now streaming on Amazon Prime.

A resolute younger lady in Paris within the 1890s units the scientific world ablaze together with her revolutionary discoveries in Radioactive, a movie in regards to the lifetime of Marie Curie, primarily based on the 2010 graphic novel Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie, A Story of Love and Fallout, by Lauren Redniss. Director Marjane Satrapi’s movie is half earnest biopic, half arthouse movie, elevated by a luminous, intense, and riveting efficiency by Rosamund Pike (Gone Woman) as Marie Curie.

(Some spoilers under for these unfamiliar with the lifetime of Marie Curie.)

Satrapi is probably finest identified for her highly effective autobiographical memoir, Persepolis, depicting her childhood in Iran throughout the Islamic Revolution in graphic novel kind, which she later tailored into an animated movie. So it isn’t stunning that she would admire Redniss’ graphic novel about Marie Curie. Nonetheless, Satrapi admitted in an interview that she was initially reluctant to tackle the undertaking. “I used to be like, why the hell would you make one other script about Marie Curie? There are already 4 of them,” she advised WWD. Ultimately, she grew to become “obsessed” with making the movie, which she views as being as a lot in regards to the aftermath of Marie Curie’s discoveries as her life and science.

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Scientists unlocked the key of how these ultrablack fish soak up mild

One specimen of the ultrablack fish species <em>Anoplogaster cornuta</em>. A unique arrangement of pigment-packed granules enables some fish to absorb nearly all of the light that hits their skin, so that as little as 0.05 percent of that light is reflected back.

Enlarge / One specimen of the ultrablack fish species Anoplogaster cornuta. A singular association of pigment-packed granules allows some fish to soak up practically the entire mild that hits their pores and skin, in order that as little as 0.05 p.c of that mild is mirrored again. (credit score: Karen Osborn/Smithsonian)

Within the darkest depths of the ocean, the place little to no mild from the floor penetrates, uncommon creatures thrives, a lot of whom create their very own mild through bioluminescence to hunt for prey, amongst different makes use of. However a number of species of fish have developed the alternative survival technique: they’re ultrablack, absorbing practically all mild that strikes their pores and skin, based on a brand new paper in Present Biology.

Karen Osborn of the Smithsonian’s Museum of Pure Historical past grew to become intrigued by the creatures upon discovering she was unable to seize these ultrablack fish on digital camera whereas working within the subject. She was attempting to {photograph} specimens caught within the group’s deep-sea trawl nets. “Two specimens, the Anoplogaster cornuta and the Idiacanthus antrostomus, had been the one two fish over the course of six years of subject work that I used to be in a position to get first rate pictures of,” Osborn informed Ars.

To take action, she used a Canon Mark II DSLR physique and a 65mm macro lens with 4 strobes, then examined varied lighting setups by taking heaps and plenty of pictures. Lastly, she adjusted distinction and utilized a high-pass filter uniformly throughout the photographs, the higher to deliver out the small print. It nonetheless wasn’t enough to seize many of the specimens caught within the trawl web. “Over time I deleted hundreds of failed pictures of different fish as ineffective as a result of I could not deliver out the small print within the images,” she added. “It did not matter the way you arrange the digital camera or lighting—they simply sucked up all the sunshine. I want I had a couple of of them now as an example this.”

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