Psychologically and physically, traffic is terrible for our health

Between the noise and frustration, we're suffering more than ever.

Photo credit: Aarón Blanco Tejedor on Unsplash
  • Traffic has been implicated in measurable exhaustion, an increase in blood pressure, negative attitudinal shifts, and a constant release of stress hormones.
  • In 2009, 3.9 billion gallons of fuel and 4.8 billion hours of time were wasted by Americans sitting in traffic.
  • Traffic is costing the US economy $100 billion every year.
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Want to know what mice in labs are saying? Try DeepSqueak.

A breakthrough app for ultrasonic squeak analysis.

(Kuttlevaserova Stuchelova/Shutterstock)
  • Mice have a vocabulary of about 20 different phrases.
  • A clever new neural-network-based application reveals what mice used in research say.
  • Spoiler: The conversation changes when a female shows up
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Sound could replace lasers in surgery

Moving from HOT to HAT, a dazzling new acoustic technology.

(Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)
  • Scientists announce the ability to simultaneously manipulate individual levitated objects.
  • Using high-frequency sound waves may provide a safer alternative to laser microsurgery.
  • Video of the research looks like a cartoon, but it's all real.
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NASA releases first sounds ever captured on Mars

On Friday, NASA's InSight Mars lander captured and transmitted historic audio from the red planet.

NASA
  • The audio captured by the lander is of Martian winds blowing at an estimated 10 to 15 mph.
  • It was taken by the InSight Mars lander, which is designed to help scientists learn more about the formation of rocky planets, and possibly discover liquid water on Mars.
  • Microphones are essentially an "extra sense" that scientists can use during experiments on other planets.
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We can assess the health of coral reefs by the sounds algae make

Tiny bubbles talk photosynthesis.

(Freeman, et al)
  • During photosynthesis, algae produces a symphony of little "pings."
  • The sounds are produced by oxygen bubbles breaking away from the plants.
  • Monitoring reef health through its sound is a new avenue for acoustic ecology.
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