Academic World News

Do women age differently from men?

The effect of medicines on women and men can differ significantly. This also applies to the currently most promising anti-ageing drug rapamycin, as researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing in Cologne and University College London have now shown. They report that the drug only prolongs the lifespan of female fruit flies, but not that of males. In addition, rapamycin only slowed the development of age-related pathological changes in the gut in female flies. The researchers conclude that the biological sex is a crucial factor in the effectiveness of anti-ageing drugs.

Iron for energy storage

Energy from sun or wind is weather-dependent and lacks an efficient way to store and transport it. Scientists from the Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung and TU Eindhoven are investigating iron as a possible energy carrier. The idea is to store excess energy in iron and release it through combustion of iron into iron oxide. The team is working to understand the underlying processes and upscale the technique to industrial relevance.

Catching the dynamic Coronal Web

Using observational data from the U.S. weather satellites GOES, a team of researchers led by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Germany has taken an important step toward unlocking one of the Sun’s most persevering secrets: How does our star launch the particles constituting the solar wind into space? The data provide a unique view of a key region in the solar corona to which researchers have had little access so far.

An app for COVID-19 studies

CoroNotes can be a great help for Covid-19 research since the app can be used to collect urgently needed data on Sars-CoV-2 infections quickly and efficiently. Scientists at the Tübingen AI Center, a joint facility of the University of Tübingen and the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, have developed CoroNotes in cooperation with physicians at the University Hospital Tübingen.

Critical “Starbleed” vulnerability in FPGA chips

FPGA chips which are used, for example, in cloud data centers and mobile phone base stations have a vulnerable feature. Field Programmable Gate Arrays, FPGAs for short, are flexibly programmable computer chips that are considered very secure components in many applications.

A signal like none before

The expectations of the gravitational-wave research community have been fulfilled: gravitational-wave discoveries are now part of their daily work as they have identified in the past observing run, O3, new gravitational-wave candidates about once a week.

Optical fibre with Einstein effect

Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light in Erlangen have discovered a new mechanism for guiding light in photonic crystal fibre (PCF). PCF is a hair-thin glass fibre with a regular array of hollow channels running along its length. When helically twisted, this spiralling array of hollow channels acts on light rays in an analogous manner to the bending of light rays when they travel through the gravitationally curved space around a star, as described by the general theory of relativity.