As of October 1 this year the EU requires that emissions of nitrogen oxides be reduced by 30 percent in trucks and 50 percent in diesel-powered cars. In 2008 these regulations will be become more stringent in Europe, and even more so in the US. The technical solution chosen by nearly all automakers to meet the requirements was originally developed by the Lund University in Sweden. Now these researchers are working on methods to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions even more.
Emissions of nitrogen oxides from heavy trucks account for 40 percent of nitrogen oxide emissions in traffic. This is seen as a major environmental problem. Thanks to the so-called three-way catalytic converter, exhaust from gasoline-powered passenger cars is relatively clean. On the other hand, it has been more problematic to clean up the exhaust from diesel-powered vehicles.
To come to grips with the problem, scientists at Lund University have developed the so-called Urea Method. This entails injecting a urine substance, NH2(CO)NH2, into the exhaust fumes in a catalytic converter in the exhaust pipe. This is the method that is now to be used.
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A University of Oklahoma astrophysicist and his Chinese collaborator have found two supermassive black holes in Markarian 231, the nearest quasar to Earth, using observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.
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A team of European researchers have developed a model to simulate the impact of tsunamis generated by earthquakes and applied it to the Eastern Mediterranean. The results show how tsunami waves could hit and inundate coastal areas in southern Italy and Greece. The study is published today (27 August) in Ocean Science, an open access journal of the European Geosciences Union (EGU).
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Bacteria do not cease to amaze us with their survival strategies. A research team from the University of Basel's Biozentrum has now discovered how bacteria enter a sleep mode using a so-called FIC toxin. In the current issue of “Cell Reports”, the scientists describe the mechanism of action and also explain why their discovery provides new insights into the evolution of pathogens.
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It comes when called, bringing care utensils with it and recording how they are used: Fraunhofer IPA is developing an intelligent care cart that provides care staff with physical and informational support in their day-to-day work. The scientists at Fraunhofer IPA have now completed a first prototype. In doing so, they are continuing in their efforts to improve working conditions in the care sector and are developing solutions designed to address the challenges of demographic change.
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