Researchers at Harper Adams University College, Shropshire, believe a ‘memory’ in the climate system could be tapped to improve long-range weather forecasts.
In the April edition of ‘Weather,’ the journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, an article co-written by Dr Peter Kettlewell will show how summer rainfall levels in the UK are affected by ‘remembered’ changes in winter air pressure over the North Atlantic ocean. The article is based upon the work of a team headed by Dr Kettlewell, a senior researcher at Harper Adams, and co-author Dr David Stephenson, Head of the Climate Analysis Group at the University of Reading. Sponsored by the Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA), this work has previously shown that the quality of UK wheat grain is directly affected by the climate changes over the North Atlantic Ocean. Large-scale alterations in air pressure between the northern and southern regions of the North Atlantic, known as the North Atlantic Oscillation or NAO, take place during the winter and affect the quality of wheat grain that is harvested during the following summer.
Continuing work on the phenomenon has now shown that the winter NAO affects wheat quality by influencing summer rainfall levels. High NAO levels in winter tend to be followed by a dry summer in England and Wales, while wet summers tend to be preceded by low NAO winters. This relationship holds true for much of northwestern Europe and southern Scandinavia and has allowed Dr Kettlewell to build up a two category forecasting system, of above or below average summer rainfall.
Peter Kettlewell | alfa
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21.09.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)
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21.09.2017 | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
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