The highest levels of silver contamination ever observed in the open ocean turned up in samples collected during a survey of the North Pacific in 2002. Researchers from the University of California, Santa Cruz, measured silver concentrations 50 times greater than the natural background level. Though still well below levels that would be toxic to marine life, this contamination of what had been considered relatively pristine waters highlights the increasingly global impact of industrial emissions from Asia, the researchers said.
"The most likely source of the silver contamination is atmospheric emissions from coal burning in Asia," said Russell Flegal, professor of environmental toxicology at UCSC. "Silver concentrations in the North Pacific trace the atmospheric depositions of industrial aerosols from Asia, with the highest concentrations in those waters closest to the Asian mainland."
Mara Ranville, a researcher in Flegals lab who earned her Ph.D. in December, collected the samples on a 35-day cruise in the summer of 2002 as part of the Global Investigation of Pollution in the Marine Environment (GIPME), a program of the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission. Ranville and Flegal reported their findings in the March 9 issue of Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, an electronic journal published by the American Geophysical Union and the Geochemical Society.
Tim Stephens | EurekAlert!
How do megacities impact coastal seas? Searching for evidence in Chinese marginal seas
11.12.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung Warnemünde
What makes corals sick?
11.12.2017 | Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenforschung (ZMT)
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong
Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...
An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications
Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...
Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.
The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
11.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
11.12.2017 | Earth Sciences
11.12.2017 | Information Technology