12/8/2005:

Intermediate Word:  poltroon (a) buffoon  (b) game-beater on a hunt  (c) coward  (d) flunky
Difficult Word: - ghillie - (a)
tasty ocean fish  (b) low sports shoe with fringed laces  (c) Scottish military cap  (d) similar to haggis but with muscle meat

MIT Sleuths Discover Quick Way To New Materials - SpaceDaily  Left: Graduate student Catherine Tweedie, left, and materials science and engineering Assistant Professor Krystyn Van Vliet, right, use a nanoindenter to measure the mechanical properties of biomaterials. Photo credit: Donna Coveney. In work that could radically change how engineers search for new materials, MIT researchers have developed a way to test the mechanical properties of almost 600 different materials in a matter of days - a task that would have taken weeks using conventional techniques. The new process could lead to the faster identification of dental implants that don't crack, tank armor that's more resistant to missiles, and other materials dependent on mechanical properties like stiffness and toughness.     
Simply the best? A look at what the UK could learn from the Swedish health system  - BBC  Whenever health systems are ranked, Sweden always seems to come top or at the very least a close runner-up. With its dazzling array of new hospitals and plentiful supply of doctors, nurses and state-of-the-art medical technology, the Scandinavian country can confidently boast it provides first-class care to its nine million inhabitants  Cancer survival rates, infant mortality and life expectancy figures all outstrip many of its European neighbours. The simple answer is that Sweden has a long history of spending lots of money on health.  

Close Coupling Of Climate With Green House Gases In The Past - Science Daily  Never before during the past 650,000 years, have concentrations of green house gases been as high as today. The warm climate periods between 650,000 and 420,000 years ago were characterised by even lower carbon dioxide and methane concentrations than subsequent warm periods. This is one of the conclusions drawn by a European team of researchers with contribution from scientists of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, after analysis of an ice core from Antarctica. The results extend previous data on historic concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide in the atmosphere by 250,000 years. Over the past 650,000 years, low green house gas concentrations have been associated also with cooler conditions.“The link between temperature and carbon dioxide, as well as methane concentrations in the past is surprisingly constant over time. Only through the impact of humans during the last centuries, atmospheric green house gases have been raised above their natural levels”, explains Dr Hubertus Fischer of the Alfred Wegener Institute. Prof Dr Thomas Stocker of the Physics Institute at the University of Bern in Switzerland adds: “The analysis highlights the fact that the current concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide, 0.38 volume parts per thousand, already exceeds the highest level recorded over the past 650,000 years by 27 percent.”        




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