6/5/2004:

Intermediate Word: 
eructate
  (a) standing erect  (b) to commit a faux pas  (c) to belch   (d) crested 
Difficult Word: - oenology  study of  (a) seals and signet rings  (b) molluscs  (c) ethnic migration patterns  (d) wines

Dinosaurs Fried Within Hours of Cosmic Collision, Study Concludes - Space.com  Most dinosaurs were incinerated in a matter of hours after an asteroid impact 65 million years ago kicked up a global rain of broiling debris, according to a new study. Anything not underground or protected by water was wiped out. The research builds on previous studies that concluded the die-off was rapid. The survivors burrowed underground or were protected from the firestorm by swamps or oceans.
Nanoscale Optimizes Adhesion - SpaceDaily  Left:  The optimal shape of adhesion for two objects in contact over a prescribed surface area is defined as such that the stress distribution is uniform and equal to the theoretical adhesion strength of molecular (e.g., van der Waals) interaction at pull-off. Robust optimal adhesion is achieved when the contact size is reduced to around 100 nanometers. At this critical size scale, the adhesion strength becomes insensitive to small deviations from the optimal shape. Image: Max Planck Institute for Metals Research   The nanometer size of hairs (spatulae) on the feet of geckos and many insects may have evolved to optimize adhesion strength, according to new research conducted at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart. The scientists discovered that there exists an optimal shape of the contact surface of the tip of such hairs which gives rise to optimal adhesion to a substrate via molecular interaction forces.

Developing Tools For Reliable Gene Chip Measurements - SpaceDaily  Generating consistent, verifiable results is difficult because of a lack of standards. As a first step toward addressing reliability issues, a consortium co-led by NIST and industry is developing standards that will satisfy needs identified at a 2003 workshop. At the workshop, organized and hosted by NIST, leaders in the microarray field from industry, government and universities recommended the development of a well-characterized set of ribonucleic acid (RNA) molecules whose identity and concentration are known. RNA is an important product of gene activity. Users will be able to validate the results of gene chip analyses by adding such a reference material to their samples and comparing the measured values to what would be expected for them. Such a reference material also will enable technology developers and researchers to assess the performance of their assays.  





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