Nobel laureates call for release of Iranian physicist

Nobel laureates call for release of Iranian physicist

Eighteen Physics Nobel laureates have signed an open letter addressed to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, calling for the release of Omid Kokabee, a 32-year-old physicist who has spent the last 3 years and 8 months in a Teheran prison.  Read more

Indian Ocean signal was not crash of flight MH370

Indian Ocean signal was not crash of flight MH370

Hopes have faded that hydroacoustic signals picked up on the floor of the Indian Ocean might help to locate the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 airliner which disappeared in March. Data from an additional sensor suggest that the signal likely resulted from geological activity and not the sound of an aeroplane crashing into the ocean’s surface.  Read more

Chimps from controversial lab move to retirement home

Chimps from controversial lab move to retirement home

Tosha, Sassy, Paula, Julius and their 106 friends will now be munching peppers and bananas without worries of being used to test new drugs. The chimpanzees, formerly used for biomedical research by a US National Institutes of Health (NIH) facility New Iberia Research Center (NIRC) in Louisiana, have now arrived at Chimp Haven, a federally funded sanctuary in Keithville, Louisiana.  Read more

French science needs ‘smarter’ spending, OECD says

French scientists are increasingly alarmed about what they see as a dearth of funds in labs and universities and poor prospects for those hoping to start a career in research. Meanwhile a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) agrees that the country’s great scientific tradition is in peril, but puts the blame on slow reforms.  Read more

Higgs particle linked to matter, not just force, particles

Part of the Compact Muon Collider (CMS) detector being assembled.

COPENHAGEN — Physicists working at CERN, the European particle accelerator near Geneva, have snared a new first for the Higgs boson. They have watched it decay directly to the particles that make up matter (called fermions) rather than just the particles that convey force (bosons), as they had before.  Read more

Kavli Prizes reward cosmic inflation, memory research and imaging

Kavli Prizes reward cosmic inflation, memory research and imaging

The 2014 Kavli Prizes, announced today, were shared among nine scientists for their work on the theory of cosmic inflation, for contributions to the field of nano-optics and for the discovery of specialized brain networks for memory and cognition.  Read more

Unknown appointed as new India science minister

Jitendra Singh, 57, a physician – as well as an author and newspaper columnist — was a professor of diabetes and endocrinology at the Government Medical College and Hospital Jammu until 2012, when he became a politician. He ran for the first time as a BJP candidate in the recent Parliamentary elections in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, and won. On 26 May Prime Minister Narendra Modi inducted Singh into his government as a junior minister, unlike his predecessor, Jaipal Reddy, who held cabinet rank.  Read more