SCIENCE & STuff | research, bad ants and a honey hunter [Virginian - Pilot]
(Virginian - Pilot Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) WELL, LET'S SEE what came into the mailbox this week.
Virginia Tech will receive $6 million from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research to build a supercomputer to improve unmanned micro air vehicles.
According to the press release from Tech, associate professor of computer science Wu Feng hopes to "transform supercomputing" with the award. Feng has already built two energy-efficient supercomputers: HokieSpeed at Tech and Green Destiny while he was working at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Feng's team includes seven people from Tech and North Carolina State University.
More news from N.C. State: The Argentine ant, which the press release calls "one of the most aggressive invasive ant species in the United States," is being run out of town by the Asian needle ant. Hold your applause. NCSU says the Asian ant, while pushing out the Argentine ant in urban environments, is also displacing native ant species in forests. The Asian ant has a venomous sting and is able to tolerate cooler temperatures than the Argentine ants. "The rise of the Asian needle ant is bad news," the release says.
Lastly, under the heading of "I truly had no idea" comes this item, reported by Gizmag (http://tinyurl.com/atvyahp).
Counterfeit honey is being identified and tracked back to its source by a laser developed to study methane on Mars. According to the report, China is a source of honey contaminated with lead and antibiotics, as well as honey diluted with other sweeteners. A British lab developed the laser, which measures isotope ratios of carbon dioxide. The European Space Agency is funding the laser's use on food as part of a technology transfer demo.
Check out Diane's "Well, That's Interesting"blog at hamptonroads.com/blogs/wellthatsinteresting
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