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August 16th 2018


Noise in the biorhythm

Biological clocks respond differently to light fluctuations

Anybody who has experienced jet lag knows the power of the biological clock. Almost all organisms, from humans to the smallest of bacteria, have a built-in system that tells them whether it is time to rest or to be active. Most biological clocks 'tick' autonomously, but some bacteria depend on light to synchronize their clock every day. Using mathematical calculations, researchers from AMOLF and the University of Michigan have now demonstrated that an autonomous clock suffers far less from noise, such as fluctuations in sunlight due to clouds. The research results were published online on 14 August 2018 in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.


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The Young eScientist Award 2018

Are you a young and ambitious researcher? Are you a true collaborator, applying or developing research software to solve challenging research questions in your discipline? And do you share your solutions with your colleagues? Then you might be the Young eScientist 2018!

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NWO works on gender equality

NWO pursues a diversity policy with emphasis on gender equality. A concrete example was the signing of Gender Equality Plans by four NWO institutes during Physics@Veldhoven on 22 January 2018. The plans describe clear actions and milestones and first results are visible.

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XMM-Newton finds missing intergalactic material

Astronomers, including scientist from SRON and Leiden Observatory have found intergalactic gas. This gas forms one of the missing pieces of the puzzle to map the total amount of 'normal' matter in the Universe.


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ASTRON makes the first step towards Science Data Centre

ASTRON, the Netherlands institute for radio astronomy, has made an important step towards the location of its Science Data Centre. Data scientists in this centre will focus, amongst other things, on data science for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), the largest radio telescope in the world that is being built in Western Australia and South Africa and in which ASTRON is playing a leading role.

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Martijn van Calmthout new head of communication at Nikhef

Science journalist and writer Martijn van Calmthout will become head of communication at the Dutch National Institute for Subatomic Physics Nikhef with effect from 1 September 2018. With his arrival at Nikhef he will strengthen the existing communication team. Van Calmthout wants to focus on making Nikhef's pre-eminent research into the foundations of the universe more broadly known.

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Physicists catch light in the eye of the storm

Stillness rules the eye of a hurricane; without a hurricane no eye, and without an eye no hurricane. In a similar manner, physicists of research institute AMOLF, the University of Amsterdam and the University of Texas at Austin, have captured light in the eye of an optical vortex. "The light could move in any direction but does not do so," says researcher Hugo Doeleman. The research will be published on 4 June in the top journal Nature Photonics.

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From sea urchin skeleton to solar cell

Researchers at AMOLF have found a way of making calcium carbonate structures, such as a sea urchin skeleton, suitable for use in electronics. They do this by modifying the composition of the material so that it becomes a semiconductor without losing its shape. This could lead to more efficient and stable solar cells. This research was published in the journal Nature Chemistry on 4 June 2018.

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Relocation of SRON-Utrecht to South Holland now official

By adding their signature to the collaboration agreement on 31 May, Leiden University, TU Delft, SRON and NWO have confirmed the relocation of SRON-Utrecht to South Holland. From 2021, the headquarters of the space research institute will be located on the science campus of Leiden University.

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