August 17, 2012 |
Researchers at Harvard University have created a robot that can change color in seconds, allowing it to blend seamlessly into a background like a chameleon, or stand out so that it is easy to see. It can even glow in the dark, and change its temperature. These are just the latest additions to a family of rubbery, bendable robots first described in a 2011 paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by the Whiteside Group, a Harvard-based research group.
August 12, 2010 |
Thousands of people have tried, in their own quixotic ways, to help BP protect wildlife and clean up crude in the Gulf of Mexico after the worst oil disaster in the country's history. There were those who shaved their dogs and sent the hair south for the company to use to soak up the oil. And there were inventors who flew to Louisiana hoping that their cleanup gadgets would catch BP's eye. A Taiwanese billionaire retrofitted a giant tanker to skim oil from the ocean. And then there's Jack Rudloe, who's determined to protect vulnerable and important sea life — and his business — all on his own. Rudloe, 67, wants to save the gulf's mollusks, shrimp, crabs, seahorses and other invertebrates from what he sees as potential extinction.
July 9, 2005 |
Scientists have discovered a jellyfish-like creature a mile below the ocean's surface that is the first marine invertebrate to use red fluorescent light to lure prey. The researchers, led by Steven Haddock of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, used robotic submarines to capture specimens from depths of 5,200 to 7,500 feet, roughly 50 miles off the Central California coast. The specimens were found to be a previously unknown species of the genus Erenna.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 8, 2012 |
The Los Angeles Zoo is opening a snazzy new home for reptiles and amphibians today, a $14-million condominium complex for Mexican beaded lizards, Rowley's palm vipers, radiated tortoises and other creatures that slither and croak. The LAIR — the acronym for Living Amphibians, Invertebrates and Reptiles — was five years in the making and will be one of just a few reptile houses to open in North America in the last decade. "We've got one of the best in the nation," zoo Director John Lewis said as workers prepared by cleaning display windows, planting feathery ferns, adjusting temperature and humidity controls and using metal hooks to place venomous snakes carefully into their spacious new homes.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 18, 2013 |
John Steinbeck couldn't find a boat and he needed one desperately. His marriage was in trouble. People in his hometown were vilifying him as a communist rabble-rouser. He figured a sea expedition with his wife, Carol, and marine biologist buddy Ed Ricketts would be just the thing. They chartered a 76-foot sardine boat called the Western Flyer. Over six weeks in 1940, they and a four-man crew chugged from Monterey to the Mexican coast, where they caroused in waterfront bars, poked through tide pools, identified dozens of new species of sea life and collaborated on "Sea of Cortez," a pioneering work of ecology still read by budding ocean researchers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 10, 2013 |
A proposed seawater desalination plant in Huntington Beach could significantly harm parts of the Southern California ocean environment unless substantial changes are made in its design and operation, according to the staff of the state Coastal Commission. A staff report prepared for this week's commission vote on the project highlights the potential downside of large-scale efforts to turn the salty water of the Pacific Ocean into drinking supplies for coastal California. "There are ways to do desal in a fairly environmentally benign way," said Tom Luster, an environmental scientist with the commission.