Scientists identify quantum differences between light and heavy water

first_imgScientists know that light water (H2O) and heavy water (D2O) have similar but not identical structures. Using quantum mechanics, researchers have recently identified several differences between the two water isotopes that previous research had not predicted. Alan Soper from the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire, UK, and Chris Benmore from Argonne National Laboratory in Argonne, Illinois, have published their results in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.Chemically speaking, D2O is an isotope of normal H2O, with each of the deuterium atoms having one neutron while the normal hydrogen atoms have no neutrons. The extra neutrons make heavy water about 10% denser than H2O, which can be seen when heavy water ice cubes sink in a glass of normal water. Biologically, this difference means that large amounts of heavy water can have harmful effects on animals, although it would take about two weeks of consuming only D2O and no H2O to kill a human.In their study, Soper and Benmore investigated the differences between light and heavy water on the quantum level. They used a combination of techniques – x-ray diffraction, neutron diffraction, and computer simulation – to discover the underlying mechanisms for why heavy water is more structured than light water, as previous research has indicated.“The task of understanding the structure and properties of any material is immense, and, in the case of water, is doubly difficult because of (a) the very keen interest in its properties, which are actually rather amazing and complicated compared to many common liquids, and (b) the difficulty of getting really reliable data on its properties,” Soper told “The significance of our results is that they will challenge the theoreticians to come up with better models for water, something that has often eluded them and which even today is a subject of much study and endeavor.”Soper explained that some of their results could be controversial, since they contrast with predictions. First, the scientists found that H2O has a longer intramolecular OH bond than D2O’s corresponding OD bond length. Specifically, the OH bond is longer by about 0.03 angstroms, or 3%. Second, the intermolecular hydrogen bond (which connects two separate molecules) is shorter in H2O than in D2O. Here, the difference is about 0.07 angstroms, or 4%. Neither of these differences in bond length had been predicted in previous studies. Mussels are inspiring new technology that could help purify water and clean up oil spills A molecule of water: the red atom is oxygen, and the gray atoms are either hydrogen (light water) or deuterium (heavy water). Physicists have investigated the underlying mechanisms for why heavy water is more structured than light water. Citation: Scientists identify quantum differences between light and heavy water (2008, August 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Further, because the OH/OD bond length difference and the hydrogen bond length difference are not equivalent (3% and 4%), there also exist geometrical differences between the structures of light and heavy water. While previous research had predicted an overall broadening of the H2O structure compared to the D2O structure, Soper and Benmore have pinpointed three specific differences, some of which are in opposition to earlier predictions.For one thing, the intermolecular OH peak is more asymmetric in H2O than D2O. Also, the distance between the hydrogen atoms on neighboring molecules is about 2% larger for H2O than in D2O. Finally, the number of hydrogen bonds per water molecule is less in H2O than in D2O (3.62 vs. 3.76). Together, these structural differences give light water a broader structure, and heavy water a narrower, more tetrahedral shape.Soper said that some of these unexpected results (such as the large degree of asymmetry in the hydrogen bond in H2O compared to D2O and the OH/OD bond length difference) may be contested by computer simulators. He also explained that the hydrogen bond length is caused by small electron movements that impact the proton (in hydrogen) or deuteron positions. Since the proton has a smaller mass than the deuteron, it sits higher in the quantum potential well (that holds the hydrogen atom) compared with the deuteron’s lower position in its potential well. “If that potential well is now perturbed by an approaching water molecule forming a hydrogen bond, then because the proton is higher in the well, it is more likely to be influenced by the approaching water molecule, drawing it away from the parent oxygen, more so than the deuteron, which is deeper in the well, and therefore less sensitive to perturbations from neighboring water molecules,” Soper said. This effect may play a role in the difference between the OH and OD bond lengths.The researchers also explained that understanding the structures of light and heavy water might not have any immediate applications, but could help researchers in a variety of fields down the road.“There is no obvious immediate impact from understanding these structures, apart from the obvious point that it will no doubt spur theoreticians to greater efforts to see if they can understand our findings,” Soper said. “Water is arguably the most important material in the human environment. Though there are lots of other materials we can and do study, somehow water captures major interest because of its fundamental importance to us. “Ultimately, if we understand water better, we will become better at predicting its properties, such as its ability to form crystals and water droplets in the atmosphere which in turn can cause immensely damaging storms as a consequence, its ability to act as the medium in which life has evolved, as the medium in which proteins will fold to their native structures, as the material used by our industry to both heat and cool, as the material used as a solvent and as a cleaner. The list is rather endless!”More information: Soper, A.K. and Benmore, C.J. “Quantum Differences between Heavy and Light Water.” Physical Review Letters 101 065502 (2008).Copyright 2008 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Marmosets found to learn to take turns when vocalizing

first_img © 2015 More information: Vocal turn-taking in a non-human primate is learned during ontogeny, Published 22 April 2015. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2015.0069 AbstractConversational turn-taking is an integral part of language development, as it reflects a confluence of social factors that mitigate communication. Humans coordinate the timing of speech based on the behaviour of another speaker, a behaviour that is learned during infancy. While adults in several primate species engage in vocal turn-taking, the degree to which similar learning processes underlie its development in these non-human species or are unique to language is not clear. We recorded the natural vocal interactions of common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) occurring with both their sibling twins and parents over the first year of life and observed at least two parallels with language development. First, marmoset turn-taking is a learned vocal behaviour. Second, marmoset parents potentially played a direct role in guiding the development of turn-taking by providing feedback to their offspring when errors occurred during vocal interactions similarly to what has been observed in humans. Though species-differences are also evident, these findings suggest that similar learning mechanisms may be implemented in the ontogeny of vocal turn-taking across our Order, a finding that has important implications for our understanding of language evolution. Explore further Citation: Marmosets found to learn to take turns when vocalizing (2015, April 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from In the primate world, only humans are able to listen to a sound made by someone else and mimic it, a skill that has led to communication and the different languages spoken around the world. Scientists know that part of communicating involves one person listening to what another says, before responding. This requires an ability to understand what it means to take turns when vocalizing. In this new study, the researchers have found that a young marmoset (a small silvery coated South American monkey) was also able to learn to take turns as part of vocalizing.In their study, the researchers studied the vocalizations of a pair of captive marmoset twins (and their parents) over the first year of their life and report that they observed two parallels to language development. The first was that taking turns when vocalizing was a learned behavior. The second was that the young marmosets were essentially taught to take turns vocalizing by their parents in ways that are similar to the methods human parents use to teach children to wait for another person to finish speaking before they try to speak themselves.In watching the monkeys as they grew, the researchers noted that if a youngster made a vocalization while a parent was vocalizing, that vocalization was typically ignored by the adult, which resulted over time in the youngster learning to wait for the adult to finish before vocalizing. They noted that as time passed, the young monkeys became less likely to interrupt—though it was more pronounced with their mother than with their father.The researchers suggest their findings indicate a learning mechanism that is similar across all primates which could lead to a better understanding of the development of language in humans. (—A trio of researchers with the University of California has found that marmosets learn to wait for others to stop making noise before they vocalize, at a very young age. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Cecilia Chow, Jude Mitchell and Cory Miller describe a study they undertook with young marmoset twins and their parents and what they learned by doing so.center_img Journal information: Proceedings of the Royal Society Common marmoset. (Callithrix jacchus) Credit: Carmem A. Busko/Wikipedia/CC BY 2.5 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Marmoset monkeys know polite conversationlast_img read more

Diamond inclusions suggest free flowing water at boundary between upper and lower

first_img Citation: Diamond inclusions suggest free flowing water at boundary between upper and lower mantle (2018, March 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from More information: O. Tschauner et al. Ice-VII inclusions in diamonds: Evidence for aqueous fluid in Earth’s deep mantle, Science (2018). DOI: 10.1126/science.aao3030AbstractWater-rich regions in Earth’s deeper mantle are suspected to play a key role in the global water budget and the mobility of heat-generating elements. We show that ice-VII occurs as inclusions in natural diamond and serves as an indicator for such water-rich regions. Ice-VII, the residue of aqueous fluid present during growth of diamond, crystallizes upon ascent of the host diamonds but remains at pressures as high as 24 gigapascals; it is now recognized as a mineral by the International Mineralogical Association. In particular, ice-VII in diamonds points toward fluid-rich locations in the upper transition zone and around the 660-kilometer boundary.Press release A team of researchers from the U.S., China and Canada has found evidence in diamonds of free-flowing water in the boundary between Earth’s upper and lower mantle. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes analyzing inclusions in diamonds spewed from volcanoes and what they found. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. The researchers were looking for molecular forms of carbon dioxide as part of carbon cycling in the Earth’s mantle when they came across evidence of something else. They had collected diamonds spewed from volcanoes (or pushed to the surface by other geologic activity) in Zaire, China, Sierra Leone and other locations in southern Africa, and were studying them by bouncing X-rays off the diamonds’ inclusions, when they came across samples of ice VII—a form of ice that does not occur naturally at the surface. The find was significant, because ice VII forms at very high pressure—approximately the amount of pressure found at depths of 610 to 800 kilometers beneath the Earth’s surface. This, the team notes, suggests that water must have been freely flowing at such depths to form the inclusions they observed. Such depths, they further note, fall into the transition zone in the mantle, a part of the Earth’s interior that is still a source of mystery.Prior research has shown that the mantle is made up mostly of hot rock under a lot of pressure. It has a lower layer, closest to the core, a transition layer, and an upper layer that eventually meets the crust. Prior research has also shown that the upper mantle has some water, which hints that there may also be water in the transition layer. The diamonds the researchers were studying would have been encased in liquid somewhere in the transition zone. The high temperatures there would not have allowed them to crystallize, however—it was only as they moved to the surface that crystallization would have occurred. The high pressure would have been maintained inside the diamond, but the temperature would have dropped dramatically. The idea of water moving around in the transition layer is intriguing, the team reports, because it has implications for tectonic plate shifting. Using Argonne’s Advanced Photon Source, researchers identified a form of water known as Ice-VII, which was trapped within diamonds that crystallized deep in the Earth’s mantle. Credit: University of Chicago.last_img read more

SHG dept to impart beautician training course to girls free of cost

first_imgKolkata: The state Consumer Affairs and Self Help Group (SHG) minister Sadhan Pande said on Tuesday that his department is ready to impart beautician training course to girls at government schools free of cost.Emphasising on the need for girls to be self-reliant, Pande said: “My department has tied up with a leading city-based beautician and has been running a beautician course. A good beautician is very much in demand for bridal make-up and for similar purposes. I would urge schools if they want to provide training in this area, they can come up with a proposal as my department is ready to provide training completely free of cost,” Pande said while addressing a program to mark the closing of 125 years celebration of Adi Mahakali Pathsala. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe minister said his department is providing training in making jute and other handicraft products, computer and other skill development training to nearly 70 lakh women across the state. “If women can form a self help group comprising 10 members, they can avail bank loan at a nominal interest of only 2 percent as the remaining percentage of the loan is borne by our department,” Pande said adding that the government is ready to help the SHGs in marketing their products.Stressing on the need for good relationship between students and teachers, the minister said traditional and old schools like Adi Mahakali Pathsala have been able to set an example in churning out students with good education as well as moral values. “We have seen that in some schools the relationship between students and teachers are not good. Hence, schools like Mahakali Pathsala should be a lesson for them,” he added.last_img read more

NSElisted firms market value crosses Rs 100 trillion

first_imgBoosted by a rally in stocks, total market valuation of listed companies at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) hit the Rs 100 trillion-mark on Wednesday. The market capitalisation (m-cap) of NSE listed firms rose to Rs 100.2 trillion at the end of trade. The 50-share Nifty hit a historic high of 8,741.85. The 50-share index also registered all-time closing high of 8,729.50, a gain of 33.90 points or 0.39 per cent.“Extending their northward journey for fifth day in a row, the key benchmark indices gained close to half a per cent. Initially, firm global cues helped index to open on positive note which later followed by a range bound session till the end,” said Jayant Manglik, President-retail distribution, Religare Securities Limited. At the Nifty, 27 stocks advanced, while 23 declined. Also Read – I-T issues 17-point checklist to trace unaccounted DeMO cashHUL was the biggest gainer with 5.34 per cent rise, while ITC with a loss of 5.15 per cent was the biggest loser at the Nifty. Bonanza Portfolio Senior Vice-President Rakesh Goyal said the crucial Budget date announcement was also a market mover. Scaling a similar peak, the total market valuation of all listed firms at the BSE had hit a record high of Rs 100 trillion in November last year. At present, the total market cap of BSE listed firms stands at Rs 1,02,56,540 crore. Meanwhile, rising for the fifth day in a row, benchmark the BSE Sensex on Wednesday set a life-time high of 28,958 points and NSE Nifty recorded a historic 8,741 points as overall macro outlook and optimism over forthcoming budget continue to buoy investor sentiment. The Sensex ended the day’s trade at a record 28,888.86, up by 104.19 points or 0.36 per cent from its previous close.last_img read more

Garden Reach Shipbuilders Engineers opens Virtual Reality Lab

first_imgKolkata: Virtual Reality Laboratory (VRL) of Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) was inaugurated.Dr Ajay Kumar, Secretary (Defence Production), inaugurated the VRL at its Park Unit location in Kolkata. Rear Admiral VK Saxena (Retd), CMD GRSE, SS Dogra, Director (Finance), AK Nanda, Director (Personnel), Cmde Sanjeev Nayyar, Director (Shipbuilding) and other senior officials of GRSE were present during the inaugural programme. Vijayendra, Joint Secretary (Naval Systems), Department of Defence Production was also present during the occasion. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedAccording to a Press communique, the design activity in Central Design Office was required to be strengthened and it often requires quick, reliable and accurate resolution of design issues. It was raised by the production branch or the vendor. Now, the virtual reality facility also enables fast analyses of upcoming issues in design phases leading to better time and resource management. Now 3-D models can be created in a virtual environment for assisting the production teams and customers to expedite approvals.It may be mentioned that GRSE has developed capabilities for in-house design and shipbuilding.It has made considerable contributions to the indigenous warship construction program of the country, which includes state-of-the-art frigates and corvettes to fast patrol vessels.last_img read more

Rath Yatra This year hot wheels to replace ageold chariot

first_imgDarjeeling: Even the Gods haven’t been able to resist the luxury of modern technology. Lord Jagannath, his brother Lord Balabhadra and sister Devi Subhadra are all set to trade their age-old chariot for fast wheels in Siliguri for this year’s Rath Yatra.On the occasion of the Chariot festival on Friday, the trio will be heading to their aunt’s house (Gundicha temple) in Innova cars.As custom has it, on the day of Rath Yatra, Lord Jagannath, accompanied by his siblings, comes out in wooden chariots and takes a ride to the aunt’s house, meeting devotees en route. After spending a week at his aunt’s house, they return back to the main temple. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killed”Earlier, we used to take Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra on a single chariot through the main thoroughfares of Siliguri. They used to then return to the temple premises and were kept on a specially-prepared platform for a week before returning to the main temple. This year, however, there is a change,” stated Nam Krishna Das, Communication Officer, ISKCON, Siliguri. This year, a spot has been earmarked in Shivmandir on the outskirts of Siliguri town opposite gate number 2 of the North Bengal University. A pandal has been erected where religious festivities will be held for a week. The Lord and his siblings will be putting up in the house of a devotee, adjacent to this spot, which will be treated as the Gundicha Temple. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPThe police were reluctant to give permission for the slow-moving chariots to be pulled to Shivmandir through the congested roads. “We then decided to use Innovas to transport the Gods. This will help avoid the traffic jams,” added Das.However, devotees need not worry. The trio will first take a trip around Siliguri in the wooden chariot (like previous years), return to the temple and then ride three separate Innovas to the Gundicha temple.”Every year we have one single Rath (chariot.) However, we have decided to have three smaller sized hydraulic chariots from next year. Overhead wires are a big problem so we have designed hydraulic chariots that can negotiate through the overhead wires and cables,” added the communication officer. The old wooden chariot has got a fresh coat of paint. The Lords will traverse the ISKCON temple, Sevok Road, Hill Cart Road, Haiderpara route to return to the ISKCON temple in the wooden chariot. From the temple they will then proceed to their aunt’s house in Shivmandir in Innovas.”It is not possible to transfer the idols to the cars from the Rath in the middle of the road. Hence, after the chariot ride, they will first return to the temple,” explained Das.last_img read more

Empty SER rake derails causes disruption for 3 hrs

first_imgKolkata: An empty rake of South Eastern Railway (SER) somehow got derailed and hit the overhead wire post near Ramrajatala station on Monday afternoon.As a result the down and middle lines remained blocked for almost three hours. Several local trains were cancelled and long distance trains scheduled from Howrah left from Santragachhi. According to the SER authority, an empty rake from Kharagpur was going to the Tikiapara carshed on Monday afternoon. Near Ramrajatala station, a few wheels of a coach slipped off the track while the train ran at a good speed. As a result it hit an over head electric wire post causing major damage. The over head wire of the down and middle lines hung and the post fell on the middle track. Immediately, the engineers of SER went to the spot and started work to bring the rake back on track. Though the damaged rake was removed within an hour, train movement could not be commenced before three hours as the overhead wires were Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifestill hanging. The engineers started to work on a war footing to clear the tracks. Meanwhile, around five pairs of local trains in the SER main line had to be cancelled. Several down trains were stopped at Santragachhi station and was transferred to the Up Line. Several mail and express trains were rescheduled and made to start from Santrachhi station. SER arranged special trains for the passengers to reach Santrachhi. Around 7 pm, the over head wires on the middle track were fixed and train movement started at 7:11 pm. The Chief Public Relation Officer (CPRO) of SER, Sanjay Ghosh said: “A detail investigation will be done. The cause of derailment will be clear after a thorough study.”last_img read more

Decoding fashion for different body shapes

first_imgPicking clothes for this festive season? Keep your body shape in mind to get the perfect outfit for a fashionable statement, say experts.Few experts have decoded fashion for different body shapes and here are tips for you to follow. Apple shape: Draw focus on arms and legs with outfits that are loose on waist. A-line kurta, deep neckline works best for you. Choose slim, cigarette pants and keep dupatta on side.Pear shape: You should go for an Anarkali top paired up with solid coloured patialas. Clingy outfits and tight bottoms should be avoided. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfHourglass shape: You have the curves, and you should flaunt them with Anarkalis, peplum top paired with fitted pants, or flared tops with fit bottom. Avoid ill fitted clothing.Inverted triangle shape: Straight cut tops, wrap tops, split tops with flared or fuller pants and skirts are best for you. Also, below is the list of some accessories one can add to complete the look. Maangtika: Kundan maangtikas are in rage. The tear droplet gives a very elegant look and you can opt for droplet that matches with your dress. Also in vogue are the Rajasthani Mangtikas with a single circular ornament.Big nose ring: Big nose rings have become a common favourite among women. Don’t want to get nose piercing done? Well, you try many options from the clip on category.last_img read more