5 New Particles Discovered in CERN

 

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) located in CERN recently detected five new subatomic particles. The particles are all different versions of the Omega-c baryon, detected in 1994. This means they are also heavier cousins to the well-known neutron and proton – the particles that make up atoms. This discovery is important as it sheds light on the inner workings of atomic nuclei, and will help physicists improve their understanding of the ‘strong force’ that holds those particles together.

Continue reading

qmunicate’s Favourite STEM books

qmunicate recommends their favourite STEM related books for you all to enjoy. From sex, to physics, to, well, everything else, you’re bound to find something to tickle your fancy. So, kick back with a nice mug of moderately boiled H²0 infused with extracts of Camellia sinensis, and enjoy getting your science on.

Continue reading

Is There a Way to Prepare for Designer Babies?

The conversation surrounding eugenics has surprisingly not changed all that much since Gattaca hit movie theaters in 1997. New technologies have brought the idea of “designer babies” out of science fiction and closer into the very near future. But among the public at large, the ethical uncertainty still persists. For some, the dilemma is a question of agency: is it ethical for humans to have god-like control over reproduction? For others, the dilemma is a question of liberty: do unborn children have the right to not have their development interfered with? And for many others, the dilemma encompasses both questions and many more.

Continue reading

Ethics of Petting Zoos: Was The On Campus Alpacalypse Necessary?

On the 17th March, students were lucky enough to be greeted by the bizarre sight of alpacas outside the memorial gate. The “Alpacas on Campus” event was a follow up to last years’ hugely successful “Paws for stress”, or “Dogs on Campus”. Yet, despite the charitable nature of the event, with proceeds going to “Pets as Therapy”, controversy arose over the ethical nature of the event. While many immediately felt their stress melt away at the thought of cuddling cute alpacas, dozens of concerned parties spoke up to question the morality of the domestication of these ‘exotic’ creatures.

Continue reading

Life As We Don’t Know It

What the world’s oldest fossil tells us about life on earth and mars

Are we alone? Ever since our first venture past the enclosure of our planet’s atmosphere, human-beings have been plagued by this question. Each new development in science brings us closer to an answer and the recent discovery of “the oldest fossil ever” by the University College of London suggests that there may, indeed, be extra-terrestrial life on Mars.

Continue reading

New Contraceptive App

Natural Cycles has been given medical approval to be used as contraception in the European Union, a first for an app. Doctor Elina Berglund, one of the scientists that discovered the Higgs boson particle, and her partner Raoul Scherwitzl designed it as an alternative to hormonal contraception such as the pill.

Continue reading

Pac Man Fever: The Franchise That Spawned an Industry

Masaya Nakamura, the founder of the Japanese video game company Namco, has died age 91. He was widely known as the “Father of Pac-Man”, and his role in bringing the iconic arcade posterboy – created by designer Toru Iwatani in 1980 – to Japan and to the US. The videogame industry has since skyrocketed and grown in every direction, From Role Playing games, First Person Shooters, to Narrative-Focussed storytelling games and indie roguelikes.

Continue reading