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The Week in Good News (10/05)

Phytoplankton produce between 50%-85% of the world’s oxygen. In fact, “every second breath you take comes from the oceans.” And new satellite data is showing us just how much CO2 phytoplankton pumps out of the atmosphere. Spoiler alert: it’s a lot. Find out more >> 

New research suggests that wood ants store short- and long-term memories on different sides of their brains. This is known as neural lateralisation, and is closely tied to the way animals form memories. Find out more >>

As robotic technology advances, so does robots’ potential to further scientific discoveries. They’re now being used to discover news treatments for diseases, new drugs, and even performing surgery. Find out more >> 

Synthetic biologists have found a way to recreate and control artificial photosynthesis for carbon sequestration (carbon storage to mitigate global warming). Researchers were able to transform light and CO2 into more useful compounds. Find out more >>

A team of researchers may have found a new way to control fusion reactions. The plasma that fusion reactors use for fuel is extremely unpredictable and difficult to control. But there may be a way to force the plasma into doing what we want. Find out more >>

Scientists have found the first animal that doesn’t need oxygen to survive. The jellyfish-like parasite doesn’t have a mitochondrial genome, meaning that it doesn’t breathe. In fact, it lives its life completely free of oxygen. Find out more >>

A team of engineers are developing smart lunar habitats that could serve as homes in a settlement on the surface of the moon. The ultimate goal is for these structures to be able to adapt autonomously to hazards including meteorite impacts or seismic activity. Find out more >>

Scientists have developed a self-assembling silver membrane that could be used to capture CO2 emissions before they have a chance to spread in the atmosphere. It’s expensive, but very efficient. Find out more >>

Imagine controlling a (toy) car with your hand gestures. Fun, right? This project is quite advanced, but it’s really interesting to watch. Find out more >>

Scientists have developed a device which can efficiently get hydrogen from water, thus unlocking hydrogen’s potential as a clean fuel. It’s too early to start using hydrogen fuel cells, but the researchers are optimistic in scaling up the technology for wider use. Find out more >>

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