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SCIENCE IN THE NEWS WEEKLY

Data Pile-Up at the Large Hadron Collider

The world's largest particle accelerator is delivering torrents of data to physicists. But the hundreds of millions of collisions happening inside the machine every second are now growing into a thick fog that, paradoxically, threatens to obscure a fabled quarry: the Higgs boson.

In other technology news, scientists say microbes that eat iron create tiny magnets inside themselves, similar to those in PC hard drives. The research may lead to the creation of much faster hard drives.

Japan is switching off its last working nuclear reactor, as part of the safety drive since the March 2011 tsunami triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima plant. The third reactor at the Tomari plant, in Hokkaido prefecture, is shutting down for routine maintenance. It leaves Japan without energy from atomic power for the first time in more than 40 years.


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PODCASTS: Expanding With the Cosmos

Using the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ATC), a 6.5-meter microwave collector in Chile, cosmologists are piecing together the early history of the known universe. In an exclusive American Scientist interview, Arthur Kosowsky—a member of the ATC team and a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pittsburgh—discusses how he is using ATC to reach back in time billions of years to search for gravitational waves that could verify inflation and reveal unprecedented details about how the cosmos was born.

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