Dark energy, hearing and a wooden phallus: ultra-short science news

Scientific news from March 3, 2023:

In space: do black holes hold the secret of dark energy?

  • According to two studies involving 17 researchers from 9 different countries, dark energy originates in black holes.
  • We know nothing about this mysterious force that repels matter and makes up two-thirds of the universe.
  • According to these researchers, black holes will be associated with the expansion of the universe and filled with vacuum energy, but this hypothesis remains controversial.

In health: The researchers were able to regenerate auditory cells in mice.

  • According to Inserm, hearing loss affects 65% of people over the age of 65 and also progresses in younger people.
  • Most cases of hearing loss occur when the hair cells inside the cochlea of ​​the inner ear are irreversibly lost.
  • It would be possible, at least in mice, to restore hearing by causing these cells to regenerate.

In archeology: Vindolanda’s wooden phallus would not be a sexual object.

  • A wooden object from Roman antiquity, found in 1992 in Vindolanda, intrigues experts with its phallic shape.
  • However, the sexual object hypothesis is not supported by researchers, who view it more as an object of everyday life, like a pestle.
  • In ancient times, the Romans believed that the penis protected from the evil eye, so it should be considered as an object of daily life with a preventive reach.

In space: The DART mission shows how to protect the Earth from a killer asteroid and a possible Armageddon.

  • 5 months ago, the US space agency’s DART probe struck. voluntarily asteroid Dimorphos 11 million kilometers from Earth.
  • This mission to change the orbit of this rocky object with a diameter of 151 meters without endangering the Earth was considered a success.
  • In early 2027, the European probe HERA will join Dimorphos to conduct a full investigation into the success of the diversion.

In the environment: Hydrogen: powerful fuel cells to end the volatility of the sun and wind.

  • In Bordeaux, Hydrogene de France is building the world’s first plant, which will produce high-power fuel cells from 2024.
  • It will equip locomotives and boats, as well as electrical networks powered by wind and photovoltaic energy.
  • The station will open in early 2024 with a production capacity of 100 MW per year and will be a symbol of the energy transition.

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