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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Science Scene

Slug: 100331_sc_SS

Headline: Science Scene

Women underrepresented in science and math, study says.

A report by the American Association of University Women found that despite gains, women still face obstacles to success in science and math.

Entitled “Why so few?” and supported by the National Science Foundation, the report looked at decades of research seeking ways to bring more women into science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The report found the gender gap is quickly rescinding in one place – the top level of math abilities, where boys are overrepresented. Thirty years ago, sixth and seventh grade boys who scored more than 700 on the math portion of the SAT outnumbered girls 13 to one – a ratio that has since shrunken to three to one.

Source: nytimes.com

EPA postpones requirement of pollution permits

Power plants and industrial sites will not be mandated to acquire federal pollution permits before next January, the Environmental Protection Agency said on Monday.

The announcement confirms a statement by the EPA last month that the regulation of climate-altering gases would be phased in over several years, beginning with the largest sources.

President Obama has repeatedly said he would prefer that Congress combat climate change with comprehensive energy legislation.

Source: nytimes.com

Cork makes no impact on flavor of wine

Whether your pinot noir was corked with natural cork or a screw cap, it will taste the same, according to a study by the American Chemical Society.

The study examined the common belief that natural cork was the only material that would regulate the amount of oxygen allowed into the wine. The amount of oxygen in wine acts on other compounds, which eventually affects the flavor of the wine.

Researchers investigated 150 bottles of 2006 vintage pinot noir and chardonnay with natural cork, synthetic cork and three screw caps, each with a different lining. They then performed a chemical profile and dissolved oxygen content of the wine under each type of seal. In addition, volunteers rated the flavor and aroma of each wine.

The study found that Seran-tin[cq] caps let in the least amount of oxygen, and did not – contrary to popular belief – taint the taste of the wine with unreacted sulfur compounds.

Source: Science News

– Compiled by Mike Dorsey and Lauren Steussy


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