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Newsweek

MIT scientists have found that lakes and seas made of methane may have shaped Titan’s shores, writes Jess Thomson for Newsweek. “This discovery could allow astronomers to learn even more about the conditions on Titan,” writes Thomson. “Knowing that waves carved out the coast enables them to predict how fast and strong the winds on the moon are and from which direction they blow.” 

Gizmodo

Gizmodo reporter Passant Rabie spotlights new research by MIT geologists that finds waves of methane on Titan eroded and shaped the moon’s coastlines. “If we could stand at the edge of one of Titan’s seas, we might see waves of liquid methane and ethane lapping on the shore and crashing on the coasts during storms,” explains Prof. Taylor Perron. “And they would be capable of eroding the material that the coast is made of.” 

STAT

Prof. Bob Langer and Prof. Giovanni Traverso have co-founded Syntis Bio, a biotech company that will use technology to “coat the stomach and potentially other organ surfaces, [change] the way that drugs are absorbed or, in the case of obesity, which hormones are triggered,” reports Allison DeAngelis for STAT

WGBH

Prof. Anna Frebel joins Arun Rath of WGBH’s All Things Considered to discuss her recent discovery of some of the universe’s oldest stars, an out-of-this-world identification made the help of MIT undergraduates Hillary Andales, Ananda Santos and Casey Fienberg. “When you meet someone new, you want to know what their name is, how old they are, maybe where they live and what they do, right?” says Frebel. “We do the same with all the astronomical objects in the sky.” 

Scientific American

Researchers at MIT have created a noise-blocking sheet of silkworm silk that could “greatly streamline the pursuit of silence,” reports Andrew Chapman for Scientific American. “The silk sheet, which is enhanced with a special fiber, expands on a technology also found in noise-canceling headphones,” explains Chapman. “These devices create silence by sampling the ambient noise and then emitting sound waves that are out of phase with those in the environment. When the ambient and emitted waves overlap, they cancel each other out.” 

Quanta Magazine

For the first time ever, researchers at MIT have observed electrons form “fractional quasiparticles without enabling the influence of a magnetic field,” reports Daniel Garisto for Quanta Magazine. This discovery “may carry the seeds of long-sought quasiparticles with stable memories that could underpin a new and powerful approach to quantum computing.” 

Newsweek

MIT have developed a new ingestible vibrating capsule that could potentially be used to aid weight loss, writes Newsweek’s Robyn White. Prof. Giovanni Traverso said the capsule “could facilitate a paradigm shift in potential therapeutic options for obesity and other diseases affected by late stomach fullness.”

Interesting Engineering

MIT engineers have developed a new adhesive, low-cost hydrogel that can stop fibrosis often experienced by people with pacemakers and other medical devices, reports for Maria Bolevich Interesting Engineering. “These findings may offer a promising strategy for long-term anti-fibrotic implant–tissue interfaces,” explains Prof. Xuanhe Zhao. 

The Boston Globe

With the help of undergraduates in MIT’s Observational Stellar Archaeology 8.S30 class, researchers at MIT found three of the oldest stars in the universe orbiting around the outskirts of the Milky Way Galaxy, reports Ava Berger for The Boston Globe. “[The stars] have preserved all this information from early on for 13 billion years for us because they’re just sitting there,” explains Prof. Anna Frebel. “Like the can of beans in the back of your cupboard, unless you crack it open or damage it somehow it just keeps sitting there.”

Popular Mechanics

Researchers at CSAIL have created three “libraries of abstraction” – a collection of abstractions within natural language that highlight the importance of everyday words in providing context and better reasoning for large language models, reports Darren Orf for Popular Mechanics. “The researchers focused on household tasks and command-based video games, and developed a language model that proposes abstractions from a dataset,” explains Orf. “When implemented with existing LLM platforms, such as GPT-4, AI actions like ‘placing chilled wine in a cabinet' or ‘craft a bed’ (in the Minecraft sense) saw a big increase in task accuracy at 59 to 89 percent, respectively.”

Popular Mechanics

MIT physicists have “successfully placed two dysprosium atoms only 50 nanometers apart—10 times closer than previous studies—using ‘optical tweezers,’” reports Darren Orf for Popular Mechanics. Utilizing this technique can allow scientists to “better understand quantum phenomena such as superconductivity and superradiance,” explains Orf. 

Mashable

Researchers at MIT have discovered “three of the oldest stars in the universe lurking right outside the Milky Way,” reports Elisha Sauers for Mashable. “These little stars are nearly 13 billion years old, and they haven't changed one bit since," says Prof. Anna Frebel. "The stars will continue to exist for about another 3 to 5 billion years or so."

Newsweek

MIT researchers have discovered three of the oldest stars in our universe among the stars that surround “the distant edge of our Milky Way galaxy,” reports Jess Thomson for Newsweek. “These stars, dubbed SASS (Small Accreted Stellar System stars), are suspected to have been born when the very first galaxies in the universe were forming, with each belonging to its own small primordial galaxy,” explains Thompson. 

Gizmodo

Prof. Anna Frebel and her colleagues have identified some of the oldest stars in our universe, located in the Milky Way’s halo, a discovery that stemmed from Frebel’s new course, 8.S30 (Observational Stellar Archaeology), reports Isaac Schultz for Gizmodo. “Studying the ancient stars won’t only help explain the timeline of stellar evolution, but also how our galaxy actually formed,” Schultz explains.

ShareAmerica

ShareAmerica reporter Lauren Monsen spotlights Prof. Dina Katabi for her work in advancing medicine with artificial intelligence. “Katabi develops AI tools to monitor patients’ breathing patterns, hear rate, sleep quality, and movements,” writes Monsen. “This data informs treatment for patients with diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Crohn’s, and ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), as well as Rett syndrome, a rare neurological disorder.”