SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Mystique

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The creation of reversibly-actuating components that alter their shapes in a controllable manner in response to environmental stimuli is a grand challenge in active materials, structures, and robotics. Here we demonstrate a new reversible shape-changing component design concept enabled by 3D printing two stimuli responsive polymers-shape memory polymers and hydrogels-in prescribed 3D architectures. This approach uses the swelling of a hydrogel as the driving force for the shape change, and the temperature-dependent modulus of a shape memory polymer to regulate the time of such shape change. Controlling the temperature and aqueous environment allows switching between two stable configurations - the structures are relatively stiff and can carry load in each - without any mechanical loading and unloading. Specific shape changing scenarios, e.g., based on bending, or twisting in prescribed directions, are enabled via the controlled interplay between the active materials and the 3D printed architectures. The physical phenomena are complex and nonintuitive, and so to help understand the interplay of geometric, material, and environmental stimuli parameters we develop 3D nonlinear finite element models. Finally, we create several 2D and 3D shape changing components that demonstrate the role of key parameters and illustrate the broad application potential of the proposed approach.

Concepts: Engineering, Control, Inkjet printer, Mystique, 3D printing, Polymers, Shapeshifting, Werewolf

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This paper tells the story of how an experiment in caring for the children of poor, working mothers became a multimillion-dollar early learning center. It follows the evolution of two nuns who began providing day care in a church and came to realize that children living in poverty need a much greater range of services. It covers how the sisters broke with the Catholic Church and engaged alternative and unorthodox sources to help the operation survive and to extend its reach. It documents how far the sisters went to keep the doors open and how they sustained success.

Concepts: Mystique, Sabretooth, Roman Catholic Church, Bishop, Catholic Church, Nun, Catholic, Rogue

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To examine the evolution of Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Medicaid programs after passage of the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA), focusing on policies affecting eligibility, enrollment, renewal, benefits, access to care, cost sharing, and preparation for health care reform.

Concepts: Health care, Health economics, Medicine, Healthcare reform, Health insurance, Economics, Mystique, State Children's Health Insurance Program

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The prevention of melanoma can be significantly improved by targeting information directly towards the subpopulation of children and, as a means to achieve it, towards young parents.

Concepts: Mystique, Sabretooth

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Size-related changes of body shape were explored in 15 polymorphic species of Solenopsis fire ants by analyzing body weight along with linear measurements of 24 body parts. Log regression slopes were used to detect changes of shape with increasing size. Within species, the largest workers weighed from about 5 to 30-fold as much as the smallest. The range of within-species body lengths varied from 1.6 mm to 4 mm. As worker size increased, the gaster tended to make up a larger proportion of body length, usually at the cost of the petiole, and rarely at the cost of head length or mesosoma length. In most, the relative volume of the gaster increased and that of the head and mesosoma decreased. Most also showed an increasingly “humped” mesosoma. For all species, head shape changed from barrel-shaped to heart-shaped as worker size increased. Antennae became relatively shorter as the relative size of the club decreased. Shape changes of the legs were more variable. S. geminata was exceptional in the extreme nature of its head shape change, and was the only species in which relative head volume increased and gaster volume decreased with increasing body size. With the exception of S. geminata, the allometric rules governing shape are remarkably similar across species, suggesting a genus-level developmental scheme that is not easily modified by evolution. It also suggests that the evolution of shape is highly constrained by these conserved growth rules, and that it acts primarily (perhaps only) through allometric growth. The results are discussed in light of the growth of imaginal discs in a resource-limited body (the pupa). The substantial variation of allometries within species and across localities is also discussed in relation to using allometric patterns to identify species or to construct phylogenies.

Concepts: Evolution, Change, Mystique, Ant, Length, Shapeshifting, Metasoma, Werewolf

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Anaemia during pregnancy and at delivery is an important public health problem in low- and middle-income countries. Its association with the children’s haemoglobin level over time remains unclear. Our goals were to identify distinct haemoglobin level trajectories using latent class analysis and to assess the association between these trajectories and maternal anaemia and other risk factors.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Life, Red blood cell, The Association, 1960s music groups, Mystique, Sabretooth