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Better catalysts for green energy

Catalysts play a major role in the field of technology applied to renewable energy. A new study, just published in Nature Materials, provides a detailed account of how to control the electron charge of nanoparticles of platinum, an important catalyst in fuel cells, to maximize the efficiency of the process. The study is the result of an intense international collaboration involving SISSA and CNR-IOM of Trieste, the University of Barcelona, ELETTRA Sincrotrone Trieste, Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany and Univerzita Karlova of Prague. 

Premiazione del concorso De Rerum Natura

9 dicembre 2015, 14.00

SISSA, Aula Magna “P. Budinich”

Il 9 dicembre alle 14.00, presso l’Aula Magna della SISSA, avranno luogo le premiazioni della seconda edizione del concorso fotografico “De Rerum Natura” promosso dal Laboratorio Interdisciplinare della SISSA. Nella stessa occasione ci sarà anche un intervento di Massimo Inguscio, direttore dell’Istituto Nazionale di Ricerca Metrologica (INRIM) di Torino, dal titolo Light, Atoms and Time. La partecipazione all’evento è gratuita  e aperta  a tutti. L’intervento di Inguscio si terrà in inglese. 

Keeping Emotions Under Control

Childhood and adolescence are ages of constant change and crucial experiences. At times the emotional weight can be difficult to manage and may lead to psychological issues in adulthood. Neurofeedback is a method that helps individuals to keep their brain activity (for example a response to an emotional event) under control. While routinely used on adults, a new study published in NeuroImage demonstrates that the technique shows promise for young people as well. 

“Disorder is almost sure” for Welcome Day

December 1, 2015, 9.30 am-12.15 am

SISSA, Main Lecture Hall

Every year, the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste welcomes new students. This year, along with introducing the Director, fellow students, and scientists, there will be several awards given (including the Bassoli Prize for Science Communication) and the lectio magistralis on chaos  by Laure Saint-Raymond, a French mathematician.

Le “giornate triestine” della SISSA

Nelle prossime settimane si terrà un nuovo ciclo di appuntamenti organizzati dal Laboratorio Interdisciplinare della SISSA, in collaborazione con il Comune di Trieste Attraverso la fotografia, il giornalismo e i romanzi gialli, tre personaggi di spicco della cultura triestina (Ugo Borsatti, Roberto Curci e Veit Heinechen) racconteranno la storia della città dal loro speciale punto di vista. Tutti gli eventi sono gratuiti e aperti al pubblico.

Un girotondo per proteggere i più piccoli

Proteggere i bambini e i loro diritti è responsabilità degli adulti. Per ribadire questo, il 20 novembre in occasione della Giornata internazionale per i diritti dell’infanzia la Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi avanzati (SISSA) di Trieste ha organizzato insieme alla “SISSA dei Piccoli”, il nido aziendale, un girotondo - simbolo di questa protezione - con i bambini che frequentano la struttura, i loro genitori e tutto il personale della Scuola. 

The secret of resistance

Being all in one piece is not always a good strategy for resisting external strain. Biological tissues are well aware of it: they tend to crack simultaneously and gradually in several places, rather than catastrophically in one place only. This makes them particularly resistant. A group of SISSA researchers conducted a theoretical study that explains the mechanism underlying this phenomenon, which was experimentally observed in epithelial cell cultures. By doing so, they take their first steps towards creating artificial materials with features inspired by biomaterials.

A “fuzzy” method for fMRI recordings

A method for data analysis used in medical diagnostics has been tested for the first time on resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data. The method, which relies on “fuzziness”, proved to be as robust as the well-known and regularly used sample entropy (SampEn) method  but with the advantage of offering greater detail than sample entropy  The findings have been published in Medical Engineering and Physics.

The missing recipe

It was one of the “missing pieces” in the Theoretical Physics of Materials puzzle and today a group of SISSA researchers has finally found it: for the first time, the phenomenon of thermal conduction has been accounted for by the fundamental laws of quantum mechanics. The study, just published in Nature Physics, will allow scientists to simulate this phenomenon numerically in extreme temperature and pressure conditions, such as those existing inside planets, or for materials, such as covalent glasses or liquids, to which currently available methods do not apply.

Finish Line for First ICTP-SISSA PhD

Collaboration between Institutions in Friuli Venezia Giulia produce results. The joint PhD program between the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) and the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste is the latest example. The first concrete evidence of this is the graduation ceremony to be held on Wednesday, 21 October for the first course which began four years ago.

The gaze that hinders expression

It is not enough to observe what abilities are altered in autistic subjects, we also need to understand how each function interacts with the others. In fact, whereas in normal subjects joint attention appears to facilitate facial mimicry (both are skills relevant for human social interaction), the opposite holds true for autistic subjects. That is what a new study, just published in Autism Research, suggests.

Ritorna “De Rerum Natura”

Si sono appena aperte le iscrizioni alla seconda edizione del concorso fotografico “De Rerum Natura, la scienza in uno scatto – Luce e visione”, organizzato dal Laboratorio Interdisciplinare della Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA) di Trieste. Il concorso è dedicato alla natura e alla scienza. La partecipazione è aperta a tutti. I vincitori riceveranno dei premi (520, 320 e 200 euro rispettivamente al I, II e III classificato in ciascuna categoria) e avranno la possibilità di esporre le proprie fotografie alla SISSA.

SISSA to “clean” gravitational waves in CMB

SISSA has received a 3-year grant of roughly 200 thousand euros for a team of researchers to study gravitational waves in cosmic microwave background radiation (CMB). The work is part of a broader project, RadioForegrounds, within the Horizon 2020 framework of the European Commission with other European institutions (Institute of Astrophysics-- Canary Islands, The University of Cantabria, Cambridge University, the University of Manchester and CNRS in France as well as the private company, Trilogic). SISSA will focus on ridding cosmic signals of contaminants.