The Nobel prize in the field of Physics was awarded to Peter Higgs and François Englert, the physicists who theorized the existence of the well-known Boson, the particle whose field gives mass to some fundamental particles across the Universe. The International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) at Trieste, who only a few weeks ago bestowed Higgs the PhD honoris causa in Theoretical Particle Physics, expresses great satisfaction for this important reward.
A study conducted with the collaboration of the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Trieste investigates the origins of the difficulty recognizing certain emotions that affects patients with Parkinson's disease. Is this impairment caused by the disease itself or is it in part the consequence of a widely used treatment (deep brain stimulation)?
A paper by Stefano Liberati from SISSA has been selected as one of the 2013 Highlight papers (the best papers of the year) of the journal Classical and Quantum Gravity. The paper is a systematic review of the methods devised by scientists since the 90s to test Einstein's laws of Special Relativity, up to the highest observable energies. These types of tests are important: deviations from Special Relativity could in fact indicate that space-time is not continuous but grainy.
For about 20 years now, experimental research on nuclear DNA has been supplemented by research based on computer simulations aimed at reconstructing the structure and function of this molecule that is so essential to life as we know it.
A systematic review – carried out with the participation of SISSA in Trieste – provides a detailed summary of the majority of models developed to date. The review is mainly aimed at biologists, for whom it may become an important research tool.
The progressive miniaturization of electronic devices requires the creation of increasingly small circuits. With traditional technology, this miniaturization is hampered by the limits imposed by physics, but some have thought of using molecules as circuits.
If molecules are to be able to do this efficiently, they need to improve their poor conduction ability. In a study published in PNAS, a team of researchers featuring Ryan Requist, Erio Tosatti and Michele Fabrizio of SISSA shows how the Kondo effect can improve the conductivity of some magnetic molecules.
Last December 30 was the closing date for enrolments in the Master's in Complex Actions (MCA) of SISSA (the International School for Advanced Studies in Trieste), but there's another opportunity for latecomers: classes will be open to a limited number of audit students who will be given the chance to enrol normally for the academic year 2013-2014.
"Moral" psychology has traditionally been studied by subjecting individuals to moral dilemmas, that is, hypothetical choices regarding typically dangerous scenarios, but it has rarely been validated "in the field". This limitation may have led to systematic bias in hypotheses regarding the cognitive bases of moral judgements.
A study relying on virtual reality has demonstrated that, in real situations, we might be far more "utilitarian" than believed so far.
The International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Trieste has obtained a major grant from the European Research Council (ERC) to study the visual system. This is the eleventh ERC grant awarded to SISSA, which once again confirms its position among the Italian research centres that have won the largest number of these grants.
Thousands of times a day, the brain stores sensory information for very short periods of time in a working memory, to be able to use it later. A research study carried out with the collaboration of SISSA has shown, for the first time, that this function also exists in the brain of rodents, a finding that sheds light on the evolutionary origins of this cognitive mechanism.
The arrival of a new 3D printer marks the start of a "mechatronic" age at SISSA. The new laboratory will enable SISSA investigators to be increasingly self-sufficient in designing and constructing the experimental setups and machinery needed for their studies.
Thanks to sophisticated equipment, including a new-generation 3D printer, and to the laboratory's expertise, scientists will no longer have to adapt their research to the constraints of existing technology but will be able to work more creatively, developing technology that fits the needs of scientific investigation.