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Race against time -- The arduous journey of fig wasps

Some details of the reproductive journey of a fig wasp, to find a suitable tree and lay eggs while simultaneously pollinate it in the process are known. In a recent study, scientists from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, fill in the gaps in our knowledge about this fascinating journey.

Sniffing out weeds, the termite way

Termites are known to be efficient farmers who farm a kind of fungus in their colonies to digest the wood that they feed. Scientists from the Indian institute of Science, Bangalore and École Nationale Supérieure de Chimie de Montpellier, Montpellier, France, explore whether the termites prefer a certain species of fungus and if they can identify weed fungi and remove them.

Research sheds light on how dry land ecosystems change

Are grasslands and deserts wastelands? How are these ecosystems affected by change in land use due to humans? In a recent study, researchers  study these complex ecosystems to understand crucial transition points for the system, after which it cannot revert back to its original state.

Moving nanoparticles using light and magnetic fields

Schematic of the two designs (Credit: Ghosh and Ghosh, Sci. Robot. 3, eaaq0076-2018)

Manipulation of particles whose sizes are a billionth of a metre poses a huge challenge and is a vast area of research. Manipulation of objects on this scale has important application from medicines to quantum technologies. Scientists from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore have devised a new approach to trap and maneuver nanoscale objects. 

Wonder material graphene to make way into next gen electronic devices

Illustration : Purabi Deshpande / Research Matters

Graphene is a form of carbon, just like diamond and graphite. It is made of a honeycomb shaped sheet of single layer of carbon atoms. Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science and University of Alabama have studied this material for its property of conducting electricity. Their study indicates that electrons can flow easily on the edges of graphene making it a very good conductor of electricity. 

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