University of Edinburgh

  • Research at the University of Edinburgh could make the search for life on Mars more efficient. Using a technique called "chemical gardening," astrobiologist Sean McMahon has demonstrated that some ancient fossils may be natural mineral deposits.
  • If your roses are getting a bit untidy, fear not, because an international team of researchers has developed a prototype robot gardener to do the job. Called Trimbot, it can not only do a spot of mowing but also prune roses and trim bushes.
  • After studying vintage film of Antarctic radar data, Thwaites Glacier was found to be melting even faster than we thought.
  • Stand by to start space mining – not on an asteroid, but aboard the International Space Station (ISS). The experimental mining kit will use bacteria to study how microorganisms can be used to extract minerals and metals from rocks on asteroids, moons, and planets.
  • Unfortunately stem cells lack some of the self-defense mechanisms that other cells have, leaving them open to attack from viruses and other threats. Now, researchers from the University of Edinburgh may have found a way to switch this mechanism back on, making stem cell treatments more effective.
  • ​​Just like the organisms they inhabit, cells require sustenance to grow and thrive. Scientists at the University of Edinburgh have developed a new diet-tracking tool that could be used to observe changes in their eating habits, which in turn may serve as telltale signs of disease.​
  • ​Although many of us may balk at the thought of drinking arsenic, the toxic chemical does occur naturally in the drinking water of some regions – and its levels definitely need to be monitored. An inexpensive new device allows people in developing countries to do so, and it works with a smartphone.
  • ​Although we've seen a number of experimental wave-power systems in recent years, a new one is claimed to be less expensive and to incorporate fewer moving parts, while still remaining durable in rough seas. It's known as a Dielectric Elastomer Generator, or DEG for short.
  • Science
    ​Ordinarily, when scientists want to produce proteins for use in medicine, they have to utilize techniques that are costly and complex. Recently, however, Scottish researchers have created genetically-modified hens that simply lay eggs containing significant quantities of such proteins.
  • Science
    ​Carried by the wind, dandelion seeds can travel enormous distances of more than a kilometer (0.6 miles). Now, researchers at The University of Edinburgh have discovered that this is thanks to a remarkable form of flight never before seen in nature.
  • ​Although Mars appears to be an arid, lifeless place now, about four billion years ago its surface was covered with bodies of water – which may have supported microscopic life. A new study has determined what type of rocks may be most likely to contain the fossilized remains of such microbes.
  • ​Keeping tabs on where a medical scope is when inside a human body often relies on expensive imaging technologies. A team at the University of Edinburgh has now developed a camera that can detect traces of light from the tip of an endoscope through up to 20 cm (7.8 in ) of tissue.