10 Most Interesting Science Technology News 2023

 Science is one of the most important branches of human knowledge. There are many topics under the umbrella of science and in 2023 there are some news that shook the world such as the discovery of room temperature superconductors, the development of the largest tokamak and the death of famous scientists. Here are the 10 most interesting science technology news of 2023.

1. 14,000-Year-Old Human Skeleton Found In Kelantan – The Oldest In Peninsular Malaysia

Start with the big news in the world of archeology in Malaysia. Last June, a research team from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) announced the discovery of a human skeleton estimated to be 14,000 years old in Keledung Kecil Cave, Nenggiri Valley, Kelantan. This makes it the oldest skeleton ever found in Peninsular Malaysia beyond the Perak Man skeleton which is estimated to be between 10,000-11,00 years old.

The archaeological team led by Associate Professor Zuliskandar Ramli has started the search for artifacts in Lembang Neggiri since last September. It was done before the entire valley was flooded by the Nenggiri Dam, which operates by 2027.

The skeleton in Kecil Keledung Cave was found in a curled-up position like a fetus with various ancient artifacts around it. Excavation sites have been opened in 14 caves in the Nenggiri Valley to allow artefacts to be rescued. In addition to human skeletons, artefacts in the form of ancient pottery, stone hammers, grindstones and food waste in the form of snail shells and animal bones have been successfully collected by the research team.

2. Baby With DNA Combination Of Three Individuals Successfully Born


In a baby, their body's DNA will contain a combination of the mother's and father's DNA. In certain situations, there is a mutation in the mother's mitochondrial DNA that causes disease that can occur in the womb or after birth that causes death. Last May in the UK, another baby was born with a combination of three individuals' DNA.

Mitochondrial donation treatment (MDT) takes 37 genes from donor eggs that do not have mitochondrial mutations. It is then inserted into the embryo from the mother's egg and the father's sperm. With MDT, mitochondrial mutations will be avoided while avoiding death. Although the DNA is a combination of 3 individuals, 98% of the DNA of a born baby is contributed by the real mother and father.

The baby born with a combination of three DNAs has not been identified but is the fifth in medical history. This MDT gene treatment helps couples who often miscarry because the mutation causes the baby to die in the womb or a few years after birth. It may be one of the ways science will try to solve genetic diseases passed from parent to child in the near future.

3. World's First Complete Eye Transplant Successfully Performed

The first organ transplant was performed in 1954 with a kidney. More and more organs can now be transplanted to recipients and this year a complete eye transplant was also successfully performed. Experts from NYU Langone Health performed this procedure last May on Aaron James (46) who suffered severe facial injuries after an accident involving high voltage at work.

He received a face transplant along with a left eye. This face and eye transplant procedure took 21 hours involving 140 doctors, nurses and health experts. Although the points received now show no rejection issues, James still can't see using them.

Still, experts from NYU Langone Health say it's a positive first step toward enabling eye transplants in the future. Last year, NYU Langone Health also successfully transplanted two pig hearts and kidneys into brain-dead humans.

4. NASA : Summer Temperatures 2023 Will Be The Highest In History

The biggest threat to humans other than AI taking over is habitat destruction due to climate change. NASA last September issued a report confirming that the summer temperature of 2023 in the northern hemisphere was the highest ever recorded in records since they were first collected in 1880.

Researchers from the Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS) found that temperatures in June, July and August 2023 were 0.23°C warmer than NASA records. It was also 1.2°C warmer than the average summer temperature between 1951 to 1980. Temperatures in the northern hemisphere will now fall again due to the arrival of autumn.

The impact of climate change has already caused 56% of the world's sea surface to change from blue to green and more and more animal habitats are being destroyed leading to extinction.

5. LK-99 is Certified Not a Room Temperature Superconductor

In August, the world of physics was rocked by the alleged discovery of a room-temperature superconductor by scientists at the South Korean Quantum Energy Research Center. The material named LK-99 raises many questions because if true it will be the answer to the production of sustainable energy sources and more efficient electric vehicles.

But the scientific community's hopes were dashed after scientists from around the world and even Korea itself found that LK-99 could not be reproduced with the claimed Meisner effect and low resistance characteristics. South Korea's Quantum Energy Research Center has also refused to hand over samples of their alleged superconductor LK-99 for testing by the scientific community.

This result is certainly disappointing because efforts to find room temperature superconducting materials have been carried out for decades without any results. The superconductors used today are achieved at temperatures of -100 degrees Celsius or at extremely high pressures. Complex cooling systems make electronic devices with superconductors have a large size.

6. Google DeepMind Discovers 2.2 Million New Crystal Structures Equivalent to 800 Years of Study

The world of science jumped another step two weeks ago with Google DeepMind's announcement that its artificial intelligence (AI) Graph Networks for Materials Exploration (GNoME) has successfully discovered 2.2 million new crystal structures. What makes this discovery extraordinary from a scientific point of view is that it is equivalent to 800 years of manual searching for crystal structures.

Of the 2.2 million crystal structures discovered, about 380,000 are stable and usable. According to DeepMind 736 structures predicted by GNoME have already been produced in the real world by several laboratories involved in this project.

The new crystal arrangement enables advances in the design of processor chips, semiconductors, superconductors, supercomputers and batteries needed in the near future. Among those found are 52,000 layered compounds that have similarities with graphene, which has the potential to become a superconducting material. A further 528 compounds have the potential to be lithium ion conductors that open the door to better battery production for electric vehicles.

7. Recycled Plastic Found Toxic And Unsafe To Use

We are told that recycling plastic is good for the earth. With no wasted material, a more sustainable world is promised by various recycling campaigns. But scientists from the University of Gothenburg released a study that says recycled plastic is unsafe to use.

Through the analysis of recycled plastic pallets from Asia, Africa. South America and Eastern Europe, they found it contaminated by chemicals, the majority of which are toxic to humans. The most common chemicals found are pesticides, followed by pharmaceuticals that are produced during the process of producing plastic and when it is being recycled.

Researchers also say there is no strict monitoring of recycled plastics at the international level. As a result this actually toxic recycled plastic may be used in products such as food storage containers or children's toys. They suggest that a stricter monitoring body be established to ensure that only safe plastics are used.

8. Largest Deposit of Lithium Found in the United States

A lithium metal deposit believed to be the world's largest was discovered inside an ancient volcano in Nevada. This lithium metal is locked in a layer of mud that is believed to have been formed 16 million years ago after this volcano exploded to create a caldera.

The researchers who discovered this deposit believe there are between 20-40 million tons of lithium in this area and it is larger than the deposit on a salt flat in Bolivia that holds the record for the largest deposit right now. Australia currently holds 47% of the world's lithium production followed by Chile (30%) and China (12%)

9. Singapore Produces Vegetable-Based 3D-Printed Octopus Meat

The technology to produce vegetable-based beef, fish, chicken and pork has been around for the past four years. Malaysian firm Phuture Food was one of the first to challenge the Impossible Meat company. Now researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) have succeeded in producing squid meat made from vegetables using 3D printing.

The loop-shaped cuttlefish meat produced has the same texture and taste as real cuttlefish meat. NUS started researching vegetable-based meat because it was aware of the fact that in the future seafood resources will decrease. This is a huge issue for Singapore which imports 90% of its seafood supply.

To produce this 3D printed squid, NUS uses microalgae and green beans mixed with plant-based oil containing omega-3 fatty acids to ensure that it is nutritious to eat. Because it is vegetable-based, this squid meat can be safely consumed by those with seafood allergies.

10. The Scientist Who Created Dolly the Clone Sheep Dies

In 1996 researchers from the Roslin Institute at the University of Edinburgh announced the successful cloning of a sheep named Dolly. It is the first time in the history of the world that a mammal has been successfully cloned. Sir Ian Wilmut who led the team that created Dolly has died yesterday aged 79 from Parkinson's disease.

Sir Wilmut's success opened up the study of stem cells which are now used to treat various diseases such as Parkinson's. Unfortunately science progressed fast enough for Sir Wilmut to see his illness treated using the technology he himself pioneered.

Dolly was cloned using the mammary cells of a Fin-Dorset sheep and the eggs of another sheep combined. This produces an embryo which is then implanted into another sheep. The world's most famous sheep died in 2003 of lung disease and is now on public display at the Roslin Institute.

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