News

From the College of Natural Sciences

Texas Astronomers Help Find Earth’s Older, Bigger Cousin

Texas Astronomers Help Find Earth’s Older, Bigger Cousin

Artist's concept of the newly discovered planet Kepler-452b (right) compared to Earth. Photo courtesy of NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. PyleArtist's concept of the newly discovered planet Kepler-452b (right) compared to Earth. Photo courtesy of NASA Ames/JPL-Caltech/T. PyleUniversity of Texas at Austin astronomers working with NASA’s Kepler mission have helped to discover the first near-Earth-sized planet around a Sun-like star in the “habitable zone,” the range of distances where liquid water could pool on a planet’s surface. They used the university’s McDonald Observatory to help confirm the finding, which has been accepted for publication in The Astronomical Journal.

Chink Found in Armor of Invasive Crazy Ant

Chink Found in Armor of Invasive Crazy Ant

Tawny crazy ants have invaded areas of the U.S. for the first time, but scientists believe they've found a vulnerability in the species. Image credit: ©Alex Wild 2012, used by permission)

Tawny crazy ants are taking hold in the United States, swarming in explosive numbers and displacing other wildlife. But scientists from the University of Texas at Austin recently discovered a chink in the insect's armor that could help control the spread of this invasive species.

Keck Foundation Awards $1.5 Million for New Method to Cool Atoms and for Student Research

Keck Foundation Awards $1.5 Million for New Method to Cool Atoms and for Student Research

Undergraduate researchers at UT Austin.

The W. M. Keck Foundation has awarded scientists at The University of Texas at Austin two grants totaling $1.5 million to develop a powerful, alternative method for cooling atoms and involve more undergraduate students in using new advanced technologies for research.

Scientists Predict which Crops Will Thrive Under Stress

Scientists Predict which Crops Will Thrive Under Stress

With climate change and population growth putting stable food supplies at risk, finding crops that can thrive in increasingly harsh environments is critical. It's also a challenge, given the difficulty of identifying plants well suited to stressful conditions.

New Approach May Spot Counterfeit Olive Oil, Help Pre-Diabetics

New Approach May Spot Counterfeit Olive Oil, Help Pre-Diabetics

Just days after new dietary guidelines came out telling Americans to pay more attention to the types of fats, not the amounts, that they eat, scientists announced they've found a new, better and faster way to detect distinctions in the fats found in food.

Two Natural Sciences Faculty Receive 2015 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards

Two Natural Sciences Faculty Receive 2015 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards

Eleven faculty members from The University of Texas at Austin, two of whom are from the College of Natural Sciences, have been chosen to receive 2015 Regents' Outstanding Teaching Awards by the Board of Regents of The University of Texas System.

The Mystery of the Brownbanded Bamboo Shark

The Mystery of the Brownbanded Bamboo Shark

All week, sharks splashed across TV screens as viewers who love (or fear) the kings of the sea tuned into shows about the allure (or revulsion) of great whites, hamnmerheads, makos and more. But if you want to unravel a great shark mystery – and learn why it gives researchers hope about the future of threatened shark populations – turn off your TV and listen to what this UT student helped discover.

Graduate Students’ Class Project Produces New Tool for Neuroscience

Graduate Students’ Class Project Produces New Tool for Neuroscience

As new graduate students in the neuroscience department, Kenneth Latimer and Jacob Yates did a class project in a business class that eventually resulted in a prestigious publication in the journal Science, as well as a new tool for neuroscience.

How Longhorns Got Their Long Horns

How Longhorns Got Their Long Horns

Evolutionary biologist David Hillis, a professor in the Department of Integrative Biology, is featured in an in-depth Q-and-A piece in the New York Times

Settlement by Oil Company BP to Support Gulf Coast Research

Settlement by Oil Company BP to Support Gulf Coast Research

Oil company BP announced it would settle a number of federal and state lawsuits with plans to pay over $1 billion annually for the next 18 years toward research, clean-up and restoration along the Gulf Coast. The University of Texas at Austin's Marine Science Institute is leading one of the research consortiums on deck to receive support.