2016 was a remarkable year in the field of some scientific discoveries. Let us see what are they.
- Gravitational Waves
The scientists in February announced that they had succeeded in detecting gravitational waves after a long search. When two massive black holes collided with each other more than 1 billion years ago, some ripples were created in space-time. These ripples are the gravitational waves and the discovery has ratified some part of relativity theory of Albert Einstein. The scientists have demanded that this discovery will make way for studying the universe and its origin in a different manner.
- Gene Editing
Scientists have discovered CRISPR- Cas 9 which is a gene editing tool. It is believed to have the potential to develop treatments for several diseases. Scientists are now focussed on bringing alternatives to CRISPR.
- Zika virus
One of the important and interesting discoveries of 2016 is the Zika Virus. The deadly virus has been linked to different kinds of birth defects. This virus is transmitted either through sexual activities of mosquito bites. The virus thrived across America and some parts of Asia. Though in November, the WHO declared that it was not an epidemic anymore.
With the discovery of Theranos, the blood-testing industries are shifting from drawing blood from your hand to pricking of the finger. They will have their own custom hardware which will analyze the blood sample.
- Proxima B
Till date, it was only a fragment of our imagination and we read it only in sci-fi novels. But in 2016, astronomers have discovered a planet which is located near the closest star to the sun.
- Polar Melt
Scientific studies have revealed that the polar ice is melting at a faster speed than expected and this will result in raising the sea levels across the world. That will inevitably have some economic consequences for cities like New York, Singapore, New Orleans and Miami. Scientists are now using satellite data and advanced technologies like laser sensors and radars for acquiring statistics.
- Treatment for Alzheimer
Scientists are re-testing a drug associated with Alzheimer which originally cleared the amyloid brain plaques of people suffering from Alzheimer in order to see whether it can improve our cognitive performances or not.
The spacecraft Rosetta launched 12 years ago collided with a comet which it chased over the years. The spacecraft, throughout its journey, studied the odd shape of the comet and its composition including the presence of nitrogen, water, oxygen, and glycine (blocks of protein).
- Artificial Intelligence
The year 2016 saw increasing use of robots and artificial intelligence in warehouses, malls, factories and other public places. The year also witnessed the launch of self-driving cars. Alphabet Inc.’s Google developed software called AlphaGo which defeated grandmaster Lee Se-dol in a five-set match. This provided an insight into the future of artificial intelligence.
- Ozone Hole
A study this year confirmed that the Antarctic Ozone Hole is finally healing. Scientists attributed the international cooperation and advanced technologies for this.