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Scientists return from Arctic with wealth of climate data

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BERLIN (AP) — An icebreaker carrying scientists on a year-long international effort to study the high Arctic has returned to its home port in Germany carrying a wealth of data that will help researchers better predict climate change in the decades to come.

The RV Polarstern arrived Monday in the North Sea port of Bremerhaven, from where she set off more than a year ago prepared for bitter cold and polar bear encounters — but not for the pandemic lockdowns that almost scuttled the mission half-way through.

“We basically achieved everything we set out to do,” the expedition’s leader, Markus Rex, told The Associated Press by satellite phone as it left the polar circle last week. “We conducted measurements for a whole year with just a short break.”

The ship had to break away from its position in the far north for three weeks in May to pick up supplies and rotate team members after coronavirus restrictions disrupted carefully laid travel plans, but that didn’t cause significant problems to the mission, he said.


“We’re bringing back a trove of data, along with countless samples of ice cores, snow and water,” said Rex, an atmospheric scientist at Germany’s Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Ocean Research that organized the expedition.

More than 300 scientists from 20 countries, including the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China took part in the 150-million-euro ($177-million) expedition to measure conditions in one of the most remote and hostile parts of the planet over the course of a whole year.

Much of the information will be used to improve scientists’ models of global warming, particularly in the Arctic, where change has been happening at a faster pace than elsewhere on the planet.

As part of the expedition, known by its acronym MOSAiC, the Polarstern anchored to

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Joe Biden Holds 50-point Lead among College Students: Poll

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Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden holds a 50-point lead over President Donald Trump among college students, new polling data has found.



a man holding a gun: Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden speaks to Union members after touring a plumbers union training center in Erie, Pennsylvania on October 10, 2020.


© Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden speaks to Union members after touring a plumbers union training center in Erie, Pennsylvania on October 10, 2020.

According to the latest survey of students released by College Pulse and Chegg on Friday, more than two thirds of undergraduates (69 percent) intend to vote for Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris on November 3.

By comparison, fewer than one in five (19 percent) told pollsters that they would vote for Trump and Vice President Mike Pence to have a second term in the White House. A further six percent said they would be voting for a third party candidate.

Biden’s popularity among college students has remained roughly level over the past few months, but is still a strong 10-point increase on his May 19 favorability rating with the group.

Undergraduates are also more confident that Trump will fail to be re-elected in less than a month’s time.

Asked if they believed the president would win a second term on September 22, 57 percent of students said no, while 43 percent believed he could pull it off. But two weeks later, more than six in ten (62 percent) told pollsters Trump would not win on November 3 as just 38 percent backed his chances.

Election Day 2020: Where Trump, Biden Stand In The Polls 30 Days Before Nov. 3

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Breaking the results down along demographic lines, Chegg also found that Biden lead Trump among students of all genders, races and high school backgrounds. Republican students were the only sub-group that broke for the Trump and Pence ticket.

However, not all of the

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‘She’s been a superstar’: tearful Dettori pays tribute to retired Enable | Horse racing

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An emotional Frankie Dettori said he had cried when the decision was finally taken to bring down the curtain on the extraordinary racing career of Enable, whose retirement was announced on Monday morning.

A sopping wet surface at Longchamp last week killed off her chance of an unprecedented third success in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe but she is the only horse to have achieved three wins in Ascot’s King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes, and Dettori was aboard for all but the first of her 15 victories.

“I did cry last night,” the 49-year-old jockey said. “It was a bit of an emotional moment because we were still thinking about rolling the dice one more time. So it was a blow.”

Although the Arc was widely expected to be Enable’s final outing, she still held entries for races at Champions’ Day this Saturday. Hopes that she might have a final run in England were sustained when she was spotted on the Newmarket gallops last week.

“I had to emotionally accept it,” Dettori said. “But I woke up this morning, I was fine. Now that I know that she’s safe and she’s gone, I’m able to slowly be touched by emotions and just look at the wider picture. She’s done so brilliant for all of us and I love her. I’m never going to forget her. I went to see her this morning. We had a tremendous journey for three and a-half, four years. She was the horse that most touched my heart.”

Asked to pinpoint the memory that would stand out most in his mind in the years to come, Dettori picked Enable’s win in last year’s King George, when she prevailed by a neck over Crystal Ocean, who had been a winner under Dettori at Royal

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Education Secretary Gavin Williamson confirms GCSE and A-Level exams WILL go ahead next summer

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Education Secretary Gavin Williamson confirms GCSE and A-Level exams WILL go ahead but be delayed by three weeks next summer amid fears over lost class time for pupils

Most A-level and GCSE exams in England will be delayed by three weeks next year to allow pupils to catch up on time lost to pandemic closures, Gavin Williamson  confirmed today.

The Education Secretary also outlined plans to streamline some subjects saying it would ‘support teachers and students by freeing up valuable teaching time’.

Most exams will take place between June 7 and July 2, but Mr Williamson also said that one maths and one English GCSE exam will take place before the May half-term, to allow pupils forced to self-isolate during the main exam period a chance to sit a paper in a core subject. 

In a written ministerial statement today, Mr Williamson confirmed that he had rejected calls for the exams next summer to be scrapped or postponed for longer, as had been called for by some teaching unions.

They warned last week that moving the timing of exams back slightly was unlikely to make any significant difference to the varied learning experiences students have had this year. 

‘We know that exams are the fairest way of measuring a student’s abilities and accomplishments, including the most disadvantaged,’ Mr Williamson said.

‘We want to give our young people the opportunity next summer to demonstrate what they know and can do.’

The Education Secretary also outlined plans to streamline some subjects saying it would 'support teachers and students by freeing up valuable teaching time'

The Education Secretary also outlined plans to streamline some subjects saying it would ‘support teachers and students by freeing up valuable teaching time’

In a written ministerial statement today, Mr Williamson confirmed that he had rejected calls for the exams next summer to be scrapped or postponed for longer, as had been called for by some teaching unions

In a written ministerial statement today, Mr Williamson confirmed that he had rejected calls for the exams next

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Commercially Available Silicon Quantum Computer Moves Forward With Quietest Bits On Record

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KEY POINTS

  • Physicists achieve a noise level 10 times lower than the previous record
  • Demonstration proves to take a major step closer to a full-scale silicon quantum processor 
  • Next step could be a 10-qubit prototype quantum integrated processor by 2023

The lowest noise level on record for a semiconductor quantum bit has been demonstrated by a team of quantum physicists, bringing the development of a commercially available silicon quantum computer one step forward to possibility. 

In a study published in Advanced Materials, the physicists said they were able to achieve a noise level 10 times lower than previously recorded for any semiconductor qubit. Specifically, they demonstrated a low-level charge noise of  S0 = 0.0088 ± 0.0004 μeV2 Hz−1. 

As a next step, the team is now looking forward to demonstrating the capability required to produce a reliable 10-qubit prototype quantum integrated processor by 2023. 

“Our team is now working towards delivering all of these key results on a single device – fast, stable, high fidelity and with long coherence times – moving a major step closer to a full-scale quantum processor in silicon,” Michelle Simmons, director for Center for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology (CQC2T) and Scientia professor of quantum physics in the Faculty of Science at the University of New South Wales, said in a press release. 

The team explained that, for a silicon quantum computer to perform reliable and applicable solutions, it should generate quantum information close to 100% accuracy. However, achieving such accuracy was impossible due to what physicists call charge noise. 

Imperfections in the material environment that hosts qubits result in charge noise. It impedes the proper encoding of information on qubits, affecting the information accuracy altogether. By separating the qubits from the surface and interface states, the team was able to demonstrate the lowest noise

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