Tag Archives: Research

The Russian Invasion of Ukraine: Resources at the Library of Congress | Library of Congress Blog

March 3, 2022 by Neely Tucker

This 1648 map is one of the first to use “Ukraine” as the name for the region. Geography and Map Division.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is the latest violent development in a long and turbulent history in the land of the steppes, and the Library has international resources on the region that go back for hundreds of years.

You can learn a lot here, from one of the first maps that used the name “Ukraine” for the area (in 1648), to the poetry and writings of national hero Taras Shevchenko in the 19th century, to up-to-the-minute news and analysis from the Congressional Research Service.

You can also watch an hourlong seminar, Putin, Ukraine, and What’s Likely to Happen, hosted by the Library’s Kluge Institute and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, recorded just before Russia invaded.

This article is a brief summary of the Library’s holdings regarding the region.

Shevchenko statue in Washington, D.C. Photo: Carol Highsmith. Prints and Photographs Division.

Some descriptions are from official Library documents.

First, it helps to know that Ukraine roughly translates as “frontier” and its location between Europe and Asia has meant that human beings have traipsed through it, going east or west, for thousands of years. It has been included in any number of empires, divided into many different configurations and called by any number of names before it declared independence in its current boundaries in 1991, after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Our primary documents thus refer to the region by the name (or names) it was known at the time. The maps, lithographs, books and manuscripts shine through with illuminations and hand-coloring from centuries long past.

Source: The Russian Invasion of Ukraine: Resources at the Library of Congress | Library of Congress Blog

Science of sleep: Why a good night’s rest gets harder with age | Medicalxpress

February 24, 2022

Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain

It’s well known that getting a good night’s sleep becomes more difficult as we age, but the underlying biology for why this happens has remained poorly understood.

A team of US scientists has now identified how the brain circuitry involved in regulating sleepfulness and wakefulness degrades over time in mice, which they say paves the way for better medicines in humans.

“More than half of people 65 and older complain about the quality of sleep,” Stanford University professor Luis de Lecea, who co-authored a study about the finding published Thursday in Science, told AFP.

Editor’s Note: Read more, see link below for original item…

Source: Science of sleep: Why a good night’s rest gets harder with age

What Structural Engineers Learned from 9/11 – Scientific American

By Donald Dusenberry, on September 8, 2021

Members of the profession study such tragic events to try and ensure that something similar won’t happen again

Credit: Donald Dusenberry


The events of 9/11 shook the world.

Before that day, we could not imagine that someone would be bold and cruel enough to enact such violence. We could not imagine that two iconic 110-story skyscrapers would collapse in the middle of a U.S. city, gouging and crushing other buildings for hundreds of feet in all directions.

We asked ourselves, “How could this possibly happen? How could they collapse?” These are natural questions that express the scope of the loss we felt on that day.

Structural engineers asked these questions, too, but they also asked the contrasting question: How did the World Trade Center towers manage to stand up to the attack at all, even for a short while? The damage was extensive. Commercial aircraft flying at nearly top speed crashed into the buildings, cutting wide swaths through the exterior walls and inflicting extensive interior damage. Shouldn’t that have been enough to cause immediate collapse?

Source: What Structural Engineers Learned from 9/11 – Scientific American

Why Is the Eastern Monarch Butterfly Disappearing? Is There Something We Can Do About It? | SCITECHDAILY

A Spartan-led research team has uncovered an answer — at least for the most recent population decline — with a huge assist from volunteers.

By Michigan State University, July 19, 2021

From article…

Michigan State University ecologists led an international research partnership of professional and volunteer scientists to reveal new insights into what’s driving the already-dwindling population of eastern monarch butterflies even lower.

Between 2004 and 2018, changing climate at the monarch’s spring and summer breeding grounds has had the most significant impact on this declining population.

In fact, the effects of climate change have been nearly seven times more significant than other contributors, such as habitat loss. The team published its report today (July 19, 2021) in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution.

“What we do is develop models to understand why monarchs are declining and what’s happening to biodiversity in general,” said Erin Zylstra, the study’s lead author. Zylstra is a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Integrative Biology and the Ecology, Evolution and Behavior Program, both in MSU’s College of Natural Science.

Source: Why Is the Eastern Monarch Butterfly Disappearing? Is There Something We Can Do About It?