Learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • develop an appreciation of the huge variety of different mammals that exist on Earth today

  • see how fossil evidence can help us to understand evolutionary history

  • understand how the structure of DNA can help us to detect differences between different species

  • apply the techniques of DNA analysis to work out which mammals are most closely related to each other

  • appreciate t
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4.7 Jets

You have seen that two kinds of active galaxies - quasars and radio galaxies - are often seen to possess narrow features called jets projecting up to several hundred kiloparsecs from their nuclei. If these are indeed streams of energetic particles flowing from the central engine, how do they fit with the accretion disc model? How could the jets be produced?

The answers to these questions are not fully resolved, but there are some aspects of the model of the central engine which probably
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2.2 Persistent currents lead to constant magnetic flux

An important consequence of the persistent currents that flow in materials with zero resistance is that the magnetic flux that passes through a continuous loop of such a material remains constant. To see how this comes about, consider a ring of metal, enclosing a fixed area A, as shown in Figure 6a. An initial magnetic field B0 is applied perpendicular to the plane of the ring when the temperature is above the critical temperature of the material from which the rin
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The Organ of Corti
Situated in the spiral-shaped cochlea of the inner ear is the organ of Corti. Only one inch long if uncoiled, it bears about twenty-five thousand sound receptor cells with hairlike projections arranged in rows on the basilar membrane. Diagrams show detailed structure of the organ of Corti. Grades 5-12. 1 min.
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9.2 Antisocial behaviour disease

The psychological arena is hugely complex because there are additional issues of responsibility and treatment. Briefly, society takes a more lenient attitude towards the behaviour of someone who is ill (diseased) compared to someone who is well. The diseased person is not fully responsible for their actions (‘They can't help it’). Therefore any individual with antisocial (aggressive) behaviour who is diagnosed as having a disease is largely absolved of blame. Having a disease, means, at l
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FORMGRIP closed cell aluminium foam
Additions such as SiC are made to molten aluminium or aluminium alloy to modify the melt viscosity and make it suitable for foaming. 1 to 3 wt% of pre-oxidised titanium hydride is then added to the melt which is solidified to form a precursor which can be foamed in a controlled manner by a subsequent heat treatment. The resulting foam has a relatively fine and uniform cell structure.
Author(s): DoITPoMS, University of Cambridge,Dr V Gergely, De

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5 Biomass conversion of solar energy

Photosynthesis in the geological past was responsible for all fossil fuel reserves, but its products are buried about 2000 times more slowly than we use them at present. The total carbon content of all biomass growing on land is estimated to be 5.6 × 1014 kg and, as Figure 10 shows, about one-fifth of this mass is renewed each year. Figure 6 shows how modern plant biomass is distributed across the continents. Clearly, biological conversion of solar energy to a chemical form in com
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Tissue engineering and stem cell technology
A lecture, "Tissue engineering and stem cell technology" given by Prof ZhanFeng Cui, University of Oxford, at the 10th OIBC Spring Symposium, held jointly with the Department for Continuing Education, at St Edward's School, Oxford, on 4 March 2009. Visit http://media.conted.ox.ac.uk/oibc2 to view the full presentation from Prof ZhanFeng Cui, including his slides.
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Purple Color Song - Jessica Ferrell
This song and slide show focuses on the color purple. The song is to the tune of "Camptown Races" and shows the word purple and items that are purple. (00:36)
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2.3 A closer look at ethical issues

Science can define what is practicable, what can be done, but it cannot determine which developments it is right to pursue; this is largely an ethical judgement. One sensible approach in making an ethical assessment is to try to weigh up the benefits of a technology against its potential to do harm. Deciding whether GM technology is acceptable, in ethical terms, then involves a judgement about the plausibility and moral weight of competing sets of claims. Individuals may make widely different
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An introduction to software development
Software development is the practice of organising the design and construction of software, the beating heart of much technology fundamental to our personal and professional life. This free introductory course, An introduction to software development, discusses the engineering nature of software development, its challenges and some fundamental practices which have developed to meet them. Software development is a fast-moving discipline and as a software development professional you must be
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Except for third party materials and otherwise stated (see http://www.open.ac.uk/conditions terms and conditions), this content is made available under a http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2

Stem Cell Therapies are no More Drugs Than Soufflés are Fast Food
Stemcell discoveries make great news stories, but their actual translation into routine clinical practice is still a major hurdle. Is it reasonable to expect the big pharmaceutical companies to manufacture these living therapies or is the paradigm shift from today’s drugs to ‘living cells as therapies’ overwhelming? Would McDonald’s ever put delicate soufflés on their fast-food menus? This lecture will use examples from current cell and tissue-engineered clinical therapies to illustrate
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X-ray tomography image of open cell polyurethane foam
If a gas is injected into a liquid it forms a cellular foam structure. When a thermoset prepolymer of low viscosity is foamed, the polymer can drain from the cell walls (driven by surface tension) before it sets at the cell edges, leaving an open-celled foam. The cell edges have three concave sides. The average co-ordination number for the nodes (where struts meet) is four, giving tetrahedral junctions. The deformation behaviour of the foam was observed by X-ray microtomography at the ESRF i
Author(s): DoITPoMS, University of Cambridge,Dr J A Elliott,

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1.3 Coal-forming environments today

Coal formation begins with preservation of waterlogged plant remains to produce peat and then slow compression as the peat is buried. About 10 m of peat will compress down to form about 1 m of coal; clearly large amounts of plant debris must be available for preservation. Even so, for a significant thickness of peat to accumulate there must be a balance between the growth of plants and the decay of underlying dead material to form peat (a process known as humification).

Su
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Solar Cells
Advanced semiconductor devices as a new source of energy for the 21st century, which deliver electricity directly from sunlight. The suitable semiconductor materials, device physics, and fabrication technologies for solar cells are presented. The guidelines for design of a complete solar cell system for household application are explained. The cost aspects, market development, and the application areas of solar cells are presented.
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Licence - see http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/nl/deed.en - Original copyright TU Delft

Internet Scout Project
The companion Web site to the NOVA program Life's Greatest Miracle, which PBS will re-broadcast on February 26th, is a great site for anyone interested in human pregnancy and fetal development. With wide-ranging information, this Web site is likely to appeal to many different audiences; users can even choose to view the entire program online. Those users interested mainly in the science of human development will enjoy How Cells Divide and How Sex is Determined. Those more interested in learning
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Middle School Portal: Math and Science Pathways (MSP2)
The Cells Alive Web site (last mentioned in the October 25, 1996 Scout Report), offered by Quill Graphics, contains several activities to help students understand the basics of cellular biology. The animal cell cycle and cell mitosis animations are especially excellent visual learning tools, clearly showing what takes place during these events and giving well-written descriptions of each stage. The site also has three interactive quizzes on cell structure, cell function, microbes, and the immune
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Middle School Portal: Math and Science Pathways (MSP2)
If you can tear your eyes away from the mesmerizing graphics on the main page, you'll find a very detailed and comprehensive cell biology tutorial created by graphic artist/biologist John Kyrk. Kyrk's animations demonstrate all major aspects of cell biology: amino acid structure, DNA replication, transcription and translation, cellular cycles (Krebs, glycolysis, mitosis), photosynthesis, and so on. The tutorial's beautiful graphics and cool animations should make studying cell biology relatively
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Middle School Portal: Math and Science Pathways (MSP2)
If you can tear your eyes away from the mesmerizing graphics on the main page, you'll find a very detailed and comprehensive cell biology tutorial created by graphic artist/biologist John Kyrk. Kyrk's animations demonstrate all major aspects of cell biology: amino acid structure, DNA replication, transcription and translation, cellular cycles (Krebs, glycolysis, mitosis), photosynthesis, and so on. The tutorial's beautiful graphics and cool animations should make studying cell biology relatively
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Middle School Portal: Math and Science Pathways (MSP2)
New from The Biology Project of the University of Arizona, this online tutorial introduces the dynamic complexes of proteins, carbohydrates, and lipids that comprise cell membranes, and relates how membranes are important for regulating ion and molecular traffic flow between cells. Each section of this Web site takes the form of a multiple choice question. Answer the question correctly, and a brief explanation of each answer choice will be displayed. Answer the question incorrectly, and a short
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