Zack Fishman

Zack Fishman

Reporter, Life Sciences and Physical Sciences

Zack Fishman, based in Chicago, covers Life Sciences and Physical Sciences for The Academic Times. Previously, Zack received his M.S. in journalism at Northwestern University, specializing in health, environment and science reporting, and his B.S. in engineering physics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

A "net" of seismometers on the moon could detect galactic gravitational waves. (NASA via AP)
A "net" of seismometers on the moon could detect galactic gravitational waves. (NASA via AP)An international collaboration of scientists has developed a blueprint for moon-based seismometers that detect gravitational waves reverberating throughout the celestial body, a design that would pick up frequencies that are out of reach for detectors on Earth.

Illustrations of Gray's beaked whales; a female is depicted on top and a male on bottom. (Mark Camm)
Illustrations of Gray's beaked whales; a female is depicted on top and a male on bottom. (Mark Camm)A new DNA analysis of stranded Gray's beaked whales, a species rarely observed alive, demonstrated with the highest accuracy yet that the population is large and has high genetic diversity, factors that will help it avoid being threatened by global warming and other ecosystem changes like many other whales are.

A decades-long dispute over something you've likely never heard of has been settled. (University of Stuttgart/Björn Miksch)
A decades-long dispute over something you've likely never heard of has been settled. (University of Stuttgart/Björn Miksch)A fresh experiment on an extreme state of matter has settled nearly 20 years of contradictory results about its ground state in one material, using direct measurements of electron spins unprecedented to the material to advance understanding of an almost five-decade-old physics problem.

Processing speeds might someday shoot through the roof, thanks to "polar vortices." (AP Photo/Khalil Senosi)
Processing speeds might someday shoot through the roof, thanks to "polar vortices." (AP Photo/Khalil Senosi)Physicists and material scientists have created a way to interact with electricity-based "polar vortices" that respond to signals at a rate of nearly 400 billion times per second, a fundamental scientific approach that could someday provide data storage and processing that is more compact and more than 100 times faster than some modern central processing units.

Neurons produced from stem cells are analyzed for G4 structures, which are disruptive configurations of DNA sequences. They are much more prevalent in Alzheimer's disease neurons, according to new research. (University of Montreal/Bernier lab)
Neurons produced from stem cells are analyzed for G4 structures, which are disruptive configurations of DNA sequences. They are much more prevalent in Alzheimer's disease neurons, according to new research. (University of Montreal/Bernier lab)Canadian biologists showed that neurons afflicted with Alzheimer's disease develop disruptive G-quadruplex structures in their DNA — and the researchers found a gene that prevents that.

Plants and groundwater move more carbon into the ocean than previously thought. (Unsplash/Joel Vodell)
Plants and groundwater move more carbon into the ocean than previously thought. (Unsplash/Joel Vodell)Coastal vegetation and groundwater flows facilitate the transfer of at least 500 million metric tons of carbon into the ocean each year, according to new scientific modeling that expands their known importance in keeping planet-warming carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere.

A false-color image of Nili Vossae, a site on Mars where layers of faults and troughs contain rare evidence of ancient water on the red planet. (NASA/JPL/University of Arizona)
A false-color image of Nili Vossae, a site on Mars where layers of faults and troughs contain rare evidence of ancient water on the red planet. (NASA/JPL/University of Arizona)A valley-like region on Mars hosted plenty of mild-temperature surface water and underground geothermal activity nearly 4 billion years ago, making it one of the best places to look for signs of ancient life on the planet, according to new computer modeling based on minerals found there.

A polar bear eating common eider eggs from a nest on Mitivik Island, Canada. (University of Windsor/Predictive Ecology Lab)
A polar bear eating common eider eggs from a nest on Mitivik Island, Canada. (University of Windsor/Predictive Ecology Lab)Driven from Arctic sea ice earlier because of global warming, polar bears hunted for duck eggs on land but did so with less-than-optimal movement and awareness of resource scarcity, according to a new study, raising questions on their ability to adapt to living off the ice.

A model of the Starship Enterprise from the TV series Star Trek. The ship was capable of traveling at "warp speed," which was faster than the speed of light. (Shutterstock/Rob Lavers)
A model of the Starship Enterprise from the TV series Star Trek. The ship was capable of traveling at "warp speed," which was faster than the speed of light. (Shutterstock/Rob Lavers)A physicist has crafted what he says is the first theoretical propulsion system that can move faster than the speed of light without the need of inaccessible negative energy. The design faces ongoing questions from other researchers but represents a significant improvement from preceding attempts.

Pulsars fire beams of electromagnetic radiation from two poles as a result of their large magnetic fields and rapid spinning. (Jurik Peter)
Pulsars fire beams of electromagnetic radiation from two poles as a result of their large magnetic fields and rapid spinning. (Jurik Peter)Astronomers searched dense clusters of stars in the Milky Way and found eight previously unknown millisecond pulsars, ultradense supernova remnants that appear to "pulse" in the sky and can complete a rotation in a tiny fraction of a second.

Light can enter different states, too. (Pixabay/Ralf Vetterle)
Light can enter different states, too. (Pixabay/Ralf Vetterle)Using photons fused with quantum effects into an extreme form of matter, German physicists generated and detected a new state of light, expanding scientists' understanding of how light behaves and opening a path for further investigation into other strange forms allowed by quantum mechanics.

Humans are restricting elephants' room to roam. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
Humans are restricting elephants' room to roam. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)By tracking hundreds of African elephants for 15 years, conservation scientists have determined that the endangered large mammals could roam more than three-fifths of Africa — nearly six times the size of their current habitat — if not for the growing presence of humans, including threats from ivory poachers on the continent.