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Science to get a fresh boost in 2015

Arctic sea ice, solar system encounters, LHC restart, combined immunotherapy - these are some of the main areas in science that researchers across the world can look forward to in 2015, according to international journal Science.

world Updated: Dec 26, 2014 05:50 IST
Vanita Srivastava

Arctic sea ice, solar system encounters, LHC restart, combined immunotherapy - these are some of the main areas in science that researchers across the world can look forward to in 2015, according to international journal Science.

As the world heats up, so does research into far-reaching consequences of shrinking Arctic sea ice. This year, scientists proposed a few patterns to watch, including large-scale Rossby waves and the polar jet stream. In 2015, there would be efforts to pin down how they might exert an Arctic influence on weather thousands of miles south.

The year of the comet came in 2014. But 2015 is apt to be the year of the dwarf planet, said the journal. In March, Nasa's Dawn spacecraft will arrive at Ceres, the largest object in an asteroid belt and one that contains a surprising amount of ice. Four months later, in July, Nasa's New Horizons spacecraft will speed past Pluto in a brief but momentous encounter.

Next spring, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, European particle physics laboratory near Geneva, Switzerland, will power up after two years of repairs. In July 2012, the LHC blasted out the Higgs boson, the last piece in physicists' standard model of the known particles.

Combination therapies that help in fighting cancer are another key area. Cancer immunotherapy continues to surge as clinical researchers gather evidence that the immune system can be a powerful ally against tumours. One big focus is mixing and matching treatments: combining two novel immunotherapies, the journal said.