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Science Progressing: Week Ending December 16

SOURCE: Wikimedia Commons A piece of equipment in the CERN particle accelerator where particles collide and release energy.

Science Progressing is your weekly guide to the science and technology policy news you shouldn’t have missed. Did we leave anything out? Tweet or facebook us and let us know.

NASA releases long awaited Scientific Integrity Framework
NASA’s new guidelines implement the principles outlined in President Obama’s two Memoranda instructing agencies to develop unified scientific integrity guidelines. Science Progress’s commentary of the rest of the process is here.

Critical Small Business Technology and Research Grant Programs Reauthorized
Today’s National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which funds the military and other key technology programs across the government contained language long-sought after by innovation advocates to reauthorize and extend the Small Business Innovation and Research and Small Business Technology Transfer gran programs, both aimed at helping start up companies create jobs and commercialize new and innovative technology. See our analysis of this and a number of other recent moves to accelerate entrepreneurship and innovation here.

14 Senators Protest HHS’s Plan B Decision
Thirteen Democrats and one independent in the U.S. Senate are questioning last week’s announcement by Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius that she would not allow over-the-counter sales of Plan B, the emergency contraceptive, to girls under 17.

Cost of Solar in India to Match Conventional Power this Decade
With the price of solar plummeting globally, India has announced that it will move up its target date to achieve solar grid parity by 5 years, from 2022 to 2017.

Courtroom Neuroscience Not Ready for Prime Time
A new report on neuroscience and the law presented today by the U.K. Royal Society suggests that cutting edge neuroscience, such as using a brain scanner to determine whether a witness is lying, or a genetic analysis to determine whether a murder suspect is predisposed to commit violent crimes, is not yet ready to withstand public scrutiny of UK courts.

Scientists Detect Preliminary Traces of the Higgs Boson
At the CERN particle accelerator 100 meters beneath the Franco-Swiss border, scientists are starting to narrow the window of possible masses for the long-sought Higgs Boson, the particle responsible for the existence of mass.

New Path to Flex and Stretch Electronics
Researchers at Berkeley National Lab and funded by the Department of Energy Office of Science and the National Science Foundation are developing new techniques for fabrication of low-cost flexible and stretchable electronics in the future.

Never Wash Your Clothes Again, with Science
Chemical engineers in China say they’ve developed a cotton fabric that cleans itself — all it needs is a little sunlight.

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