Keyword: science

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  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Apollo 11 Landing Site Panorama

    12/20/2014 6:54:38 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 20 replies
    NASA ^ | December 20, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Have you seen a panorama from another world lately? Assembled from high-resolution scans of the original film frames, this one sweeps across the magnificent desolation of the Apollo 11 landing site on the Moon's Sea of Tranquility. Taken by Neil Armstrong looking out his window of the Eagle Lunar Module, the frame at the far left (AS11-37-5449) is the first picture taken by a person on another world. Toward the south, thruster nozzles can be seen in the foreground on the left, while at the right, the shadow of the Eagle is visible toward the west. For scale, the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Reflections on the 1970s

    12/20/2014 6:50:51 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 14 replies
    NASA ^ | December 19, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: The 1970s are sometimes ignored by astronomers, like this beautiful grouping of reflection nebulae in Orion - NGC 1977, NGC 1975, and NGC 1973 - usually overlooked in favor of the substantial glow from the nearby stellar nursery better known as the Orion Nebula. Found along Orion's sword just north of the bright Orion Nebula complex, these reflection nebulae are also associated with Orion's giant molecular cloud about 1,500 light-years away, but are dominated by the characteristic blue color of interstellar dust reflecting light from hot young stars. In this sharp color image a portion of the Orion Nebula...
  • ISS astronaut needs a wrench, NASA successfully 'emails' him one

    12/19/2014 2:44:12 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 43 replies
    cnet.com ^ | 19 December 2014 9:46 pm GMT | Anthony Domanico
    An astronaut aboard the International Space Station needed a socket wrench, so NASA engineers emailed him designs for 3D-printing one.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- NGC 7331 and Beyond

    12/18/2014 9:13:33 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 17 replies
    NASA ^ | December 18, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Big, beautiful spiral galaxy NGC 7331 is often touted as an analog to our own Milky Way. About 50 million light-years distant in the northern constellation Pegasus, NGC 7331 was recognized early on as a spiral nebula and is actually one of the brighter galaxies not included in Charles Messier's famous 18th century catalog. Since the galaxy's disk is inclined to our line-of-sight, long telescopic exposures often result in an image that evokes a strong sense of depth. The effect is further enhanced in this sharp image from a small telescope by galaxies that lie beyond the gorgeous island...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Geminid Fireball over Mount Balang

    12/18/2014 9:08:45 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    NASA ^ | December 17, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This was a sky to remember. While viewing the Geminids meteor shower a few days ago, a bright fireball was captured over Mt. Balang, China with particularly picturesque surroundings. In the foreground, a sea of light clouds slowly floated between dark mountain peaks. In the background, the constellation of Orion shone brightly, with the familiar three stars of Orion's belt visible near the image top right. Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, is visible near the image center. The bright fireball flashed for only a fraction of second on the lower right. The source of the fireball...
  • Volume of world's oldest water estimated

    12/18/2014 1:33:29 AM PST · by WhiskeyX · 42 replies
    BBC ^ | 17 December 2014 Last updated at 20:25 ET | Rebecca, BBC
    The world's oldest water, which is locked deep within the Earth's crust, is present at a far greater volume than was thought, scientists report. The liquid, some of which is billions of years old, is found many kilometres beneath the ground. Researchers estimate there is about 11m cubic kilometres (2.5m cu miles) of it - more water than all the world's rivers, swamps and lakes put together. The study was presented at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting. It has also been published in the journal Nature. The team found that the water was reacting with the rock to release...
  • NASA Rover Finds Active and Ancient Organic Chemistry on Mars

    12/16/2014 4:22:20 PM PST · by Islander7 · 22 replies
    JPL ^ | Dec 16, 2014 | Staff
    NASA's Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a rock-powder sample collected by the robotic laboratory's drill. "This temporary increase in methane -- sharply up and then back down -- tells us there must be some relatively localized source," said Sushil Atreya of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, a member of the Curiosity rover science team. "There are many possible sources, biological or non-biological, such as interaction of water and rock."
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- W5: Pillars of Star Formation

    12/16/2014 2:05:46 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies
    NASA ^ | December 16, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: How do stars form? Images of the star forming region W5 like those in the infrared by NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite provide clear clues with indications that massive stars near the center of empty cavities are older than stars near the edges. A likely reason for this is that the older stars in the center are actually triggering the formation of the younger edge stars. The triggered star formation occurs when hot outflowing gas compresses cooler gas into knots dense enough to gravitationally contract into stars. In the featured scientifically-colored infrared image, spectacular pillars, left...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Potsdam Gravity Potato

    12/15/2014 3:22:41 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 50 replies
    NASA ^ | December 15, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Why do some places on Earth have higher gravity than others? Sometimes the reason is unknown. To help better understand the Earth's surface, sensitive measurments by the orbiting satellites GRACE and CHAMP were used to create a map of Earth's gravitational field. Since a center for studying this data is in Potsdam, Germany, and since the result makes the Earth look somewhat like a potato, the resulting geoid has been referred to as the Potsdam Gravity Potato. High areas on this map, colored red, indicate areas where gravity is slightly stronger than usual, while in blue areas gravity is...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Molecular Cloud Barnard 68

    12/14/2014 8:07:43 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 16 replies
    NASA ^ | December 14, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Where did all the stars go? What used to be considered a hole in the sky is now known to astronomers as a dark molecular cloud. Here, a high concentration of dust and molecular gas absorb practically all the visible light emitted from background stars. The eerily dark surroundings help make the interiors of molecular clouds some of the coldest and most isolated places in the universe. One of the most notable of these dark absorption nebulae is a cloud toward the constellation Ophiuchus known as Barnard 68, pictured above. That no stars are visible in the center indicates...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Infrared Visible Andromeda

    12/13/2014 5:49:17 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | December 13, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This remarkable synthetic color composite image was assembled from archives of visible light and infrared astronomy image data. The field of view spans the Andromeda Galaxy (M31), a massive spiral a mere 2.5 million light-years away. In fact, with over twice the diameter of our own Milky Way, Andromeda is the largest nearby galaxy. Andromeda's population of bright young blue stars lie along its sweeping spiral arms, with the telltale reddish glow of star forming regions traced in space- and ground-based visible light data. But infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope, also blended directly into the detailed composite's...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Crystals on Mars

    12/13/2014 5:44:56 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 11 replies
    NASA ^ | December 12, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: This extreme close-up, a mosaic from the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on the Curiosity rover, spans a breathtaking 5 centimeters. It captures what appear to be elongated crystal shapes formed by the precipitation of minerals dissolved in water, a likely result of the evaporation of ancient lake or river from the Martian surface. Brushed by a dust removal tool and illuminated by white LEDs, the target rock named Mojave was found on the Pink Cliffs outcrop of the Pahrump Hills at the base of Mount Sharp. The MAHLI images were acquired on Curiosity's sol 809, known on planet...
  • Red States Are Getting a New Shade of Redder-people who deny climate change most likely to suffer

    12/12/2014 1:28:28 AM PST · by Cincinatus' Wife · 42 replies
    Slate ^ | December 12, 2014 | Joshua Zaffos
    ".....Yuma,Colorado, a farming town of 3,500 people near the Kansas border, celebrated last month as homegrown Republican Cory Gardner was elected to the U.S. Senate. Gardner, a high school football player and the son of a farm equipment dealer, defeated incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Udall to help the GOP gain control of the Senate in the second-most expensive congressional race of all time.Gardner represented Colorado’s 4th Congressional District for four years, an expansive territory that covers the mostly flat and rural eastern third of the state. Farmers there mostly grow corn to feed cattle, and water comes from the quickly...
  • Scientists develop artificial skin that can feel rain and the touch of a hand

    12/11/2014 11:25:37 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 6 replies
    /CBS News/ ^ | December 9, 2014, 3:15 PM | By/Michael Casey
    The smart skin, which in photos appears to drape a prosthetic hand like a see-through glove, is made of a soft polymer known as elastomer, and contains pressure, temperature and humidity sensors and stretchable electrodes that stimulate the existing nerves. The researchers were able to demonstrate how the skin could sense pressure from catching a ball as well as the temperature of a cup of hot or cold water. It could tell wet from dry, and the skin's heat sensors responded when it touched a baby doll warmed to body temperature.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Moondog Night

    12/11/2014 7:16:15 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | December 11, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: In this night scene from the early hours of November 14, light from a last quarter Moon illuminates clouds above the mountaintop domes of Kitt Peak National Observatory near Tucson, Arizona. Bright Jupiter is just left of the overexposed lunar disk with a streak of camera lens flare immediately to the right, but that's no fireball meteor exploding near the center of the picture. Instead, from the roadside perspective a stunningly bright moondog or paraselene stands directly over Kitt Peaks's WIYN telescope. Analogous to a sundog or parhelion, a paraselene is produced by moonlight refracted through thin, hexagonal, plate-shaped...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Reddening of M71

    12/10/2014 10:07:57 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 2 replies
    NASA ^ | December 10, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Now known to be a globular star cluster at the tender age of 10 billion years, M71 is a mere 13,000 light-years away within the narrow boundaries of the faint constellation Sagitta. Close to the plane of the Milky Way galaxy in planet Earth's sky, its 10,000 or so member stars are gathered into a region about 27 light-years across near the center of this color composite view. In fact, the line-of-sight to M71 passes along the galactic plane through much intervening diffuse interstellar dust. The dust dims starlight and scatters blue light more efficiently, masking the brightness of...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Flame Nebula in Visible and Infrared

    12/10/2014 10:04:49 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    NASA ^ | December 09, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What lights up the Flame Nebula? Fifteen hundred light years away towards the constellation of Orion lies a nebula which, from its glow and dark dust lanes, appears, on the left, like a billowing fire. But fire, the rapid acquisition of oxygen, is not what makes this Flame glow. Rather the bright star Alnitak, the easternmost star in the Belt of Orion visible just to the right of the nebula, shines energetic light into the Flame that knocks electrons away from the great clouds of hydrogen gas that reside there. Much of the glow results when the electrons and...
  • Russia's Usmanov to give back Watson's auctioned Nobel medal

    12/09/2014 9:10:35 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 17 replies
    Russia's richest man has revealed that he bought US scientist James Watson's Nobel Prize gold medal, and intends to return it to him. Steel and telecoms tycoon Alisher Usmanov said Mr Watson "deserved" the medal, and that he was "distressed" the scientist had felt forced to sell it. The medal, awarded in 1962 for the discovery of the structure of DNA, sold for $4.8m (£3m) at auction. The medal was the first Nobel Prize to be put on sale by a living recipient....
  • The Statist Academic Reflex

    12/09/2014 11:07:33 AM PST · by Academiadotorg · 3 replies
    Accuracy in Academia ^ | December 8, 2014 | Malcolm A. Kline
    Once upon a time, there was a saying among the young: “The answer is more beer. What is the question?” Substitute the word “government” for the word “beer” and you have what could be the rallying cry for academics today. “As for spurring economic growth in general, there is a near consensus among serious economists about many of the policies that are necessary,” MIT economists Erik Brynjolfsson, Andrew McAfee, and Michael Spence wrote in an article which appeared in Foreign Affairs last summer. “ The basic strategy is intellectually simple, if politically difficult: boost public-sector investment over the short and...
  • Does Science Now Point to God? Author to Discuss Discoveries in Cosmology, Biology, Evolution

    12/08/2014 2:54:27 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 60 replies
    PRWeb ^ | October 1, 2014 | Joseph Budzinski
    Has science now proven that God exists? Douglas Ell, author of the new book Counting To God, will speak about this and other “big questions” related to science and faith in two lectures at Trinity Episcopal Church in Vero Beach. Times: Tuesday, October 21, 2014, 6:00 pm Tuesday, November 18, 2014, 6:00 pm Location: Trinity Episcopal Church 2365 Pine Avenue Vero Beach, FL 32960 Both talks are open to the general public and there is no charge. In Counting To God, Ell applies the lens of mathematical analysis to a series of scientific discoveries, drawing startling conclusions about the relation...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Wanderers

    12/08/2014 7:53:19 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 16 replies
    NASA ^ | December 08, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: How far out will humanity explore? If this video's fusion of real space imagery and fictional space visualizations is on the right track, then at least the Solar System. Some of the video's wondrous sequences depict future humans drifting through the rings of Saturn, exploring Jupiter from a nearby spacecraft, and jumping off a high cliff in the low gravity of a moon of Uranus. Although no one can know the future, wandering and exploring beyond boundaries -- both physical and intellectual -- is part of the human spirit and has frequently served humanity well in the past.
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Aurora Shimmer, Meteor Flash

    12/07/2014 9:13:20 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | December 07, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Northern Lights, aurora borealis, haunted skies over the island of Kvaløya, near Tromsø Norway on 2009 December 13. This 30 second long exposure records their shimmering glow gently lighting the wintery coastal scene. A study in contrasts, it also captures the sudden flash of a fireball meteor from the excellent Geminid meteor shower in 2009 December. Streaking past familiar stars in the handle of the Big Dipper, the trail points back toward the constellation Gemini, off the top of the view. Both aurora and meteors occur in Earth's upper atmosphere at altitudes of 100 kilometers or so, but aurora...
  • Proof of Life

    12/07/2014 8:01:54 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 5 replies
    PJ Media's Belmont Club ^ | December 7, 2014 | Richard Fernandez
    The intellectual role that used to be occupied by theology is now largely filled by science fiction. Wikipedia lists only a dozen of possibly hundreds of books where writers, some of them practicing mathematicians or scientists themselves, examine the consequences of our current understanding of the universe. The familiar, everyday world that we know isn’t what it seems. It is actually a strange place. On large scales it isn’t governed by ‘common sense’ Newtonian physics but by the paradoxes of relativity. At very small scales, perhaps at its foundation, it is governed by quantum phenomena, which is stranger still. Arthur...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Orion Launch

    12/06/2014 1:08:37 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 11 replies
    NASA ^ | December 06, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Headed for two orbits of planet Earth and a splashdown in the Pacific, Orion blazed into the early morning sky on Friday at 7:05am ET. The spacecraft was launched atop a United Launch Aliance Delta IV Heavy rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Its first voyage into space on an uncrewed flight test, the Orion traveled some 3,600 miles from Earth, about 15 times higher than the orbital altitude of the International Space Station. In fact, Orion traveled farther into space than any spacecraft designed for astronauts since the Apollo missions to the Moon. The Orion...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Milky Way over Moon Valley

    12/06/2014 1:06:04 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 13 replies
    NASA ^ | December 05, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Our Milky Way Galaxy arcs over a desolate landscape in this fantastic panoramic night skyview. The otherworldly scene looks across the arid, eroded terrain of the Valle de la Luna in the Chilean Atacama desert. Just along the horizon are lights from San Pedro, Chile, as well as the small villages of Socaire and Toconao, and a tortuous road from the city of Calama to San Pedro. Taken on October 18th, the five panel mosaic also features the four galaxies easily visible from our fair planet's dark sky regions. At the far left, satellite galaxies known as the Large...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Plato and the Lunar Alps

    12/04/2014 2:05:05 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 5 replies
    NASA ^ | December 04, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: The dark-floored, 95 kilometer wide crater Plato and sunlit peaks of the lunar Alps (Montes Alpes) are highlighted in this sharp digital snapshot of the Moon's surface. While the Alps of planet Earth were uplifted over millions of years as continental plates slowly collided, the lunar Alps were likely formed by a sudden collision that created the giant impact basin known as the Mare Imbrium or Sea of Rains. The mare's generally smooth, lava-flooded floor is seen below the boardering mountain range. The prominent straight feature cutting through the mountains is the lunar Alpine Valley (Vallis Alpes). Joining the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Sharpless 249 and the Jellyfish Nebula

    12/04/2014 2:01:46 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 3 replies
    NASA ^ | December 03, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Normally faint and elusive, the Jellyfish Nebula is caught in this alluring telescopic mosaic. The scene is anchored right and left by two bright stars, Mu and Eta Geminorum, at the foot of the celestial twin while the Jellyfish Nebula is the brighter arcing ridge of emission with dangling tentacles below and right of center. In fact, the cosmic jellyfish is part of bubble-shaped supernova remnant IC 443, the expanding debris cloud from a massive star that exploded. Light from the explosion first reached planet Earth over 30,000 years ago. Like its cousin in astrophysical waters the Crab Nebula...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Eta Carinae and the Expanding Homunculus Nebula

    12/04/2014 1:59:03 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies
    NASA ^ | December 02, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: How did the Eta Carinae star system create this unusual expanding nebula? No one knows for sure. About 170 years ago, the southern star system Eta Carinae (Eta Car) mysteriously became the second brightest star system in the night sky. Twenty years later, after ejecting more mass than our Sun, Eta Car unexpectedly faded. Somehow, this outburst appears to have created the Homunculus Nebula. The three-frame video features images of the nebula taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1995, 2001, and 2008. The Homunculus nebula's center is lit by light from a bright central star, while the surrounding...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Stars and Dust Pillars in NGC 7822 from WISE

    12/04/2014 1:55:52 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | December 01, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Hot, young stars and cosmic pillars of gas and dust seem to crowd into NGC 7822. At the edge of a giant molecular cloud toward the northern constellation Cepheus, this glowing star forming region lies about 3,000 light-years away. Within the nebula, bright edges and complex dust sculptures dominate this detailed skyscape taken in infrared light by NASA's Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite. The atomic emission by the cluster's gas is powered by energetic radiation from the hot stars, whose powerful winds and light also sculpt and erode the denser pillar shapes. Stars could still be forming...
  • Starship Troopers: One of the Most Misunderstood Movies Ever

    12/02/2014 7:02:56 AM PST · by C19fan · 77 replies
    The Atlantic ^ | November 7, 2013 | Calum Marsh
    When Paul Verhoeven’s Starship Troopers hit theaters 16 years ago today, most American critics slammed it. In the New York Times, Janet Maslin panned the “crazed, lurid spectacle,” as featuring “raunchiness tailor-made for teen-age boys.” Jeff Vice, in the Deseret News, called it “a nonstop splatterfest so devoid of taste and logic that it makes even the most brainless summer blockbuster look intelligent.” Roger Ebert, who had praised the “pointed social satire” of Verhoeven’s Robocop, found the film “one-dimensional,” a trivial nothing “pitched at 11-year-old science-fiction fans.” But those critics had missed the point. Starship Troopers is satire, a ruthlessly...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Seahorse of the Large Magellanic Cloud

    11/30/2014 6:20:52 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | November 30, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: It may look like a grazing seahorse, but the dark object toward the image right is actually a pillar of smoky dust about 20 light years long. The curiously-shaped dust structure occurs in our neighboring Large Magellanic Cloud, in a star forming region very near the expansive Tarantula Nebula. The energetic nebula is creating a star cluster, NGC 2074, whose center is visible just off the top of the image in the direction of the neck of the seahorse. The representative color image was taken last year by the Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 in honor...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- 3D 67P

    11/29/2014 4:07:38 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 9 replies
    NASA ^ | November 29, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Get out your red/blue glasses and float next to a comet! The Rosetta mission lander Philae's ROLIS camera snapped the two frames used to create this stereo anaglyph for 3D viewing during its November 12 descent to the nucleus of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The comet's curious double lobed nucleus is seen nearly end on from a distance of about 3 kilometers, about 1 hour before Philae arrived at the surface. Philae's initial landing site is near the center of the front facing lobe. Part of a landing gear foot cuts across the upper right corner, in the close foreground of...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Portrait of NGC 281

    11/29/2014 4:05:48 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | November 28, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Look through the cosmic cloud cataloged as NGC 281 and you might miss the stars of open cluster IC 1590. But, formed within the nebula, that cluster's young, massive stars ultimately power the pervasive nebular glow. The eye-catching shapes looming in this portrait of NGC 281 are sculpted columns and dense dust globules seen in silhouette, eroded by intense, energetic winds and radiation from the hot cluster stars. If they survive long enough, the dusty structures could also be sites of future star formation. Playfully called the Pacman Nebula because of its overall shape, NGC 281 is about 10,000...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Galileo's Europa Remastered

    11/29/2014 4:02:05 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 15 replies
    NASA ^ | November 27, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Looping through the Jovian system in the late 1990s, the Galileo spacecraft recorded stunning views of Europa and uncovered evidence that the moon's icy surface likely hides a deep, global ocean. Galileo's Europa image data has been newly remastered here, using improved new calibrations to produce a color image approximating what the human eye might see. Europa's long curving fractures hint at the subsurface liquid water. The tidal flexing the large moon experiences in its elliptical orbit around Jupiter supplies the energy to keep the ocean liquid. But more tantalizing is the possibility that even in the absence of...
  • 1960’s satellite imagery of polar ice discovers “enormous holes” in the sea ice

    11/29/2014 6:39:51 AM PST · by Lorianne · 39 replies
    Whats Up With That? ^ | 04 September 2014 | Anthony Watts
    NSIDC has announced the discovery and recovery of space footage of Earth’s polar icecaps, dating back to 1964. The recovered photographs have yielded some startling surprises, according to David Gallaher, technical services manager at NSIDC, bold mine: In the Arctic, sea ice extent was larger in the 1960s than it is these days, on average. “It was colder, so we expected that,” Gallaher said. What the researchers didn’t expect were “enormous holes” in the sea ice, currently under investigation. “We can’t explain them yet,” Gallaher said. “And the Antarctic blew us away,” he said. In 1964, sea ice extent in...
  • SpaceX will attempt to land Falcon 9 boot December 9th on a floating platform and then reuse it

    11/25/2014 3:44:13 PM PST · by Vince Ferrer · 24 replies
    Next Big Future ^ | Octiber 27, 2014 | Next Big Future
    Elon Musk spoke at the MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics Department's 2014 Centennial celebration. The October 22-24 Centennial Symposium featuring some of the most illustrious names in aerospace reflecting on past achievement, celebrating today’s innovative research and education, and offering their perspectives on what lies ahead. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said his company will make a first attempt to land the booster stage of its Falcon 9 rocket on a floating platform during the upcoming ISS resupply mission. If the attempt is successful, the company plans to refurbish and reuse the booster stage, making spaceflight history and paving the way for...
  • 'Jurassic World' Dinosaurs Stuck in the 1980s, Experts Grumble

    11/27/2014 10:48:23 AM PST · by EveningStar · 38 replies
    National Geographic ^ | November 26, 2014 | Linda Qiu and Dan Vergano
    Who doesn't love a dinosaur flick? Well, paleontologists have a few fossil bones to pick with Jurassic World, the latest in a line of dinosaur movies that once bragged about its scientific credibility. The trailer for the new movie, a reboot of the popular 1990s Jurassic Park franchise, was released Tuesday and has already been viewed more than 14 million times on YouTube. Like the original movie, Jurassic World takes place in an island safari park, where tourists visit living dinosaurs cloned from ancient DNA—until one hybrid monster goes rogue. Despite global fervor among fans, dinosaur scientists are not thrilled...
  • Lab-grown spinal cords grown in petri dishes for the first time

    11/26/2014 11:12:33 PM PST · by 2ndDivisionVet · 20 replies
    The Guardian & Observer ^ | November 26, 2014 | Mo Costandi
    Researchers in Germany have grown complete spinal cords – partly thanks to a gene called sonic hedgehog.As regenerative medicine and stem cell technologies continue to progress, so the list of tissues and organs that can be grown from scratch – and potentially replaced – continues to grow. In the past few years, researchers have used stem cells to grow windpipes, bladders, urethras and vaginas in the lab, and, in some cases, successfully transplanted them into patients. Others are making progress in growing liver and heart tissue; one team in London is busy growing blood vessels, noses and ears; and some...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Io and Callisto Mutual Event

    11/26/2014 5:23:54 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | November 26, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: A 24 minute sequence from top to bottom, this intriguing series of telescopic frames tracks the occultation of Io by Callisto, two of Jupiter's Galilean moons, from San Pietro Polesine, Italy, planet Earth. A challenging observational project using a small telescope, the two contrasting Jovian worlds are both slightly larger than Earth's Moon. In fact, bright, volcanic Io and dark, cratered Callisto are about 3,640 and 4,820 kilometers in diameter respectively. With Earth itself now crossing near the orbital plane of Jupiter's moons, astronomers are enjoying a season of Galilean moon mutual events ranging from eclipses to occultations. The...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Creature from the Red Lagoon

    11/25/2014 8:55:15 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | November 25, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What creature lurks near the red Lagoon nebula? Mars. This gorgeous color deep-sky photograph has captured the red planet passing below two notable nebulae -- cataloged by the 18th century cosmic registrar Charles Messier as M8 and M20. M20 (upper right of center), the Trifid Nebula, presents a striking contrast in red/blue colors and dark dust lanes. Just below and to the left is the expansive, alluring red glow of M8, the Lagoon Nebula. Both nebulae are a few thousand light-years distant. By comparison, temporarily situated below them both, is the dominant "local" celestial beacon Mars. Taken late last...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Soaring over Titan

    11/24/2014 12:45:57 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 8 replies
    NASA ^ | November 24, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What would it look like to fly over Titan? Radar images from NASA's robotic Cassini satellite in orbit around Saturn have been digitally compiled to simulate such a flight. Cassini has swooped past Saturn's cloudiest moon several times since it arrived at the ringed planet in 2004. The virtual flight featured here shows numerous lakes colored black and mountainous terrain colored tan. Surface regions without detailed vertical information appear more flat, while sufficiently mapped regions have their heights digitally stretched. Among the basins visualized is Kraken Mare, Titan's largest lake which spans over 1,000 kilometers long. Titan's lakes are...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Tornado and Rainbow Over Kansas

    11/23/2014 11:41:49 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 10 replies
    NASA ^ | November 23, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: The scene might have been considered serene if it weren't for the tornado. During 2004 in Kansas, storm chaser Eric Nguyen photographed this budding twister in a different light -- the light of a rainbow. Featured here, a white tornado cloud descends from a dark storm cloud. The Sun, peeking through a clear patch of sky to the left, illuminates some buildings in the foreground. Sunlight reflects off raindrops to form a rainbow. By coincidence, the tornado appears to end right over the rainbow. Streaks in the image are hail being swept about by the high swirling winds. Over...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Solar Flare from a Sharper Sun

    11/23/2014 11:38:14 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | November 22, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Solar active region AR2192 was the largest recorded sunspot group of the last 24 years. Before rotating off the Earth-facing side of the Sun at the end of October, it produced a whopping six energetic X-class flares. Its most intense flare was captured on October 24 in this stunning view from the orbiting Solar Dynamics Observatory. The scene is a color combination of images made at three different wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light; 193 angstroms shown in blue, 171 angstroms in white, and 304 angstroms in red. The emission, from highly ionized Iron and Helium atoms, traces magnetic field...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- M1: The Crab Nebula

    11/23/2014 11:14:59 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 16 replies
    NASA ^ | November 21, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: The Crab Nebula is cataloged as M1, the first object on Charles Messier's famous 18th century list of things which are not comets. In fact, the Crab is now known to be a supernova remnant, debris from the death explosion of a massive star, witnessed by astronomers in the year 1054. This sharp, ground-based telescopic view uses narrowband data to track emission from ionized oxygen and hydrogen atoms (in blue and red) and explore the tangled filaments within the still expanding cloud. One of the most exotic objects known to modern astronomers, the Crab Pulsar, a neutron star spinning...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- LDN 988: Dark Nebula in Cygnus

    11/23/2014 11:11:15 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 2 replies
    NASA ^ | November 20, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Obscuring the rich starfields of northern Cygnus, dark nebula LDN 988 lies near the center of this cosmic skyscape. Composed with telescope and camera, the scene is some 2 degrees across. That corresponds to 70 light-years at the estimated 2,000 light-year distance of LDN 988. Stars are forming within LDN 988, part of a larger complex of dusty molecular clouds along the plane of our Milky Way galaxy sometimes called the Northern Coalsack. In fact, nebulosities associated with young stars abound in the region, including variable star V1331 Cygni shown in the inset. At the tip of a long...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Bright Spiral Galaxy M81

    11/23/2014 11:07:51 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 3 replies
    NASA ^ | November 19, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: One of the brightest galaxies in planet Earth's sky is similar in size to our Milky Way Galaxy: big, beautiful M81. This grand spiral galaxy can be found toward the northern constellation of the Great Bear (Ursa Major). This superbly detailed view reveals M81's bright yellow nucleus, blue spiral arms, and sweeping cosmic dust lanes with a scale comparable to the Milky Way. Hinting at a disorderly past, a remarkable dust lane actually runs straight through the disk, to the left of the galactic center, contrary to M81's other prominent spiral features. The errant dust lane may be the...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Star Formation in the Tadpole Nebula

    11/23/2014 10:51:40 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 12 replies
    NASA ^ | November 18, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Dusty emission in the Tadpole nebula, IC 410, lies about 12,000 light-years away in the northern constellation Auriga. The cloud of glowing gas is over 100 light-years across, sculpted by stellar winds and radiation from embedded open star cluster NGC 1893. Formed in the interstellar cloud a mere 4 million years ago, bright cluster stars are seen all around the star-forming nebula. Notable near the image center are two relatively dense streamers of material trailing away from the nebula's central regions. Potentially sites of ongoing star formation in IC 410, these cosmic tadpole shapes are about 10 light-years long....
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Double Dust Disks of HD 95086

    11/22/2014 11:08:37 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | November 17, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What do other star systems look like? To help find out, astronomers are carrying out detailed observations of nearby stars in infrared light to see which have dust disks that might be forming planets. Observations by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and ESA's Herschel Space Observatory have found that planetary system HD 95086 has two dust disks: a hot one near the parent star and a cooler one farther out. An artist's illustration of how the system might appear is featured here, including hypothetical planets with large rings that orbit between the disks. The planets may have created the large...
  • Throwback Thursday: Seeing through our galaxy

    11/21/2014 10:58:31 PM PST · by LibWhacker · 7 replies
    Medium ^ | 11/20/14 | Ethan Siegel
    When we look out at the Universe, our view is pretty consistently dominated by the stars within our own galaxy. Although we know that many interesting things lie beyond — globular clusters, individual galaxies, and rich clusters and superclusters of galaxies — being in the Milky Way makes it very hard to see a great many of them. This is because our own galaxy, from our vantage point within it, dominates a huge fraction of the sky overhead. Image credit: Richard Payne, of Arizona Astrophotography.The plane of the Milky Way itself obscures about a total of 20% of our night sky. What appears...
  • Evolutionary Cosmologies: Religious Endeavor to become like God

    11/20/2014 11:07:20 AM PST · by spirited irish · 28 replies
    Renew America ^ | Nov. 20, 2014 | Linda Kimball
    Throughout the de-Christianized West and America neo-pagan and mystical pantheist evolutionary reasoning is taken for granted throughout the college curriculum, just as it is in all aspects of modern thought and experience. It not only undergirds biological and earth sciences, but also Freudian and Jungian psychology, anthropology, law, sociology, politics, economics, the media, arts, medicine, and all other academic---and increasingly seminarian---disciplines as well. The West's amoral transnational elite Gnostics, the "chosen" ones, are particularly enamored of evolutionary reasoning: "Western cultural elites have disregarded God for more than two centuries, but for a while the effects were mostly confined to their...