Humans like to brag about how we invented agriculture around 12,000 years ago, perhaps somewhere in the fertile crescent of Southwest Asia. We also like to boast about how we pioneered antibiotics some 80 years ago. However, like most things, nature beat us to the punch millions of years ago.
Friday, Oct 12th 2018 (12:00am)
So I just got back from a little vacation that briefly put me in the Great White North for the first time, and I took the opportunity to visit the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory in Victoria BC where the visitor's center has dubbed itself the Centre of the Universe. It's a nifty little observatory of significant historical and scientific interest that is sadly now in a state of disrepair, woefully underfunded by the Canadian government and looking to restore itself to the point where it can at least contribute to the astrological community again and open itself back up to schools and the general public.
Monday, Sep 24th 2018 (12:00am)
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The European Space Agency's Gaia satellite has created a catalogue of 1.7 billion stars, 600 million more than previously recorded. It's the most detailed star map of the Milky Way galaxy ever made. The star map offers astronomers and astrophysicists a breathtaking and revolutionary view of our home galaxy.
Friday, Sep 7th 2018 (12:01am)
"Our minds aren't passive observers, simply perceiving reality as it is. Our minds actually change reality," said Alia Crum, PhD, who directs the Stanford Mind and Body Lab in a recent Stanford News feature.
Wednesday, Sep 5th 2018 (12:00am)
Think about this. Colonizing Mars makes perfect sense. It's the planet most like Earth but it also represents some serious challenges. Transporting food rather than growing it on the surface of the red planet would be exponentially more expensive.
How best to develop crops that will grow an additional 49 million miles from the Sun and in a practically nonexistent atmosphere?
Wednesday, Aug 1st 2018 (12:00am)
Congress passed the National Aeronautics and Space Act, on July 16 and President Eisenhower signed it into law on July 29, 1958. NASA opened for business on Oct. 1, 1958, with T. Keith Glennan as our first administrator. Our history tells a story of exploration, innovation and discoveries. The next 60 years, that story continues. Learn more.
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This summer, NASA's Parker Solar Probe will launch to travel closer to the Sun, deeper into the solar atmosphere, than any mission before it. If Earth was at one end of a yard-stick and the Sun on the other, Parker Solar Probe will make it to within four inches of the solar surface.
Inside that part of the solar atmosphere, a region known as the corona, Parker Solar Probe will provide unprecedented observations of what drives the wide range of particles, energy and heat that course through the region—flinging particles outward into the solar system and far past Neptune.
Inside the corona, it's also, of course, unimaginably hot. The spacecraft will travel through material with temperatures greater than a million degrees Fahrenheit while being bombarded with intense sun light.
So, why won't it melt?
Monday, Jul 23rd 2018 (12:01am)
An asteroid discovered orbiting the Sun in December last year has revealed a fun surprise: it's not one asteroid, but two, locked in their own binary orbit around a mutual center of gravity.
Monday, Jul 16th 2018 (12:00am)
The discovery of a high-energy neutrino on Sept. 22, 2017, sent astronomers on a chase to locate its source... a supermassive black hole in a distant galaxy. Watch to learn more.
Credit: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center
Music: Hidden Tides from Killer Tracks
Sunday, Jul 15th 2018 (12:00am)
(2017 WEBBY PEOPLE'S VOICE WINNER for Best Science & Education Video)
Learn step-by-step how the little female bugs go about getting a meal for her eggs and transmit disease as a by-product in this fascinating video clip.
Saturday, Jul 14th 2018 (12:00am)
The European Space Agency had its own special way of marking a memorial service for astrophysicist Professor Stephen Hawking. At the same time his ashes were interred at Westminster Abbey in London, the ESA beamed music featuring Hawking's famously synthesized voice towards the closest-known black hole.
The three-person Expedition 56/57 crew launched into space from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan this morning (June 6). On their way to the rocket, the crew - or at least Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev - did something odd: Reportedly, as in the past, the bus transporting them would stop, and the male crewmembers will urinate on the back-right tire of their ride.
What would Stuart Little make of it? Mice have been created whose brains are half human. As a result, the animals are smarter than their siblings.
The idea is not to mimic fiction, but to advance our understanding of human brain diseases by studying them in whole mouse brains rather than in dishes.
The altered mice still have mouse neurons – the “thinking” cells that make up around half of all their brain cells. But practically all the glial cells in their brains, the ones that support the neurons, are human.
“It’s still a mouse brain, not a human brain,” says Steve Goldman of the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York. “But all the non-neuronal cells are human.”
Thursday, May 31st 2018 (1:11am)
The thought of terraforming an entire planet is likely more science fiction than science fact. For example, in this clip, we are presented with the idea of starting the process with nuclear bombs. Someone didn't think of residual radiation.
Also, Mars has no magnetic field. The solar wind particles would rip most of the atmosphere away and dry up all the water.
Thursday, May 10th 2018 (12:00am)
Climate change is an increasingly dangerous antagonist, and we're not doing a great job curtailing it. Which is why, in the not too distant future, we may have to undertake a new, Manhattan Project-style endeavor to hold back the rising mercury. Once a fringe idea, there’s now a growing possibility we'll build machines that will, in a manner of speaking, darken the Sun.
Take a virtual tour of the Moon in all-new 4K resolution, thanks to data provided by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft. As the visualization moves around the near side, far side, north and south poles, we highlight interesting features, sites, and information gathered on the lunar terrain.
Saturday, Apr 14th 2018 (12:00am)
NASA has two teams of researchers working to design a robotic bee that can fly on Mars. The space agency announced the project on March 30. It's in its early stages, but the idea is to replace modern rovers - which are slow, bulky and very expensive - with swarms of sensor-studded, fast-moving micro-bots that can cover much more ground at a relatively low cost.
Thursday, Apr 12th 2018 (12:00am)
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)
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