As SpaceX's Elon Musk continues to track his red roadster's journey into deep space, he's also preparing to launch something far more practical. On Thursday, SpaceX will launch a pair of prototype satellites intended to form the basis for Starlink, a constellation of about 11,000 satellites that would beam broadband internet down to Earth. Thursday's launch - originally slated for Wednesday but put on hold because of "high altitude wind shear" - marks the first big step in Musk's plan for "rebuilding the internet in space," as he put it in 2015. In addition to competing with typical internet providers, Starlink could deliver connectivity to rural communities without the lag they're accustomed
The Broward sheriff deputy assigned to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School resigned on Thursday, about a week after a school shooting there that left 17 people dead. Scot Peterson, a school resource officer from the Broward County Sheriff’s office, waited outside the school building without ever going inside, sheriff Scott Israel said during a news conference on Thursday. “What I saw was a deputy arrive at the west side of building 12, take up a position, and he never went in,” Israel said Thursday, referring to the school building where the shooter went on his rampage.
An ancient seal bearing a Hebrew script and recovered in Jerusalem may have belonged to the biblical prophet Isaiah. The clay seal dates back to the eighth century B.C. and was discovered in a Jerusalem excavation site, National Geographic reported. Trending: What Does the Future Hold for Skier Lindsey Vonn after Her Final Olympic Games?
President Donald Trump attempted early Thursday to clarify comments he made the previous day — when he suggested during a listening session with school shooting survivors that arming “adept” teachers could be one way to end future tragedies faster — by calling again for giving guns to weapons-trained teachers. “A ‘gun free’ school is a magnet for bad people,” Trump tweeted Thursday morning. Trump reiterated the point Thursday, saying that he did not call for arming all teachers, before pushing the idea that “highly trained teachers” could stop school shootings.
The arrival of plants on Earth changed the planet and its inhabitants in big ways, and a new study suggests they arrived far earlier than thought. University of Bristol researchers now say that land plants evolved from pond scum about 500 million years ago—a whopping 100 million years earlier than the history books tell us, per a release. The date we've long used is based on the fossil record, but fossils aren't so great when it comes to plants because they are far less likely to be preserved than, say, an animal with bones. Hoping to find the answer outside of the fossil record, study co-author Mark Puttick and a team of researchers looked for differences in the DNA of more than 100 plant and algal species to see when they diverged on the evolutionary scale, reports Science.
Vice President Mike Pence issued an impassioned condemnation of North Korea at the Conservative Political Action Conference Thursday in response to criticism of his choice to ignore the North Korean Olympic delegation and sit during the country’s national anthem. “The United States of America doesn’t stand with murderous dictatorships, we stand up to murderous dictatorships,” Pence told the crowd at CPAC. Pence attracted media spotlight as the head of the U.S. delegation to the Olympics in Pyeongchang where he sat only a few feet away from the sister of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un during the opening ceremonies but did not acknowledge her.
A European space probe has swung into position around Mars in preparation to analyze its atmosphere for possible signs of life. The European Space Agency said Wednesday its Trace Gas Orbiter successfully performed a delicate maneuver known as aerobraking that involved dipping into the red planet's upper atmosphere to slow the probe. The agency says the orbiter will start looking for trace gases such as methane, which can result from biological or geological activity, in April. It will also search for ice that could help future Mars landings. A NASA-made radio on board will also help relay signals from U.S. rovers on the surface back to Earth. Europe plans to land its own rover on Mars in 2021.
Two millennia ago, a small Greco-Roman temple in present-day Turkey awed and enthralled its residents. Was it the bloodthirsty will of Pluto, the god of the underworld? New research published on Feb. 12 in the journal Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences suggests a far earthlier explanation to the cave’s mystery: noxious carbon dioxide.
We now know for sure that our extinct Neanderthal cousins were artists who regularly drew on cave walls. The finding implies the capacity to make art may have been inherited from the common ancestor we share with Neanderthals, which lived 500,000 years ago. Many European caves contain prehistoric art, all of which has been attributed to modern humans, though there have been past claims of Neanderthal paintings with weak evidence, Alistair Pike of the University of Southampton, UK and his colleagues have …
In global markets the price of cobalt, a mineral used in batteries for high-tech products from iPhones to Tesla electric cars, has nearly tripled to $81,500 a tonne in two years. In Kolwezi, a mining town in southeastern DRC, Chinese entrepreneurs dominate the middle section of the market, purchasing the raw cobalt from miners and selling it on for refining. Transactions in the buying houses depend on the purity of the ore.
Neither Cruciani nor his lawyer Mark L. Furman commented outside court. Cruciani changed from a beige jail uniform into a white shirt and black pants and got into a waiting car. One former patient, Hillary Tullin, 45, called a sexual abuse hotline last year and reported that Cruciani had abused her between 2005 and 2013, authorities said.
Mental decline is a natural part of aging, but for about five percent of the elderly population, their wits stay sharp well into their 80’s and beyond. At an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Austin, Texas last weekend, scientists from across the country came together to discuss their latest findings on the brains of super-agers, Science Alert reported. Super-agers are a small demographic of the elderly population that retain cognition on par with their far younger counterparts, sometimes up until the day that they die.
Allison Barrie on why American soldiers may soon be issued new, advanced night vision goggles similar to the type used by elite U.S. Special Operations forces.
Since 2011, NASA has been upgrading a mobile launcher originally built for the Ares I vehicle to fit its massive Space Launch System rocket. The project is well over budget—when all is said and done, the revamp of the $234 million tower is expected to cost an additional $678 million, per Ars Technica—but that might not be its only issue. As NASASpaceFlight.com reports, the 355-foot-high launch tower is now "leaning," possibly due to the recent addition of connecting arms. NASA acknowledges "some deflection and imperfections" but says the launcher is "structurally sound" and does not need any design modifications. "While NASA seems to believe this lean is not enough to require additional construction,
Special Counsel Robert Mueller has indicted 13 Russians and three Russian entities for meddling in the 2016 U.S. election. For anti-Trumpers, the indictments are proof positive that Donald Trump colluded with the Russians. For Trump supporters, the lack of any Trump campaign folks associated with this latest wave of indictments is exonerating (or, as Trump succinctly puts it, “no collusion!”).
Last year, Emma Gonzalez was leading Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School’s Gay Straight Alliance and working on a science project that launched a camera into space. Cameron Kasky played Motel (“the ‘miracle of miracles’ guy”) in the school’s production of Fiddler on the Roof. As the students’ movement gains visibility, they have faced backlash from bots and trolls who spread conspiracy theories about them and accuse them of being “crisis actors.” But the kids just laugh it off.
Brazil's defense minister said on Thursday that Boeing, Lockheed Martin, SpaceX and other U.S. aerospace companies have expressed interest in launching rockets from its Alcantara military base near the equator and visited the site in December. "They were very impressed," Defense Minister Raul Jungmann told reporters. "They showed interest, but I can't say whether it will materialize." Alcantara's location makes it attractive because one-fifth less fuel is used to launch satellites into orbit along the equator compared with sites farther north or south. Besides SpaceX, Lockheed Martin and Boeing, the Alcantara visit included smaller aerospace U.S. companies Vector Space Systems, which launches
Abdullahi Bego, a spokesman for the governor in Yobe state, said that authorities had no credible information that those missing from the village of Dapchi were taken by Boko Haram. Some witnesses, however, recalled seeing young girls being taken by the armed militants who also abducted 276 girls from the school in Chibok in April 2014. “I share the anguish of all the parents and guardians of the girls that remain unaccounted for,” Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari tweeted Wednesday evening.
German judges Thursday pushed back a decision on whether German cities can ban old diesel cars to reduce air pollution, with potentially dramatic consequences for a key industry and transport policy in Europe's largest economy. The court "wants to deliberate very thoroughly" on the question, presiding judge Andreas Korbmacher said, adding that the ruling will be announced on Tuesday. While a decision from the Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig in favour of anti-pollution plaintiffs would not order any vehicles off the road, it could open the way for cities to do so in zones where the air is particularly contaminated by diesel exhausts.
Samuel W. Shaffer faces at least 25 years in prison after agreeing to the Wednesday plea deal in Iron County, where prosecutors said he abused an 8-year-old girl related to a group member, the Spectrum newspaper reported. Child kidnapping and additional abuse courts were dropped in an agreement that keeps the girl from having to testify, said Iron County Attorney Scott Garrett. Shaffer and a friend formed a group called the Knights of the Crystal Blade based on arcane Mormon ideas long abandoned by the mainstream church and each believed himself married to two young girls, prosecutors have said.
Eavesdropping on the rumblings of a volcano may help scientists predict when an eruption is coming, according to a recent study published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The study used data from a volcano called Villarrica in Chile, which erupted in March 2015. Coincidentally, the eruption began just two months after scientists had started monitoring the noises it produces—in particular, infrasound, or noises pitched deeper than humans can hear.
As many dog owners know to their cost, dogs often have a penchant for things that we find less than palatable. If it’s not counter or table surfing, it might be raiding the kitchen rubbish bin or snacking on rich pickings from the park, street or elsewhere. Occasionally, those rich pickings include poo, much to the disgust of many owners.
Last summer, scientists announced that they had found what could be the first moon to be spotted outside of the solar system. But new research on the supposed moon's evolution calls its existence into question. If it does exist, the moon is most likely a large, Neptune-size object orbiting an even larger gas-giant planet. But the unwieldy system strains understanding of how it may have formed, researchers have said. In July 2017, scientists reluctantly announced the possible discovery of an exomoon. A candidate planet identified by NASA's Kepler telescope revealed lopsided dips in the light streaming from the planet's star, suggesting the possibility of a moon. After exomoon hunter David Kipping,
Thousands of chanting students, including survivors of the Florida school shooting, rallied at the state Capitol on Wednesday, demanding changes to gun laws and threatening to remove Republicans who refuse to address new gun-control measures. A week after the massacre that killed 17 people, the students took their message into the gun-friendly halls of power in Tallahassee. Florida lawmakers have rebuffed gun restrictions since the GOP took control of both the governor’s office and the Legislature in 1999.
For years, European countries have commanded the most powerful passports in the world. Now, that title belongs to Asia. The Passport Index, which ranks nations based on travel freedom and visa requirements upon entering foreign countries, declared Tuesday that South Korea now wields the world’s most powerful passport, joining Asian city-state Singapore atop the rankings. South Korea and Singapore now outrank Germany’s passport, which in recent times topped the charts.