Science

  • SpaceX Unveils Plan for Manned Mars Mission
    Good Morning America

    SpaceX Unveils Plan for Manned Mars Mission

    Humans could set foot on Mars within the next 10 years -- at least if SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has his way. Building such a complex system will cost a lot of money -- so much that Musk hasn’t yet named a dollar figure.

  • Tough times for S.Africa's all-female anti-poaching unit
    AFP

    Tough times for S.Africa's all-female anti-poaching unit

    South Africa's all-female "Black Mambas" anti-poaching team had never lost a rhino since they were formed in 2013, but the killing of two animals earlier this month shattered their proud record. The two rhinos, one of which was pregnant, were shot dead and their horns hacked off by poachers on a full moon night, underlining the crisis that threatens the species. The Black Mambas are made up of 36 unarmed female rangers, aged from 19 to 33, based at the Balule Game Reserve in Limpopo province on the edge of Kruger National Park.

  • Elon Musk says he won't be the first person on Mars because he doesn't want to die
    Business Insider

    Elon Musk says he won't be the first person on Mars because he doesn't want to die

    On Tuesday, Elon Musk gave a keynote talk at the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, where he outlined SpaceX's ambitious plan to colonize Mars. Musk made it clear that he wants to make a "ticket to Mars" within reach for many people, aiming to bring the price down to $200,000 — or the median cost of a house in the US.

  • Weapons autonomy is rocketing
    Foreign Policy Magazine

    Weapons autonomy is rocketing

    By Heather M. Roff, Ph.D. Best Defense guest columnist While we debate whether or not it is a good idea, weapons are steadily becoming more autonomous, most notably in target identification. That’s the core conclusion from a study I just completed in

  • Reuters

    Europe's food safety watchdog says to release studies on weed-killer glyphosate

    By Kate Kelland and Alissa de Carbonnel LONDON/BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Europe's food safety watchdog will release data from some of the scientific studies it reviewed in its assessment of glyphosate, an ingredient in Monsanto's widely used herbicide Roundup and subject of a fierce row over possible cancer risk. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) said on Thursday it had decided to release the raw data as part of its "commitment to open risk assessment". EFSA had received several requests for data in relation to its glyphosate assessment, including from members of the European parliament.

  • World's first baby born from 3-parent technique: report
    AFP

    World's first baby born from 3-parent technique: report

    The woman, whose identity was withheld by New Scientist, and her husband sought the help of John Zhang, a doctor from the New Hope Fertility Center in New York City to have a baby that would be genetically related to them but would not carry the inherited disease. Since the mother carried the genes for the disease in her mitochondria, or DNA that is passed down from the maternal side, Zhang used her nuclear DNA and combined it with mitochondria from an egg donor, in a technique known as spindle nuclear transfer.

  • Early bloomer: Demonstration shows flower that can shape-shift on demand
    Digital Trends

    Early bloomer: Demonstration shows flower that can shape-shift on demand

    Scientists coming up with shape-shifting materials is cool, but you know what’s even cooler? Materials that shape-shift on demand. That’s what a team of researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Akron describe

  • The Land Rover Discovery arrives in record-breaking form
    AFP Relax News

    The Land Rover Discovery arrives in record-breaking form

    Land Rover knows how to build up to a new model reveal. While other companies are content with video teasers or social media campaigns, the British SUV brand can always be counted on to go above and beyond. The bricks, a record 5,805,846 to be precise, were needed to build a 13-meter-high replica of London's iconic Bridge, in and around which the new Discovery made its entrance.

  • Cave fires and rhino skull used in Neanderthal burial rituals
    New Scientist

    Cave fires and rhino skull used in Neanderthal burial rituals

    BURNING through the darkness, the fires would have lit up the cave around where the young child lay. The remains of a series of small fires discovered within a dolomite hillside 93 kilometres north of Madrid, Spain, could be the first firm evidence that Neanderthals held funerals. The blackened hearths surround a spot where the jaw and six teeth of a Neanderthal toddler were found in the stony sediment. Puzzlingly, within each of these hearths was the horn or antler of a herbivore, apparently carefully placed there. In total, there were 30 horns from aurochs and bison as well as red deer antlers, and a rhino skull nearby. Advertisement Archaeologists believe the fires may have been lit as some

  • As drought grips Iran, farmers lament loss of a way of life
    Los Angeles Times

    As drought grips Iran, farmers lament loss of a way of life

    Watermelons once sprung from this soil, the giant striped fruit dotting the arid landscape like mushrooms after a rain. “It was such a garden,” farmer Hossain Mirakhouri, 45, recalled of his childhood on this sun-scorched plateau east of Tehran. Now nothing remains of his family’s patch of watermelon, a water-hungry crop that Mirakhouri can no longer afford to grow in increasingly dry conditions. He and his brothers, who farm a 2-acre homestead by hand much as their ancestors did, have switched to growing barley and genetically modified cotton, which they say have lower water requirements.  “The amount of land that is cultivable shrinks year in, year out,” said Mirakhouri, sweat beading on his

  • Sugar gives bees a happy buzz: study
    AFP

    Sugar gives bees a happy buzz: study

    An unexpected sugary snack can give bees a little buzz and appears to lift their mood, even making them optimistic, according to research Thursday that suggests pollinators have feelings, too. Since emotions are subjective and difficult to measure -- particularly in animals -- researchers looked at how bees' behavior changed after they were given a sip of sucrose solution. "Bees given a 60 percent sucrose reward to induce a positive affective state flew faster to the cylinder than non-rewarded bees," said the study in the journal Science, led by Clint Perry at the University of London.

  • Sculptor Antony Gormley creates labyrinth for new London show
    Reuters

    Sculptor Antony Gormley creates labyrinth for new London show

    British sculptor Antony Gormley puts people's relationships with urban construction at the forefront of his latest exhibition "Fit", creating a sort of labyrinth in a London gallery space. "Sleeping Field", one of the installations at the White Cube Bermondsey gallery, is made up of hundreds of iron sculptures, which at first look like small high-rise buildings but on closer inspection resemble resting bodies. "Gormley has configured the gallery space into 15 discrete chambers to create a series of dramatic physiological encounters in the form of a labyrinth," it said.

  • Justice Department’s move on scientific evidence reform delays justice
    The Hill

    Justice Department’s move on scientific evidence reform delays justice

    Compassionate Americans concerned about the plight of wrongfully convicted citizens – folks who want our criminal justice system to operate fairly and accurately – should be outraged by the Department of Justice’s pigheaded rejection of fundamental, far-reaching forensic science evidence reform. Alex Kozinski, a conservative judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (appointed by President Reagan in 1985), wrote in a sober, strongly-worded op-ed for The Wall Street Journal “Rejecting Voodoo Science in the Courtroom” that the PCAST report “examines the scientific validity of forensic-evidence techniques – DNA, fingerprint, bitemark, firearm, footwear and hair analysis. It concludes that virtually all of these methods are flawed, some irredeemably so.” Kozinski counsels: “The PCAST report recommends developing standards for validating forensic methods, training forensic examiners and making forensic labs independent of police and prosecutors.

  • Reuters

    Scientists fix fractures with 3D-printed synthetic bone

    By Kate Kelland LONDON (Reuters) - Scientists in the United States have successfully treated broken spines and skulls in animals using 3D-printed synthetic bone, opening the possibility of future personalized bone implants for humans to fix dental, spinal other bone injuries. Unlike real bone grafts, the synthetic material - called hyper-elastic bone - is able to regenerate bone without the need for added growth factors, is flexible and strong, and can be easily and rapidly deployed in the operating room. Giving details in a teleconference, the scientists said the results of their animal trials - published on Wednesday in the Science Translational Medicine journal - were "quite astounding".

  • Inside the Apartment Where Garrett Phillips Was Found Dead
    ABC News Videos

    Inside the Apartment Where Garrett Phillips Was Found Dead

    Potsdam Police Chief Mark Murray takes us back to the scene of the crime to show Elizabeth Vargas how police think Garrett Phillips' killer escaped. Enter the apartment. Don't always. For Specter here the door was open is on responsive don't show floor

  • Dead whales beached in Chile, climate change suspected
    AFP

    Dead whales beached in Chile, climate change suspected

    Several huge whales have washed up dead over recent months on beaches in northern Chile, where scientists suspect they are moving in increasing numbers due to climate change. After the beaching of hundreds of dead whales in the south last year, the trend has now shifted to areas where the phenomenon was previously rare. "We have detected a rise in recorded cases of beached whales on the coast, which is not normal," Sernapesca biologist Gerardo Cerda told AFP on Wednesday.

  • 2017 Land Rover Discovery Release Date, Price and Specs
    CNET

    2017 Land Rover Discovery Release Date, Price and Specs

    "Discovery" is one of the auto industry's all-time great names, a moniker incredibly well-suited to an SUV with a history of providing legitimatelegendary off-road chops. So it was quite a surprise when Land Rover walked away from the appellation in the mid-2000s in favor of an alphanumeric soup -- LR3 and then LR4, model names that that sounded they belonged to a line of icemakers. Well, the rebranding experts have evidently been put out to pasture in Great Britain, because Land Rover has finally, mercifully restored the Discovery nameplate for this fifth-generation model. And it's not just the name that's new, the Green Oval has reworked the seven-seat SUV from stem to stern for its Paris Motor

  • The Atlantic Wire (RSS)

    A Fitbit for Your Placenta

    “It is described as the ‘afterbirth,’” said Catherine Spong, an obstetrician/gynecologist and the acting director of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). To appreciate the placenta, you have to recognize that it’s responsible for sustaining a fetus as it grows into a baby, which is tethered by the umbilical cord to the placenta embedded in a pregnant woman’s uterine wall. Through this arrangement, the placenta provides nutrients and oxygen to the fetus, eliminates waste, regulates fetal temperature, produces hormones, and performs other crucial pregnancy tasks.

  • IdeaFestival 2016: 5 ways to navigate uncertainty in the workplace and use it to enhance creativity
    TechRepublic

    IdeaFestival 2016: 5 ways to navigate uncertainty in the workplace and use it to enhance creativity

    Our human discomfort with uncertainty may impact hiring decisions and creativity in the workplace, according to Jamie Holmes, a future tense fellow at the New America think tank. Holmes spoke at IdeaFestival 2016 on Wednesday, when he explained that while we enjoy uncertainty during sporting events or while touring a new place, we don't like it at work, in healthcare, or in deciding whether or not to trust someone. "Uncertainty, whether good or bad, amplifies our emotions," Holmes said. "Our brains seek consistency." The following are the five consequences of uncertainty, according to psychologists: Assimilation: We extend a concept we already have about the way the world works. For example,

  • Quartz has tested Google’s new AI-powered translator, and it needs to learn more Chinese
    Quartz

    Quartz has tested Google’s new AI-powered translator, and it needs to learn more Chinese

    Google has recently overhauled Google Translate. The new AI-powered translator, “Google Machine Neural Translation,” can cut down errors by 80% compared to its current algorithm, making it nearly identical to human translators, the company said this week. The new method is currently only available for English to Mandarin and vice-versa, but judging from the examples Google gave, it appears to be doing great at translating standard journalistic writing. Here at Quartz, where language is an obsession, we decided to take matters into our own hands. As we did with Skype’s instant translator, we put Google’s new translator through a realistic Chinese stress test. The highest score available is five

  • Microbiologist Dianne Newman Wins MacArthur 'Genius' Grant
    Forbes

    Microbiologist Dianne Newman Wins MacArthur 'Genius' Grant

    Dianne Newman studies bacteria that breathe rocks. She also studies bacteria that live in mucus in the lungs of cystic fibrosis patients. She was one of the 23 new MacArthur Fellows named last week because she knows how those two things fit together. Newman is a microbiologist at the California Institute of Technology. She studies the evolution of bacterial metabolism, the interactions between bacteria and geology and how bacteria survive in oxygen-depleted environments. She says she fell in love with bacterial genetics as a graduate student. She was studying bacteria that breathe arsenate, a molecule of arsenic and oxygen atoms, instead of molecular oxygen like we do. “It was just so fascinating

  • Everything You Need To Know About Friday's Rare Black Moon
    Refinery 29 UK

    Everything You Need To Know About Friday's Rare Black Moon

    For the second time this month, earthlings of the Western Hemisphere will experience a special event involving our moon. Earlier this month, we got our full moon — the Harvest Moon. Basically, a Black Moon is the exact opposite of a Blue Moon, the term used when you get two full moons in one month.

  • Turns out Australia isn't where you think it is
    Business Insider

    Turns out Australia isn't where you think it is

    Australia has had to change its position on world maps four times in the past 50 years. The country happens to be located on one of the world's fastest-moving tectonic plates, travelling about 2.7 inches north per year. That's almost three times as fast as the plate on which the US is positioned, which only travels around one inch per year. According to Dr Lucia Perez-Diaz from the Department of Earth Sciences at Royal Holloway University, tectonic plates — the massive chunks of earth on which continents sit — move about as fast as your fingernails grow; between 5 and 10cm per year. "The reason why different plates move at different speeds is relatively simple: each plate is different," Perez-Diaz told

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Comments on Elon Musk's Mission to Mars
    The Street

    Neil deGrasse Tyson Comments on Elon Musk's Mission to Mars

    NEW YORK (TheStreet) --Elon Musk wants to make traveling to Mars a reality. "I really have no other purpose than to make life interplanetary," Musk said while speaking at the International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico on Tuesday. Utilizing SpaceX, Musk's space exploration company he aims to make the cost of one ticket to Mars less than $200 thousand. Astrophysicist, cosmologist, and author Neil deGrasse Tyson joined Wednesday morning's "Squawk Box" on CNBC to comment on the ambitious goal of Elon Musk. "He's putting his money where his mouth is," Tyson said. Adding that anyone can simply give talks, or write books about space exploration, but that talk is cheap. "If you're a

  • Elon Musk Unveils His Plan For Colonizing Mars
    ABC News Videos

    Elon Musk Unveils His Plan For Colonizing Mars

    Tesla founder Elon Musk wants to establish a new civilization on Mars in the next 10 years. The health insurer has announced plans to subsidize the device next year to give people a chance to use their health related apps and Selena Gomez just broke a record I'm in sick Graham she's the first person to hit 100 million followers pretty impressive comes as Selena takes a break from social media he hasn't posted anything on mr. Gramm.