The fireball that streaked through the Michigan sky put on quite a show but as far as potentially killer space rocks, it was merely a flash in the pan. There are much bigger asteroids careening through our solar system. Scientists who watch for them hope they spot them in time to get people out of the way if a truly dangerous one is heading straight to Earth. So far, one isn't coming. Just as Tuesday's meteor lit up the Michigan skies, about 30 scientists were gathered in California to discuss the biggest meteor hit in modern history — the 1908 explosion over Tunguska , Russia, that flattened 800 square miles (2,100 square kilometers) of forest. And that's nothing compared to what happened 65
Bannon walked into a closed-door meeting with House members Tuesday morning and was still being grilled Tuesday evening as part of the committee’s investigation into Russian election inference. The committee chairman, Devin Nunes of California, issued the subpoena after Bannon refused to answer questions about his time on the presidential transition or his work in the Trump White House, said Nunes spokesman Jack Langer.
The spill from a sunken Iranian tanker off China's east coast has spawned four oil slicks as authorities prepared to send robots to the wreckage to assess the environmental damage. The Sanchi, which was carrying 136,000 tonnes of light crude oil from Iran, sank in a ball of flames in the East China Sea on Sunday, a week after colliding with Hong Kong-registered bulk freighter the CF Crystal. The State Oceanic Administration of China said late Wednesday that it was monitoring four slicks with a total area of almost 101 square kilometres (39 square miles), roughly the same size as Paris.
In 1545, disaster struck Mexico’s Aztec nation when people started coming down with high fevers and headaches, bleeding from the eyes, mouth and nose. Within five years, as many as 15 million people — an estimated 80 per cent of the population — were wiped out in an epidemic the locals named “cocoliztli”. On Monday, scientists swept aside smallpox, measles, mumps, and influenza as likely suspects, fingering a typhoid-like “enteric fever” for which they found DNA evidence on the teeth of long-dead victims. “The 1545-50 cocoliztli was one of many epidemics to affect Mexico after the arrival of Europeans, but was specifically the second of three epidemics that were most devastating and led to the largest number of human losses,” said Ashild Vagene of the University of Tuebingen in Germany.
A Thai military court on Wednesday dropped royal insult charges against an 84-year old historian who questioned whether a Thai king had actually defeated a Burmese adversary in combat on elephant-back over 500 years ago. Sulak Sivaraksa was charged in October under the draconian lese majeste law that protects the monarchy from libel and defamation. The Bangkok military court had agreed to hear views from historians and experts before it decided to drop the charges for lack of evidence.
The selection of Russell M. Nelson was announced during an address broadcast from Salt Lake City to Mormons around the world. “If you have stepped off the path, may I advise you with all the hope in my heart to please come back,” Nelson said. The announcement came after Nelson was chosen as the religion’s 17th president during a private meeting of the church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles leadership body in a temple, per church tradition that makes the longest-tenured member of the Quorum the new president.
Rats have gotten a bad reputation as the catalyst behind the Black Death, the infamous medieval pandemic that originated in China in 1334. It’s been popularly thought that rats infected with a bacterium called Yersinia pestis transmitted plague to humans through a bite, a horrific process that culminated in the death of 60 percent of the European population as it spread across continents. In a paper released Monday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers from the University of Oslo argue that Yersinia pestis was more likely spread by body lice and human fleas.
China and Europe are jointly testing new technology that could help satellites peer through clouds and analyze storms. The European Space Agency says it has teamed up with China's National Space Center to conduct ground tests on two complementary devices designed to deliver high-resolution images from an orbit of 36,000 kilometers (22,370 miles). The agency said Wednesday that if the tests are successful, the next stage would be a space mission. It is the first time Europe and China have worked together to test and build an instrument. Current satellite systems are unable to gather the temperature and humidity data needed to accurately monitor storms. The tropical cyclones in the northwest Pacific,
In a letter, the State Department notified the U.N. Relief and Works Agency that the U.S. is withholding $65 million of a planned $125 million funding installment. The letter also makes clear that additional U.S. donations will be contingent on major changes by UNRWA, which has been heavily criticized by Israel.
A team of experts in Mexico has discovered two linked underwater caverns that are more than 4,000 years old and form the largest known such cave on earth. The discovery of the cave system, which stretches 215 miles, could hold valuable information about the ancient Mayan population, which inhabited parts of Mexico, the Yucatan Peninsula, and Guatemala, among other areas in the region. The cave holds hundreds of Mayan relics, according to Guillermo de Anda, the director of the Gran Acuifero Maya team, which is part of Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History. De Anda told Reuters that the caves are certain to shed light on how the Mayan civilization evolved. 500 YEARS LATER, SCIENTISTS
Donald Trump listens to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt after announcing his decision that the United States will withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., June 1, 2017. The debate is how do we know what the ideal surface temperature is in 2100? Shifting the ‘debate’ toward ‘the ideal surface temperature’ achieves that goal by creating the perception that we don’t know what temperature we should aim for.
The European Space Agency (ESA) is drawing up contingency plans for projects, commercial deals, and staffing that may be adversely affected by Brexit, senior officials said Wednesday. Programmes throw in flux by Britain's pending departure from the European Union (EU) include the Copernicus satellite constellation to monitor environmental damage, and the Galileo satellite navigation system. Britain's EU-linked participation in both programmes will come to an end after Brexit, unless it negotiates a specific deal, the ESA has said.
Over the span of three weeks in 2015, more than 200,000 saiga antelope suddenly died in central Kazakhstan. Scientists knew that bacteria called Pasteurella multocida type B caused the mass death. Now, new research suggests that the bacteria was already present in the animals; it was triggered and became harmful because of a period of unusual weather. Richard Kock, a professor of Wildlife Health and Emerging Diseases at The Royal Veterinary College, witnessed the "rapidly accelerating death." "You went from one or two animals to within three or four days — thousands. And then they were all dead by the seventh day," Kock tells NPR. "The animals were showing normal behavior, normal signs, normal
A former student at the University of Alabama has apologized after posting videos to social media in which she used the N-word repeatedly. Harley Barber, who identified herself as a member of the Alpha Phi sorority on Instagram, said Wednesday in an interview with the New York Post that she was expelled from the school following the incident. While university officials did not confirm whether Barber was expelled, a spokesperson told the Associated Press that she is no longer enrolled at the college.
The California mother of 13 children who were allegedly tortured, starved or shackled inside a house of horrors was “perplexed” when investigators paid a visit to their home this week, officials said Tuesday. Authorities said Louise Turpin, the 49-year-old biological mother of all 13 children, appeared baffled about why authorities were inside her Perris, Calif., home, where they allegedly found at least three children bound to their beds with chains and padlocks Sunday. “The mother was perplexed as to why we were at that residence,” Capt. Greg Fellows of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said at a news conference.
A team of scientists will train dogs to see if the animals can sniff out looted artifacts from the Middle East that are being smuggled into the United States. Now, scientists are hoping the canines can also be trained to sniff out artifacts from Syria and Iraq, war-torn countries that have experienced widespread looting of archaeological sites. "Terrorists, organized crime and common criminals are destroying archaeological sites on an industrial scale to cash in on illegal profits … that is why we need to find out if we can train dogs to help," said Michael Danti, a consulting scholar at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, in a statement announcing the creation of the K-9 Artifact Finders research program.
Experts have discovered an ancient prince’s tomb in southern Siberia that may contain treasures or even an ice mummy preserved in the region’s frozen soil. Archaeologist Gino Caspari first noticed the circular structure while studying high-resolution satellite images of the Uyuk River Valley in Siberia. The Bern University scientist suspected that the unusual structure was a burial mound from the ancient Scythian civilization. The nomadic Scythian civilization stretched from Central Asia across the Eurasian Steppes. The Scythians emerged around the ninth century B.C. and their society lasted until about the 1st century B.C. Intrigued by the satellite images, Caspari took part in an initial dig
The governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar say they plan to repatriate hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees within two years, a timeframe humanitarian actors warn is far too fast for a safe and voluntary return. The repatriation process will begin on Jan. 23, according to statements issued by both countries’ foreign ministries. The UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, has not been involved in the discussions.
It sounds apocalyptic. The night sky lit up. The ground shook. This all happened after a meteor showed up to rock Michigan on Tuesday night. YouTube user Mike Austin captured the event on a dashcam and it's spectacular. NASA also got a very different look at our celestial visitor. One of the cameras in NASA's All-sky Fireball Network caught a glimpse of the meteor. The NASA Meteor Watch Facebook page shared the footage late on Tuesday. You can see a flash appear in the upper right-hand corner, which quickly fills the screen with light: Michigan bolide of 2018 Jan 16 There was a VERY bright fireball (possible superbolide, which has a brightness between that of the Full Moon and the Sun) seen in
A slow-moving landslide in a fertile farming region in Washington state has forced evacuations as officials prepare for what they say is inevitable — the collapse of a ridge that sits above a few dozen homes and a key highway. People in Washington are especially wary of landslides following one in 2014 north of Seattle that swept through a tiny community and across a state road, killing dozens. Experts say the slide could happen as soon as late January or early February above Union Gap, a small agricultural town in the rolling brown foothills of the Cascade Range.
A Chinese boom in solar panel installation last year helped drive global investment in renewable clean energy technology to record levels, a new study showed Tuesday. After a dip in 2016, overall global investment in the sector rose 3.0 percent to a total $333.5 billion, offsetting falls in Japan, Germany and Britain, according to the Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) study. "The 2017 total is all the more remarkable when you consider that capital costs for the leading technology -– solar -– continue to fall sharply," said BNEF chief executive Jon Moore.
President Donald Trump is tiptoeing around the first congressional election of the new year as he heads to southwestern Pennsylvania on Thursday to hail the Republican tax cuts he signed last year. Trump will appear with the Republican nominee for a Pittsburgh-area House seat. Democrats, meanwhile, aren’t necessarily any more confident in the chances that lawyer and former Marine Conor Lamb can flip the district to their side.
A Navy spokesman, Capt. Greg Hicks, said the charges, which also include dereliction of duty and endangering a ship, will be presented to what the military calls an Article 32 hearing to determine whether the accused are taken to trial in a court-martial. The disciplinary actions were decided by Adm. Frank Caldwell and are the latest in a series of moves the Navy has made in the aftermath of the deadly collisions, which investigators concluded were avoidable. It fired several top leaders, including the commander of the 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, and several other senior commanders in the Pacific.
When an argument comes to blows, it’s especially devastating for a mantis shrimp. Scientists at Duke University decided to create some conflict between mantis shrimp in order to see if and when they would resort to drastic violence to solve it. They took pairs of mantis shrimp of a certain species, Neogonodactylus bredini, and gave one of each pair a burrow. Mantis shrimp have a punch strong enough to break glass, boil water and kill each other.