The world's largest radio telescope began searching for signals from stars and galaxies and, perhaps, extraterrestrial life Sunday in a project demonstrating China's rising ambitions in space and its pursuit of international scientific prestige. Beijing has poured billions into such ambitious scientific projects as well as its military-backed space program, which saw the launch of China's second space station earlier this month. Measuring 500 meters in diameter, the radio telescope is nestled in a natural basin within a stunning landscape of lush green karst formations in southern Guizhou province. It took five years and $180 million to complete and surpasses that of the 300-meter Arecibo Observatory
The illegal trade in pangolins, helmeted hornbills and other wildlife products is thriving in Laos, a monitoring group said Friday, urging the Southeast Asian nation to crack down on a lucrative commerce largely fuelled by demand in neighbouring China. The authoritarian country has long been top transit hub for the smuggling of wildlife products, with widespread corruption and weak law enforcement allowing the criminal activity to flourish. Wildlife trade monitoring group TRAFFIC said Friday that endangered species such as pangolins and helmeted hornbills were being openly sold in Laos and that law enforcement against the illegal trade remained threadbare.
Baby lobsters might not be able to survive in the ocean's waters if the ocean continues to warm at the expected rate. That is the key finding of a study performed by scientists in Maine, the state most closely associated with lobster in the U.S. The scientists found that lobster larvae struggled to survive when they were reared in water 5 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than the current temperatures typical of the western Gulf of Maine. That's how much the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change expects the Gulf of Maine to warm by the year 2100. The paper appears this month in the scientific journal ICES (ICE-ees) Journal of Marine Science. Scientists at the University of Maine Darling
Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, want to rid the world of all disease by the end of this century-and they're pledging $3 billion of their fortune to the ambitious goal. Over the next 10 years, the Facebook CEO and his pediatrician wife will donate about six percent of their net worth of $55.2 billion toward advancing scientific research to "cure, prevent or manage all disease" in the next 80 years, the couple announced yesterday at an event in San Francisco for the Chan Zuckerberg initiative. At current rates of progress, Zuckerberg reckons, it will be possible to solve most of these problems "by the end of this century." Zuckerberg and Chan have spent the past two years speaking to scientists and other experts to plan the endeavor.
Common crime lab techniques made famous by shows like Law & Order have come under fire yet again—this time by President Obama’s top scientific advisers. A damning report released this week by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology calls into question the scientific basis of the forensic analysis of bite marks, mixed DNA samples, hair samples, and footwear, among other techniques. In spite of the esteemed origin of the report, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said the Justice Department wouldn’t heed the findings.
Hey, put some pants on that rat! Nobel-winning scientists celebrated the year's strangest scientific research Thursday at Harvard, where the Ig Nobel prizes were awarded. The annual awards (this year's was dubbed the "26th first annual") honor scientists and inventors who come up with the weirdest technological and scientific breakthroughs of the year. One of the best (worst?) awards has to be the "Reproduction Prize," given to a study performed by the late Cairo University Professor Ahmed Shafik, who dressed rats in pants to see if the different materials would affect their sex drive. He found, to no modern fashionista's surprise, that rats with polyester in their pants (as opposed to cotton
Holiday weight gain isn't unique to the United States: A new analysis finds that people in Germany and Japan also pack on pounds during festive seasons. In the study, which was published today (Sept. 21) in the New England Journal of Medicine, the researchers gave wireless digital scales to nearly 3,000 participants in Germany, Japan and the United States. People in all three countries gained weight, on average, around Christmas, according to the study.
CANBERRA, Australia — The fedora, the bomber jacket and the consuming quest invite comparisons to Indiana Jones. Blaine Gibson, though, hasn’t matched the film hero’s triumph in finding the legendary chest containing the stone tablets inscribed with the Ten Commandments. Not that he didn’t try. “The Ark of the Covenant, I did not find it. However, I do believe that it’s in Ethiopia somewhere,” Gibson told AP recently. The amateur sleuth has had far greater success finding clues from a modern mystery: the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. He is the first person searching for the plane who’s actually found any trace of it and says he won’t quit gathering clues until the mystery is
A man who lived as a goat in the Swiss Alps and a scientist who studied how pants affect the sex drive of rodents are among the winners of this year's spoof Nobel prizes. The 26th edition of the annual Ig Nobel Prizes, which celebrate the silly side of science, were handed out Thursday at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The top honor in the reproduction category went to the late Ahmed Shafik from Cairo University, who died in 2007, for his work that showed how the sex lives of rats are affected by the fabric of pants they are fitted with.
SpaceX said Friday that evidence points to a large breach in the rocket's helium system during a routine prelaunch test that turned into a devastating fireball three weeks ago. The Falcon rocket and a satellite were destroyed in the Sept. 1 explosion, which occurred on the pad two days before the scheduled liftoff. In an update Friday, SpaceX said it's still poring through video, audio and data from the moment the first sign of a problem occurs, until the actual fireball.
Laos has promised to phase out farms that breed endangered tigers for their body parts, a positive step from a country believed to be a major hub of wildlife trafficking in Asia, conservation groups said Friday. The announcement by Laotian officials in South Africa came one day before the start of a meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, or CITES. If implemented, the move could help to curb the illegal trade in tiger bones and other parts used in traditional medicine in areas of Asia, and protect the depleted population of tigers.
The fedora, the bomber jacket and the consuming quest invite comparisons to Indiana Jones. Blaine Gibson, though, hasn't matched the film hero's triumph in finding the legendary chest containing the stone tablets inscribed with the Ten Commandments. Not that he didn't try. "The Ark of the Covenant, I did not find it. However, I do believe that it's in Ethiopia somewhere," Gibson told AP recently. The amateur sleuth has had far greater success finding clues from a modern mystery: the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. He is the first person searching for the plane who's actually found any trace of it and says he won't quit gathering clues until the mystery is solved. "Travel is what
LONDON — Remember that guy that decided being a human is overrated and created special prostheses that allowed him to live among mountain goats in the Alps for three days? Absolute legend, right? Well, this hero is finally receiving the acclaim that
Kellogg announced on Monday that it is recalling approximately 10,000 cases of Eggo Nutri-Grain Whole Wheat Waffles due to possible contamination with the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. There are several ways that bacteria such as Listeria can get into food products, said Benjamin Chapman, a food safety specialist and an associate professor at North Carolina State University. One way is if the bacteria make their way into the food-processing plant, Chapman said.
Police say the murder weapon was an empty bottle of rum found in Faith Hedgepeth's apartment.
The fire under Centralia has been burning since 1962. That spring, a dump in the Pennsylvania mining town caught on fire. The dump was in a strip mine, which led to an underground mine, which led to a coal seam under the town. Fire met fuel, miles and
Germany has halted a three-decade-long decline in its birth rate, with data showing that the trend has started to reverse, statisticians said Friday. Over the last 35 years Europe's biggest economy had recorded a steady fall in birth rate, which reached a low of 1.49 child for each woman born in the year 1968, said the Federal Institute for Population Research. "The decline in birth rate has stopped," said Martin Bujard, a researcher at the institute.
People with an unusual condition called synesthesia, which makes them experience a "mixing" of their senses, may automatically form stronger mental links between the sound of a word and the image that word conjures up in their mind, according to a small new study. For example, a person with synesthesia might always perceive the letter "Y" as blue or yellow, even when that individual sees it in black print. "There's been a debate about synesthesia," study co-author Dr. Krish Sathian, a neurologist at Emory University, said in a statement.
Elon Musk has talked a lot about going to Mars. Now he wants to colonize it. Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla Motors, will speak Tuesday about the technical challenges that industry, government and science need to solve to establish a permanent, self-sustaining human presence on Mars. The title of his talk, at the prestigious International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico, is "Making Humans a Multiplanetary Species." Musk has spoken for years about taking humans to Mars. He has even said he personally wants to live and eventually die on Mars, "just not on impact." He started SpaceX with a Mars mission in mind, and he has forecast that the company will achieve its first unmanned
In a story Sept. 23 about a bill to protect whales from fishing gear for Dungeness crab, The Associated Press erroneously reported the name of an environmental group that backed the legislation. The group is the Center for Biological Diversity, not the Center for Environmental Diversity.
Beijing's state media has made the bold claim that a Chinese defense contractor successfully developed the world's first quantum radar system. Quantum radar is based on the theory of quantum entanglement and the idea that two different particles can share a relationship with one another to the point that, by studying one particle, you can learn things about the other particle-which could be miles away. In quantum radars, a photon is split by a crystal into two entangled photons, a process known as "parametric down-conversion." The radar splits multiple photons into entangled pairs-and A and a B, so to speak.
Apparently we have more than 5 senses — THREE more, according to science Growing up, we all learned that our wonderfully complicated human selves are equipped with the ability to hear, smell, taste, feel and touch.
Connecticut hasn't become the Silicon Valley of bioscience quite yet, but five years after lawmakers made a massive investment to support the development of that industry, there is a thriving hub in Farmington. The labs are being leased to the companies as part of the university's Technology Incubation Program, which is designed to help bioscience and tech companies start and grow in Connecticut.
Although boredom is as familiar a feeling as excitement or fear, science has only begun to understand what makes people bored. Recently, six scientists who emerged after living for a year in isolation on the Mauna Loa volcano as part of the HI-SEAS (Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) experiment, which simulated the isolation that future space travelers might experience traveling to and living on Mars, said that boredom was their biggest challenge. Boredom "has been understudied until fairly recently, but it’s [worth studying] because human experience has consequences for how we interact with each our and our environment," said James Danckert, professor of cognitive neuroscience at the University of Waterloo in Ontario in an interview with Live Science.