Science

  • Capybaras, Giant Rodents Native to South America, Could Become Invasive Species in Florida
    ABC News

    Capybaras, Giant Rodents Native to South America, Could Become Invasive Species in Florida

    Capybaras, giant rodents that are native to South America, may be establishing themselves as an invasive species in Florida, according to Elizabeth Congdon, the only biologist in North America studying the animal. "Right now, they're considered exotics -- non-native animals that aren't supposed to be here," Congdon told ABC News today. Capybaras were first accidentally introduced to forests in northern Florida after five of them escaped a research facility in the early '90s, said Congdon, an assistant professor at the Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Florida, who warned about the potential threat of the species at an animal behavior conference earlier this month.

  • ABC News

    Rosetta Space Probe Sees Bright Flares, Landslide on Comet

    The European Space Agency's Rosetta probe has captured images of a bright burst of light on the comet it is orbiting, apparently caused by a landslide. The dramatic light flashes were recorded Feb. 19 and accompanied by rising temperatures and sharp increases in dust, gas and plasma released from comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Eberhard Gruen of the Max-Planck-Institute for Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, Germany, said Thursday that a landslide on the comet's surface was most likely responsible. The flashes would have been generated by light reflecting from dust particles kicked up by the landslide. The European Space Agency plans to crash-land Rosetta on the comet's surface Sept. 30, more than

  • Here's why Italy is prone to devastating earthquakes
    Mashable

    Here's why Italy is prone to devastating earthquakes

    UPDATE: Aug. 25, 2016, 8:19 a.m. BST Death toll is at least 247 dead: 190 in Rieti province and 57 in Ascoli Piceno province, according to Italy Civil Protection. Dozens of people were killed in central Italy after a 6.2-magnitude earthquake nearly leveled hilltop towns and trapped residents under piles of rubble. The Wednesday morning earthquake is the latest in a string of deadly seismic events to strike Italy in the past four decades.

  • Scientists explore sunken World War II aircraft carrier
    CNN

    Scientists explore sunken World War II aircraft carrier

    Scientists led by Robert Ballard, the deep-sea explorer known for his discoveries of the Titanic and the German battleship Bismarck, surveyed the USS Independence this week, using remotely operated vehicles. The Ocean Exploration Trust has made the expedition available on live stream.

  • LiveScience.com

    In Babies, Zika Can Linger for Months, Brazilian Case Suggests

    A baby in Brazil who became infected with Zika in the womb still had the virus in his body for months after he was born, according to a new report of the case. The baby's mother, who lived in São Paulo, showed symptoms of Zika when she was 26 weeks pregnant, according to the report, published today (Aug. 24) in the New England Journal of Medicine. When the baby was born, he was diagnosed with microcephaly, or an abnormally small head and brain.

  • Quake damages scores of Myanmar's heritage Bagan temples
    Associated Press

    Quake damages scores of Myanmar's heritage Bagan temples

    It was a time of conquest and conversions. Over 250 years, from the 11th century onwards, the rulers of Bagan built more than 10,000 magnificent religious monuments. The stupas, temples and monasteries became the defining emblems of Bagan, the capital of the Pagan (pronounced PUH'-gahn) empire that ruled Myanmar from roughly 1044 to 1287.

  • Exclusive: Monsanto pulls new GM cotton seed from India in protest
    Reuters

    Exclusive: Monsanto pulls new GM cotton seed from India in protest

    Monsanto Co has withdrawn an application seeking approval for its next generation of genetically modified cotton seeds in India, a major escalation in a long-running dispute between New Delhi and the world's biggest seed maker. A letter sent by Monsanto's local partner in India, the conglomerate's biggest market outside the Americas, strongly objects to a government proposal that would force Monsanto to share its technology with local seed companies.

  • Why Doctors Without Borders Refused to Negotiate for ISIS Hostage Kayla Mueller
    ABC News Videos

    Why Doctors Without Borders Refused to Negotiate for ISIS Hostage Kayla Mueller

    The humanitarian group's USA executive director Jason Cone says they decided not to negotiate for the American hostage's freedom. Kayla was about Doctors Without Borders vehicle when she was captured by crisis in Syria.

  • Auto, aerospace industries warm to 3D printing
    AFP

    Auto, aerospace industries warm to 3D printing

    New 3D printing technology unveiled this week sharply increases the size of objects that can be produced, offering new possibilities to remake manufacturing in the auto, aerospace and other major industries. One application demonstrated by 3D printing machinery maker Stratasys would allow airlines to pick made-to-order airplane interiors that could be tweaked with the click of a mouse. "We're now talking about parts in feet and meters versus centimeters and inches," said Rich Garrity, Americas president for Stratasys.

  • Zika Is Just the First Front in the 21st-Century Biowar
    Foreign Policy Magazine

    Zika Is Just the First Front in the 21st-Century Biowar

    There are many national security challenges facing the United States, but too often our focus is exclusively on threats from terrorism, geopolitics and cyberattacks. As the country confronts the arrival of the Zika virus and contemplates travel bans to Miami, it’s time to have an adult conversation about the threats posed by biology.

  • Jeff Williams Breaks US Space Record
    VOA News

    Jeff Williams Breaks US Space Record

    American astronaut Jeff Williams has set a new record for most cumulative time in space for a U.S. astronaut. On Wednesday, Williams surpassed 520 days living in space, breaking Scott Kelly’s record set during his nearly year-long mission aboard the International Space Station. Williams will be heading back to Earth on September 6, which will extend his record to 534 days. The first 10 days of Williams’ time in space date back to 2000, when he was a flight engineer aboard Space Shuttle Atlantis during STS-101 as the shuttle was involved in helping put the finishing touches on the space station. According to NASA, Williams returned to space in 2006 for a six-month flight aboard the ISS. He returned

  • Italy Earthquake: Complex Geology Drives Frequent Shaking
    LiveScience.com

    Italy Earthquake: Complex Geology Drives Frequent Shaking

    Powerful earthquakes like the 6.2-magnitude temblor that rocked central Italy early this morning (Aug. 24) are surprisingly common in the region, geologists say. The shaking was caused by movement in the Tyrrhenian Basin, a seismically active area beneath the Mediterranean Sea. Here, the ground is actually spreading apart, said Julie Dutton, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey.

  • Meet the cyborg bringing biohacking to the people
    Mashable

    Meet the cyborg bringing biohacking to the people

    American biohacker Amal Graafstra, 40, decided in 2005 that he wanted to be done with such archaic technology "from like 700 BC." He looked at iris scanning and fingerprint reading as solutions for opening his office door, but decided those options were expensive and unreliable. Attitudes are changing as people become more familiar with the idea of implants.

  • What?! Washington State Plans to Kill Entire Pack of Wolves Because of Cattle Interests
    OneGreenPlanet

    What?! Washington State Plans to Kill Entire Pack of Wolves Because of Cattle Interests

    Cows have such a peculiar role in modern society. Millions of them are cruelly abused every year at the hands of the animal agriculture industry, but they are also some of the most protected animals. Cattle ranchers look after cows to make sure they are not attacked, and when another animal is seen impeding on their grazing land or injuring them, ranchers will reach out to their local governments to get rid of the “pests.” We’ve seen wild horses driven out of their native land to protect livestock and now, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is moving forward with plans to exterminate an entire pack of wolves in Washington due to recent attacks on livestock. Admittedly, this was not

  • For 10 years, possibly biggest pearl was hidden under bed
    Associated Press

    For 10 years, possibly biggest pearl was hidden under bed

    A Filipino fisherman in western Palawan island has found possibly the world's biggest pearl, but he didn't know it. The fisherman's family would rub it with their hands before going out to sea in the belief it would bring them luck, said relative Aileen Amurao. Amurao, who is also Puerto Princesa city's tourism officer, said Thursday that the man gave her the pearl last month for safekeeping because he was moving to a new place.

  • GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain
    Reuters

    GM mustard clears hurdle in India but more remain

    A government panel has cleared commercial use of what would be India's first genetically modified (GM) food crop, but politicians still have to give final approvals amid wide-spread public opposition. Technical clearance for indigenously developed GM mustard seeds was given on Aug. 11 by the panel of government and independent experts, following multiple reviews of crop trial data generated over almost a decade, said two sources with direct knowledge of the matter. The decision to go ahead is likely to be made public soon by the environment ministry's Genetic Engineering Approval Committee, and is expected eventually to move to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's desk via Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave.

  • Yearlong Mars Simulation Nears End on Mauna Loa
    Popular Mechanics

    Yearlong Mars Simulation Nears End on Mauna Loa

    Six scientists are close to wrapping up a year of near isolation in a Mars simulation on a Hawaii mountain. The scientists are housed in a dome on Mauna Loa and can go outside only in spacesuits, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported. Kim Binsted, principal investigator for the Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation, said this simulation is the second-longest of its kind after a mission that lasted 520 days in Russia.

  • America by Air: Hills Over Duncan Mills
    The Atlantic

    America by Air: Hills Over Duncan Mills

    Here’s the latest from Jimmy Rollison, one of our ace photographers for the series, who’s provided stunning views over Monument Valley, Dinosaur National Monument, and the Continental Divide. This colorful one was captured over Duncan Mills, California

  • Jump starting the brain: Experimental device used to rouse 25-year old man from a coma
    Mashable

    Jump starting the brain: Experimental device used to rouse 25-year old man from a coma

    A team of physicians and neuroscientists on Wednesday reported the successful use of ultrasound waves to “jump start” the brain of a 25-year-old man recovering from coma — and plan to launch a much broader test of the technique, in hopes of finding a way to help at least some of the tens of thousands of patients in vegetative states.

  • Crusader-era hand grenade surprises archaeologists
    Fox News

    Crusader-era hand grenade surprises archaeologists

    A centuries-old hand grenade that may date back to the time of the crusaders is among a host of treasures retrieved from the sea in Israel. The metal artifacts, some of which are more than 3,500 years old, were found over a period of years by the late Marcel Mazliah, a worker at the Hadera power plant in northern Israel. Mazliah’s family recently presented the treasures to the Israel Antiquities Authority. Experts, who were surprised by the haul, think that the objects probably fell overboard from a medieval metal merchant’s ship. Related: The hand grenade was a common weapon in Israel during the Crusader era, which began in the 11th century and lasted until the 13th century, according to the

  • Can Virtual Reality Make You Sick?
    Consumer Reports

    Can Virtual Reality Make You Sick?

    To be safe, you might want to have a spotter with you before you cover your eyes with the goggles and make the leap into virtual space. According to psychology professor Jim Blascovich, co-author of “Infinite Reality: The Hidden Blueprint of Our Virtual Lives” (William Morrow Paperbacks, 2012), it may be powerful enough to distract even young burn victims and significantly reduce their pain.

  • Perfume Could Soon Be Used To Help Solve Sexual Assault Cases
    Alice Sholl

    Perfume Could Soon Be Used To Help Solve Sexual Assault Cases

    It’s this attribute which means that perfume could also be used as ‘trace evidence’ along with these other materials. Scientists wrote in the journal Science and Justice that analysing fragrances could be particularly useful in cases where a crime has involved close physical contact, such as a sexual assault. “We’ve shown that first, perfume does transfer, and second, we can identify when that transfer has happened,” said director of the UCL Centre for the Forensic Sciences Dr Ruth Morgan.

  • Myanmar's peacock: a national symbol dying off in the wild
    AFP

    Myanmar's peacock: a national symbol dying off in the wild

    Embraced by kings and freedom fighters alike, Myanmar's peacocks have long been a national symbol of pride and resistance -- but they are becoming ever harder to spot in the wild. Ornithologist Thet Zaw Naing is worried. Every year that goes by, Myanmar's national bird becomes a less familiar sight.

  • Auction house to sell composite skeleton of a dodo bird
    Associated Press

    Auction house to sell composite skeleton of a dodo bird

    The dodo bird is extinct — but one collector can now have their own dodo skeleton. Summers Place Auctions is selling what it describes as a rare composite skeleton of a dodo bird, a creature once found on the island of Mauritius. Although individual bones of the flightless bird come up for sale occasionally, Summers Place director Rupert van der Werff says this is the first time a nearly complete skeleton has come up for sale since the early 20th century.

  • Reuters

    Coastal land expands as construction outpaces sea level rise

    By Alister Doyle OSLO (Reuters) - The Earth has gained coastal land equivalent to the size of Jamaica in the past 30 years with man-made construction outpacing erosion caused by rising sea levels, mapping data showed on Thursday. Using satellite data with Google Earth, Deltares said coastal regions had gained a net 13,565 square kilometers (5,237 square miles) of land since 1985, roughly the size of Jamaica or the U.S. state of Connecticut. "We expected on average the coast to shrink ... as sea level has risen," said Fedor Baart of Deltares, an author of the study published in the journal Nature Climate Change.