Science

  • SpaceX Unveils Plan for Manned Mars Mission
    ABC News

    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. The billionaire entrepreneur, who also happens to be the CEO of Tesla Motors, chairman of renewable energy company Solar City and co-founder of PayPal, today unveiled his ambitious plan for colonizing the Red Planet. His concept -- which he offhandedly admits amounts to a “fairly significant technical challenge” (it is rocket science, after all) -- involves building and launching a 400-foot carbon-fiber spacecraft, sending a reusable rocket to refuel it mid-orbit, then deploying the spaceship’s built-in solar array and sending it off on a 3- to 4-month journey to Mars, only to be refueled by methane gas produced on Mars and sent back to Earth. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk unveiled an “interplanetary transport system” to carry humans to Mars.

  • Pillar of Obama climate plan has its day in court
    AFP

    Pillar of Obama climate plan has its day in court

    The cornerstone of President Barack Obama's drive to fight global warming underwent close scrutiny Tuesday in a high-stakes day in court. The so-called Clean Power Plan, approved last year, sets state-by-state emissions targets for existing power plants and aims to reduce America's output of CO2 by nearly a third by 2030 as compared to 2005 levels. The court's action raised doubts about America's contribution to a historic accord to fight global warming, reached in December in Paris, and infuriated environmentalists around the world.

  • Asia's poor choking on filthy air
    AFP

    Asia's poor choking on filthy air

    Polluted air is a "public health emergency", the World Health Organization said Tuesday, adding nine out of 10 people globally breathe bad air that is blamed for more than six million deaths a year. Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific region -- including China -- are the hardest hit, the data showed. South Asia is also badly affected, with the WHO saying poor air quality is responsible for the deaths of more than 600,000 people in India and 37,000 people in Bangladesh every year.

  • Meet the nuclear cattle of Fukushima
    CNN

    Meet the nuclear cattle of Fukushima

    Nuclear Cattle On March 11 2011, a 15-meter tsunami triggered by a 8.9-magnitude earthquake, disabled the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima, causing a nuclear accident. Residents within a 20 km radius of the facility were forced to evacuate their homes and leave behind their livelihoods and possessions. Before leaving, some farmers released their cows so they could roam free and survive in the nuclear fallout-affected area. 1,400, however, died from starvation, while the government euthanized 1,500 more. Since 2011, Matsubara has documented both the relationship six farmers have with their surviving herds as well as an ongoing study examining the effects radiation has on large

  • A baby with 3 biological parents was born using a new technique — here's what that means
    Business Insider

    A baby with 3 biological parents was born using a new technique — here's what that means

    A baby containing the DNA from three different people was born, New Scientist reports. Three-parent in-vitro fertilization (IVF) was approved in the UK back in 2015, but the team from the New Hope Fertility Center in New York performed the procedure in Mexico. The idea is to substitute that faulty mitochondrial DNA in a mother's egg with a third set of DNA from a donor's egg to avoid these inherited conditions.

  • Materials programmed to shape shift
    BBC News

    Materials programmed to shape shift

    Scientists have pre-programmed materials to change their shape over time. Previous shape-shifting materials have needed some external trigger to tell them to transform, like light or heat. Now, a US-based team has encoded a sequence of shape transformations into the very substance of a polymer, with each change occurring at a pre-determined time. Details appear in Nature Communications journal. The principles could be applied in implants that deliver medicine from within the human body and the technology could also see use in heavy industry. Professor Sergei Sheiko from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and colleagues introduced two types of chemical bond to their polymer: permanent

  • A Rare Black Moon Will Rise In the Sky on Friday Night
    Country Living

    A Rare Black Moon Will Rise In the Sky on Friday Night

    When it comes to rare lunar events, September 2016 seems to be the month that keeps on giving: This Friday, September 30, a Black Moon will rise in the skies of the Western Hemisphere, a phenomenon we haven't seen since March 2014. The Black Moon, which will occur at 8:11 p.m. ET on Friday, will only be happening in the Western Hemisphere because, technically, the new moon will happen on October 1 for the Eastern Hemisphere (they'll be getting their Black Moon at the end of next month). The next time we'll see a second new moon in a single calendar month in the Americas will be July 2019.

  • 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".

  • One of the original 'power posing' researchers now says its effects aren't real
    Business Insider

    One of the original 'power posing' researchers now says its effects aren't real

    Authored by Dana Carney and Andy Yap, then of Columbia University, as well as Amy Cuddy of Harvard, the study suggested that standing like Wonder Woman for two minutes could raise testosterone levels and reduce stress hormone levels temporarily. Cuddy gave a TED talk on power posing in 2012 that has been viewed 46 million times, and she's built a lucrative business based partly on the research that power posing works. Dana Carney, who today serves as a professor at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, recently published a report renouncing the effects of power posing.

  • Elon Musk discusses his vision for how he plans to colonize Mars
    CNBC.com

    Elon Musk discusses his vision for how he plans to colonize Mars

    Musk said a crewed mission to Mars could happen in 10 years, "if things go super well." The sources of funding for this endeavor will include private sector and government investors, profits from servicing the international space station and launching satellites, and Musk's own money, among others. "The reason I am personally accumulating assets is to fund this," Musk said. And once there, there would be no shortage of jobs, since "Mars would have a labor shortage for some time," he said. The ship would depart every 26 months, when the distance between Earth and Mars is closest. It would be made in large part of carbon fiber and fueled by methane, which can be synthesized using elements available

  • The SpaceX of China aims to commercialize a mysterious rocket on the world stage
    Quartz

    The SpaceX of China aims to commercialize a mysterious rocket on the world stage

    The US, Russia, and European Union all have private rocket companies staking a claim in the burgeoning commercial space business. Landspace, founded in 2015, says it will have its first commercial launch in 2017, an extraordinarily fast pace of development for an orbital rocket. The secret to Landspace’s rapid entry to market is that the company, founded by veterans of China’s state-owned rocket firms, will use flight-proven designs already deployed by the Chinese government.

  • Fox News Latino

    Evolution of large dinosaurs linked to development of bony cranial ornaments

    London –  The evolution of gigantic theropod dinosaurs such as "Tyrannosaurus rex" was linked to the development of exaggerated cranial ornaments such as crests and horns, a study published Tuesday said. Researchers from the University of North Carolina concluded in a study published in "Nature Communications" magazine that non-avian theropod species possessing ornaments developed larger body sizes than unadorned lineages. Phyletic giantism _ an evolutionary trend toward large size _ can thus be linked to the possession of cranial ornamentation, the study said. The paper found a clear correlation between the evolution of large-sized bodies and the appearance of osseous ornaments, whose "origin and influence across macroevolutionary time scales remains poorly understood for virtually all animals," according to the study.

  • Overpopulation in Dhaka 'will see groundwater contaminated with arsenic within next decade'
    International Business Times UK

    Overpopulation in Dhaka 'will see groundwater contaminated with arsenic within next decade'

    Deep groundwater near megacities may become contaminated within 10 years, scientists have warned. Using the example of Dhaka, in Bangladesh, they show that over-pumping water in cities affects regional ground resources in the region. Around 15 million people live in Dhaka, making it one of the most populated cities in the world. Population density is also one of the highest in the world, with roughly 115,000 people per square mile. Accommodating the needs of such a vast number of inhabitants means there are often enormous strains on the environment. Water resources are a prime example of this. Like many of the world's megacities, Dhaka is reliant on groundwater from aquifers – permeable rocks

  • Barrons

    Amgen: The Blame Game

    This morning, Amgen (AMGN) reported that its cancer drug Kyprolis failed to do what it hoped it would in a late-stage trial. RBC’s Michael Yee and Judy Liu wonder if the design of the trial was to blame: Amgen announced the Clarion study (head to head versus Velcade) did not meet stat sig for progression free survival although survival did show a solid trend (Hr=1.21). This is a surprise since the prior Endeavor second line study was a very big success and today’s result in first line may be due to lack of sufficient powering in our view, given strong trend in survival and deeper responses with Kyprolis should better especially earlier. Furthermore, all 3 key-opinion leaders Amgen hosted emphasized

  • 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

  • Russian Airline Owner to Challenge Musk, Bezos in Space
    Bloomberg

    Russian Airline Owner to Challenge Musk, Bezos in Space

    A Russian airline entrepreneur wants to join the space race, challenging Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp. and Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin LLC with a plan to launch commercial rockets. S7 Group, the owner of Russia’s S7 Airlines, agreed to buy the floating rocket platform Sea Launch from a group of investors and aims to restore its operations after a more than two-year hiatus, the family-owned company said. S7 Group co-founder Vladislav Filev described the deal as an “admission ticket” into the aerospace industry. “Why are we doing it? Just because it’s beautiful,” Filev said in an interview in Moscow before heading to Guadalajara, Mexico, to sign the deal. S7 faces significant challenges

  • Let's fill a toilet with 240 pounds of mercury and then flush it
    CNET

    Let's fill a toilet with 240 pounds of mercury and then flush it

    Mercury, both beautiful and potentially dangerous, is a heavy metal that's liquid at normal ambient temperatures. It can be poisonous and should be treated with care. So what do you do with several large flasks of the shimmery stuff? You flush it down a toilet, of course. YouTube channel Cody's Lab filmed that exact experiment for us all to watch with wonder. Related stories Flush a functional solid-gold toilet at the Guggenheim Museum Iron Throne toilet lets you rule the bathroom The Cody's Lab video, posted on Tuesday, kicks off by discussing just how hard it is to flush a dense lead bullet down a toilet. You need a super-sucker of a loo to get the job done. The bullet test prompted Cody to

  • 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

  • Susan Miller on Why October's New and Full Moons Will Lead to Personal Reinvention
    InStyle

    Susan Miller on Why October's New and Full Moons Will Lead to Personal Reinvention

    Susan Miller is InStyle's resident astrologer and founder of AstrologyZone.com. The new moon in Libra that appeared just one day prior to the dawning of October on Sept. 30 is a glorious one, and gives a tone of optimism and happiness during the first two weeks of October. Think of a new moon as a portal that opens to bring opportunities in one area of life, coaxing you to act on a goal important to you.

  • Elon Musk outlines Mars colonization plan
    Reuters

    Elon Musk outlines Mars colonization plan

    By Irene Klotz GUADALAJARA, Mexico (Reuters) - SpaceX is developing a massive rocket and capsule to transport large numbers of people and cargo to Mars with the ultimate goal of colonizing the planet, company chief and tech billionaire Elon Musk said on Tuesday. Musk outlined his plans for the Mars rocket, capable of carrying 100 passengers plus cargo per voyage, even as SpaceX is still investigating why a different rocket carrying a $200 million Israeli satellite blew up on a launch pad in Florida earlier this month. "You can't create a self sustaining civilization if the ticket price is $10 billion per person," he said during a presentation at the International Astronautical Congress meeting in Guadalajara.

  • Ethics isn’t just for philosophers—designers need to take responsibility, too
    Quartz

    Ethics isn’t just for philosophers—designers need to take responsibility, too

    A few years ago, I was doing PhD research and interviewing designers around the world to identify the limiting factors in designers integrating sustainability into their work. Nearly everyone I interviewed had, at some point, learned about the systemic implications of rapid innovation and how to make better decisions. Yet most of them still passed off the responsibility of making the “right” decision to someone else: It was the boss’s, client’s, manufacturer’s, government’s, or consumer’s choice that would solve the problem that their production would participate in. When everyone within a system plays this hands-off, “that’s not my problem” game, the system is very quickly riddled with external

  • 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.

  • WSU research leads to algae treatment for blindness
    Detroit Free Press

    WSU research leads to algae treatment for blindness

    In a coup for Wayne State University’s reputation as a research center, a small eye-care company that uses green algae genes to treat a type of human blindness has sold for $60 million. The company, RetroSense Therapeutics, which is now based at the Ann Arbor SPARK business accelerator, was acquired this month by Allergan, a $4 billion-a-year maker of skin and eye care products. The company's treatment uses a virus to deliver a photoreceptor gene from the algae into a human patient's eye. The research, which aims to cure an inherited disease that causes people to slowly go blind, has shown promise. The Federal Drug Administration gave permission for a clinical trial. Sean Ainsworth, founder and

  • The Seattle Times

    Study may give new respect to our Milky Way neighborhood

    NEW YORK (AP) — Our corner of the Milky Way galaxy may be a bigger deal than scientists thought. The galaxy is shaped like a disk, with four major arms of stars, dust and gas spiraling out from the center. Our solar system lies at the edge of what’s called the Local Arm, which resembles a separate piece of an arm. Historically, the Local Arm “didn’t get much respect…. People thought it was just a tiny little thing,” says Mark Reid of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts. But a new paper he co-authored concludes it is bigger than scientists thought. Researchers calculated that it stretches more than 20,000 light-years long, maybe about four times what scientists

  • Scientists Have Discovered A Way To Kill Superbugs Without Antibiotics
    UPROXX

    Scientists Have Discovered A Way To Kill Superbugs Without Antibiotics

    As antibiotics become more commonplace, whether we need them or not, superbugs are worrying doctors and turning up more and more often. Shu Lam, a graduate student at the University of Melbourne, has a simple solution: Impale the little buggers. Lam is being cautious, noting that she’s only tested it on six superbugs and only done one live trial with mice.