Science

  • ABC News

    NASA Nears the End of Its Splashdown Tests for Mars Craft

    NASA has conducted the second to last splashdown test for its Orion spacecraft as the agency prepares to eventually send humans to Mars. Scientists at NASA's Langley facility on Thursday used a pendulum and explosives to fling a test capsule into a pool of water at about 25 mph. The 11-foot craft disappeared behind a bowl-shaped splash before bouncing buoyantly against safety netting. More than 500 instruments gauged aspects of the impact, including the level of strain on the carbon fiber heatshield and aluminum cabin. Crash test dummies were also inside to measure safety designs. Orion sailed through its first unmanned test flight in 2014, splashing down in the Pacific Ocean. Another unmanned

  • Indonesia seizes hundreds of frozen pangolins
    AFP

    Indonesia seizes hundreds of frozen pangolins

    Indonesian authorities have seized more than 650 critically endangered pangolins found hidden in freezers and arrested a man for allegedly breaking wildlife protection laws, police said Friday. Police discovered the pangolins, known as "scaly anteaters", when they raided a house in Jombang district on the main island of Java after local residents became suspicious about the large number of freezers in the property. A total of 657 pangolins, which are consumed as a luxury dish in China and used in traditional medicine, were found wrapped in plastic and stored in five large freezers, East Java province police spokesman Raden Prabowo Argo Yuwono told AFP.

  • Two big earthquakes hit Italy and Myanmar on the same day
    International Business Times UK

    Two big earthquakes hit Italy and Myanmar on the same day

    Two big earthquakes struck Europe and Asia on the same day this week, killing hundreds and razing entire towns to the ground. Rescuers in central Italy are continuing to search for survivors trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings, after a 6.2 magnitude earthquake struck the Umbria region of the country in the early hours of Wednesday morning. The death toll has surpassed 240, officials have confirmed, with many more people missing. Hours later, a 6.8 magnitude earthquake hit central Myanmar, damaging historic buildings in the city of Bagan and killing at least one person. Both countries, Myanmar in particular, are prone to quakes as they are located on major fault lines. Although we know

  • 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.

  • Nicer Up North: Canadians Top Americans in Altruism
    LiveScience.com

    Nicer Up North: Canadians Top Americans in Altruism

    In a study aimed at measuring altruism, researchers "lost" a total of 7,466 letters in 2001 and 2011 in 63 urban areas in the United States and Canada. That changed in 2011, however, when the United States had a 10 percent drop in helping behavior, which did not occur in Canada, suggesting that people in the United States were less altruistic than before, said study researcher Keith Hampton, a professor of media and information at Michigan State University. The project began after Hampton heard an anecdote that altruism was declining in Canada.

  • US National Parks from Space: 100 Years of Nature (Photos)
    SPACE.com

    US National Parks from Space: 100 Years of Nature (Photos)

    To celebrate the centennial of the U.S National Park Service, Expedition 48 Commander Jeff Williams of NASA has taken hundreds of images of national parks from his vantage point in low Earth orbit, aboard the International Space Station. Here, a series of Williams' photographs are assembled into this composite image of the Grand Canyon.

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

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

    By Mayank Bhardwaj NEW DELHI (Reuters) - 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.

  • LiveScience.com

    How Do EpiPens Work?

    The price of EpiPens has increased more than 400 percent since 2007. People who need to keep them on hand — often because they may need the emergency drug in case they have a life-threatening allergic reaction — brought the price increase to light, and eventually it reached Congress: In a letter to Mylan, the company that makes EpiPens, Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa has now asked the company to explain its pricing. But how do EpiPens work?

  • Revolutionizing the fight against drowning
    FOX News Videos

    Revolutionizing the fight against drowning

    Tech Take: Kingii founder Tom Agapiades on how he set out to create a new flotation device that provided more comfort than traditional life vests and inflatables

  • 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.

  • Indonesia steps up fire response as haze blankets Singapore
    Associated Press

    Indonesia steps up fire response as haze blankets Singapore

    Six Indonesian provinces have declared states of emergency as forest fires blanketed a swath of Southeast Asia in a smoky haze. Singapore's air quality deteriorated to unhealthy levels on Friday as winds blew smoke from fires on Sumatra, where millions of people are already affected by haze, across the city-state and into southern Malaysia. The number of hotspots detected in Sumatra and Borneo by weather satellites has increased in the past month though they are below levels last year when massive fires in Indonesia caused a regional crisis.

  • Newsmax

    Deep-Earth Tremor Detected From Atlantic 'Weather Bomb'

    A deep-Earth tremor detected by Japanese earthquake trackers for the first time was traced to a distant and powerful "weather bomb" in the Atlantic. Their findings, published in the journal Science, could help experts learn more about the Earth's inner structure and improve detection of earthquakes and oceanic storms, reported Agence France-Presse. The storm in the North Atlantic, which struck between Greenland and Iceland, was small but potent and gained punch as pressure quickly mounted. Groups of waves sloshed and pounded the ocean floor during the storm, Using seismic equipment on land and on the seafloor that usually detects the Earth's crust crumbling during earthquakes, researchers found

  • 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.

  • Lost WWII Ships Explored in Underwater Expedition
    LiveScience.com

    Lost WWII Ships Explored in Underwater Expedition

    An exploration of a World War II battleground right off U.S. shores is now underway. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is working with several nonprofit and private partners to explore the twin wrecks of the freighter SS Bluefieldsand the German U-boat U-576. The German submarine attacked and sank the Bluefields on July 15, 1942, and was then itself sunk by bombs from U.S. Navy air cover and the deck gun of another merchant ship in the convoy, the Unicoi.

  • Fern-inspired ‘Nanofur’ can soak up oil spills without absorbing water
    Digital Trends

    Fern-inspired ‘Nanofur’ can soak up oil spills without absorbing water

    You only need to think back to the BP oil spill of 2010 to realize what an enormous potential problem such spillages are. “We — and other scientists worldwide — would like to increase the absorption capacity of artificial oil absorbers as this is a serious problem for the environment,” Hendrik Hölscher, one of the researchers involved with the study, told Digital Trends. Nanofur took its inspiration from water ferns, which are capable of absorbing oil while remaining water-repellent, due to the hairy microstructure of their leaves.

  • Reuters

    Argentine soy growers fret seed royalties bill might favor Monsanto

    Argentine soy farmers fear they will get shortchanged under a proposal they say would favor U.S. agricultural company Monsanto Co by forcing them to pay royalties on seeds grown on their own farms using the company's genetically modified technology. Farmers in Argentina's Pampas grains belt say they should have to pay only once, or maybe twice, for seeds containing Monsanto's Intacta RR2 PRO technology. Monsanto says to plant seeds grown with that technology without paying royalties - something that the current law allows - amounts to copyright infringement.

  • Addicted To Coffee? Blame It On Your Genes
    Marie-Claire Dorking

    Addicted To Coffee? Blame It On Your Genes

    Well according to science how much coffee a person needs/wants may be dependent on their genes. Scientists at the University of Edinburgh have identified a gene that may play a role in how the body breaks down caffeine. According to the study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, people who have a certain variation of a gene called PDSS2, will break down caffeine more slowly.

  • 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.

  • LiveScience.com

    Why Areas with More Men Have Higher Marriage Rates

    The research showed that counties in the U.S. with more men than women generally had higher rates of marriage, fewer births outside marriage and fewer single female heads of household — all of which are generally signs of greater family stability, according to the researchers. "There's this numerical expectation that, as men increase in numbers, that means that there are fewer women available, so men are less likely to get married," said Ryan Schacht, the study's lead author and a postdoctoral researcher in anthropology at the University of Utah. In the study, the researchers looked at U.S. Census data from 2,800 counties in all 50 states, focusing on the relationship between each county's gender ratio (the number of men relative to women) and certain markers of family stability that researchers commonly use in research like this, such as marriage rates and the percentage of households with children who were headed by single women.

  • Correction: Hospital Superbug Outbreak story
    Associated Press

    Correction: Hospital Superbug Outbreak story

    In a Feb. 20, 2015 story about an antibiotic-resistant "superbug" outbreak at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, The Associated Press mischaracterized a statement an expert made about proving the cause of an infection. Lawrence Muscarella, a health care and sterilization expert, said he was suggesting an argument hospitals might use when he said, "Proving causation is impossible." Muscarella said an infection can be proven to come from a hospital instrument.

  • What would a real 'cyber war' with Russia look like?
    FOX News Videos

    What would a real 'cyber war' with Russia look like?

    Tech Take: TrustedSec's Alex Hamerstone on how a cyber conflict with Russia might escalate in the wake of recent hacks on the New York Times and DNC

  • Conflict and drought threaten Mozambique's Gorongosa park
    AFP

    Conflict and drought threaten Mozambique's Gorongosa park

    Passing through the aged faded gates into Gorongosa National Park, it's difficult to imagine you've just entered Mozambique's largest wildlife sanctuary. Bled dry by a long civil war that ravaged Mozambique from 1976 to 1992, the park has seen a remarkable turnaround in the last decade.

  • Soft, Rubbery 'Octobot' Can Move Without Batteries
    LiveScience.com

    Soft, Rubbery 'Octobot' Can Move Without Batteries

    The researchers say soft robots can adapt more easily to some environments than rigid machines, and this research could lead to autonomous robots that can sense their surroundings and interact with people. As the fuel gives off oxygen, pressure from the gas builds up in the controller and eventually causes some valves to open and others to close, inflating chambers in half the robot's arms and forcing them to move.

  • Scientist finds new way to represent same old depressing climate trends
    Vox

    Scientist finds new way to represent same old depressing climate trends

    Take a look at this image. Let me know if you see any trends. Hmm … can’t quite put my finger on it… The image — which uses this dataset to represent temperature change from 1850 to 2016 — comes to us via University of Reading climate scientist Ed Hawkins. He’s the same guy who made the now-famous spiral graph, which was featured during the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics: I was wondering what Hawkins thinks of the recent popularity of climate visuals like the ones he’s made, so I asked him. Here’s what he had to say: I think it is getting easier to make creative visualisations, so more people are trying out ideas which then propagate between different fields. There is also better web technology

  • 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.