Since it was founded in 1958, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s goals have been civilian. The agency’s main objective, to explore outside our orbit, was part of a larger mission to provide "the most effective utilization of the scientific and engineering resources of the United States." Consider that a success: Each year, thousands of consumer products benefit from “spin-offs,” integration of technologies and processes originally developed for and by NASA. Aptly titled Spinoff, each issue is 100-plus pages of essential nerd material and trivia fodder, charting the diaspora of space technology.
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
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.
President Obama is expanding a national monument off the coast of Hawaii, more than quadrupling it in size and making it the world's largest protected marine area. The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument was created by President George W. Bush in 2006. At the time, it was seven times larger than all the other U.S. marine sanctuaries combined and the biggest marine reserve in the world. On Friday, Obama signed a proclamation expanding the monument to more than 580,000 square miles — twice the size of Texas, and once again the world's largest. "The monument designation bans commercial fishing and any new mining, as is the case within the existing monument," The Associated Press notes. "Recreational
This February, something strange happened on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the comet that the Rosetta probe has been orbiting since 2014. There was an eruption, with gas and dust flying everywhere, and it was caught on film by Rosetta, as the probe floated only 21 miles away. It just so happened that nine of Rosetta's 11 instruments were on at the time, giving scientists an unprecedented look at the disturbance. "Over the last year, Rosetta has shown that, although activity can be prolonged, when it comes to outbursts, the timing is highly unpredictable, so catching an event like this was pure luck," ESA's Rosetta project scientist Matt Taylor said in a statement. "By happy coincidence, we
A gorgeous new exhibit reveals just how salty the Dead Sea is. Artist Sigalit Landau submerged a 1920s-style long, black dress in Israel's Dead Sea for two months in 2014. Landau has been inspired by the Dead Sea's unique environment for past artwork, including salt-crystal-encrusted lamps, a salty hangman's noose and a crystalline island made of shoes, according to the artist's website.
In an unexpected finding, an international team of astronomers have discovered a massive galaxy that consists almost entirely of dark matter – an unidentified form of matter that, scientists predict, accounts for around 27% of the universe's total mass. No one is exactly sure what dark matter is, even though it is essential to the stability of the universe, as well as our understanding of physics. Dragonfly 44, as the galaxy has been named, was spotted using two of the world's most powerful telescopes, the WM Keck Observatory and the Gemini North Telescope both located on Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano in Hawaii. The findings have been published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters. Dragonfly 44
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.
Mustering cattle across rugged terrain and wide open spaces, Australia's newest drover is a far cry from a man with a big hat, a horse and fancy boots. Australia is the world's third largest cattle exporter but with the age of producers creeping higher, and cattle stations averaging about 400,000 hectares (988,420 acres) of land - nearly four time the size of Hong Kong - rearing livestock can be difficult, even with a sufficient number of cowhands. A labor shortage makes the task harder though, and threatens Australia's hope of boosting its livestock output to profit from rising Asian demand for red meat.
The wind was howling, the sun blinding, and the temperature cold enough to chill your bones when the six made their final march towards the North Pole. American Commander Robert Peary, his assistant Matthew Henson, and four Inuit men arrived at what was, according to Peary's reading of his sextant, exactly 90 degrees north latitude. It had taken more than two decades for Peary to complete this task.
The Grade Fire blazing across the northern edge of California briefly spun up a spectacularly odd phenomenon known as an "ash devil" on Thursday. The ash devil, which is closely related to "fire whirls," formed in Yreka, California began pulling in burnt ashes and debris from the fire as it spun across the fire area.
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.
NASA's Juno space probe on Saturday was set to pass the closest it will get to the planet Jupiter during the main phase of its planned mission to the gas giant, the US space agency's officials said. Juno was to swing within some 2,600 miles (4,200 kilometers) of the solar system's largest planet, the closest any spacecraft has passed, traveling at 130,000 miles per hour (208,000 kilometers per hour) at around 5:51 am (12:51 GMT). It was the first time Juno’s eight scientific instruments and its camera were switched on, marking the science mission's start, officials said in a statement on NASA's website.
Bees have it rough. It’s not enough that they have to deal with bloodsucking varroa mites, a host of diseases and pathogens, disappearing habitat and a variety of agricultural chemicals designed to kill insects. They have also become pawns in the ag wars, the subject of dueling bee-death narratives. In one of those story lines, pesticides are the culprit. That’s the story from Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and the Center for Food Safety, all of which urge supporters to call for bans on a particular class of pesticides — neonicotinoids, also called neonics — that have been identified as culprits in the health problems honeybees face. Whenever new research shows a link between bees and pesticides,
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.
Muellers say President Obama gave sincere apology, said he'd donate to foundation for Kayla. Make more happen. My immediate reaction is heartbreak. She was an outstanding young woman and a great spirit. And I think that spirit will live on. Reporter:
Overdose deaths from the opioid painkiller fentanyl — the same drug that killed singer-songwriter Prince in April — have increased sharply in a number of U.S. states, according to a new report. From 2013 to 2014, eight U.S. states — Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Ohio, Florida, Kentucky, Maryland and North Carolina — had large increases in overdose deaths tied to synthetic opioids. During that same time, the number of drug products that tested positive for fentanyl after being seized by law enforcement officers increased by more than 10 times in the eight states, rising from 293 to 3,340.
Scientists have found a “ghost galaxy” that is 99.99% made up of dark matter. It’s located inside of the Coma galaxy and has probably already spawned hundreds of new sci-fi scripts being sent to the desks of Hollywood producers’ assistants. Its discovery is another win for the scientific community, which has identified the ghost galaxy’s location even though dark matter doesn’t reflect light and can’t be seen.
Predicting earthquakes. Mapping the human genome. Recreating the “big bang.” Our attempt to unravel the world’s biggest mysteries would be impossible without computers—and with increased access to innovative computing technologies, we’re just beginning to scratch the surface of what can be deciphered. Computing power is growing exponentially. The first supercomputer, a CDC 6600 released in 1964, operated at three million floating-point operations per second. Compare that with today’s supercomputers which operate at 125 quadrillion floating-point operations per second. Despite these advancements, the roadblock to mass-implementation of supercomputers has, to date, been cost—supercomputers require
Alaska's largest city is home to more than 300 grizzly and black bears — and now more than a dozen multicolored ones. Life-size statues painted by city artists for a public art installation called "Bears on Parade" are popping up as part of an effort to raise awareness that if you live in Anchorage, you live near bears. "The whole point of this was to engage in conversation about bears and their habitat — the food that they eat, where they live," said Brenda Carlson, a tourism official who helped organize the program.
Blink and you'll miss it: The Tesla Model S was just rated the third-fastest accelerating production car in the world, beating out cars such as the Lamborghini Aventador and the Bugatti Veyron. The head-snapping acceleration of the new supercharged Model S raises a question: Just how did engineers at Tesla get the electric, seven-seat family sedan to go so fast? It turns out, one part of the car largely determines the Tesla's impressive performance.
Terry Root often goes to sleep at night wondering how she’ll be able to get up the next morning and do it all over again. A senior fellow at Stanford’s Woods Institute for the Environment, Root has spent the past two decades unraveling the thread between climate change and the eventual mass extinctions of countless species of plants, animals — and, yes, humans. “That’s a tough, tough thing to cope with,” Root says in a weary, jagged voice. Stanford University built a non-secular spiritual center on campus called Windhover, where students and faculty can go to meditate and reflect.
Tom Steyer is founder of the advocacy group NextGen Climate. July was the hottest month in recorded history, by a lot, and August isn’t looking any better. So how do we interpret that? What does it mean? I’m no scientist. In my 30 years as a businessperson, though, I’ve learned that the best decisions require looking at all of the available data and trends. You seldom have the complete analysis that a scientist would require — events unfold quickly. Instead, businesspeople often must make decisions on the basis of imperfect information. A responsible chief executive knows two things: that a decision not to act is a decision, and that no competent leader risks the health of the entire enterprise
SwagBot is the world's first cattle herding robot and was developed by scientists to help Australia's livestock farmers. Roselle Chen reports.
But the data took me in some strange directions. As did the horrifying lack of data. Seventy-six Koreans seemed small to me, but what do I know? I’m just a journalist. So I spoke to geneticist Spencer Wells, founder and former director of National Geographic’s Genographic Project (arguably a 23andMe competitor), which he ran from 2005-2015. “ is a really low number,” he concurred. In which I discover I am part Japanese. Or not. Who knows Let us rewind to a more innocent time when I thought this report was going to be accurate. The envelope, please: Based on the 23andMe report, I have zero Middle-Eastern genetic markers. Also, astonishingly, the report shows that I am 13.4% Japanese and 14%