The well-preserved 5 foot-long skull of an extinct reptile was first discovered on the bank of the Volga River in 2002, but until now had not been identified as a new species. The fossil belongs to a group of marine reptiles called plesiosaur.
Astronomy amateurs have helped Australian scientists find a star that exploded around 970 million years ago – long before the dinosaurs even roamed the Earth. Such exploding stars are known as supernovae. Although they burn only for a short amount of time, they can tell astronomers a lot about the universe.
The tool section of the emoji keyboard boasts an array of knives, a syringe, a water gun, a beeper, a battery, and a bomb. But when it comes to objects you might find in a laboratory, the options are slim to none. Scientists are hoping to change that by proposing a slate of science-specific emoji. If approved, items such as lab goggles, a petri dish, a test tube, and a DNA double helix could join the ranks of things you text your friends. SEE ALSO: Your hairstyle may be getting its very own emoji soon Industrial giant GE and the American Chemical Society last month proposed 10 emoji to the Unicode Consortium, the organization that oversees the official list of these icons. Nine emoji were deemed candidates for the next selection process, meaning all or some of these could hit keyboards in summer 2018. Eight of nine proposed science emoji.Image: GE and american chemical societyNancy Briscoe, an audience development manager at GE, said the emoji were part of a broader effort to make STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields more culturally accepted. "Giving people the right tools to express scientific thought is important to keep the subject relevant and accessible in a fast-paced world," she said in an email. "We think it's important that we all be able to communicate about science more clearly, so why not create (emoji) to aid that process?" Efforts like these could influence more than just our texts. A mainstream cultural embrace of scientists and their work may have political ramifications, as well. In the U.S., the Trump administration has indicated that government-backed research is a low priority, while top officials have met mainstream scientific findings with hostility and skepticism. Just this week, the White House proposed cutting billions of dollars for basic and applied research funding. Image: American Association for the Advancement of ScienceTrump's proposed budget for fiscal year 2018 would cut total research funding by 16.8 percent, or $12.6 billion, below the 2017 omnibus spending bill. No administration appears to have proposed research cuts this deep in more than 40 years, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) said in a preliminary analysis. Scientists say they're worried about losing their jobs or running out of funding to conduct crucial research. In April, thousands of people in the U.S. and worldwide joined the March for Science to urge officials and the public to support fact and reason. A handful of science-themed emoji won't change this. But they could at least begin to demystify and destigmatize science in popular culture. Image: ge and american chemical society Image: ge and american chemical society"Science is definitely having a moment right now, whether it's ensuring access to proper science education, funding of grants, or advancing certain fields like engineering and aeronautics," Briscoe said. "Because of this, the [emoji] proposal covers a wide range of accessible science objects." The nine proposed emoji aren't the only science-themed icons up for consideration. At the first-ever Emojicon in San Francisco last fall, science enthusiasts and designers submitted formal proposals to Unicode for other planets in our solar system besides Earth, including the not-to-be-forgotten dwarf planet Pluto. Craig Cummings, vice-chair of Unicode's technical committee, said in November that the planet emoji proposal could be fast-tracked for inclusion in the 2017 summer update,
Nature reported. The path for other science emoji is a bit longer. If approved, those icons could be included in the 2018 summer update. WATCH: This adorable emoji python will cure your fear of snakes
By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (Reuters) - Two U.S. astronauts completed a hastily planned spacewalk outside the International Space Station on Tuesday to replace a computer that failed on Saturday, NASA said. Station commander Peggy Whitson assembled a new computer from spare parts aboard the station and installed it during a 2.5-hour spacewalk as the orbiting outpost sailed 250 miles (400 km) over Earth. The 50-pound (23-kg) computer, which is about the size of a microwave oven, is one of two that control equipment, including solar power panels, cooling loops, radiators and robotics gear, on the U.S. side of the station.
NASA's Cassini orbiter was the first to deliver a really clear look at the eye-catching, hexagonal storm swirling on Saturn's north pole, so it's only fitting that the craft has now delivered a photo of the peculiar phenomenon that adds a new layer of awe. As part of Cassini's recent photo sweep, the orbiter took a nice long look at Saturn's northernmost point once more and discovered that it has almost completely changed color. How's that for a surprise?
Saturn's seasons are really, really long. A single trip around the sun — what we think of as a year here on Earth — takes nearly thirty times as long for Saturn. Like many planets, Saturn's surface undergoes changes as seasons progress and change, and since Cassini has been orbiting the planet since way back in 2004, the craft has had the opportunity to observe a full season, and all the dramatic changes that came with it.
One of those changes was the increase in what NASA refers to as "springtime hazes." That haze is what makes the planet look a giant ball of blurry clouds, and an increase in haze at the north pole has caused the bluish-green hue of the massive hexagon to transition into a mix of dull brown and tan, with just a hint of green remaining in the very center of its eye.
It's a fantastic observation, and a great example of the kind of amazing material we'll be missing out on when Cassini ends its mission later this year.
By Ed Stoddard THE CRADLE OF HUMANKIND, South Africa (Reuters) - An exhibit of the largest collection of fossils of close human relatives ever to go on public display opened on Thursday in South Africa, not far from the caves where they were unearthed. Launched on "Africa Day" in an area named "The Cradle of Humankind," the exhibit coincides with the publication of a controversial paper that questions the widely-held view that humanity's evolutionary roots lay in Africa.
Literature professor Simon John James and physicist Richard Bower were both involved in the curating the exhibition, Time Machines–the past, the future, and how stories take us there. Simon John James: Richard, what does the term “time travel” mean for a physical scientist? Richard Bower: Time travel is the basis of modern physics, and, for anyone that looks up at the night sky, an everyday experience.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — In a story May 24 about the Western snowy plover, The Associated Press reported erroneously that Oregon requires dogs to be kept on leash in snowy plover nesting areas. The state bans dogs from all active nesting areas.
Getting regular exercise may help slow the aging of your body's cells, a new study finds. Compared with the people in the study who didn't exercise at all, the highly active people had a "biological age" that was about nine years younger, said study author Larry Tucker, a professor of exercise science at Brigham Young University in Utah. To reap these benefits of exercise, you'd need to spend 30 to 40 minutes running, five days a week, according to the study.
PALOMINO VALLEY, Nev. (AP) — President Donald Trump's budget proposal calls for saving $10 million next year by selling wild horses captured throughout the U.S. West without the requirement that buyers guarantee the animals won't be resold for slaughter.
Women who can't wait to have their glass of wine at the end of the day, take note: A new report concludes that even one small drink daily can raise a woman's risk of breast cancer. The report includes data gathered from more than 12 million women worldwide — 260,000 of whom had breast cancer — during nearly 120 studies. In the report, which was published today (May 23), researchers cut through the clutter of breast cancer studies, and offer a clear set of recommendations to help women reduce their risk of the disease.
Shots fired. President Donald Trump may be 6,000 miles away from Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, but that didn't stop him from launching an all-out assault on climate science and related energy research. The weapon of choice? His fiscal year 2018 budget proposal. The cuts are staggering in scope, and the consequences are already starting as federal employees and contractors — spooked by the figures out this week — begin job searching in earnest. SEE ALSO: Trump might pick a non-scientist to be USDA's 'chief scientist' Every single agency that touches climate change research, from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to the Department of Energy, NASA, and especially the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), would see sharp reductions and eliminations of climate research programs. NASA project scientist Nathan Kurtz surveys an iceberg locked in sea ice in Greenland.Image: Mario Tama/Getty ImagesWhile the proposal is just the start of negotiations with Congress over a final, enacted budget, it represents the clearest statement yet of Trump's priorities for governing the country. And those priorities do not put climate change — ranked by other major industrialized and developing countries as one of the top threats facing the world today — high on the list. According to Mick Mulvaney, the head of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the administration targeted climate funding for sharp reductions, but he rejected the charge that it's anti-science. “I think the National Science Foundation last year used your taxpayer money to fund a climate change musical. Do you think that’s a waste of your money?” he said, citing a well-worn example from 2014 of wasteful research spending often pointed to by Republican lawmakers who deny the link between human-caused greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. “What I think you saw happen during the previous administration is the pendulum went too far to one side, where we were spending too much of your money on climate change, and not very efficiently,” Mulvaney said at a budget briefing on Tuesday morning. “We don’t get rid of it here. Do we target it? Sure," he said. "Do a lot of the EPA reductions aimed at reducing the focus on climate science? Yes." "Does it meant that we are anti-science? Absolutely not." Losing our eyes and ears The budget cuts Trump is proposing would leave climate scientists without critical data and would shrivel up the job market for researchers at a time when climate change expertise is more needed than ever. One budget cut at NASA would hit an instrument meant to improve scientists' ability to monitor the amount of solar radiation entering and exiting the atmosphere, which is a foundational measurement needed for keeping tabs on and projecting climate change. Tens of thousands of protestors gathered on April 22, 2017 to protest the Trump administration's anti-science moves.Image: LO SCALZO/EPA/REX/ShutterstockAnother would eliminate a mission known as CLARREO-PF, which is a satellite instrument aimed at increasing our understanding of how clouds and particles known as aerosols affect the climate. This would address one of the biggest uncertainties in climate science, but hey, Trump and his cabinet members do like citing uncertainty as a reason not to act on global warming, so... ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ NASA's overall Earth Science Mission, which helps provide research and observations of our planet, would be cut by nearly 9 percent, including the elimination of five Earth observation missions and an education program aimed at supporting the next generation of space science researchers. At the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the office responsible for helping restore and protect our coasts in a time of sea level rise would be completely eliminated. The agency's climate research programs, considered to be among the best in the world, would also take a funding cut on the order of 30 percent. The NOAA budget also contains some bizarre cuts that the meteorology community will likely strongly object to, including getting rid of the array of Pacific Ocean buoys that enable forecasters to detect El Niño events, as well as a network of specially-designed ocean instruments to detect destructive tsunamis in the Pacific Ocean before they hit land. In addition, the NOAA budget would slow the National Weather Service's implementation of more accurate computer models, increasing the gap between U.S. capabilities and those in Europe and elsewhere, which have surpassed this country. In addition, the U.S. Geological Survey, would be cut by more than 10 percent. Even before these cuts, the agency has been having trouble maintaining its network of river gauges that the National Weather Service relies on for triggering flood warnings. So just as heavy rains are becoming more common in a warming climate, the number of functioning gauges is declining. The Energy Department's Office of Science, which funds research in physical sciences and cutting edge computer modeling, would also see a funding decrease of 17 percent. None of these decreases are small, and all would reverberate across labs scattered across the country and throughout universities that depend on government grants for research funding. Picking the losers as winners The cuts could also fundamentally change the energy landscape, eliminating the government program that helped launch innovative renewable energy companies such as Tesla. Under former president Barack Obama, the Energy Department turned into a massive venture capital firm dedicated to funding potentially transformational energy technologies. Now Trump is proposing to eliminate that program, known as the Advanced Research Projects Agency: Energy, or ARPA-E. If the current administration has its way, the office would see its budget plunge from $290 million in Fiscal Year 2017 to just $20 million as it is put to rest completely, along with hopes that the next Tesla will crop up in the U.S., and not, say, in China or another economic competitor. But the shift in priorities doesn't end there. The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy would be cut by 70 percent compared to Fiscal Year 2017 levels, a staggering decrease that sets the government up against market trends as solar, wind and battery technologies comprise more and more newly-built electric facilities. Last one: select S&T agencies and programs, requested changes from omnibus levels. #sciencebudget pic.twitter.com/6HoswXd42R — Matt Hourihan (@MattHourihan) May 23, 2017 Don't worry though, fossil fuels like coal and oil would fare just fine under the budget request. And nuclear power, which has stagnated due to regulatory hurdles and lower natural gas, wind, and solar prices, would get a boost in funds. Here comes the brain drain Major science groups that are normally inclined to avoid partisan combat have already come out and slammed the budget as misguided at best. Rush Holt, a physicist and former congressman who is the director of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), said the budget would have a near-term impact on public health and overall science and technology capabilities in America. "What we see is not just a reduction in government programs, what we see is a failure to invest in America," Holt said on a conference call with reporters. "We’re not just talking about the long-term future either. The harm to public health and to other areas would start to be felt really very soon." @AAAS_GR R&D by character, as a share of GDP. Research funding would hit a 40-year low in 2018. #Science @AAAS_GR pic.twitter.com/btVEj3RxMQ — Matt Hourihan (@MattHourihan) May 23, 2017 According to one AAAS analyst, the only science and technology-related government agency to see a funding increase under Trump's budget is the secretive Defense Advance Research Projects Agency, better known as DARPA. The funding cuts, if they get through Congress as proposed, which is doubtful, would also discourage those seeking to go into science and engineering careers from doing so, as it would eliminate thousands of post-doctoral and career positions. One contractor who works with the federal government on environmental issues, but asked not to be identified since he is not authorized to speak to the press, told
Mashable that he and "many others" he knows have already begun "changing their career plans" as they brace for job cuts. "The ramifications of these cuts – which are below the FY17 omnibus levels – will have significant impacts on the health and welfare of the nation," Chris McEntee, the executive director and CEO of the American Geophysical Union, which is the world's largest organization of Earth scientists, said in a statement. Joanne Carney, director of government relations at AAAS, said the budget cuts will hurt the U.S. by impeding our ability to anticipate the ramifications of climate change. "...This is about dealing with reality at all levels of government," she said. "So defunding the very programs that seek to allow us to better understand the Earth and our changing environment isn’t helping the U.S. to address climate-related changes. It’s not allowing us to make informed decisions on how to adapt or to mitigate, and it has long-term consequences." There is some good news It is virtually certain that Congress will restore some of the funding for climate science. Many members of Congress of both parties were declaring the budget request dead on arrival on Tuesday. However, even a fraction of the proposed cuts would still hit the science community hard and potentially erode America's leadership position in global climate research.
Maria Gallucci contributed reporting for this story. WATCH: It's official, 2016 was Earth's warmest year on record
Dads not only act differently in their daily interactions with the children, but scans of their brains also revealed different patterns of activity depending on whether they have a boy or a girl. In recent years, a number of studies has shown that fathers treat girls and boys differently – suggesting in some cases that their behaviours could reinforce gender stereotypes in their children. For instance, studies often rely on parents' self-reports of their interactions with their children.
Rescuers have retrieved the bodies of two Indian climbers who died on Mount Everest last year but whose remains could not be moved due to bad weather, an official said Thursday. A team of Nepali climbers retrieved the bodies of Goutam Ghosh and Paresh Nath from the balcony, an area just below the summit of the 8,848-metre (29,029-foot) mountain. Ghosh's remains were only located this year by other climbers on the mountain.
Beyond Fiber Optics: Teraphysics Set to Enable the Future of 5G With Wireless High-Speed Data Delivery Technology LOS ANGELES, CA / ACCESSWIRE / May 24, 201 7 / Teraphysics, developer of ultrahigh-speed ...
At every stop in Donald Trump's whirlwind of summit meetings in Europe, the issue of climate change -- and the US president's threat to ditch the 196-nation Paris Agreement -- is never far from the surface. "I am still trying to convince the doubters," German Chancellor Andrea Merkel said Tuesday at informal 30-nation climate talks in Berlin, where China's climate tzar, Xie Zhenhua, also urged the United States to stay the course. Newly minted French President Emmanuel Macron, on the eve of his May 7 victory, likewise vowed to "do everything possible" to keep the former reality TV star on board.
The High Dive is known for drawing crowds into the local music scene, but this week, music wasn’t what drew nearly 200 people to the venue – it was NASA. Nerd Nite Seattle is a monthly gathering at the bar in the city’s Fremont neighborhood, featuring beer, tasty Mexican food, science talks and, of course, nerdy Seattleites. Tuesday night’s event drew in plenty of the regulars, plus an assortment of first-timers. One of the first-timers was NASA astronaut Anne McClain. She mingled with the crowd, and then got on stage to speak about her rigorous astronaut training, share hilarious stories about… Read More
The ancient civilisation that populated the coasts of Peru some 15,000 years ago was more advanced than archaeologists had previously imagined. Ancient artefacts suggest that these people had developed efficient techniques to extract resources from the sea early on. The site of Huaca Prieta in coastal Peru is home to the earliest pyramid in Latin America.
If congress agrees with Trump’s latest budget proposal, NASA will have about $561 million less to work with in 2018 than it did in 2017. With that said, significant programs will meet the chopping block because of it: NASA’s education program will completely shut down, along with at least four other missions related to studying asteroids or understanding Earth’s changing climate. NASA's acting administrator, Robert M. Lightfoot Jr., didn’t sound all that concerned.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A Western snowy plover chick that hatched on an Oregon beach this spring is the first of its species to emerge successfully in that area in more than 50 years and provides hope that a management plan for the federally threatened species is working, wildlife officials said Wednesday.
The year was 1999, and the people were going online. AOL, Compuserve, mp3.com, and AltaVista loaded bit by bit after dial-up chirps, on screens across the world. Watching the internet extend its reach, a small group of scientists thought a more extensive digital leap was in order, one that encompassed the galaxy itself. And so it was that before the new millennium dawned, researchers at the University of California released a citizen-science program called SETI@Home.
A treatment for obesity could be on the horizon as scientists have discovered an antibody that reduces body fat. In trials on mice, the antibody was found to increase bone mass and reduce adipose tissue (fat)—and while human studies are some way off, the findings could lead to new treatments for weight loss and osteoporosis. The antibody discovered targets follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) found in the pituitary gland.
If you believe the numbers, Hong Kong is one of the most meat-crazed societies on earth. Beef consumption in 2016 came in at 53.2 kilograms per head -- roughly the equivalent of eating two Big Macs a day, ...
A study of women in India who learned to read in their 30s shows the human brain's incredible capacity to reorganize and transform itself, researchers said Wednesday. Researchers recruited women in India, a country with an illiteracy rate of around 39 percent, to see what they could learn about the areas of the brain devoted to reading. "This growth of knowledge is remarkable", said Falk Huettig from the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, lead author of the study in the journal Science Advances.
Speaking multiple languages, accruing new skills or even just quitting a habit can forge new neural pathways. Literacy, it turns out, changes ancient regions of the brain that researchers never suspected played a role in reading. The finding expands not only our understanding of reading but also disorders that impair it, namely dyslexia.
Nearly 50 years ago, astronaut Neil Armstrong famously made his mark on the moon. When Armstrong returned from the Apollo 11 mission, he had a bag containing rock fragments and dust he collected from the moon's surface. Cassandra Hatton, a vice president at Sotheby's, explained that NASA unknowingly lost track of the bag, which protected the Earth and space craft from lunar pathogens, while clearing out items in the Johnson Space Center in Texas.
Vancouver, British Columbia--(Newsfile Corp. - May 24, 2017) - Jaxon Minerals Inc. (TSXV: JAX) (FSE: 0U3) ("Jaxon" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has purchased and received data from the 2012 Geotech VTEM resistivity/conductivity and magnetics airborne survey (464 line kilometre) flown at the company's Hazelton VMS target, 50 kms northwest of Smithers, British Columbia. Previous operators at the property had commissioned the survey but failed to complete final payment. Jaxon has ...
Electric vehicles have been billed as the sustainable alternative to gas-guzzling cars. But that hasn't always been the case, particularly when coal-fired electricity is used to recharge the battery. Yet with solar and wind power booming in the U.S., and natural gas supplanting coal, the low-carbon EV dream is finally becoming a reality, a new analysis says. Automakers are also unveiling new and better electric car models, making it easier to ditch gasoline-fueled cars. Electric vehicles are now "unequivocally" the cleanest cars in the country, based on a national average, the research and journalism group Climate Central reported on Wednesday. SEE ALSO: Tesla plans to double its charging network by the end of the year That's an improvement over the group's previous analysis, which found that a fully gas-powered hybrid car was better for the environment than an electric car, based on the national average, over 100,000 miles of driving. "In more and more of the country, new electric cars are becoming the greenest option on the market, even when you consider the source of the electricity they use," Eric Larson, an energy systems analyst at Climate Central and the report's lead author, said in a press release. Image: climate central"More electric car choices are coming online, and the country has been gradually reducing the carbon intensity of electrical grids in recent years," he said. "That means Americans now have many more options if they want to drive cleaner cars." The analysis updates previous reports and is posted on a new interactive website, Climate-Friendly Cars. Visitors can search by U.S. state to see how all-electric, plug-in hybrids, and conventional battery hybrids compare from an environmental standpoint. The climate-friendliness of a particular model varies from state to state, since the best types of car are still determined by the local electric grid. In 37 states, an all-electric car emits fewer greenhouse gas emissions compared to the most fuel-efficient gas-powered car, over the first 100,000 miles driven. But in 13 fossil fuel-dependent states, a gas-powered car is still the cleanest choice for car owners, the Climate Central analysis found. The climate-friendliest cars in New York, for the current model year only.Image: Climate centralEV drivers aren't limited to the Nissan Leaf or Tesla Model X, two early popular models of all-electric cars. For instance, in a state like New York, the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, BMW i3 BEV 60 ah, Fiat 500e and VW e-Golf also rank among the climate-friendliest options. Thanks to the growing variety, at least five all-electric car models are more climate friendly in 28 states compared to the "greenest" gas-powered car in that state, the report found. Within 24 states, plug-in hybrids, which can run on either gasoline or an electric charge, are also among the top environmentally friendly options. States where electric cars are by far the best option for the climate include California, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, South Dakota, Vermont, and Washington. Among the states where gas-powered cars are still the lowest-emissions options, thanks to their big base of coal-fired power plants, are Indiana, Kentucky, North Dakota, Utah, and West Virginia. WATCH: Watch a Tesla Model X drive itself to the office