Month: November 2017

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An unnatural number of earthquakes hit Texas in the past decade, and the region’s seismic activity is increasing. In 2008, two earthquakes stronger than magnitude 3 struck the state. Eight years later, 12 did. Natural forces trigger most earthquakes. But humans are causing earthquakes, too, with mining and dam construction the most frequent suspects. There
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It’s not every day that an asteroid from outside the Solar System comes whizzing past your front door. In fact, it’s only ever happened once that we’ve observed, when astronomers spotted interstellar asteroid ‘Oumuamua in October. Now a collective of astronomers and engineers wants to seize the opportunity to study ‘Oumuamua – by chasing after
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If this past year or two has made anything abundantly clear, it is that the information we rabidly consume isn’t always as factual or reliable as we might think. There exists an overwhelming barrage of intentional misinformation online, on television, and in print publications. This misinformation is especially prevalent when it comes to science. It’s
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The hypothesis of Panspermia states that life exists through the cosmos, and is distributed between planets, stars and even galaxies by asteroids, comets, meteors and planetoids. In this respect, life began on Earth about 4 billion years ago after microorganisms hitching a ride on space rocks landed on the surface. Over the years, considerable research
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When a human-made disaster like a chemical spill or nuclear accident occurs, it’s not unusual for the land to be ridden off. But there’s an unlikely candidate that could actually be able to survive the harsh terrain and help the area become viable again – Australian native plants.   “It’s a biotechnology called ‘phytoremediation’ and
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For the first time, scientists have witnessed lightning triggering nuclear reactions in the atmosphere, confirming a hypothesis dating back almost a century. It’s long been predicted that high-energy electrons in lightning can produce gamma rays that induce nuclear reactions in thunderclouds, but before now, the phenomenon has never been conclusively observed.   “The photonuclear reaction
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After weeks of silence and denials, Russia has confirmed that it too has detected evidence of a mysterious radiation cloud floating above much of Europe, observing a dramatic radiation spike above Russia’s Ural Mountains. The acknowledgement comes after a number of other European nations suggested Russia was the probable origin of the unexplained radiation surge,
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During the mid- to late-twentieth century, quantum physicists picked apart the unified theory of physics that Einstein’s theory of relativity offered. The physics of the large was governed by gravity, but only quantum physics could describe observations of the small. Since then, a theoretical tug-o-war between gravity and the other three fundamental forces has continued
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It’s the hiatus that never happened: an apparent ‘slowdown’ in rising surface temperatures between 1998 and 2012, which encouraged climate change deniers to label global warming a made-up conspiracy. Even a hoax. To be clear, thanks to the efforts of scientists, this ‘pause’ in global warming has been thoroughly debunked, but new research highlights another