Does gold come from outer space?
2013-09-20 05:26:41 UTC
The idea that gold came from outer space sounds like science fiction, but it has become well-established - it's pretty much received opinion in the field of earth sciences. How did this bizarre theory take hold, and is it here to stay?
For the chieftains of pre-Columbian America, the dazzling ...
Va. company about to make first space station run
2013-09-17 20:28:24 UTC
A Virginia company is all set to make its first-ever supply run to the International Space Station.
On the eve of its premiere rendezvous mission, Orbital Sciences Corp. said everything looked good for Wednesday's launch from Virginia's Eastern Shore.
An unmanned Antares rocket was schedule...
Understanding the Universe’s invisible elements
2013-09-13 00:29:14 UTC
Most of the Universe is invisible. Understanding these unseeable elements can be an important step in working out how the entire Universe works.
Charles Alcock, the director of the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, says the Solar System extends far further than first thought. If we ...
NASA: Voyager 1 probe has left the solar system
2013-09-12 23:21:48 UTC
LOS ANGELES (AP) — NASA's Voyager 1 probe has left the solar system, boldly going where no machine has gone before.
Thirty-six years after it rocketed away from Earth, the plutonium-powered spacecraft has escaped the sun's influence and is now cruising 11 1/2 billion miles away in interstellar...
Szechuan pepper taps at nerve fibers
2013-09-11 19:59:47 UTC
As many Asian chefs know, a dash of Szechuan peppers delivers a lip-rattling experience. This fizzy, tingly sensation comes courtesy of specialized nerve fibers that detect physical vibrations, a new study suggests.
Szechuan peppers aren’t spicy, but chefs often pair them with hot chilies to e...
Vaccine stops deadly sand-fly-spread scourge in animal test
2013-09-11 19:56:29 UTC
A lethal parasite appears susceptible to an experimental vaccine that seizes upon the scourge’s apparatus for invading cells.
Researchers prompted animals’ immune systems to destroy Leishmania protozoa by inducing mass-production of the very protein receptor that the parasites use as a pry bar...
A gut infection can keep mice lean
2013-09-07 23:45:45 UTC
Skinniness could be contagious. Gut bacteria from thin people can invade the intestines of mice carrying microbes from obese people. And these invaders can keep mice from getting tubby, researchers report in the Sept. 6 Science.
“It’s very surprising,” says molecular microbiologist Andreas Sch...
World's largest volcano lurks beneath Pacific Ocean
2013-09-09 06:44:25 UTC
A team writing in the journal Nature Geoscience says the 310,000 sq km (119,000 sq mi) Tamu Massif is comparable in size to Mars' vast Olympus Mons volcano - the largest in the Solar System.
The structure topples the previous largest on Earth, Mauna Loa in Hawaii.
The massif lies some 2km b...
NASA launching robotic explorer to moon from Va.
2013-09-06 18:51:35 UTC
NASA is poised to return to the moon.
An unmanned rocket is scheduled to blast off late Friday night from Virginia with a robotic explorer that will study the lunar atmosphere and dust. Called LADEE (LA'-dee), the moon-orbiting craft will measure the thin lunar atmosphere.
Scientists want t...
Tiny human almost-brains made in lab
2013-09-01 07:53:22 UTC
Largely left to their own devices, human stem cells knitted themselves into tissue with a multitude of brain structures and specialized cadres of neurons in a form reminiscent of the brain of a nine-week-old fetus, scientists report August 28 in Nature.
The tissue doesn’t approach the dizzying...
Traveling with elders helps whooping cranes fly straight
2013-09-01 07:41:42 UTC
Here’s a lesson on road trips from whooping cranes: For efficient migration, what matters is the age of the oldest crane in the group. These more experienced fliers nudge youngsters away from going off course on long flights.
“The older birds get, the closer they stick to the straight line,” s...
A fight between gut parasites means a win for people
2013-09-01 07:36:26 UTC
Parasitic worms may have their perks. For indigenous people at the Amazon’s southern edge, infection with the slithering gut hitchhikers may protect against other parasites, a new study shows.
The finding calls into question whether parasitic infections should always receive treatment. “By tre...
Scientists find clue to age-related memory loss
2013-08-29 01:53:24 UTC
WASHINGTON (AP) — Scientists have found a compelling clue in the quest to learn what causes age-related memory problems, and to one day be able to tell if those misplaced car keys are just a senior moment or an early warning of something worse.
Wednesday's report offers evidence that age-relat...
The down and dirty about nerve agents like sarin
2013-08-27 17:58:55 UTC
WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that evidence of a large-scale chemical weapons attack in Syria was "undeniable." There are still many questions about chemical weapons, though, some of which can be answered easily and some of which can't.
Q: What chemical weapon are...
Test-tube babies: A simpler, cheaper technique?
2013-08-23 06:28:34 UTC
LONDON (AP) — Since the first test-tube baby was born more than three decades ago, in vitro fertilization has evolved into a highly sophisticated lab procedure. Now, scientists are going back to basics and testing a simpler and cheaper method.
In the West, many would-be parents spend thousands...
Former astronaut C. Gordon Fullerton dies at 76
2013-08-23 06:25:21 UTC
LANCASTER, Calif. (AP) — C. Gordon Fullerton, a former astronaut who flew on two space shuttle missions and had an extensive career as a research and test pilot for NASA and the Air Force, died Wednesday, the space agency said. He was 76.
Fullerton suffered a severe stroke in 2009 and had been...
NASA recycles spacecraft to search for asteroids
2013-08-23 05:53:39 UTC
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — A NASA spacecraft currently in hibernation will be restarted to search for asteroids that astronauts could potentially explore.
The space agency said Wednesday it will awaken the Wise spacecraft next month to begin its new three-year mission to hunt for space rocks at a...
Ex-dolphin trainer now looking into mass die-off
2013-08-21 19:19:00 UTC
BRIGANTINE, N.J. (AP) — Once upon a time, he was known as Capt. Bob, the man who trained the dolphins and seals to perform for crowds in Atlantic City.
But as he got to know the dolphins, Bob Schoelkopf renounced keeping them in captivity and devoted the rest of his life to rescuing stranded m...
Astronaut recounts near-drowning on spacewalk
2013-08-21 19:12:23 UTC
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The Italian astronaut who nearly drowned in his helmet during a spacewalk last month is sharing more details about the terrifying experience, revealing how he felt all alone and frantically tried to come up with a plan to save himself.
Luca Parmitano wrote in his on...
Telescope captures dramatic moment of starbirth
2013-08-21 19:10:02 UTC
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — This is one baby picture you won't want to miss.
The ALMA (AL'-mah) telescope in Chile has captured a close-up of the glowing material spewing from a newborn star.
The stunning images show material streaming from the baby star at incredible speed, glowing as it p...
2 Russians turn cable guys in record spacewalk
2013-08-17 13:55:43 UTC
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — In a record-long spacewalk, Russian cosmonauts rigged cable outside the International Space Station on Friday for a new lab that's due to arrive in a few months.
Fyodor Yurchikhin and Aleksandr Misurkin spent almost the entire seven-hour-plus spacewalk routing 120 f...
SF Bay Area building demolition fuels quake study
2013-08-17 22:46:59 UTC
HAYWARD, Calif. (AP) — It took just seconds for a 13-story building overlooking San Francisco Bay to implode, spewing smoke and chunks of concrete as it crumbled into a heap of rubble. But U.S. Geological Survey scientist Rufus Catchings was marveling less at the visual spectacle than what he cou...
Lavabit privacy row: second email service closes 'to prevent spying'
2013-08-10 18:47:04 UTC
Withdrawal comes after apparent pressure on Lavabit to allow US government access to encrypted messages on its servers.
Two American companies which provided encrypted email services – one to the NSA fugitive Edward Snowden – have abruptly shut down the service, apparently following US governm...
NOAA report card for 2012's climate: More warming
2013-08-09 06:32:24 UTC
WASHINGTON (AP) — A new massive federal study says the world in 2012 sweltered with continued signs of climate change. Rising sea levels, snow melt, heat buildup in the oceans, and melting Arctic sea ice and Greenland ice sheets, all broke or nearly broke records, but temperatures only sneaked in...
NOAA trims forecast for busy hurricane season
2013-08-09 06:30:47 UTC
WASHINGTON (AP) — This Atlantic hurricane season may not be quite as busy as federal forecasters once thought, but they still warn of an unusually active and potentially dangerous few months to come.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration updated its hurricane season forecast Thur...