Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Curiosity Detects Methane Spike on Mars


NASA Science News for Dec. 16, 2014

NASA's Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a rock-powder sample collected by the robotic laboratory’s drill.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/16dec_methanespike/

Needed: 11 Trillion Gallons to Replenish California Drought


NASA Science News for Dec. 16, 2014

It will take about 11 trillion gallons of water to recover from California's continuing drought, according to a new analysis of NASA satellite data.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/16dec_drought/

Interstellar 'Tsunami Waves' Sweep Past Voyager 1


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 16, 2014

Since 2012, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has experienced three 'tsunami waves' in interstellar space. The most recent, which reached the spacecraft earlier this year, is still propagating outward according to new data.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/16dec_voyagercme/

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Rosetta Reignites Debate over Earth's Oceans


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 14, 2014

A popular theory holds that ocean water was brought to Earth by the ancient impacts of comets and asteroids. However, new data from the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft indicate that terrestrial water did not come from comets like 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/14dec_cometwater/

Big Picture Science for Monday 15 December 2014 - Shocking Ideas

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Big Picture Science - Shocking Ideas

Electricity is so 19th century. Most of the uses for it were established by the 1920s. So there’s nothing innovative left to do, right? That’s not the opinion of the Nobel committee that awarded its 2014 physics prize to scientists who invented the blue LED.

Find out why this LED hue of blue was worthy of our most prestigious science prize … how some bacteria actually breathe rust … and a plan to cure disease by zapping our nervous system with electric pulses.

Guests:
  • Siddha Pimputkar – Postdoctoral researcher in the Materials Department of the Solid State Lighting and Energy Electronics Center under Shuji Nakamura, winner of the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Jeff Gralnick – Associate professor of microbiology at the University of Minnesota
  • Kevin Tracey – Neurosurgeon and president of the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in New York

Permalink: http://radio.seti.org/episodes/Shocking_Ideas

You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Blog Picture Science, the companion blog to the radio show.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Weekend meteor shower


Source - Space Weather News for Dec. 12, 2014: http://spaceweather.com

GEMINID METEOR SHOWER:  The best meteor shower of the year, the Geminids, peaks this weekend when Earth passes through a stream of debris from "rock comet" 3200 Phaethon. Forecasters expect to see as many as 120 meteors per hour when the shower peaks on Dec. 13th and 14th.  Visit http://spaceweather.com for photos and observing tips.

AURORA WATCH:  A geomagnetic storm is underway on  Dec. 12th as Earth enters a high-speed stream of solar wind.  Aurora alerts are available from http://spaceweathertext.com (text) and http://spaceweatherphone.com (voice).

Embers from a Rock Comet: The 2014 Geminid Meteor Shower


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 12, 2014

Earth is passing through a stream of debris from "rock comet" 3200 Phaethon, source of the annual Geminid meteor shower. Forecasters expect as many as 120 meteors per hour when the shower peaks on Dec. 13-14.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/12dec_embers/

A companion video is posted below and can also be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sT3D6t8VT-k&feature=youtu.be



License: Standard YouTube License

Monday, December 8, 2014

New Horizons Wakes Up on Pluto's Doorstep


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 7, 2014

After a voyage of nearly nine years and three billion miles —the farthest any space mission has ever traveled to reach its primary target – NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft came out of hibernation on Dec. 6th for its long-awaited 2015 encounter with the Pluto system.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/07dec_plutosdoorstep/

A companion video is posted below and can also be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RDIsbN-e1qU



License: Standard YouTube License

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Big Picture Science for Monday 08 December 2014 - Living Computers

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Big Picture Science - Living Computers

It’s the most dramatic technical development of recent times: Teams of people working for decades to produce a slow-motion revolution we call computing. As these devices become increasingly powerful, we recall that a pioneer from the nineteenth century – Ada Lovelace, a mathematician and Lord Byron’s daughter – said they would never surpass human ability. Was she right?

We consider the near-term future of computing as the Internet of Things is poised to link everything together, and biologists adopt the techniques of information science to program living cells.

Plus: What’s your favorite sci-fi computer?

Guests:

Permalink: http://radio.seti.org/episodes/Living_Computers

You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Blog Picture Science, the companion blog to the radio show.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Study: Astronauts face a growing peril from space radiation


Source - Space Weather News for Dec. 6, 2014: http://spaceweather.com

SPACE RADIATION:  According to a new study just published in the research journal Space Weather, astronauts face a growing peril from space radiation.  Rising fluxes of cosmic rays inside the solar system place increasingly strict limits on the amount of time explorers can safely travel through interplanetary space.  Visit http://spaceweather.com for more information and links to the complete study.

AURORA WATCH:  Arctic sky watchers should be alert for auroras this weekend. Earth is passing through a fast-moving stream of solar wind, and this is causing geomagnetic unrest around the poles.

Geomagnetic storm alerts are available from http://spaceweathertext.com (text) and http://spaceweatherphone.com (voice).

Japan Launches Asteroid Mission


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 4, 2014

On Dec. 3, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) successfully launched its Hayabusa2 mission to rendezvous with an asteroid, land a small probe plus three mini rovers on its surface, and then return samples to Earth. NASA and JAXA are cooperating on the science of the mission.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/04dec_hayabusa2/

Climate Change and the Yin-Yang of Polar Sea Ice


Source - NASA Science News for Dec. 4, 2014

Arctic and Antarctic sea ice are both affected by climate change, but the two poles of Earth are behaving in intriguingly different ways.

The complete article can be found here: http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/28nov_yinyang/

A companion video is posted below and can also be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hauoepPqns4&feature=youtu.be



License: Standard YouTube License

Monday, December 1, 2014

Geminid meteor shower gets an early start


Source Space Weather News for Dec. 1, 2014: http://spaceweather.com

EARLY GEMINIDS: Earth is entering a stream of debris from "rock comet" 3200 Phaethon, source of the annual Geminid meteor shower.  The shower is not expected to peak until Dec. 14th, but NASA meteor cameras are detecting Geminid fireballs over the USA two weeks early.  Visit http://spaceweather.com for images and updates.

AURORA WATCH:  A high-speed solar wind stream is buffeting Earth's magnetic field on Dec. 1-2.  High-latitude sky watchers, especially those around the Arctic Circle, should be alert for auroras in the nights ahead.  Geomagnetic storm alerts are available from  http://spaceweathertext.com (text) and http://spaceweatherphone.com (voice).

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Big Picture Science for Monday 01 December 2014 - Long Live Longevity

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Big Picture Science - Long Live Longevity

ENCORE: Here’s to a long life – which, on average, is longer today than it was a century ago. How much farther can we extend that ultimate finish line? Scientists are in hot pursuit of the secret to longer life.

The latest in aging studies and why there’s a silver lining for the silver-haired set: older people are happier. Also, what longevity means if you’re a tree. Plus, why civilizations need to stick around if we’re to make contact with E.T.

And, how our perception of time shifts as we age, and other tricks that clocks play on the mind.

Guests:

This encore podcast was first released on July 29, 2014

Permalink: http://radio.seti.org/episodes/Long_Live_Longevity

You can listen to this and other episodes at http://radio.seti.org/, and be sure to check out Blog Picture Science, the companion blog to the radio show.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Electric Blue Clouds over Antarctica


Source - Space Weather News for Nov. 29, 2014: http://spaceweather.com

NASA's AIM spacecraft has spotted electric-blue clouds forming over Antarctica.  These are noctilucent clouds (NLCs) and their apparition marks the beginning of the 2014-2015 season for southern NLCs.  By the second week of December, Antarctica could be blanketed in electric blue.

Visit http://spaceweather.com for more information and updates.