A mother and baby orangutan holding hands and snugglingGetty The animal kingdom never ceases to amaze, delight and occasionally horrify us. Evolution, it should be abundantly clear, is almost endlessly inventive. Here are some of the most bizarre and awesome zoological discoveries of 2018. I’m not even going to pretend that this list is definitive.
SANTA FE, N.M. — SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk says a redesigned test vehicle for the company’s next-generation reusable launch system could be ready for initial flights early next year. In a tweet early Dec. 24, Musk posted a photo of two parts of that initial test article, a conical section next to a cylindrical
Volcanic eruptions, as history has proven, can be very dangerous. And there’s something that can make them even more so. When lava comes into contact with water, it can dramatically explode, like it did with Hawaii’s Kīlauea and Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull – but this doesn’t always happen. The problem is, we don’t really know why these
There’s no other way to say it: human hair is strange. Compared to most other mammals, human beings are decidedly naked, and the little fuzz that we do have is oddly patchy and quite diverse. The most obvious of our bizarre bald regions are perhaps the soles of our feet and the palms of our hands.
This aerial picture taken on December 23, 2018 by Bisnis Indonesia shows the Anak (Child) Krakatoa volcano erupting in the Sunda Straits off the coast of southern Sumatra and the western tip of Java. (NURUL HIDAYAT/AFP/Getty Images)Getty As it stands, the death toll from the likely volcanically-generated tsunami in Indonesia’s Sunda Strait is 281, but
The sky was clear and the Moon had risen high, but Captain W.J. Watson of the British ship Charles Bal noticed that the Java Sea had “suddenly assumed a milky-white appearance. Watson commented that the sky that night – 22 August 1883 – took on a pinkish hue, “as when the Aurora is showing faintly.”
At the very centre of the image above is something incredible – a single, positively-charged strontium atom, suspended in motion by electric fields. Not only is this an incredibly rare sight, it’s also difficult to wrap your head around the fact that this tiny point of blue light is a building block of matter. Tiny
1. In Australia, birds of prey deliberately start forest fires – wielding flaming sticks to do so. Indigenous people have known of these ‘firehawk raptors’ for quite some time, but now we also have scientific research describing this stunning phenomenon. 2. Here’s an update on what you learned in high school biology – this year
On 24 December 1968 – 50 years ago this Christmas eve – Apollo 8 astronauts Frank Borman, Jim Lovell, and William Anders became the first humans to circle the Moon. The mission was historic. But equally memorable is the famous “Earthrise” photo that resulted, showing Earth rising above the lunar landscape. Until that point, no
Get water in your lungs, and you’re in for a very bad time. But when water enters a new type of “lung” created by researchers at Stanford University, the result is hydrogen fuel – a clean source of energy that could one day power everything from our cars to our smartphones. Though this isn’t the
Vocalist Rivers Cuomo of Weezer performs at Shoreline Amphitheatre on August 7, 2018 in Mountain View, California. (Photo by Miikka Skaffari/Getty Images)Getty This could be the coolest cover of Weezer’s “Island In The Sun.” Not just because 19-year-old Kira Iaconetti has a good voice. But she sang the song in a hospital (Seattle Children’s Hospital), in
WASHINGTON — A cyberattack that may have compromised information about current and former NASA employees is only the latest sign of ongoing information security problems that have plagued the agency for years. In a Dec. 18 memo to NASA employees, Bob Gibbs, assistant administrator for the office of human capital management, said that the agency
FILE PHOTO: The SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, scheduled to launch a U.S. Air Force navigation satellite, sits on Launch Complex 40 after the launch was postponed after an abort procedure was triggered by the onboard flight computer, at Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., December 18, 2018. REUTERS/Steve Nesius/File Photo (Reuters) – A SpaceX rocket carrying a
Homemade Organic Oyster Stew with Crackers and ParsleyGetty On Christmas Eve, households across the Southeast U.S. will be serving up oyster stew (many New England households serve it up for Thanksgiving). This dish used to be so common that oyster crackers likely get their name because such crackers are often served with oyster stew. This stew has its roots in Indigenous dietary
MT LAUREL, New Jersey — SpaceX launched the U.S. Air Force’s newest GPS satellite Dec. 23 on a Falcon 9 rocket, completing the company’s 21st and final launch of the year. The rocket lifted off at 8:51 a.m. Eastern from Cape Canaveral, Florida, following technical and weather-related delays that pushed the mission out five days.
At least 222 deaths have been reported in Indonesia on Sunday after a tsunami struck the Sunda Strait without warning, the latest disaster to befall a Pacific nation repeatedly stricken this year. As of late Sunday, Indonesian government officials reported more than 843 injured and 28 still missing. The cause remains unclear, but 1-meter high
In an incredible world first, astrophysicists detected multiple planets in another galaxy earlier this year, ranging from masses as small as the Moon to ones as great as Jupiter. Given how difficult it is to find exoplanets even within our Milky Way galaxy, this is no mean feat. Researchers at the University of Oklahoma achieved
A study revealed the ages at which loneliness tends to peak. (Photo: Getty Images)Getty Alone Yoda was. But lonely was he? When Yoda appeared in Empire Strikes Back, he was pretty much by himself on the planet Dagobah with no Direct TV. However, according to a study just published in the journal International Psychogeriatrics, he may have
WASHINGTON — Swarm Technologies will pay $900,000 to settle an investigation by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission into the startup’s launch of four picosatellites on an Indian rocket this January without regulatory approval, the FCC announced Dec. 20. Swarm defied the FCC by launching the satellites after the agency dismissed its application for an experimental
For centuries, Peruvian locals have talked about a river in the Amazon that burns so hot it can kill. According to legend, Spanish conquistadors foolishly ventured into the rainforest in search of gold, and the few men that returned told stories of poisoned water, man-eating snakes, and a river that boiled from below. For Peruvian