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After months of analysis, NASA has posted this ScienceCasts report of a large meteoroid impact on the Moon on March 17, 2013. Lunar impacts aren't uncommon - hundreds occur each year - but this one was the brightest flash recorded in the eight year span of the agency's lunar monitoring program. NASA estimates that a 40 kg space rock slamming into the Mare Imbrium region caused the visible-to-the-naked-eye explosion. The bright flash wasn't produced by combustion - the Moon has no atmosphere - but by the glow of hot vapors and molten lunar rock heated up by the tremendous kinetic force of the impact.
Work with bulldozers and backhoes to collect materials for a road building project has destroyed an ancient Maya pyramid in Belize. You can read all the details here. And then you can wipe away your tears.
According to researchers in Australia the answer could be 'yes'. But probably not the way you think. The study, which appears online at BMC Ecology, suggests that different plant species actually communicate with each other by sending nano-scale signals through the soil. It makes you wonder if the rhubarb doesn't have some dirt on the begonias.
Talking plants!? That's ridiculous!
Mountain climbing is dangerous. Mountain climbing on a volcanic mountain is extra dangerous. A team of mountain climbers in the Philippines found that out today, five with very tragic results.
Courtesy Virgin GalacticThis morning high above the Mojave Desert in California, SpaceShipTwo fired its engines in air for the first time, making its first step toward putting a commercial, tourist space craft into space. As opposed to traditional ground-fired rockets, SpaceShipTwo is carried up into the upper atmosphere by a jet plane, cut loose and then fires its engines to boost it toward space. Today's test took the craft up to 45,000 feet with its partner. The blast shoot it up to 55,000 feet for about a 10 minutes. Here is a link to video of the firing. And here is a link to our previous posts about SpaceShipTwo.
Courtesy MashableLaw enforcement authorities aren't giving out specific information, but robotic experts are chiming in with their thoughts on how robots played a role in capturing the Boston Marathon bombers. Here's a pretty interesting online article theorizing the use of robots in the case. The link includes a video that shows how these robots do their jobs. While TV reports Friday night said that a robotic arm was used to pull the tarp off the boat where the second suspect was hiding, those reports, have now been called incorrect.
What do you think about using robots to handle dangerous tasks involving terrorism and crime?
Ever wondered how astronauts brush their teeth in a zero gravity environment? Or rinse out a wet rag? Or even make a peanut butter and honey sandwich (with a tortilla)? Wonder no more. Canadian astronaut and ISS Commander Chris Hadfield has created several videos that show how astronauts tackle these usually mundane tasks in space. Here are three:
When yesterday's bombs went off at at the Boston Marathon, chaos erupted. Runners were still scattered about the 26-mile course. But technology was able to keep track of where they all were. You can read about it all here.
Courtesy CC/Flickr/dni777We've posted about this grouwin problem numerous times before, but the trend continues downward for honeybee populations. This recap of the problem looks at the situation from Minnesota and national angles. It also addresses the complex causes of this serious situation. Here's an older post on the bee problem.
A few days of sunshine have really started to melt our snow here in the Twin Cities. But looking at the Mississippi River, you can hardly tell. In fact, the river levels at the official St. Paul monitoring location dipped down the past few days before turning back up. The next flood forecast is due out tomorrow. About a month ago, forecasters estimated at 95 percent chance of the river topping flood stage. Click here to see a graph of the past week's water levels in St. Paul.