SciNews January 21, 2016


Iceman may have had tummy ache, charting growth of very old baby, parents and children share mites with similar genes, 4 new elements on periodic table, award winning video of hummingbird flight, shaking up Einstein’s theory of general relativity, possibly the most powerful supernova, satellites keep an eye on earth – just a few of the themes in today’s eclectic collection of SciNews.  Share these stories with your students and get them excited about science.

SciNews is published twice weekly. Stay tuned for more.

7308778_s from 123rfBiology

5,300 year-old Iceman had never-before-seen stomach illness. Globe and Mail

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Charting the growth of one of the world’s oldest babies. Science Daily

Late Cretaceous Chasmosaurus fills in missing pieces of dinosaur evolution

The discovery of a juvenile Chasmosaurus — one of the rarest dinosaur discoveries — made headlines around the world in late 2013. Now a new article by these researchers outlines the results of their scientific findings in an alpha-level taxonomic description. Read more…

The mites living on your face probably run in your family. Science News

Researchers identified four lineages of microscopic Demodex folliculorum mites living on the foreheads of 70 volunteers. People with different geographical ancestry hosted different mixes of mites. Participants of Asian and European descent harbored fewer types of mites than people with Latin American and African ancestry. The differences probably reflect historical patterns of human migration, the researchers report December 14 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Read more…

Chemistry

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Four elements earn permanent seats on the periodic table. Science News

On December 30, the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry announced that a Russian-U.S. collaboration had attained sufficient evidence to claim the discovery of elements 115, 117 and 118. IUPAC awarded credit for the discovery of element 113 to scientists at RIKEN in Wako, Japan (SN Online: 9/27/12). Both groups synthesized the elements by slamming lighter nuclei into each other and tracking the decay of the radioactive superheavy elements that followed. Read more…

Physics

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Capturing the wonders of hummingbird flight. Science News

Hummingbirds are extreme athletes, deftly hovering and darting between flowers. Now a combination of high-speed filming and computer simulations reveals how the birds’ wings manipulate the surrounding air to aid in flight. The images seen here come from a video of simulated flight that won an American Physical Society Gallery of Fluid Motion award in November. Read more…

Gravitation under human control? Science Daily

Produce and detect gravitational fields at will using magnetic fields, control them for studying them, work with them to produce new technologies — it sounds daring, but one physicist has proposed just that in a new article. If followed, this proposal could transform physics and shake up Einstein’s theory of general relativity. Read more…

Earth and Space Science12693495_s from 123rf

What is 10 miles across, but powers an explosion brighter than the Milky Way? Science Daily

Astronomers studying what may be the most powerful supernova ever seen

Right now, astronomers are viewing a ball of hot gas billions of light years away that is radiating the energy of hundreds of billions of suns. At its heart is an object a little larger than 10 miles across. And astronomers are not entirely sure what it is. If, as they suspect, the gas ball is the result of a supernova, then it’s the most powerful supernova ever seen. Read more…

Succession of satellites keep eye on Earth. Science News

The secret sources of water, fuel and minerals … may be discovered by using a new tool for geologists — an orbiting spacecraft. Cameras which detect infrared, ultraviolet and visible light and which orbit at a height of 100 or more miles will be an immense aid to geologists mapping the contours … of the Earth’s surface. —Science News Letter, January 22, 1966  Read more…

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