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It's the first photograph ever taken of the backside of the Moon, taken October 7th, 1959. And here's the story how it was made.
Reposted fromyellowsoupmarine yellowsoupmarine

Fossilized dinosaur proteins, and making a fridge from rubber bands

Have you ever tried to scrub off the dark, tarlike residue on a grill? That tough stuff is made up of polymers—basically just byproducts of cooking—and it is so persistent that researchers have found similar molecules that have survived hundreds of millions of years. And these aren’t from cook fires. They are actually the byproducts of death and fossilization. Host Sarah Crespi talks with Contributing Correspondent Gretchen Vogel about how these molecules can be found on the surface of certain fossils and used as fingerprints for the proteins that once dwelled in dinos. And Sarah talks with Zunfeng Liu, a professor at Nankai University in Tianjin, China, about a new cooling technology based on a 100-year-old observation that a stretched rubber band is warm and a relaxed one is cool. It’s going to be hard to beat the 60% efficiency of compression-based refrigerators and air conditioning units, but Zunfeng and colleagues aim to try, with twists and coils that can cool water by 7°C when relaxed. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life by David Quammen Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Twila Cheeseborough/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Ep. 541: Weird Issues: Expansion Rate of the Universe

541: Weird Issues: Expansion Rate of the Universe Astronomy Cast 541: Weird Issues: Expansion Rate of the Universe by Fraser Cain & Dr. Pamela Gay Just when the Universe was starting to make sense, the cosmos throws a curveball at us. Astronomers have been trying to accurately measure the expansion rate of the Universe as far back as Hubble. It's been tough to nail down, and now astronomers are starting to figure out why.

An app for eye disease, and planting memories in songbirds

Host Sarah Crespi talks with undergraduate student Micheal Munson from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, about a smartphone app that scans photos in the phone’s library for eye disease in kids.  And Sarah talks with Todd Roberts of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, about incepting memories into zebra finches to study how they learn their songs. Using a technique called optogenetics—in which specific neurons can be controlled by pulses of light—the researchers introduced false song memories by turning on neurons in different patterns, with longer or shorter note durations than typical zebra finch songs. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: MOVA Globes; KiwiCo.com Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Jim Brendon/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Ep. 540: Weird Issues: How Do (or Don't) Planets Form?

As astronomers started to discover planets orbiting other stars, they immediately realized that their expectations would need to be tossed out. Hot jupiters? Pulsars with planets? We're now decades into this task, and the Universe is continuing to surprise us.
Reposted byTokei-Ihtop125

Privacy concerns slow Facebook studies, and how human fertility depends on chromosome counts

On this week’s show, Senior News Correspondent Jeffrey Mervis talks with host Sarah Crespi about a stalled Facebook plan to release user data to social scientists who want to study the site’s role in elections. Sarah also talks with Jennifer Gruhn, a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Copenhagen Center for Chromosome Stability, about counting chromosomes in human egg cells. It turns out that cell division errors that cause too many or too few chromosomes to remain in the egg may shape human fertility over our reproductive lives. Finally, in this month’s book segment, Kiki Sanford talks with Daniel Navon about his book Mobilizing Mutations: Human Genetics in the Age of Patient Advocacy. Visit the books blog for more author interviews: Books et al. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: MOVA Globes; The Tangled Tree by David Quammen Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Jennifer Gruhn; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Ep. 539: Weird Issues: Why We Don't Know the Age of Saturn's Rings

How old are Saturn's rings? They could be brand new, or they could be as ancient as the Solar System itself. Planetary scientists thought they knew the answer thanks to new data from Cassini, but new ideas are calling even that into question. 

Cooling Earth with asteroid dust, and 3 billion missing birds

On this week’s show, science journalist Josh Sokol talks about a global cooling event sparked by space dust that lead to a huge shift in animal and plant diversity 466 million years ago. (Read the related research article in Science Advances.) And I talk with Kenneth Rosenberg, an applied conservation scientist at Cornell University, about steep declines in bird abundance in the United States and Canada. His team estimates about 3 billion birds have gone missing since the 1970s. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: MOVA Globes; KiwiCo.com Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Public domain; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Ep. 538: Asteroids: Rubble piles of the Solar System

Thanks to all the work from Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS-REx, astronomers are getting a much better look at the smaller asteroids in the Solar System. It turns out, they're piles of rubble... but fascinating piles of rubble. Let's talk about what we've learned so far.

Studying human health at 5100 meters, and playing hide and seek with rats

In La Rinconada, Peru, a town 5100 meters up in the Peruvian Andes, residents get by breathing air with 50% less oxygen than at sea level. International News Editor Martin Enserink visited the site with researchers studying chronic mountain sickness—when the body makes excess red blood cells in an effort to cope with oxygen deprivation—in these extreme conditions. Martin talks with host Sarah Crespi about how understanding why this illness occurs in some people and not others could help the residents of La Rinconada and the 140 million people worldwide living above 2500 meters. Read the whole special issue on mountains.  Sarah also talks with Annika Stefanie Reinhold about her work at the Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience in Berlin training rats to play hide and seek. Surprisingly, rats learned the game easily and were even able to switch roles—sometimes playing as the seeker, other times the hider. Annika talks with Sarah about why studying play behavior in animals is important for understanding the connections between play and learning in both rats and humans. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: MOVA Globes; Kroger’s Zero Hunger, Zero Waste campaign Download a transcript (PDF)  Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Tambako The Jaguar/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

Ep. 537: Reusable Rocket Revolution

We took a hiatus this summer, but SpaceX sure didn’t, with the tests of the Starhopper prototype. Today we’re going to talk about the revolution in reusable rocketry and quest to build a fully reusable two-stage rocket.

Searching for a lost Maya city, and measuring the information density of language

This week’s show starts with Contributing Correspondent Lizzie Wade, who spent 12 days with archaeologists searching for a lost Maya city in the Chiapas wilderness in Mexico. She talks with host Sarah Crespi about how you lose a city—and how you might go about finding one. And Sarah talks with Christophe Coupé, an associate professor in the department of linguistics at the University of Hong Kong in China, about the information density of different languages. His work, published this week in Science Advances, suggests very different languages—from Chinese to Japanese to English and French—are all equally efficient at conveying information. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: Kroger’s Zero Hunger, Zero Waste campaign; KiwiCo Download a transcript (PDF) Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast  

Where our microbiome came from, and how our farming and hunting ancestors transformed the world

Micro-organisms live inside everything from the human gut to coral—but where do they come from? Host Meagan Cantwell talks to Staff Writer Elizabeth Pennisi about the first comprehensive survey of microbes in Hawaii’s Waimea Valley, which revealed that plants and animals get their unique microbiomes from organisms below them in the food chain or the wider environment. Going global, Meagan then speaks with Erle Ellis, professor of geography and environmental science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, about a project that aggregated the expertise of more than 250 archaeologists to map human land use over the past 10,000 years. This detailed map will help fine-tune climate models. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this show: Science Sessions Podcast; Kroger Download a transcript (PDF)  Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Chris Couderc/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]
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Figure 5 (A) Global fire zones, NASA. The Earth data fire map accumulates the locations of fires detected by moderate-resolution imaging radiometer (MODIS) on board the Terra and Aqua satellites over a 10-day period. Each colored dot indicates a location where MODIS detected at least one fire during the compositing period. Color ranges from red where the fire count is low to yellow where number of fires is large
(B) An ecological catastrophe in Russia: wildfires have created over 4 million square km smoke lid over central northern Asia. Big Siberian cities are covered with toxic haze that had already reached Urals.
Reposted fromyellowsoupmarine yellowsoupmarine

Promising approaches in suicide prevention, and how to retreat from climate change

Changing the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline from 1-800-273- 8255 (TALK) to a three-digit number could save lives—especially when coupled with other strategies. Host Meagan Cantwell talks to Greg Miller, a science journalist based in Portland, Oregon, about three effective methods to prevent suicides—crisis hotlines, standardizing mental health care, and restricting lethal means. Greg’s feature is part of a larger package in Science exploring paths out of darkness. With more solutions this week, host Sarah Crespi speaks with A. R. Siders, a social scientist at the Disaster Research Center at the University of Delaware in Newark, about her policy forum on the need for “managed climate retreat”—strategically moving people and property away from high-risk flood and fire zones. Integrating relocation into a larger strategy could maximize its benefits, supporting equality and economic development along the way. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this show: KiwiCo; Kroger Download a transcript (PDF) Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: Scott Woods-Fehr/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook] 

One million ways to sex a chicken egg, and how plastic finds its way to Arctic ice

Researchers, regulators, and the chicken industry are all united in their search for a way to make eggs more ethical by stopping culling—the killing of male chicks born to laying hens. Contributing Correspondent Gretchen Vogel talks with host Sarah Crespi about the many approaches being tried to determine the sex of chicken embryos before they hatch, from robots with lasers, to MRIs, to artificial intelligence, to gene editing with CRISPR. Also this week, Sarah talks with Melanie Bergmann, a marine biologist at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, Germany, about finding microplastic particles in snow all the way up at the Fram Strait, between Greenland and the Svalbarg archipelago in Norway. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Download a transcript (PDF) Ads on this week’s show: Science Sessions podcast; National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast [Image: fruchtzwerg’s world/Flickr; Music: Jeffrey Cook]

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Next-generation cellphone signals could interfere with weather forecasts, and monitoring smoke from wildfires to model nuclear winter

In recent months, telecommunications companies in the United States have purchased a new part of the spectrum for use in 5G cellphone networks. Weather forecasters are concerned that these powerful signals could swamp out weaker signals from water vapor—which are in a nearby band and important for weather prediction. Freelance science writer Gabriel Popkin joins host Sarah Crespi to talk about the possible impact of cellphone signals on weather forecasting and some suggested regulations. In other weather news this week, Sarah talks with Pengfei Yu, a professor at Jinan University in Guangzhou, China, about his group’s work using a huge smoke plume from the 2017 wildfires in western Canada as a model for smoke from nuclear bombs. They found the wildfire smoke lofted itself 23 kilometers into the stratosphere, spread across the Northern Hemisphere, and took 8 months to dissipate, which line up with models of nuclear winter and suggests these fires can help predict the results of a nuclear war. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: KiwiCo.com Download the transcript (PDF)  Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast

Earthquakes caused by too much water extraction, and a dog cancer that has lived for millennia

After two mysterious earthquake swarms occurred under the Sea of Galilee, researchers found a relationship between these small quakes and the excessive extraction of groundwater. Science journalist Michael Price talks with host Sarah Crespi about making this connection and what it means for water-deprived fault areas like the Sea of Galilee and the state of California. Also this week, Sarah talks with graduate student Adrian Baez-Ortega from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom’s Transmissible Cancer Group about the genome of a canine venereal cancer that has been leaping from dog to dog for about 8000 years. By comparing the genomes of this cancer from dogs around the globe, the researchers were able to learn more about its origins and spread around the world. They also discuss how such a long-lived cancer might help them better understand and treat human cancers. This week’s episode was edited by Podigy. Ads on this week’s show: Science Sessions podcast from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Download the transcript (PDF) Listen to previous podcasts. About the Science Podcast
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