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Spread of early humans: New findings

New studies reveal the diversity of early human populations and help pin down when we left Africa.

Farewell, Rosetta comet mission

ESA’s great Rosetta comet mission has come to an end. Details from its final hour, here.

Why do leaves change color in fall?

In the fall, the leaves of some trees turn yellow, orange or red. The bright colors are wonderful to behold. But do they have some hidden purpose?

Need details on SpaceX’s Mars mission?

Links, photos and more about Elon Musk’s plan to make humans a multiplanetary species.

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Mercury is tectonically active

New findings suggest Mercury is contracting and experiences ongoing “mercuryquakes.”

Are we in a sixth mass extinction?

This short video puts modern extinctions in context by comparing them with Earth’s 5 previous mass extinctions.

Where’s the moon? Waning crescent

A waning crescent moon is sometimes called an old moon. It’s seen in the east before dawn.

Shark and tuna convergent evolution

Lamnid sharks and tuna have similar physical traits that make them top ocean predators. But, a new study says, they took very different evolutionary paths.

Star of the week: A future Pole Star

Gamma Cephei (aka Errai) is a binary star system with at least one planet. It’ll someday be a Pole Star for Earth.

Possible water plumes spotted on Europa

Water plumes erupting on Jupiter’s moon Europa might make it easier to investigate whether life exists in the warm ocean believed to be deep beneath its icy surface.

Today in science: E=mc2

Mass and energy are interchangeable.

New theory on why time advances

Why does time flow inexorably toward the future? A Berkeley physicist proposes that time is expanding because space is expanding.

Last hurrah of sunlike star

New Hubble image shows the demise of a sunlike star. Our own sun will also burn out and shroud itself with stellar debris, but not for another 5 billion years.