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Science Wire | Oct 03, 2015

Sea ice still too thick for Arctic shipping route

Despite climate change, sea ice will continue to make the Northwest Passage too treacherous to be a regular Arctic shipping route for decades, says study.

Photo Credit: sandcastlematt
Science Wire | Oct 02, 2015

Why do tree 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?

Visible satellite imagery of Hurricane Joaquin showing an eye forming on 9/30/15. Image Credit: NASA
Science Wire | Oct 02, 2015

U.S. Southeast braces for floods

U.S. landfall looks increasingly unlikely. “Historical” flooding possible in parts of the U.S. Southeast and Mid-Atlantic.

Image Credit: Aramgutang
Science Wire | Oct 01, 2015

What’s the birthstone for October?

October has two birthstones – opal and tourmaline.

The sea turtle in its habitat, as it might have looked 120 million years ago.   © Jorge Blanco.  Via Senckenberg.
Science Wire | Sep 30, 2015

Fossil evidence of Earth’s oldest sea turtle

Fossilized shells and bones uncovered at two sites in Colombia. Scientists date this ancient sea turtle’s remains at 120 million years old.

September 28, 2015. View larger. \  Image credit: NASA
Science Wire | Sep 29, 2015

Wildfires continue to plague US West

A satellite view from Monday shows wildfires still burning in Oregon, Idaho, and Montana. The fires started in August.

Science Wire | Sep 29, 2015

High ‘supermoon tides’ strike coasts

Sunday’s supermoon, combined with an 18.6-year lunar cycle, caused high tides on both sides of the Atlantic this week. There were many flood warnings and alerts in effect in the UK on Tuesday night. In eastern North America, Tropical Storm Joaquin might combine with high tides to cause flooding.

Image Credit: kaet44
Science Wire | Sep 29, 2015

Video: Greenland’s ice melt

Scientists are studying the increasingly fast rate of summertime ice melt in Greenland. See a new NASA video, plus illustrations of the 2015 melt season.

Night falls when you enter Earth's shadow
FAQs | Sep 28, 2015

When can you see Earth’s shadow?

During Sunday night’s total eclipse of the moon, Earth’s shadow brushed the moon’s face. But you can see Earth’s shadow tonight, too, or any clear evening.

This original painting by James Havens of Ugrunaaluk kuukpikensis, the new species of duck-billed dinosaur, illustrates a scene from ancient Alaska during the Cretaceous Period.
Science Wire | Sep 28, 2015

Newly discovered dinosaur roamed northern Alaska

Hadrosaur was a truly polar dinosaur that endured months of winter darkness and probably experienced snow.

A draft of a new "tree of life," a collaborative effort between 11 institutions, via Astrobiology.com.
Science Wire | Sep 21, 2015

New tree of life for 2.3 million species

An initial draft, a collaborative effort from scientists at 11 institutions, of a new, comprehensive evolutionary tree of life. Plus …

Smokey sunset, August , 2015, from EarthSky community member Chris Levitan Photography.
Science Wire | Sep 21, 2015

2015 wildfire season a record-breaker

Worst recorded years for U.S. wildfires are 2005, 2006, 2007, 2011 and 2012. This year has already joined that list, and wildfire season is still going strong.

January 1, 2015 sunset by Helio de Carvalho Vital.  Shot 3 of 6.
Science Wire | Sep 19, 2015

Why aren’t day and night exactly equal at the equinox?

On the day of the equinox, the center of the sun would set about 12 hours after rising – given a level horizon, as at sea, and no atmospheric refraction.

Autumn foliage. Image Credit: Kasia via Flickr.
Science Wire | Sep 18, 2015

Why Earth has 4 seasons

Some assume our planet’s changing distance from the sun causes the change in the seasons. That’s logical, but not the case, for Earth.

Image: Via Fairy Room
Science Wire | Sep 18, 2015

What is a fairy ring?

Have you ever noticed mushrooms growing in a big circle? It’s known as a fairy ring. How does it happen?

Advancing monsoon clouds and showers in Aralvaimozhy, near Nagercoil, India. A new study finds that focusing on El Niño and La Niña’s impacts on the monsoon in regions and sub-seasons—instead of all-India for the whole monsoon season—may improve rainfall forecasts.
Image via PlaneMad/CreativeCommons/ AGUBlogosphere.
Science Wire | Sep 17, 2015

India’s monsoon not bringing enough rain

“Right now, the monsoon is 12 percent below average and dropping, and [India is] headed for a pretty serious dry season,” said a researcher.

Earthquake off the coast of Chile - 8.3 magnitude, a powerful quake - on September 16, 2015.
Science Wire | Sep 17, 2015

Powerful earthquakes off Chile’s coast

At least five people killed and 1 million evacuated, after a powerful 8.3-magnitude earthquake off the coast of Chile last night. Tsunami waves and many strong aftershocks followed. Tsunami advisory for California and Hawaii.

The 1997–98 El Niño observed by TOPEX/Poseidon. The white areas off the Tropical Western coasts of northern South and all Central America as well as along the Central-eastern equatorial and Southeastern Pacific Ocean indicate the pool of warm water.  Via NASA/JPL
Science Wire | Sep 17, 2015

Video: This year’s El Niño compared to 1997-98

Wow! Check out this visual comparison of the emerging El Niño with the record-breaking El Niño of 1997-98, which created weather extremes around the globe.

Artist's impression. Image credit: Don Dixon, copyright Erik Sturkell.
Science Wire | Sep 17, 2015

Researchers find double crater in Sweden

They are evidence of two enormous meteorite impacts, a twin strike that happened around 460 million years ago.

Photo credit: NASA Goddard
Science Wire | Sep 15, 2015

2015 Arctic sea ice minimum 4th lowest

The 2015 Arctic sea ice minimum summertime extent is the 4th lowest since observations from space began, according to a NASA analysis of satellite data.

El Niño years typically bring rain-carrying storms to the western US. Image credit:Stuart Rankin/flickr
Science Wire | Sep 14, 2015

El Niño this year: What will it bring?

An El Niño is building that’s expected to culminate in the fall and last until the winter and could possibly become a “mega” El Niño.