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Human World

Science Wire | Apr 24, 2014

First sex-determing genes appeared 180 million years ago

The Y chromosome, which distinguishes males from females at the genetic level, appeared some 180 million years ago, according to a new study published in Nature.

April 23, 2014 earthquake
Apr 24, 2014

6.6-magnitude earthquake off Vancouver Island on April 23

The quake hit at 8:10 p.m. local time. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. No tsunami warning was issued.

Lunar eclipse illustration courtesy of Luc Viatour
FAQs | Apr 24, 2014

What is a Blood Moon?

A lunar tetrad – four total lunar eclipses in a row – began on the night of April 14-15. People are calling it a Blood Moon eclipse. Here’s why.

Image credit: SISSA Medialab
Science Wire | Apr 23, 2014

Is spacetime like a liquid?

A very slippery superfluid, that’s what spacetime could be like, say physicists.

Blogs | Apr 22, 2014

How to spot the International Space Station

Every so often, the International Space Station (ISS) becomes visible in your night sky. Here’s how you can spot it.

First Earth Day 1970
FAQs | Apr 22, 2014

Why celebrate Earth Day on April 22?

Earth Day is celebrated on April 22 each year. But why April 22?

Blogs | Apr 21, 2014

Arctic sea ice maximum in 2014 fifth lowest on record

Arctic sea ice reached its maximum extent for the year on March 21, 2014, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Center. It was the fifth lowest on record.

Milky Way via Visit Manish Mamtani Photography
Science Wire | Apr 20, 2014

7 ways to celebrate International Dark Sky Week

International Dark Sky Week runs April 20-26, 2014. Learn how to help celebrate and preserve the beauty of the night.

Interviews | Apr 17, 2014

Neanderthals bred with modern humans, study confirms

Advanced genetic analysis and statistical modeling have confirmed that early humans mated with Neanderthals.

Artist's concept of worlds in space
Blogs | Apr 14, 2014

Why is Mars near the moon on eclipse night?

A total eclipse moon has to happen at full moon. Outer planets are always near the full moon in their month of opposition. Mars reached opposition April 8 …

Lunar eclipse via Classical Astronomy.
Blogs | Apr 13, 2014

A Christian astronomer talks about Blood Moons

Some books say the upcoming series of eclipses is a harbinger of dire events. Jay Ryan, astronomer and Christian, explains why he’s not persuaded that “Blood Moons” are a sign of apocalypse.

Unusually warm sub-surface water in Pacific 2014
Blogs | Apr 08, 2014

Warm water in Pacific could spark a monster El Nino in 2014

Scientists are watching a giant mass of sub-surface water in the Pacific. When this water reaches the sea surface, it could set off a powerful El Nino.

Sentinel-1A liftoff
Blogs | Videos | Apr 07, 2014

If you could ride a rocket to space, here’s what you’d see

Cameras mounted on the upper stage of a Soyuz rocket last week looked earthward during a satellite launch.

Photo cedit: National Institute of Standards and Technology
Science Wire | Apr 04, 2014

New atomic clock won’t gain or lose a second in 300 million years

The NIST has launched a new hyper-accurate atomic clock for the U.S. time standard called NIST-F2. The clock uses a ‘fountain’ of cesium atoms to determine the exact length of a second.

Science Wire | Apr 04, 2014

Computer maps 21 distinct emotional expressions

… even seemingly contradictory ones, like “happily disgusted.”

7.6-magnitude earthquake April 3, 2014
Blogs | Apr 03, 2014

Another powerful earthquake rocks northern Chile

For the second time in two days, a powerful earthquake has struck Chile. Today’s quake was 7.6 magnitude. It’s considered an aftershock of the 8.2-magnitude quake on April 1.

March 29, 2014 X-flare via NASA SDO
Blogs | Videos | Apr 01, 2014

Aurora alert for April 1 and 2

The first of three sets of solar particles are now en route to Earth and are expected to deliver glancing blows to Earth beginning April 1 and into April 2.

Science Wire | Mar 31, 2014

Breakthrough in invisibility cloaks, stealth technology

Scientists can create artificial nanostructures that can ‘bend light.’ But the challenge has been making enough of the material to turn invisibility cloaks into a practical reality.

Cyclone Hellen on Mar. 29, 2014 via NASA
Blogs | Mar 31, 2014

Tropical Cyclone Hellen crushing parts of Madagascar

Meteorologists said Hellen was likely to be “one of the most powerful tropical cyclones ever seen over the northern channel [of the southwestern India Ocean] since the satellite era (1967).”

Photo by Ted S. Warren via the Concord Monitor.
Blogs | Mar 27, 2014

What causes landslides?

The primary cause of a landslide is the influence of gravity acting on weakened materials that make up a sloping area of land.

Photo creditL Annie Lewis
Blogs | Photos | Mar 27, 2014

Miss the moon and Venus this morning? Photos here

Photos from friends around the world of the March 27 and March 28 pairing of the moon with Venus. Thank you, everyone, for posting!