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Watch start of India’s monsoon season

This year’s monsoon rainfall began on June 5 in southern India. This animation, made from satellite data, shows where the precipitation fell as the season started.

Video: Fine dining in microgravity

An astronaut aboard the ISS prepares one of her favorite meals – quinoa salad with tomato, mackerel and leek cream in a warm tortilla. Here’s how it’s done in space.

Gorgeous video flies you around Ceres

This new video animation of dwarf planet Ceres – released by NASA today (June 8, 2015) – is based on images taken by the Dawn spacecraft as it orbits around this little world. It’s our best look yet at Ceres, which is the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter …

Rip currents #1 danger for beach-goers

More than 100 people die each year after getting caught in rip currents. These outgoing ocean currents are the #1 danger for people at beaches. These currents can sometimes flow as fast as 2.5 meters per second (8 feet per second), which is faster than any human swimmer. Learn what to do if you get caught in a rip current, in this video. And share with your kids!

Video: Perpetual ocean

In honor of World Ocean Day on June 8, a beautiful video visualization of ocean currents around the world. It shows ocean surface currents from June 2005 through December 2007.

Deepest-yet hydrothermal vents discovered in Pacific

In Spring 2015, researchers from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) discovered a large, previously unknown field of hydrothermal vents in the Gulf of California, about 150 kilometers (100 miles) east of La Paz, Mexico. Lying more than 3,800 meters (12,500 feet) below the surface, the Pescadero Basin vents are the deepest high-temperature hydrothermal vents ever observed in or around the Pacific Ocean.

They are also the only vents in the Pacific known to emit superheated fluids rich in both carbonate minerals and hydrocarbons. The vents have been colonized by dense communities of tubeworms and other animals unlike any other known vent communities in the in the eastern Pacific.

Giant Magellan Telescope is a go

The Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT) project announced this week (June 3, 2015) that its construction phase will now begin. The project’s 11 international partners have secured more than US$500 million to begin work on what they say will be the first of a new generation of large ground-based telescopes and the largest optical telescope in existence.

Pluto’s moons tumble in chaotic dance

If you lived on one of Pluto’s small moons Nix or Hydra, you’d have a hard time setting your alarm clock. That’s because you couldn’t know for sure when, or even in which direction, the sun would rise. This surprising result is one of several about Pluto’s moons published on June 4 in the journal Nature, and it’s illustrated by the computer animation above. In the animation, Pluto’s moon Nix changes its spin unpredictably as it moves through space, orbiting the double world Pluto and its largest moon Charon. The view is from the surface of Pluto as Nix circles the Pluto-Charon system.

Shock collision inside black hole jet

Scientists assembled this time-lapse movie of a plasma jet blasting from a black hole in a distant galaxy from 20 years of Hubble Space Telescope observations. The video shows the core of the elliptical galaxy NGC 3862, located some 260 million light-years from Earth. It shows a rear-end collision between two high-speed knots of matter in the jet.

Now is the time to prepare for hurricanes

In conjunction with the start of the hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific (May 15) and Atlantic Oceans (June 1), officials with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are urging residents in coastal areas to develop preparedness plans.