Science is the poetry of Nature.







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Posts tagged "science"

amnhnyc:

It’s a fishy #FossilFriday!

Vinctifer comptoni lived around 110 million years ago in the Romualdo Formation, in what is now Brazil. Although most of its close relatives are sharp-toothed predators, Vinctifer comptoni was a filter feeder. One clue it was not a hunter is the lack of teeth, and instead had enlarged gill rakers. These long, comblike bones were apparently used to filter small animals from the water, which were then swallowed.

Want to feel this fish? It is on display in the current exhibition Pterosaurs: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs, and the public is invited to touch it! 

archiemcphee:

Don’t worry, Cthulhu is still fast asleep and no one has heard from the Kraken for centuries. This nightmarish maw is the beak of a female colossal squid, one that weighed 770 lbs (350 kg), measured nearly 11.5 feet long ( 3.5 m) and was recently dissected by scientists during a live webcast from the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington, New Zealand. The squid was found by Captain John Bennett and his crew in Antarctic waters back in December 2013. She’s only the second intact colossal squid specimen ever recovered, providing an extraordinary opportunity for scientists to learn more about this mysterious species.

The squid’s eyes measured nearly 14 inches in diameter. The better to see you with, my dear. She also had three hearts, all the better to love you to tiny, bite-size pieces.

Click here for additional images, courtesy of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. Learn more about the colossal squid here.

Click here to watch the entire dissection.

[via Business Insider Australia and The Huffington Post]

teded:

View the TED-Ed Lesson Where do genes come from?

When life emerged on Earth about 4 billion years ago, the earliest microbes had a set of basic genes that succeeded in keeping them alive. In the age of humans and other large organisms, there are a lot more genes to go around. Where did all of those new genes come from? Carl Zimmer examines the mutation and multiplication of genes.

Diversity is not only about bringing different perspectives to the table. Simply adding social diversity to a group makes people believe that differences of perspective might exist among them and that belief makes people change their behavior. Members of a homogeneous group rest somewhat assured that they will agree with one another; that they will understand one another’s perspectives and beliefs; that they will be able to easily come to a consensus. But when members of a group notice that they are socially different from one another, they change their expectations. They anticipate differences of opinion and perspective. They assume they will need to work harder to come to a consensus. This logic helps to explain both the upside and the downside of social diversity: people work harder in diverse environments both cognitively and socially. They might not like it, but the hard work can lead to better outcomes.

Zodiacal Light

Pre dawn Zodical light (upper left) and Aurora (top) near Tensleep Wyoming on 8-27. - DakotaLapse

(via afro-dominicano)

amnhnyc:

Lonesome George, the last Pinta Island giant tortoise, was unveiled at the Museum this afternoon. He will be on public view for just over 3 months, through January 4, 2015. Museum scientists worked closely with taxidermy experts to preserve Lonesome George as he appeared in life. 

Learn more about Lonesome George

(via afro-dominicano)

theaatproject:

On today’s date, September 18th, Leon Foucault was born. Well-noted for his demonstration of the Foucault Pendulum, which was conceived as a simple experiment to show the rotation of the Earth, Foucault also devised an early measurement of the speed of light, discovered eddy currents, and is credited with naming the gyroscope.
Happy 195th birthday, Monsieur Foucault!
[wikipedia]

theaatproject:

On today’s date, September 18th, Leon Foucault was born. Well-noted for his demonstration of the Foucault Pendulum, which was conceived as a simple experiment to show the rotation of the Earth, Foucault also devised an early measurement of the speed of light, discovered eddy currents, and is credited with naming the gyroscope.

Happy 195th birthday, Monsieur Foucault!

[wikipedia]

(via afro-dominicano)

kqedscience:

USGS Releases a New Mapping Tool to Assist Tsunami Shelter Development

It may happen just once in your lifetime: a large tsunami is coming, big enough to make you run for your life. Where do you go? USGS has released a new tool to help planners plot out shelters in West Coast communities and other tsunami-hazard zones.

Learn more from geologist Andrew Alden at KQED Science.

theaatproject:

These Trippy Photos Show Art Colliding With Science

Today’s most innovative artists are taking not paint and chisel but science and technology as their media, to represent nature both seen and unseen. They are creating works radically different from any that have ever gone before and that may even change our perceptions of the world — truly the new avant-garde. I call this movement “artsci.”
As renowned video artist Peter Weibel says, “Today, art is an offspring of science and technology.” It’s an extraordinary thought. Today’s cutting-edge art doesn’t just use science and technology. It is actually driven by it.
laboratoryequipment:

Researchers Look at the Origins of Plate TectonicsThe mystery of what kick-started the motion of our earth’s massive tectonic plates across its surface has been explained by researchers at the Univ. of Sydney."Earth is the only planet in our solar system where the process of plate tectonics occurs," said Prof. Patrice Rey, from the Univ. of Sydney’s School of Geosciences. "The geological record suggests that until three billion years ago the earth’s crust was immobile so what sparked this unique phenomenon has fascinated geoscientists for decades. We suggest it was triggered by the spreading of early continents then eventually became a self-sustaining process."Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/09/researchers-look-origins-plate-tectonics

laboratoryequipment:

Researchers Look at the Origins of Plate Tectonics

The mystery of what kick-started the motion of our earth’s massive tectonic plates across its surface has been explained by researchers at the Univ. of Sydney.

"Earth is the only planet in our solar system where the process of plate tectonics occurs," said Prof. Patrice Rey, from the Univ. of Sydney’s School of Geosciences. "The geological record suggests that until three billion years ago the earth’s crust was immobile so what sparked this unique phenomenon has fascinated geoscientists for decades. We suggest it was triggered by the spreading of early continents then eventually became a self-sustaining process."

Read more: http://www.laboratoryequipment.com/news/2014/09/researchers-look-origins-plate-tectonics

beautifulmars:

The Loneliest Crater on All of Mars

From rim to rim, this crater measures approximately 68 m (225 ft).

afro-dominicano:

Hubble Helps Astronomers Find Smallest Known Galaxy With Supermassive Black Hole

Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have found a monster lurking in a very unlikely place.

New observations of the ultracompact dwarf galaxy M60-UCD1 have revealed a supermassive black hole at its heart, making this tiny galaxy the smallest ever found to host a supermassive black hole.

This suggests that there may be many more supermassive black holes that we have missed, and tells us more about the formation of these incredibly dense galaxies. The results will be published in the journal Nature on 18 September 2014.

Lying about 50 million light-years away, M60-UCD1 is a tiny galaxy with a diameter of 300 light-years — just 1/500th of the diameter of the Milky Way. Despite its size it is pretty crowded, containing some 140 million stars. While this is characteristic of an ultracompact dwarf galaxy (UCD) like M60-UCD1, this particular UCD happens to be the densest ever seen.

Despite their huge numbers of stars, UCDs always seem to be heavier than they should be. Now, an international team of astronomers has made a new discovery that may explain why — at the heart of M60-UCD1 lurks a supermassive black hole with the mass of 20 million Suns.

"We’ve known for some time that many UCDs are a bit overweight. They just appear to be too heavy for the luminosity of their stars," says co-author Steffen Mieske of the European Southern Observatory in Chile. "We had already published a study that suggested this additional weight could come from the presence of supermassive black holes, but it was only a theory. Now, by studying the movement of the stars within M60-UCD1, we have detected the effects of such a black hole at its centre. This is a very exciting result and we want to know how many more UCDs may harbour such extremely massive objects."

The supermassive black hole at the centre of M60-UCD1 makes up a huge 15 percent of the galaxy’s total mass, and weighs five times that of the black hole at the centre of the Milky Way. “That is pretty amazing, given that the Milky Way is 500 times larger and more than 1000 times heavier than M60-UCD1,” explains Anil Seth of the University of Utah, USA, lead author of the international study. “In fact, even though the black hole at the centre of our Milky Way galaxy has the mass of 4 million Suns it is still less than 0.01 percent of the Milky Way’s total mass, which makes you realise how significant M60-UCD1’s black hole really is.”

afro-dominicano:

Remembering Stellafane


  "The image is assembled from several hundred 30-second exposures made while attempting to record Perseid meteors in August 2006. The unusual-looking building in the foreground is the famous Porter Turret telescope at Stellafane. Moonlight illuminated the foreground during the exposures" - Dennis di Cicco

afro-dominicano:

Remembering Stellafane

"The image is assembled from several hundred 30-second exposures made while attempting to record Perseid meteors in August 2006. The unusual-looking building in the foreground is the famous Porter Turret telescope at Stellafane. Moonlight illuminated the foreground during the exposures" - Dennis di Cicco

smashedplantain:

SPHERICAL FLAMES

Astronauts play with fire on board the International Space Station.

When a fire breaks out in space, the basic rule of “stop, drop and roll” that we all learned in school doesn’t apply. That’s because flames in microgravity behave differently than they do on Earth. For one thing, flames in near-zero gravity are circular, not tear-shaped. And even after a flame appears to have gone out it may still be burning. To better understand how these fires burn and how best to extinguish them, astronauts are conducting experiments aboard the International Space Station. One such experiment, called FLEX-2, explores the characteristics of flames using droplets of fuel that are ignited in a test chamber. The steps to perform the experiment are straightforward: place a sample of flammable liquid inside the chamber, ignite the liquid and watch it burn. The research has applications ranging from fire safety to improving the performance of fuel combustion engines.

image

The droplet is ignited, producing a bright flash. 

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A flame shaped like a ball forms around the droplet. The white-hot glow is due to the production of soot particles. 

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Astronauts use a video camera to record the flame as the droplet is consumed.

Watch the video to learn more.

Credit: Science@NASA and NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center