Stephen Hawking's Nightmare: "Earth as Venus" --'It Has flat-Out Crushed Every Probe We've Sent' (WATCH Today's Most Popular)

 


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"Venus today has a thick atmosphere that contains very little water, but we think the planet started out with an ocean's worth of water," said John T. Clarke of Boston University, a renowned authority on planetary atmospheres.

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Today's Top Science Headline: Upgrade at CERN's LHC --"Exploring Strange Signals That Could Upend Particle Physics"

 

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"Physicists are already exploring some strange signals at the LHC, reports The Guardian, that could be the first hints that the so-called standard model of particle physics is about to break down. The standard model is a series of equations that describe how particles such as the electrons and quarks found inside atoms interact with each other. The theory works brilliantly, but physicists know it is incomplete: it says nothing about gravity, or the dark matter [image below] that clings unseen to galaxies, or the dark energy that drives the expansion of the universe, or why the world around us is made of matter instead antimatter."

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Stephen Hawking Placed at Rest Next to Issac Newton and Charles Darwin --"Last Thoughts on Death, Aliens, and the Universe"

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A message from late British astrophysics giant Stephen Hawking was beamed towards the nearest black hole on Friday as his remains were laid to rest in London's Westminster Abbey. With celebrities and science enthusiasts from around the world in attendance, the ashes of the theoretical physicist were interred by the graves of fellow science greats Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin.

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Moons of Alien Planets --"Greatly Expand Habitats for Life"

 

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"There are currently 175 known moons orbiting the eight planets in our solar system. While most of these moons orbit Saturn and Jupiter, which are outside the Sun's habitable zone, that may not be the case in other solar systems," said Stephen Kane, an associate professor of planetary astrophysics and a member of the UCR's Alternative Earths Astrobiology Center. "Including rocky exomoons in our search for life in space will greatly expand the places we can look."

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Today's "Planet Earth Report" --Increased Human Activity is Causing the Planet’s Mammals to Flee Daylight

 

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Human activity is causing the planet’s mammals to flee daylight for the protection of night, according to a new study from UC Berkeley that represents the first effort to quantify the global effects of human activity on the daily patterns of wildlife. Its results highlight the powerful and widespread process by which animals alter their behavior alongside people: human disturbance is creating a more nocturnal natural world.

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Today's Top Science Headline --"How Would Alien Worlds Battle Climate Change?"

 

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"So we can’t just sit here studying tipping points on Earth at the expense of going out and exploring other worlds and looking for life and intelligence elsewhere, because the knowledge we gain from that is probably essential for our own future. Think of it this way: If you’re sick and you go to the doctor to be cured, the doctor will have pretty limited abilities if he only has ever studied [just] you. If he has studied you and lots of other people, [however,] he’ll have a much clearer picture of what ails you. It’s probably like that with planets and civilizations, too."

 

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NASA: Will Opportunity Survive Mars' Dust Storm? --"Atmospheric Opacity Twice as High as Ever Recorded"

 

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In its more than 5,000 Martian days, Opportunity has driven 45.16 kilometers — a record for any extraterrestrial vehicle. Its scientific legacy includes the discovery that non-acidic, life-friendly waters existed on Mars roughly 4 billion years ago.

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Storm-Driven Ocean Swells Trigger Catastrophic Disintegration of Antarctic Ice Shelves

 
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Global sea-level rise up close, at its source: in only a matter of days, the collapse of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in 2002 removed an area of ice shelf that had been in place for the previous 11,500 years. Removal of the ice shelf buttressing effect also caused a 3- to 8-fold increase in the discharge of glacial ice, behind the shelf, into the ocean, in the year following disintegration.

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The Fascinating Story of NASA's Discovery of Organics on Dwarf Planet Ceres

 

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Organic molecules are the chemical building blocks for life. Their detection on Ceres doesn't mean life exists there or ever existed there; non-biological processes can give rise to organic molecules as well. But because life as we know it can't exist without organic material, scientists are interested in how it's distributed through the solar system. The presence of organic material on Ceres raises intriguing possibilities, particularly because the dwarf planet is also rich in water ice, and water is another necessary component for life.

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