World’s Largest Underwater Cave System Discovered in Mexico --215-mile Sunken Labyrinth is a Trove of Ancient Mayan Artifacts (WATCH Video)

 

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"This immense cave represents the most important submerged archaeological site in the world, since it has more than a hundred archaeological contexts, among which is evidence of the first settlers of America, as well as the extinct fauna and, of course, of the Maya culture," says Guillermo de Anda, a National Geographic explorer and director of the Great Maya Aquifer Project (GAM). 

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TV Premier Today --Blue Planet II "Captures Never-Before-Seen Views of Earth's Oceans" (WATCH Video)

 

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“We’ve taken technology to places where it was probably never meant to go.” On her very first dive into the frigid waters of Antarctica, Orla Doherty’s yellow submarine began taking on water. So she did what she was supposed to — she stuck a finger in the puddle at her feet and licked it. It was salty. That meant it wasn’t drinking water spilled by one of the crew members; it was saltwater leaking into the sub — at 1,476 feet (450 meters) below the surface. “That made my heart start beating quite fast,” says Doherty, a producer for BBC America.

 

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Today's "Planet Earth Report" --What Happens At NASA and the ISS During the Government Shutdown

 

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As the wheels of the U.S. government ground to a halt Friday at midnight, thousands of federal employees prepared to face days or weeks without work or pay until their offices reopened. Some employees will continue working through the government shutdown, however, including the three with the longest commute: NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei, Joseph Acaba, and Scott Tingle. Despite the political tussle that closed most of the government on Saturday, the American part of the International Space Station remains open for business. Mission control staff, considered “essential” personnel, will keep working, too, to support the astronauts.

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Today's Top Space Headline --"We are Seeing the Creation of the Most Massive Galaxy Known in 1st Billion Years of the Universe"

 

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“With these exquisite ALMA observations, astronomers are seeing the most massive galaxy known in the first billion years of the Universe in the process of assembling itself,” said Dan Marrone, associate professor of astronomy at the University of Arizona.

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Mystery Deepens "About Link Between Supermassive Black Holes and Cosmic Islands We Call Galaxies"

 

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"The Earth, like many planets and stars, has a magnetic field that sprouts out of the North Pole, circles the planet and goes back into the South Pole," says Chris Packham, associate professor of physics and astronomy at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). "It exists because the Earth has a hot, liquid iron rich core," said Packham. "That flow creates electric currents that create a magnetic field. A black hole has a magnetic field as it was created from the remnant of a star after the supernova explosion."

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The Pentagon Was Built With Mineralized Microbes Predating Dinosaurs

 

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A new study led by The Australian National University (ANU) has found that some of the building blocks of the Pentagon and Empire State Building were made by microbes that lived up to 340 million years ago, predating the dinosaurs. The material, known as oolitic limestone, is a popular building material around the world and is almost completely made of millimeter-sized spheres of carbonate called ooids.

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"Unlike Anything We’ve Seen Before" --Neutron-Star Merger Afterglow Continues to Brighten

 
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The afterglow from the distant neutron-star merger detected last August has continued to brighten – much to the surprise of astrophysicists studying the aftermath of the massive collision that took place about 138 million light years away and sent gravitational waves rippling through the universe.

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Microbial Life in the Solar System Can Now Be Directly Detected --"First Since the Mars Viking Missions in the 70's"

 
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"The search for life is a major focus of planetary exploration, but there hasn't been direct life detection instrumentation on a mission since the 70s, during the Viking missions to Mars," explains Dr Jacqueline Goordial. "We wanted to show a proof-of-concept that microbial life can be directly detected and identified using very portable, low-weight, and low-energy tools."

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"You Mess With It At Your Peril" --World's Biggest Wildlife Reserve Planned for Antarctica in Global Campaign" (Today's "Planet Earth Report")

 
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“The Antarctic is a massively important area and you mess with it at your peril,” said Callum Roberts, professor of marine conservation at the University of York, who says the sanctuary would also play a key role in tackling climate change – soaking up huge amounts of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. “The Antarctic is very important in locking away carbon in deep-sea sediments. There is also a very rapid rate of sinking there – it has some of the coldest waters in the world … and this sinking is one of the great pumps of the global ocean system.”

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