Science

4:50pm

Wed September 18, 2013
The Two-Way

Private Spacecraft Lifts Off With Space Station Supplies

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 5:53 pm

Orbital Sciences' Cygnus spacecraft has successfully launched from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia on its way to becoming the second private vehicle to resupply the International Space Station.

Space.com says:

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2:50pm

Wed September 18, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

The Other 10 Most Important Questions In Science

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 3:23 pm

Oceans, and the innards of Earth itself, are the final frontiers of our planet. Expect amazing discoveries as explorers document more and more of this unseen realm.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Last week I presented my take on 10 of the 20 most important questions in science, a list at the heart of a book by Mun Keat Looi, Hayley Birch and Colin Stuart titled The Big Questions in Science: The Quest to Solve the Great Unknowns. It was published in the U.K. last week.

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11:14am

Wed September 18, 2013
Krulwich Wonders...

Mama Mia, Mama Mia! A Canadian Bohemian Rhapsodizes About String Theory

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 11:42 am

YouTube

5:36pm

Tue September 17, 2013
The Two-Way

Stephen Hawking Backs Assisted Suicide For The Terminally Ill

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 6:54 pm

British scientist Stephen Hawking appears during the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games in London last year.
Leon Neal AFP/Getty Images

Cosmologist Stephen Hawking, who has lived for years with the progressive and debilitating motor neuron condition known as Lou Gehrig's disease, tells the BBC that he favors assisted suicide for people with terminal illnesses.

Hawking, 71, who uses a wheelchair and speaks through a computer speech synthesizer activated by his eye movements, said: "We don't let animals suffer, so why humans?"

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5:34pm

Tue September 17, 2013
All Tech Considered

Calculated To Win: Supercomputers Power America's Cup

Oracle Team USA heads to the waterfront after winning the ninth race of the America's Cup with a 47-second victory over Emirates Team New Zealand.
Eric Risberg AP

The 2013 America's Cup isn't just about using human muscle to race faster than the wind. This year, the international sailing competition is about supercomputing.

Tech teams are working behind the scenes to crunch numbers and model things like how a half-degree change in wing angle could add 5 knots in speed.

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4:28pm

Tue September 17, 2013
The Two-Way

New Private Spacecraft Set For Mission To Resupply Space Station

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 5:18 pm

An artist's rendering of the Cygnus spacecraft approaching the International Space Station.
Orbital Sciences

The SpaceX Dragon may have gotten there first, but Orbital Sciences' Cygnus spacecraft is set to become the second private robotic ship to dock with the International Space Station after a Wednesday launch from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

The launch is scheduled for 10:50 a.m. EDT on Wednesday from Pad 0A at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops.

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4:14pm

Tue September 17, 2013
The Salt

Auto-Brewery Syndrome: Apparently, You Can Make Beer In Your Gut

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 6:29 pm

Most of us prefer drinking fermented beverages,€” not producing them in our gut.
Morgan Walker NPR

This medical case may give a whole new meaning to the phrase "beer gut."

A 61-year-old man — with a history of home-brewing — stumbled into a Texas emergency room complaining of dizziness. Nurses ran a Breathalyzer test. And sure enough, the man's blood alcohol concentration was a whopping 0.37 percent, or almost five times the legal limit for driving in Texas.

There was just one hitch: The man said that he hadn't touched a drop of alcohol that day.

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1:23pm

Tue September 17, 2013
The Salt

Golden Rice Study Violated Ethical Rules, Tufts Says

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 6:30 pm

Genetically modified to be enriched with beta-carotene, golden rice grains (left) are a deep yellow. At right, white rice grains.
Isagani Serrano International Rice Research Institute

Tufts University announced Tuesday that one of its researchers broke ethical rules while carrying out a study of genetically modified "golden rice" in China.

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12:39pm

Tue September 17, 2013
Shots - Health News

Healthful Living May Lengthen Telomeres And Lifespans

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 3:22 pm

Scientists claim they have evidence that explains why lifestyle changes known to be good for you — low-fat diets, exercise, reducing stress — can lengthen your life.

Based on a small, exploratory study, researchers say these good habits work by preventing chromosomes in our cells from unraveling. Basically, they assert that healthy living can reverse the effects of aging at a genetic level.

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11:34am

Tue September 17, 2013
13.7: Cosmos And Culture

The Bubble At The Edge Of The Solar System

A bubble in space: Abell 39 marks the death of a star like the sun. Wind from the aging central star pushes into the surrounding interstellar gas, building up a dense shell that glows blue in this image. After 36 years of travel, the Voyager spacecraft is just now reaching the edge of the sun's own wind-blown bubble.
WIYN/NOAO/NSF

Science at its most fundamental level is not made of experiments or math, copper tubing or silicon chips. Science, at its most fundamental level, is made up of stories because that's how human beings understand themselves and their place in the cosmos.

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