Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 1:03 pm
Once upon a time, giants roamed the planet — many of them in what is now Utah. A panel of paleontology experts describes some of the state's ancient treasures, from massive long-necked sauropods to the Utahraptor, a predator that would put those in Jurassic Park to shame.
The James Webb Space Telescope will succeed Hubble in 2018, boasting modern computers and a mirror with seven times the viewing area. Bob Hellekson, ATK Program Manager for the telescope, discusses the telescope's newly constructed wings, designed to support the telescope's folding mirror, and astrophysicist Stacy Palen talks about what the telescope may reveal about the cosmos.
This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. We're broadcasting today from the Grand Theatre at Salt Lake Community College. And, of course, just up the road from Salt Lake City is the city's namesake, the Great Salt Lake. Parts of it are 10 times saltier than the ocean. But this is no Dead Sea. It's teeming with microbes which can turn the water bubblegum pink.
Smartphones can check e-mail, record videos and even stream NPR. Now NASA has discovered they make pretty decent satellites, too. Three smart phones launched into space this past Sunday are orbiting above us even now, transmitting data and images back to Earth. The PhoneSats, which cost just a few thousand dollars each, could usher in big changes for the satellite industry.
The U.S. military and law enforcement agencies have seen increased public scrutiny on the domestic use of the robotically piloted planes known as drones. Working on the sidelines of this debate, the U.S. Geological Survey has been trying to find a second life for retired military drones in the areas of environmental and wildlife management. Instead of watching the battlefield, these drones are watching birds.