The last 13 years have been terrible for ancient African baobab trees.
Nine of the 13 oldest either lost trunks or died altogether after having lived for longer than a millennium, researchers report June 11 in Nature Plants. But just what the demise means for the iconic species is up for debate.
“Whilst we are saddened about the death and collapse [of the old trees], current...
Smashing together a billion protons a second wasn’t enough for the Large Hadron Collider.
The particle accelerator, located at CERN in Geneva, is getting spiffed up to allow it to carry out collisions at an even faster rate. On June 15, scientists announced the start of construction for an LHC upgrade called the High-Luminosity LHC.
The upgrade will boost the collision rate by at...
The Pillars of Creation may keep standing tall due to the magnetic field within the star-forming region.
For the first time, scientists have made a detailed map of the magnetic field inside the pillars, made famous by an iconic 1995 Hubble Space Telescope image (SN Online: 1/6/15). The data reveal that the field runs along the length of each pillar, perpendicular to the magnetic field...
Gravity waves evidence
The long search for gravitational waves … may be in the final lap…. Rotating binary stars or, perhaps, other galaxies like the Milky Way but far beyond it, or the center of the Milky Way itself, are likely sources for gravitational radiation. — Science News, June 22, 1968.Update
Although Joseph Weber, a physicist at the University of Maryland, announced...
In Central America’s rain-drenched forests, leaf-cutting ants collect pieces of leaves on which they grow fungi for food. But the rain can hit hard, especially for a small ant. When leaf-cutting ants sense an incoming shower, they hoof it back to their nests, says a study in the May Insectes Sociaux.
Researchers from Argentina, Mexico and Peru tested how one species of leaf-cutting ants...
Fewer teens are having sex than at any point since 1991, a national survey of U.S. high school students finds. But among those students who are sexually active, fewer are using condoms, raising the risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections.
About 40 percent of teens surveyed in 2017 reported having ever had sex. That’s down from about 54 percent in 1991, the first year the...
The global network of seafloor cables may be good for more than ferrying digital communication between continents. These fiber-optic cables could also serve as underwater earthquake detectors, researchers report online June 14 in Science.
“It’s a very exciting proposition,” says Barbara Romanowicz, a seismologist at the University of California, Berkeley and the Collège de France in...
News in Brief
Baby planets growing in a disk of gas and dust around an infant star have been identified and weighed for the first time. In papers published June 13 in the Astrophysical Journal Letters, two teams of astronomers describe a new technique to observe the newborn planets with unprecedented precision.
One team, led by Richard Teague of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, found two...
About 99 million years ago, tiny frogs hopped through a wet, tropical forest — and an unlucky few ran afoul of some tree sap. Four newly described frog fossils, preserved in amber, offer the earliest direct evidence of ancient frogs living in a humid tropical clime — just as many modern amphibians do.
None of the frog fossils is complete, making it difficult to place the frogs within...