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E.g., 11/18/2018
E.g., 11/18/2018
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  • wombat
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  • Mystery Solved

    Wombats are the only animals whose poop is a cube. Here’s how they do it.

    Of all the poops in the world, only wombats’ are shaped like cubes.

    The varied elasticity of the wombat’s intestines helps the marsupials to sculpt their scat into cubelike nuggets, instead of the round pellets, messy piles or tubular coils made by other mammals, researchers reported November 18 at the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics meeting in Atlanta.

    Wombats...

    11/18/2018 - 17:00 Animals
  • News

    Small doses of peanut protein can turn allergies around

    Carefully calibrated doses of peanut protein can turn extreme allergies around. At the end of a year of slowly increasing exposure, most children who started off severely allergic could eat the equivalent of two peanuts.

    That reversal, reported November 18 in the New England Journal of Medicine, “will be considered life-transforming for many families with a peanut allergy,” says...

    11/18/2018 - 16:45 Health
  • News

    Tiny satellites will relay news of InSight’s Mars landing in minutes, not hours

    The next spacecraft set to land on Mars is bringing its own communications team. InSight, a lander scheduled to touch down on the Red Planet on November 26, is accompanied by a pair of briefcase-sized spacecraft that will send details of the landing to Earth in almost real time.

    The twin craft on this mission are CubeSats — tiny, inexpensive satellites that are easy to build and launch....

    11/18/2018 - 07:00 Planetary Science
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    11/16/2018 - 22:14
  • News in Brief

    A Bronze Age game called 58 holes was found chiseled into stone in Azerbaijan

    DENVER — A dotted pattern pecked into stone at a remote Eurasian rock-shelter represents a Bronze Age game that was thought to have existed at that time only in Mesopotamia, Egypt and other Near Eastern regions.

    The game is known as 58 holes, or Hounds and Jackals. Archaeologist Walter Crist of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City described his surprising discovery of...

    11/16/2018 - 13:12 Archaeology, Anthropology
  • News

    FDA restricts the sale of some flavored e-cigarettes as teen use soars

    In an attempt to curtail an alarming rise in teenage vaping, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced restrictions on the sale of certain flavored e-cigarettes that appeal to young people on November 15. The agency also said it would seek to ban menthol cigarettes, long a goal of public health advocates, as well as flavored cigars.

    The flavor restrictions coincide with the release...

    11/16/2018 - 13:05 Health
  • News

    Astronomers spot another star that flickers like Tabby’s star

    There’s another oddly flickering star in the galaxy.

    Astronomers using a telescope in Chile have discovered a star whose strange dimming and brightening of light are reminiscent of Tabby’s star, which was once suggested to host an alien megastructure.

    The megastructure idea, first posited in 2015, was later quashed by data suggesting that the dips are probably from dust particles...

    11/16/2018 - 10:14 Astronomy, Planetary Science
  • News

    It’s official: We’re redefining the kilogram

    Out with the old — kilogram, that is.

    Scientists will soon ditch a specialized hunk of metal that defines the mass of a kilogram. Oddly enough, every measurement of mass made anywhere on Earth is tied back to this one cylindrical object. Known as “Le Grand K,” the cylinder, cast in 1879, is kept carefully sequestered in a secure, controlled environment outside Paris.

    On November 16...

    11/16/2018 - 07:22 Numbers, Physics
  • News

    Lyme and other tickborne diseases are on the rise in the U.S. Here’s what that means.

    There’s no sign that ticks are backing down.

    A record high of 59,349 cases of tickborne diseases were reported in 2017 in the United States. That’s a 22 percent increase in cases — or roughly 11,000 more — than were reported in 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on November 14.

    Lyme disease accounted for most of the reported diseases, with nearly 43,000...

    11/15/2018 - 16:58 Health
  • News

    Development near natural areas puts more Californians in the path of wildfires

    In the past week, the Camp Fire has killed at least 56 people and leveled the Northern California town of Paradise. Another wildfire raging through the Los Angeles suburbs, the Woolsey Fire, has already destroyed more than 500 buildings and forced some 250,000 people to evacuate their homes.

    Such disasters are likely to occur more frequently in the coming years, data from recent years...

    11/15/2018 - 14:30 Climate, Science & Society