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E.g., 06/19/2018
E.g., 06/19/2018
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  • News

    Underwater fiber-optic cables could moonlight as earthquake sensors

    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...

    06/14/2018 - 14:00 Earth, Oceans, Technology
  • News

    Here’s what narwhals sound like underwater

    Narwhals are among the most elusive of whales. But for the first time, researchers have been able to eavesdrop on the creatures for days at a time as these unicorns of the sea dove, fed and socialized.

    Biologist Susanna Blackwell and colleagues listened in on the clicks, buzzes and calls of the East Greenland narwhal (Monodon monoceros). The team’s findings, published June 13 in PLOS ONE...

    06/13/2018 - 14:00 Animals, Oceans, Conservation
  • News

    Antarctica has lost about 3 trillion metric tons of ice since 1992

    Antarctica is losing ice at an increasingly rapid pace. In just the last five years, the frozen continent has shed ice nearly three times faster on average than it did over the previous 20 years.

    An international team of scientists has combined data from two dozen satellite surveys in the most comprehensive assessment of Antarctica’s ice sheet mass yet. The conclusion: The frozen...

    06/13/2018 - 13:23 Climate, Earth, Oceans
  • News

    Sunshine is making Deepwater Horizon oil stick around

    Sunlight shapes oil spills’ long-term legacies.

    In the days and weeks after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, sunlight hit the oil slicks on the surface of the water. That triggered chemical reactions that added oxygen to oil molecules that once were just chains of carbon and hydrogen atoms. These oxygenated hydrocarbons are still sticking around eight years...

    06/12/2018 - 07:00 Pollution, Chemistry
  • News

    Tropical cyclones have slowed over the last 70 years

    Tropical cyclones don’t move as fast as they used to.

    The fierce, swirling storms move 10 percent slower, on average, than they did nearly 70 years ago, a new study finds. Such lingering storms can potentially cause more damage by dumping even more rainfall on land beneath them.

    Atmospheric scientist James Kossin examined changes in how quickly tropical cyclones, known as...

    06/06/2018 - 13:34 Climate, Oceans
  • News

    A big analysis of environmental data strengthens the case for plant-based diets

    From beef to beer, coffee to chocolate, there are environmental costs in what humanity chooses to eat and drink. Now a new study that quantifies the impact on the planet of producing and selling 40 different foods shows how these choices make a difference.

    Agricultural data from 38,700 farms plus details of processing and retailing in 119 countries show wide differences in environmental...

    06/06/2018 - 07:00 Sustainability, Agriculture, Climate
  • Science Visualized

    Here’s a look at the world’s deadliest volcanoes — and the ways they kill

    Guatemala’s Fuego volcano erupted explosively on June 3, sending hot gas and rock racing downhill in what’s known as a pyroclastic flow. At least 69 people were killed. Emergency officials are trying to reach buried villages to assess the scope of the disaster, but Fuego is already the world's deadliest eruption of 2018.

    The tragedy offers a grim reminder of the many dangers posed by...

    06/05/2018 - 13:09 Earth, Health
  • Science Ticker

    Treating roads with oil and gas wastewater may spread harmful pollution

    Each year, finding and extracting oil and gas for energy produces hundreds of billions of gallons of wastewater in the United States. When recycled and spread on roads, the wastewater can leak its contaminants, including salt, radioactive elements and chemicals that interfere with hormones, into groundwater and surface water, researchers report May 30 in Environmental Science and Technology....

    05/30/2018 - 17:49 Pollution, Ecosystems
  • News in Brief

    The first Americans could have taken a coastal route into the New World

    Ancient colonizers of the Americas could have traveled down Alaska’s Pacific coast in canoes or other sea vessels around 17,000 years ago, a new study finds.

    At that time, toward the end of the last ice age, glaciers had just receded from a cluster of southern Alaskan islands, say geologist Alia Lesnek of the University at Buffalo in New York and colleagues. Life-supporting habitats...

    05/30/2018 - 14:00 Climate, Ecosystems, Anthropology
  • News

    The Chicxulub asteroid impact might have set off 100,000 years of global warming

    After a giant asteroid hit Earth about 66 million years ago, the planet’s climate went on a roller coaster ride.

    The space rock’s impact set off tsunamis and wildfires before climate-chilling clouds of sulfur gas engulfed the planet for decades, wiping out most life (SN: 11/25/17, p. 14). As these clouds dissipated, billions of tons of carbon dioxide, which spewed into the atmosphere...

    05/24/2018 - 15:13 Paleontology, Oceans, Climate