April 18, 2015 | Science News

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April 18, 2015

Editor's Note

In this issue, both feature articles focus on anniversaries, though of two very different kinds.
By Eva Emerson | April 4, 2015
Magazine issue: Vol. 187, No. 8 , April 18, 2015 , p. 2

Features

Hubble space telescope in space

Feature

The Hubble Space Telescope has served for more than two decades as the sharpest eyes ever to peer into the universe.
Exploding Oil Rig

Feature

Five years after the Gulf of Mexico’s largest disaster, researchers are still studying its ecological impact and struggling to learn the fate of most of the spilled oil.

Call to Action

SUPPORT SCIENCE NEWS

Science News is a nonprofit.

Help us keep you informed.

Editor's Note

In this issue, both feature articles focus on anniversaries, though of two very different kinds.

Features

Exploding Oil Rig
Five years after the Gulf of Mexico’s largest disaster, researchers are still studying its ecological impact and struggling to learn the fate of most of the spilled oil.
Hubble space telescope in space
The Hubble Space Telescope has served for more than two decades as the sharpest eyes ever to peer into the universe.

News

herpes
An experimental herpes vaccine works in animal tests by using an approach starkly different from that used in previous vaccine development.
Iceland Genome Lab
A detailed genetic portrait of the Icelandic population is helping scientists to identify the genetic underpinnings of disease.
car traffic
Reactive molecules in air pollution derail immune responses in the lung and can trigger life-long asthma.
talon jewelry
Eagle-claw jewelry points to Neandertals’ symbolic behavior before contact with humans, researchers argue.
Maven probe
Surprise auroras and mystery dust clouds dance in the Martian atmosphere, NASA’s newest Mars orbiter discovers.
An experimental Crohn’s disease drug triggers a high remission rate in patients.
Little Eiffel Tower
Finding the sweet spot in a pool of resin, chemists can create detailed 3-D objects faster than 3-D printers.
An interconnected series of chemical reactions with a few primordial chemicals can cook up all the necessary elements of life
Physicists have measured entanglement between pairs of photons within a macroscopic beam of light, a first step toward understanding how particles’ quantum connections lead to large-scale effects.
warming map
Sagging storms brought on by rapid Arctic warming worsen summertime heat waves across the Northern Hemisphere.
cell voltage
The electric charge across cell membranes directs many aspects of brain development, and changing it can fix certain brain birth defects.
A trail of silicon-rich particles in one of the rings of Saturn points to possible hydrothermal activity on Enceladus.
packing peanuts
Baking foam peanuts at high heat can form wee structures that lure lithium ions and could make for cheaper, more powerful batteries.
supernova dust
Dust still lingers in the remnants of supernova that exploded 10,000 years ago, affirming that the explosions filled the early universe with dust.
croc fossil
Early ancestors of crocodiles, not dinosaurs, may have been northern Pangaea’s top predator 230 million years ago, according to a new fossil find.
UK Genetics Map
A genetics study finds subtle differences that reveal secrets about the history and ancestry of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
cardiac muscle cells
Mice regrow muscle cells after heart attacks if injected with molecules mimicking RNA involved in cell growth.
baby aspirin
Aspirin and NSAIDs appear widely protective against colorectal cancer, but not for everyone.
mirror made of copper wire
A metamaterial mirror reflects only a single wavelength of light, potentially leading to more compact and affordable radio antennas.
Ring
Ancient find fingers ninth century connection between Vikings and Islamic civilization.
Super Earth vs. Earth
Rocky planets much heavier than Earth may form in different ways.
Chinese lunar rover
Radar imaging done by China’s Yutu lunar rover reveals that the moon’s geological history could be more complex than once thought.
green hermit hummingbird
A rainforest plant avoids inbreeding by accepting pollen only from hummingbird species that must travel to reach it.
person pouring detergent into washing machine
Bleach-containing detergents destroy antibacterial silver nanoparticles that coat clothes.

Notebook

Rock-shelter in Sri Lanka
People lived year-round in rainforests well before previous estimates, an analysis of teeth excavated in Sri Lanka suggests.
Splashing coffee
Foam dampens liquids’ sloshing, keeping keeps lattes and beer from spilling so easily, researchers find.
Birth Control
A 1960s study probed birth control pills’ effectiveness for women. Researchers are still trying to make a pill for men.
Astronomer Zoltan Levay uses the Hubble Space Telescope to create stunning images of cosmic landscapes.
Southwest Airplane
By ignoring car and plane crashes related to bad weather, U.S. tallies of winter storm deadliness severely underestimate hazard.

Reviews & Previews

Cave painting of aurochs
Science journalist Richard Francis delves into the genetic changes humans have caused in dogs, cats, pigs, horses, camels and more.
Trekking through Laos
Nature writer William deBuys introduces readers to the enigmatic saola of Southeast Asia.

Letters to the Editor

Readers share their experiences with dry weather in the U.S., discuss how humans mentally sort quantities and more.

Science Visualized

A micrograph of a mouse's lungs
Cancer drugs coated with plastic can reach a mouse’s lungs for targeted delivery, but steering the capsules to the right spots can be a challenge.