Vol. 170 No. #21
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More Stories from the November 18, 2006 issue

  1. Earth

    The African source of the Amazon’s fertilizer

    More than half of the airborne dust that provides vital nutrients to the Amazonian rainforest comes from a small corner of the Sahara.

  2. Chemistry

    Were Viking landers blind to life?

    The Viking landers may have missed potential signs of life when they explored Mars in 1976.

  3. Earth

    Farm salmon spread deadly lice

    In the Pacific Northwest, sea lice that spread from cultivated salmon to their wild counterparts have become major parasites affecting the wild population.

  4. Astronomy

    Black hole survey

    Scanning the sky for high-energy X rays, a NASA satellite found more than 200 supermassive black holes within 400 million light-years of Earth.

  5. Paleontology

    Asian amber yields oldest known bee

    A tiny chunk of amber from Southeast Asia contains the remains of a bee that's at least 35 million years older than any reported fossil of similar bees.

  6. Astronomy

    Nearest extrasolar planet

    Astronomers have confirmed the existence of the nearest known planet beyond the solar system.

  7. Revving up recall while fast asleep

    Scientists have discovered a way to give memory a modest lift while people slumber.

  8. Animals

    Hey, that’s me!

    A test with a jumbo-size mirror suggests that Asian elephants may be among the few species that can recognize their own images.

  9. Anthropology

    Ancient Gene Yield: New methods retrieve Neandertals’ DNA

    Researchers have retrieved and analyzed a huge chunk of Neandertal DNA.

  10. Astronomy

    Dark Fingerprints: Hubble sheds light on cosmic expansion

    The mysterious cosmic push that's tearing up the universe began revving up about 5 billion years ago.

  11. Tech

    Unstoppable Bot: Armed with self-scrutiny, a mangled robot moves on

    Roboticists have made a walking machine that carries on despite serious damage.

  12. Health & Medicine

    More Evidence of Protection: Circumcision reduces STD risk in men

    Circumcised men are less likely to get sexually transmitted diseases than uncircumcised men are.

  13. Tech

    Cleanup Speedup: Device improves oil-spill recovery

    By adding grooves to the surface of a common oil-skimming device, researchers recovered up to three times as much oil as they do with smooth-surfaced devices.

  14. Animals

    Chicken Speak: Birds pass test for fancy communication

    The chicken may be the first animal other than primates that's been shown to make sounds that, like words, represent something in the environment. With audio.

  15. Derailing a Disease: Stem cells slow dogs’ muscular dystrophy

    Injecting a special type of stem cell into dogs with the canine equivalent of Duchenne muscular dystrophy significantly slowed the disease's progression.

  16. Earth

    Dashing Rogues

    Rogue waves, which tower over the waves that surround them, are probably more common than scientists had previously suspected.

  17. Anthropology

    Evolution’s Mystery Woman

    A heated debate has broken out among anthropologists over whether a highly publicized partial skeleton initially attributed to a new, tiny species of human cousins actually comes from a pygmy Homo sapiens with a developmental disorder.

  18. Humans

    Letters from the November 18, 2006, issue of Science News

    Sunny side heads up “Rare Uranian eclipse” (SN: 9/9/06, p. 166) tells us, “Because the moons of Uranus orbit at the planet’s equator, the sun seldom illuminates them directly.” I think what you mean is that the moons seldom pass directly between Uranus and the sun. But surely the sun still illuminates them, even when […]