Science News Magazine:Vol. 162 No. #17
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More Stories from the October 26, 2002 issue
News flash: Earth still has only one moon
An object discovered orbiting Earth in early September isn't a moon but something much more mundane—an upper stage of a rocket that was used in the Apollo 12 mission to the moon.By Ron Cowen
Dipping deeper into acid
New experiments reveal how a molecule of acid dissolves in water.
Stegosaur tails packed a punch
A mathematical analysis of a fossil stegosaur's bones leaves little doubt that the creature's spike-studded tail was an effective defense against predators.
Mosasaurs were born at sea, not in safe harbors
Newly discovered fossils of prehistoric aquatic reptiles known as mosasaurs suggest that the creatures gave birth in midocean rather than in near-shore sanctuaries as previously suspected.
Curved claws hint at pterosaur habits
A study of the claws of flying reptiles known as pterosaurs suggests that some of the creatures may have walked like present-day herons and used their wing fingers to hold prey.
Trackway site shows dinosaur on the go
Scientists say that a sediment-filled, bathtub-shape depression found at one of North America's most significant dinosaur trackway sites is the first recognized evidence of urination in dinosaurs.
Insects, pollen, seeds travel wildlife corridors
Strips of habitat boost insect movement, plant pollination, and seed dispersal among patches of the same ecosystem.By Susan Milius
Neptunium Nukes? Little-studied metal goes critical
Researchers have measured with far greater accuracy than ever before how much neptunium it would take to make a bomb.By Peter Weiss
Ancient Lure of the Lakes: Early Americans followed the water
Archaeological investigations in Chile indicate that beginning around 13,000 years ago, early American settlers lived at high altitudes during humid periods, when they could set up hunting camps on the shores of lakes.By Bruce Bower
Cloudy Findings: A new population shows up in the Milky Way
A radio telescope has detected a previously unknown population of hundreds of hydrogen clouds in the gaseous halo that surrounds the disk of our galaxy.By Ron Cowen
Outmuscled: Muscles, not nerve cells, fail in old worms
In aging worms, the nervous system stays intact but muscles don't.By John Travis
Air-Pollution Pileup: Mediterranean endures emissions from afar
Although most Mediterranean countries aren't big polluters, the area is a crossroads for pollution-carrying air currents from Europe, Asia, and North America.
Health & Medicine
Blood Booster: Growth signal shifts cord stem cells into high gear
A protein called Delta-1 stimulates stem cells in umbilical cord blood to proliferate in a lab dish, attach well to bone marrow when implanted into mice, and even proceed to the animal's thymus to become T cells.By Nathan Seppa
Upside Way Down: Video turns fish story on its head
The first video of whipnose anglerfish reveals them swimming upside down and trolling for prey on the 5,000-meter deep ocean floor.
A novel approach for identifying prime numbers provides a long-sought improvement in the theoretical efficiency of prime-detecting algorithms.
Why Turn Red?
Why leaves turn red is a stranger question than why they turn yellow.By Susan Milius