Astronomy, Astrophysics, News

Organic molecules found on comet

The Philae lander found organic molecules on the surface of a comet.

As we were telling you already in several articles, the Rosetta probe is in orbit of a comet – the 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko comet. But to make things even more exciting, Philae, Rosetta’s lander, also made contact with the comet; among other things, the lander found carbon molecules on the comet – the basis of life on Earth. Considering how comets are believed to…

Environment, News

Interpol wants you to help catch the worst environmental criminals

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Interpol is launching the first-ever Most Wanted-style list for environmental criminals. This is a milestone achievement because it shows just how serious environmental crimes have become. These crimes include poaching, ivory trafficking and illegal logging – and the list is expected to grow. Andreas Andreou, an officer with Interpol’s environmental unit said: “Until recently, environmental offenses were not even considered a…

Health & Medicine, News

Massive study shows that Triclosan, a common antimicrobial in hygiene products can cause cancer

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Triclosan is a common antimicrobial and antifungal agent found in consumer products, including soaps, detergents, toys and, surgical cleaning treatments. The effectiveness of Triclosan has been questioned many times, with studies showing that in the long run, it may actually have negative effects by creating bacterial resistance. Now, a new study on mice has found that long term exposure to the…

Geology

Scientists have finally climbed to the bottom of one of Siberia’s mysterious holes

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Scientists have finally climbed to the bottom of one of Siberia’s mysterious holes, and they have come up with some interesting information – and some amazing pics. In case you’re not up to date, scientists started observing some mysterious craters in Siberia. The pseudoscience media had a field day – and so did conspiracy theorists. Could it be aliens? War…

Environmental Issues, News

40% of Wisconsin ‘Frac Sand’ Producers Violated Environmental Rules

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Hydraulic fracking is one of the hottest topics right now – and while proposers and defenders of the method argue that everything is safe and there is no need to worry, the facts seem to only agree with them sometimes. Even if all the rules and regulations are followed, there would be some controversy; but the thing is, rules are…

News, Space, Space flight

Rosetta’s Philae probe landed on a comet – why this is HUGE news

First image from the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from the Rosetta million’s lander Philae Photograph: ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA/Photograph: ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

OK, so we’ve been keeping you up to date with what’s been happening with the Rosetta mission, but we had to sleep eventually, and wonderful things have happened in the mean time. In case you’re not aware, here’s a short summary: Rosetta is a probe launched by the European Space Agency (the European equivalent of NASA) in order to study…

News, Space

Rosetta comet landing – watch it as it happens! [live blog]

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In case you’re not aware, the European Space Agency is just now trying to send Rosetta’s lander, Philae, towards the comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. The probe is already orbiting the comet and has revealed the most accurate topography of a comet. Watch the live stream here: Further updates: The separation went great, and the lander is on its way to the comet. 09:06 GMT….

News, Space

Rosetta mission discovers the comet that “sings”

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As I am writing this, the Rosetta mission’s lander, Philae, is mid way through its landing on a comet. If everything works out, this will be the first time humans have landed anything on a comet and will provide valuable information about not only the comet in particular, but also our solar system in general. *UPDATE* Rosetta’s final ‘go’ has…

Environment, News

Rich countries giving the oil, gas and coal industres $88 bn a year in subsidies and tax cuts only for new reserves

Rich companies are investing heavily in fossil fuels, much more than in renewables. Image via The Malay Online.

Rich countries are effectively giving oil, gas and coal companies $88 bn a year to explore new reserves, despite clear evidence that those industries are causing global warming. From a climate change perspective, it would be best to leave those reserves in the ground and focus on renewable energy, but despite a huge growth, renewable energy is not yet able…

GeoPicture

GeoPicture of the Week: Kutkhiny Baty, The Weird Valley

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Deep in the Kamceatka peninsula, there lies an eerie, unique valley – Kutkhiny Baty – The Weird Valley. This is how Kutkhiny Baty looks like from a helicopter: The valley is made from whitish pumice stone. Pumice is a very light volcanic rock. Pumice is created when super-heated, highly pressurized rock is violently ejected from a volcano. The unusual foamy configuration of pumice happens…