Science

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Greenhouse Gas Levels Reached Record High Last Year

“Far from falling, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere actually increased last year at the fastest rate for nearly 30 years,” WMO’s Michel Jarraud says in a news release.  At this rate, the global annual average CO2 concentration is set to cross the symbolic 400 parts per million threshold by the next year or two.  Read more...

Ozone Layer Showing Signs Of Recovery

It’s been a dismal few decades for our troubled ozone layer, but it’s finally on the road to recovery, according to a comprehensive new assessment released on Wednesday.

If signatories continue to fully comply with the Montreal Protocol, it is anticipated that the ozone layer above the mid-latitudes and Arctic will recover to 1980 levels before 2050. The seasonal hole above the Antarctic will take significantly longer to heal, however, since ozone-depleting substances can linger for many years in the atmosphere.  Read more…

Gorgeous Auroras Anticipated Following Massive Solar Flares

 

September 10th, 2014 saw a huge CME (Coronal Mass Ejection) from the Sun.  It was an X-class flare (1.6) the most powerful type.  Two more CMEs exploded September 11th, from the same active region.  The Auroras ought to be pretty spectacular (September 12th, and may last through the 13th), and possibly visible as far south as Iowa and Pennsylvania.   Read more…

Tectonics on Jupiter's moon Europa

What would you call an earthquake on Europa?  In many ways Jupiter’s moon is like Earth, with tectonic plates shuffling across its face, creating new surface where it parts and subducting older surface to the liquid below, but where Earth uses rocky crust and lava, Europa uses salty seas and a crust of ice.

This communication between exterior and interior lends hope to the idea that panspermia has taken root and the subsurface sea is inhabited.  Read more...

 

Taking out the trash, Space-style!

The Cygnus craft is part of NASA's Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS), and is used to deliver supplies to the International Space Station.  While it’s docked, astronauts fill it with expended gear and trash so upon release it can burn up in the atmosphere.  Here’s the time lapse “Bye-bye!”  Read more...  Watch Video...

Meteoric Origns -- Doubts Raised by Experts

Saturday September 6, 2014: A mysterious crater, 12m in diameter (equivalent to the height of a four-story building), appeared near the capital city of Managua, Nicaragua.  Not one of the 1.5 million locals saw a fireball for what would have been a one meter meteorite, not has any remnant of the object been found.  Read more...

Hidden Star Finally Revealed after 21 Years

A supernova detonates once every second somewhere in the universe.  The rare Type IIb supernova (SN 1993J) combines the features of a supernova explosion in a binary system with what’s seen when a single massive star explodes.   "This is like a crime scene, and we finally identified the robber," says Alex Filippenko from the University of California, Berkeley. Read more...