Saturn with no rings?

April 5, 2011 at 10:21 pm (Space)

Saturn is one of eight planets in our solar system. Like planet, other planets have defections and Saturn is loosing its rings. This is what is happening, as Saturn goes around the sun, it turns its rings edge-on to Earth for a period of time and it happens once every 14-to-15 years. The rings turn out to be so thin; they can actually disappear when viewed through a small telescope. “The rings have narrowed considerably in the last year”. Galileo was an Italian scientist who was a major figure in the Scientific Revolution. He wanted to disprove Aristotle’s theory of falling objects. He discovered Saturn’s rings in 1610 and it has been shown that were experiencing a “ring plane crossing”. Saturn’s rings are getting thinner and thinner and soon with just disappear. In relationship to this he began to discover new Saturnian moons and faint outer rings. In 2005 the Cassini spacecraft flew over Saturn’s northern hemisphere and found the sky as an azure as Earth itself. Saturn is filled with golden clouds and for years Cassini enjoyed this view. If this pattern continues will Saturn be ring-less? That’s the question.


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Is The Five- Second Rule A Myth?

April 5, 2011 at 2:25 pm (research) ()

            This article talks about Researchers in Clemson University, who performed a study in which they tested how time affects the amount of bacteria transmitted. They placed salmonella-infected bologna on blocks of wood and carpet for five, thirty and sixty seconds. The scientists discovered that no matter how much time the salmonella was present, the amount of bacteria on the bologna was still the same. “In general, if there are bacteria on the floor, they will cling to the food nearly immediately on contact” says Dr. Roy Gulick, who works at Weill Cornell Medical College. Bacteria typically are present around the house, and are abundant. The quote backs up the results found in the study at Clemson University. A common myth is that if dropped food is picked up quickly enough, bacteria does not latch on to it.  “Eating dropped food poses a risk for ingestion of bacteria and subsequent gastrointestinal disease, and the time the food sits on the floor does not change the risk” Dr. Gulick, said. The only factors that influence bacteria transportation are the type of floor, bacteria and food. Larger bacteria have a higher chance of transferring than smaller ones. Nonetheless, some amount of bacteria is transferred, no matter the factors involved. The purpose of this article was to bring up, and disprove the popular misconception of the “Five-Second Rule”. I chose this article because, like many I have dropped food and cited the rule as an excuse for eating the dropped food. I wanted to see if it was true or not.  The science used in this experiment was Biology, and the transfer of bacteria.  Future research in this field could go to performing more experiments like the one used in Clemson University. That experiment was conducted all the way back in 2007, and similar investigations have not been conducted since then. If more experiments were performed, more people would be made aware of the “Zero-Second Rule”.

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Can you get addicted to diet soda?

April 5, 2011 at 2:22 pm (Health) ()

the caffeine in diet soda trains your brain to crave and want it more. artificial sweeteners may also be another factor in the addiction to diet soda. Many people believe, that just becuase its diet soda means that they can drink all they want of it and still be healthy.

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Stronger Microscopes Could “Solve The Cause of Viruses”

April 5, 2011 at 12:48 pm (Technology) ()

The best microscope that was already created can clearly see things around one micrometre. Recently, researchers have created a new microscope. A team, led by Professor Lin Li & Dr Zengbo Wang, created a microscope that could see 20 times small or 50 nanometres. “This is beyond the theoretical limit of optical microscopy” was said in the article, meaning this is a  whole new step in science and in the world. We were limited in research of small items but now we can take research to a whole new level.

Scientists can already view the surface of cells. The new microscope can examine inside of cells and can potentially view live viruses. “Seeing inside a cell directly without dying and seeing living viruses directly could revolutionize the way cells are studied and allow us to examine closely viruses and biomedicine for the first time” said Lin Li. From the examination of live viruses with this new creation, scientists can possibly see what causes viruses and then find a solution to it. If that is possible, this is a great development. It could possibly save or help victims of deadly viruses. Viruses, with no cures available such as HIV, could possibly be defeated with a solution in the future.

As a side note, Professor Li also added that 50 nanometres is just the first step of the new microscope. He believes that the the microscope can possibly see even smaller items.

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Mass Dolphin Deaths Along The Gulf Coast

April 5, 2011 at 10:59 am (Animals) ()


An increasing number of dolphins have been discovered by park rangers, beach-goers and BP cleanup crews washing up on the shores of the beaches on the Gulf Coast. A total of 67 dead dolphins, including infant dolphins have been found near Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama coastlines since January 1, 2011. Marine researchers have been investigating this unusual occurrence because this is 10 times the normal rate of stillborn and infant deaths. Scientists have been trying to determine the cause and if the deaths are related to cold weather, infection, or disease, and possibly to the BP oil spill last year. The dolphins varied in age and some of the bodies found were barely 3 feet long, meaning they probably died soon after birth or were born stillborn.

The reason why this has caused so much confusion is because nearly 2,000 to 5,000 dolphins live in the Gulf region and although it is the beginning of the dolphin birthing season and it is normal for researchers to see deaths, it is not normal for the numbers to be this high. Dr. Doug Inkley, the National Wildlife Federation’s senior scientist says “Until necropsies are performed, we won’t know the cause of death, and even then may never know. As we have learned from recent mass mortality events of mallards and blackbirds, they are not all that uncommon and most often the cause is disease. It wouldn’t be surprising for disease to be a factor in this case.” It is difficult to find out what the cause of all these dolphins’ deaths are and Dr. Doug Inkley also says “Another possibility is poor nutritional status of the pregnant females, causing them to abort the young or give birth to weak young. Certainly, the oil spill through exposure to toxics could make the dolphins more vulnerable to disease, or lead to starvation if food sources become scarce. There could also be sublethal effects of the oil on adults that inhibit successful reproduction.” Although none of the bodies had noticeable signs of oil toxicity, tissue samples from each of the dolphins are being studied and some of the dolphins are being fully examined to see if unusually high levels of chemicals were in the dolphins’ bodies before they died.

Although disease and infection may be a cause in this investigation, there is still a big chance that something greater is the cause and researchers are still working to figure it out as well as strongly believe it may be related to the BP oil spill. On February 20, marine scientist, Samantha Joye, presented her research on the Gulf ocean floor and it revealed that oil from the BP oil spill is suffocating marine life with 4-inch layers of thick oil and microorganisms are not consuming the oil quickly, therefore causing deaths.

Scientists agree that it could possibly take years to see what long-terms effects the BP oil spill has on marine life and that it could still affect bottlenose dolphins and increase the number of deaths in the Gulf for many years. New dolphin remains are still being discovered and in this past week alone, 24 baby dolphins have been found. More will probably still be discovered on Mississippi and Alabama beaches each week while researchers and scientists are still determined to try and figure out the cause.





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Waited Time or A New Solution?

April 3, 2011 at 12:17 pm (Genetics, Health, Medical Discoveries, research) ()

They call it a skin cell gun. Which was developed by Professor Joerg C. Gerlach and colleagues of the Department of Surgery at the University of Pittsburg’s McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine. It was first introduced in 2008. It’s basically like a “spray paint gun” only it sprays cultured skin cells. This process helps cut down a process that would normally take 2 weeks to a matter of a couple of days.

This process usually takes an hour to an hour and a half. It’s a biopsy that takes all of the patients undamaged skin and healthy stem cells are isolated from this biopsy. The wound is then sprayed, and covered with new dressing, with tubes that consist of an artery, while the second tube is there to function as a vein. “The tubes are connected to an “artificial vascular system” and provide electrolytes, antibiotics, amino acids and glucose to the wound.” Fact from the article. They also use the dressing that they put over the skin to clean and make sure that the wound continues to be sterilized. It also provides nutrition to keep the new skin stem cells regenerating.

This way would be completely more effective figuring using a skin graph would take about a week. Which includes more time for the damaged skin to create all types of infections or blisters, and the death rate would surely probably go back up if this new-found technology wasn’t created. Or if it wasn’t continued to be enhanced.

Check it out, there’s a video with the article!
New Development For Skin Cells

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High-fibre diet may help you live longer

April 3, 2011 at 12:06 pm (Health)

What is fiber, and what are its effect on us ? Fiber is a part of foods such as bran, fruits, and vegetables that passes through the body but is not digested. Fiber helps food move through the intestines. Eating more fiber can help you feel more full for longer amount of time and keeps your blood sugar levels stable. Not only that but it can protect you from diseases and help you stay alive longer as well. Research was done in order to examine the diets of 350,000 people and after 9 years those who ate the most fiber were about 22% chance less to have died from the causes compared to others. Fiber helps protect you from heart disease and respiratory illness such as premonia. Overall eating a lot of fiber helps you from many diseases, but many people don’t eat a lot of fiber. The recommendation is about 18g of fibers a day but the average person has 12g a day. In addition there are 2 types of fibers, soluble and insoluble but both are very beneficial. You should eat more oats and beans for a better and good source of fiber for a long healthy life. “The spirit of man is more important than mere physical strength, and the spiritual fiber of a nation more than its wealth”

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Lizards with the power of earthworms

April 2, 2011 at 2:04 pm (Animals, Technology) (, )

There is a type of lizard called the sandfish lizards which travel in the sand like a worm in the soil.  These reptiles will go in the sand and wriggle around whilst under the sand.  These lizards tuck in their legs and go in an S-formation to get around.  These lizards are said, by Daniel Goldman, to do this to escape predators.  “You just want to get the hell out of there as fast as you can,” says Daniel Goldman.

A fast sandfish lizard can travel up to two body lengths within only four seconds.  This type of burrowing has interested researchers in trying to find this type of movement with robots.  Robin Murphy, director of a robot assisted rescue group, says that technology would be useful for earthquakes or mudslides.  Robin Murphy says, ” There’s lack of any technology short of a shovel.”  This is saying that we could learn a lot of technology in terms of traveling through the ground thanks to the sandfish lizards.

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turtle species are becoming endangered.

April 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm (Animals) ()

Destroying by illegal hunting for food and pet trading along with habitat loses. Many turtle species will go extinct in decades. There are seventeen of the 25 species are found in Asia, three from South America and Africa, one from Australia, and one from Central America and Mexico.  The only remaining Abdington Island giant tortoise called Lonesome George. Scientist disagreed that it is a subspecies of Galapagos tortoise.  In China’s Suzhou Zoo, the Wildlife Conservation Society veterinarians have been working with Chinese officials to breed the last known male or female pair of giant turtle.  The problem in Asia is illegal hunting for turtles because people hunt turtles for food, pets, and traditional medicines. To prevent turtles from becoming endangered is to create laws, habitat protection, and breeding.

“Turtles are being unsustainably hunted throughout Asia,” said co-author Brian D. Horne of the Wildlife Conservation Society. In this quote, turtles were being hunted throughout of Asia because of traditional medicines, pets, and foods. “Turtles are wonderful adapted to defend themselves against predators by hiding in their shells, but this defense mechanism doesn’t work against organized, large-scale human hunting effort,” Liz Bennet, Vice President of Wildlife Conservation Society Species Program.  Bennet felt that turtles should not be harmed and should not be endangered.

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Trees are getting Sick?

April 2, 2011 at 1:53 pm (Environment) ()

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