Science

Big Bang evidence evaporates

Big Bang evidence evaporates

The Big Bang theory has not been disproven. Get that idea out of your mind as fast as possible. Instead, a team of scientists have, this week, produced a paper which disproves their previous findings that suggest they'd found the first "direct evidence" that the Big Bang had happened in the way it's widely accepted to have happened. Instead of knowing when - 10 or so seconds after the Big Bang happened - the universe ballooned and expanded at a super-fast rate, we're back to where we were before the BICEP2 team announced their findings this past March. That's all.

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Pink sea slugs stick to Northern California

Pink sea slugs stick to Northern California

The Hopkins' rose nudibranch sea slug has appeared in Santa Cruz, San Francisco, and Bodega Bay over the past couple of weeks. This is strange, according to local scientists, as these tiny slugs don't generally appear anywhere north of San Luis Obispo. It's been suggested that these pink creatures have found themselves in strange places due to changes in ocean temperature over the past year. These slugs are amongst several abnormal creatures to appear in the area here in early 2015.

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Philae isn’t lost just yet

Philae isn’t lost just yet

While the European Space Agency (ESA) lost contact with their comet lander Philae in November, "there is good confidence" they'll be able to make contact once more. So says Stephan Ulamec, lander manager at the German Space Agency (DLR). Ulamec also warned that should the ESA get in contact with Philae via Rosetta, "it may be that they only get very limited periods of operation in the [dark] pocket, and they will have to plan for more modest science sequences." If Philae is able to reach out to Rosetta, that is.

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Hand of God nebula captured by Very Large Telescope

Hand of God nebula captured by Very Large Telescope

This week the European Southern Observatory (ESO)'s "Very Large Telescope" (VLT) captured an image of the Hand of God. This nebulous globule is also known as "Maw of the Beast", and lies around 1,300 light years away from the planet Earth. This image was captured as a part of ESO's "Comic Gems" program which is aimed at capturing images with telescopes such as the Very Large Telescope for education in classrooms and public outreach. The Very Large Telescope operates at the Paranal Observatory.

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Big Bang echoes just cosmic dust BICEP2 investigation finds

Big Bang echoes just cosmic dust BICEP2 investigation finds

It was supposed to be evidence of the first shudderings of the universe, a post-Big Bang ripple of cosmic inflation finally spotted by the BICEP2 telescope, but scientists have finally admitted they got it wrong. The unexpected announcement last March that researchers had identified primordial gravitational waves they believed dated back to the moments right after the formation of the universe had led to suggestions that the US team responsible could win a Nobel Prize. Now, though, the European Space Agency has confirmed that what was thought to be a huge cosmic discovery from a trillionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second, all of fourteen billion years ago, was in fact just dust.

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Turns out, Americans don’t believe what Scientists know

Turns out, Americans don’t believe what Scientists know

Science may be all about quantifiable facts rather than beliefs, but the gulf between what scientists think and what the US public at large believes true is shockingly wide, new research suggests. Although scientific endeavor is rated highly by the general public, some of the conclusions involved are less accepted, with climate change, genetically-modified foods, and childhood vaccinations all not only hot topics but areas where opinions diverge considerably. That opens up a tricky can of worms, researchers at Pew warn, where future studies could be at risk because they can't communicate their potential worth successfully with the general public and policymakers.

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Jurrasic World for real: new “dragon” dinosaur turns up in China

Jurrasic World for real: new “dragon” dinosaur turns up in China

At 15-meters long, Qijianglong (pronounced “CHI-jyang-lon") was not a small dinosaur. Half of its length was made up of neck, while a tiny head sat on one end and a four-legged hulk of a body sat at the other. The digging site at which this animal was found was first discovered in 2006, and only now have paleontologists gotten to a point where they're comfortable confirming the new species, long neck and head included. This creature is from the mamenchisaurids family and the sauropodomorpha (sauropod) suborder - long necked, plant-eating dinosaurs found all around the world.

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Skull shows earliest Humans and Neanderthals cross-breed

Skull shows earliest Humans and Neanderthals cross-breed

A 55,000-year-old skull has been discovered in a cave in western Galilee, one that's going by the name "Manot." According to a study published this week in Nature, this is the oldest representation of human life in a place and time in which Neanderthals are known to have lived. This skull shows features found in both European Neaderthals and humans around the time the being it belonged to died. Anatomically Modern Humans and Neantherthal traits are both present, and the team that've published the study we're seeing today seem to think they've found something rather extraordinary.

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Falcon Heavy flight animation reveals SpaceX’s future vision

Falcon Heavy flight animation reveals SpaceX’s future vision

Elon Musk's SpaceX has just released a new flight animation video that reveals its vision of how it wants it next launch to proceed. Presuming, of course, it doesn't end up in flames. It shows what will be the first test flight for the heavy-lift Falcon rocket and also throws in some hints of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, where SpaceX plans to have its second Florida launch pad later this year. That is, of course, if all goes well.

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