Research

Scientists discover signs of water in a distant galaxy

Scientists discover signs of water in a distant galaxy

Scientists observing distant planets and galaxies are looking for indications that there might be planets orbiting in the habitable zone of stars. In addition to looking for those planets, they are also looking for indications that there may be elements required to support life as we know it, such as water. Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have been researching a massive galaxy that formed in the early universe called SPT0311-58.

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NASA wants a new framework for determining extraterrestrial life

NASA wants a new framework for determining extraterrestrial life

One of the biggest questions in human history is are we alone in the universe. The hunt for extraterrestrial life has been going on for decades, and so far, none has been discovered. At some point in the future, we may discover extraterrestrial life, be that in the form of intelligent beings or simple single-celled organisms remains to be seen. NASA has been preparing to discover extraterrestrial life for about as long as it's been an organization. The agency is now calling for a new framework that scientists can use to help identify extraterrestrial life.

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ISS astronauts harvest chile peppers and enjoy space tacos

ISS astronauts harvest chile peppers and enjoy space tacos

One of the biggest challenges facing human spaceflight for long durations is providing enough necessities, such as food and water for the crew. One of the projects that NASA is working on aboard the ISS is growing food to support the astronauts and give crew members a more diverse diet while in space. Recently, astronaut Megan McArthur shared some images on Twitter celebrating that the team had harvested red and green chili peppers.

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ReSkin aims to give AI a sense of touch

ReSkin aims to give AI a sense of touch

Humans take the sense of touch for granted, and it's one of the most important types of input that we get in certain situations. Our sense of touch allows us to do things like feel how we are gripping an object to enable us to pick it up easily without crushing it. Anytime we pick up something fragile, like an egg, we know exactly how hard to squeeze it to keep from crushing it, making a huge mess. For robots and AI without a similar sense of touch, it's difficult for the robot to gather information about the object it is attempting to handle.

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NASA study warns farmers must quickly adapt to climate change

NASA study warns farmers must quickly adapt to climate change

Humanity only has around a decade at most before climate change has a major impact on crops in many parts of the world's "breadbasket regions," according to a new study from NASA, Columbia University's The Earth Institute, and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. The researchers say farmers need to speed up the rate at which they adapt to these climate changes to avoid huge crop losses.

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MIT has completed the final project in the autonomous Roboat project

MIT has completed the final project in the autonomous Roboat project

Typically when we talk about autonomous taxis, we are talking about vehicles like cars, SUVs, and buses that can cruise the highways without drivers behind the wheel. MIT has been working on an autonomous taxi that's quite different and very specific to Amsterdam and the city's famous canal system. The autonomous taxis, in this case, are known as Roboats. They are autonomous boats capable of carrying passengers around the city and performing other actions.

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New species of human ancestor dubbed Homo bodoensis

New species of human ancestor dubbed Homo bodoensis

University of Winnipeg paleoanthropologists Dr. Mirjana Roksandic and an international team of researchers have discovered and named a new ancient ancestor to modern humans. The ancient human ancestor is Homo bodoensis, and it lived in Africa during the Middle Pleistocene era, which was about half a million years ago.

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A small asteroid surprised NASA when it passed very close to the planet

A small asteroid surprised NASA when it passed very close to the planet

NASA usually keeps an eye on every asteroid in space that has the potential to impact the Earth. It routinely says that most of these asteroids are small and pose no risk, but there's always some fear that a large and unknown asteroid could be lurking in space. Recently, a small asteroid roughly the size of a refrigerator came extremely close to the Earth.

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CDC lab tests confirm vaccines are better than “natural immunity”

CDC lab tests confirm vaccines are better than “natural immunity”

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has published a new study comparing the protection offered by the COVID-19 vaccines with that of natural immunity through a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection. As with previous research on the topic, the new study found the immune response triggered by vaccines is more robust than the response from an infection, further dashing the myth that having had COVID-19 offers substantial protection against reinfection.

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Study finds many heavy elements are created when neutron stars collide

Study finds many heavy elements are created when neutron stars collide

Scientists know that elements lighter than iron are typically forged deep in the core of stars. The extremely high temperature in the core of stars can fuse protons allowing them to be smashed together, resulting in progressively heavier elements. One thing that has stumped scientists is what process creates heavy elements such as gold, platinum, and others.

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Johns Hopkins study casts doubt on statins as COVID-19 treatment

Johns Hopkins study casts doubt on statins as COVID-19 treatment

Johns Hopkins University has published a new study in which researchers evaluated whether statins -- a type of drug used to lower "bad" LDL cholesterol levels -- may offer some protection against severe COVID-19 outcomes. Unlike previous smaller studies that reported evidence pointing toward a potential benefit, the new study reports statins don't seem to have any effect on the respiratory disease.

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ESA plans communications tests between Mars Express and Chinese rover

ESA plans communications tests between Mars Express and Chinese rover

The ESA has announced that it is planning to conduct a series of five communications tests between the Mars Express orbiter and China's Zhurong rover currently exploring the surface of Mars. Most rovers and landers sent to Mars lack radios powerful enough to send data directly back to Earth. Instead, they rely on spacecraft orbiting the Red Planet to capture the data using short-range radios and then forward the data using more power for long-range equipment back to Earth.

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