Sneaky New Bacteria on the ISS Could Build a Future on Mars

Sneaky New Bacteria on the ISS Could Build a Future on Mars

In mid-March, NASA researchers announced that they’d found an unknown life-form hiding aboard the International Space Station.As part of an ongoing research project into the microbial life of the ISS, astronauts onboard in 2015 and 2016 swabbed down various parts of the station and sent home the wipes they used.

NASA Wants to Set a New Radiation Limit for Astronauts

NASA Wants to Set a New Radiation Limit for Astronauts

Under the existing standard, some veteran astronauts might have been excluded from longer-term space missions because they are bumping up against lifetime radiation limits.But NASA doesn’t have much data on the health effects of radiation from space on its astronauts.

Astronomers Finally Know What Causes Fast Radio Bursts

Astronomers Finally Know What Causes Fast Radio Bursts

Neutron stars are best known for powering pulsars, rapidly repeating bursts of radiation driven by the fact that these massive objects can complete a rotation in a handful of milliseconds.

How Space Travel Tries to Kill You and Make You Ugly

How Space Travel Tries to Kill You and Make You Ugly

How Bad Is Bad. The expected radiation exposure for a Mars excursion for an astronaut—a federal worker—far exceeds the levels permitted for terrestrial workplace activities by the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Why the ‘Queen of Shitty Robots’ Renounced Her Crown

Why the ‘Queen of Shitty Robots’ Renounced Her Crown

The tumor, which she nicknamed Brian, was remarkable chiefly because of its size: 4.6 centimeters across.“Plot twist,” Giertz says in a subdued voice during a YouTube dispatch about the golf-ball-sized growth at the time.Even before the brain tumor, Giertz says, she was starting to feel like “it was harder and harder to come up with ideas.

How the Mandalorian Might See Through Walls

How the Mandalorian Might See Through Walls

As you race for the exit, think about what just happened: Light traveled outward from your flashlight, bounced off the bear, and traveled back to your retina.

A Scientist's Tiny Black Hole Brings the Cosmos Into the Lab

A Scientist's Tiny Black Hole Brings the Cosmos Into the Lab

Jeff Steinhauer makes tiny scale models of black holes in his lab out of rubidium atoms.In another experiment involving cold atom blobs, physicists at the University of Chicago simulated a different extreme environment—what it would be like for a person to accelerate to billions of g’s.

The Physics Nobel Goes to the Big Bang and Exoplanets

The Physics Nobel Goes to the Big Bang and Exoplanets

This year’s award goes to a Canadian physicist, James Peebles, whose theoretical work underpins the current understanding of the universe’s beginnings, and to two Swiss astronomers, Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz, who discovered the first planet orbiting a Sun-like star .

NIWA UV research reinforces success of Montreal Protocol

NIWA UV research reinforces success of Montreal Protocol

On the eve of the 30th anniversary since the Montreal Protocol came into force, new research by NIWA scientists reinforces its reputation as the world’s most successful environmental treaty.

Why a Promising, Potent Cancer Therapy Isn't Used in the US

Why a Promising, Potent Cancer Therapy Isn't Used in the US

The nuanced answer is that no one knows for sure, because neither carbon ion nor proton therapy has “gold standard” evidence from randomized Phase III clinical trials showing patients live longer with the treatment than with standard radiation.

Space Photos of the Week: Sun Spotting

Space Photos of the Week: Sun Spotting

Launched in 2018, NASA’s Parker Solar Probe will take years to swoop into orbit around the Sun, but once it’s there, its main goal is to figure out exactly what drives the solar wind, the constant stream of highly charged particles that are spit out from the openings in the surface.

Where Do Supermassive Black Holes Come From?

Where Do Supermassive Black Holes Come From?

This speed limit can theoretically be exceeded if the matter is collapsing fast enough; the Basu and Das model suggests black holes were accreting matter at three times the Eddington rate for as long as the chain reaction was happening.

Should You Wear White or Black on Hot Days? Here's the Data

Should You Wear White or Black on Hot Days? Here's the Data

Perhaps the question should be: Does white reflect MORE thermal radiation than black clothing (I'm equating thermal radiation and infrared light—same thing). The T-shirts (both the black and the white) have an emissivity very close to 1—they don't really reflect much infrared radiation.

The Chernobyl Disaster Might Have Also Built a Paradise

The Chernobyl Disaster Might Have Also Built a Paradise

“If you go to the most contaminated areas, like some sites in the Red Forest, on a spring day you can barely hear a single bird singing,” says Anders Møller, an ecologist at the University of Paris-Sud who has been studying Chernobyl since 1991.

Are Humans Fit for Space? A ‘Herculean’ Study Says Maybe Not

Are Humans Fit for Space? A ‘Herculean’ Study Says Maybe Not

A human mission to Mars could last as long as three years, and in the laconic tones of the twins study, “genetic, immune system, and metabolic functions are of particular concern given exposure to space radiations, restricted diets … disrupted circadian rhythms, and weightlessness.”.

Why 5G Makes Me Reconsider the Health Effects of Cellphones

Why 5G Makes Me Reconsider the Health Effects of Cellphones

But what if the FCC is measuring public health effects against a decades-old standard that (a) measures the wrong thing and (b) was based on the work of an insular, private group, half of whose initial funding came from the power and telecom industries and that elects its own members?

What the California Wildfires Can Teach Us About Data Sharing

What the California Wildfires Can Teach Us About Data Sharing

I was part of a small group of volunteers who came together to start a nonprofit organization, Safecast, to design, build, and deploy Geiger counters and a website that would eventually make more than 100 million measurements of radiation levels available to the public.We started in Japan, of course, but eventually people around the world joined the movement, creating an open global data set.

L’Oréal’s New Clip-on Sensor Tracks Your Exposure to UV Rays

L’Oréal’s New Clip-on Sensor Tracks Your Exposure to UV Rays

The combination of sensors and algorithms is a strategy that’s been adopted in other lightweight wearables, which directly measure some metrics, and use those metrics to inform an algorithm that calculates others.'It opens the door for a new consumer market for us, and a new retail environment.'Guive Balooch, global VP of L'Oréal’s Tech IncubatorThe app also provides metrics about a user’s skin exposure.

The 'Liquidators' Who Risked It All to Clean Up Chernobyl

The 'Liquidators' Who Risked It All to Clean Up Chernobyl

"Many live on a state pension."Skipp photographed the men and women with his Fujifilm GFX 50 in their homes, as well as at at a local museum dedicated to explaining the history of Chernobyl and Slavutych.