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Science News
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Rosetta spacecraft sent to crash on comet its has been chasing

Journalist sit below a scale model of the Rosetta spacecraft at the European Space Agency's headquarters in DarmstadtBy Victoria Bryan BERLIN (Reuters) - The Rosetta spacecraft is nearing the end of its historic, 12-year comet chase, slowly falling towards the surface of the dusty, icy body in a mission that has provided insight into the early days of the solar system and captured the public's imagination. The spacecraft has stalked comet 67P/ChuryumovGerasimenko across more than 6 billion km (3.7 billion miles) of space, collecting a treasure trove of information on comets that will keep scientists busy for the next decade. On Friday morning, the European Space Agency said the "collision maneuver" started last night was on track and the point of no return had been reached, putting Rosetta on course to crash into the comet at 1038 GMT (6.38 a.m. ET).

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 06:05:17 -0400
Billionaire Elon Musk outlines plans for humans to colonize Mars

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk unveils his plans to colonize Mars during the International Astronautical Congress in GuadalajaraBy Irene Klotz GUADALAJARA, Mexico (Reuters) - SpaceX is developing a massive rocket and capsule to transport large numbers of people and cargo to Mars with the ultimate goal of colonizing the planet, company chief and tech billionaire Elon Musk said on Tuesday. Musk outlined his plans for the Mars rocket, capable of carrying 100 passengers plus cargo per voyage, even as SpaceX is still investigating why a different rocket carrying a $200 million Israeli satellite blew up on a launch pad in Florida earlier this month. SpaceX intends to fly to Mars about every 26 months when Earth and Mars are favorably aligned.

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 03:19:14 -0400
Scientists fix fractures with 3D-printed synthetic bone

By Kate Kelland LONDON (Reuters) - Scientists in the United States have successfully treated broken spines and skulls in animals using 3D-printed synthetic bone, opening the possibility of future personalized bone implants for humans to fix dental, spinal other bone injuries. Unlike real bone grafts, the synthetic material - called hyper-elastic bone - is able to regenerate bone without the need for added growth factors, is flexible and strong, and can be easily and rapidly deployed in the operating room. Giving details in a teleconference, the scientists said the results of their animal trials - published on Wednesday in the Science Translational Medicine journal - were "quite astounding".

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 02:50:30 -0400
Hubble spots evidence of water plumes on Jupiter's moon Europa

This Jan. 26, 2014 image provided by NASA shows a composite image of possible water plumes on the south pole of Jupiter's moon Europa. Europa is among several moons in the solar system where evidence of an underground ocean has been discovered in recent years. The Hubble data were taken on January 26, 2014. The image of Europa, superimposed on the Hubble data, is assembled from data from the Galileo and Voyager missions. (NASA via AP)Astronomers on Monday said they have spotted evidence of water vapor plumes rising from Jupiter's moon Europa, a finding that might make it easier to learn whether life exists in the warm, salty ocean hidden beneath its icy surface. The apparent plumes detected by the Hubble Space Telescope shoot about 125 miles (200 km) above Europa's surface before, presumably, raining material back down onto the moon's surface, NASA said. Europa, considered one of the most promising candidates for life in the solar system beyond Earth, boasts a global ocean with twice as much water as in all of Earth's seas hidden under a layer of extremely cold and hard ice of unknown thickness.

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 15:44:51 -0400
Scientists find new fat clues in faeces

By Kate Kelland LONDON (Reuters) - Scientists in Britain have found a new link between the diversity of bacteria in human poo - the human fecal microbiome - and levels of harmful types of body fat. In research that may help explain why excessive weight problems and obesity tend to run in families, the scientists said high levels of visceral fat - which is linked to risks of chronic disease - were linked to having a relatively small range of bacteria in faeces. People with a high diversity of bacteria in their faeces had lower levels of visceral fat, according to the study published on Monday in the journal Genome Biology.

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 07:32:04 -0400
Leprosy Found in California Child: How Doctors Diagnosed It

Leprosy Found in California Child: How Doctors Diagnosed ItLeprosy has been confirmed in one of two California schoolchildren suspected to have the disease, according to CBS Los Angeles. Health officials were first notified in early September about the two possible cases of leprosy, now usually called Hansen's disease. The diagnosis was confirmed at the National Hansen's Disease Laboratory Research Program (NHDP) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:59:53 -0400
In Shift, Most Americans Now Say President Should Release All Medical Records

A majority of Americans now say that a U.S. president should release all of his or her medical information. The poll, which was conducted by Gallup last week, found that a slim majority of Americans, 51 percent, said that a president should release all medical information that might affect that person's ability to serve in office, whereas 46 percent said that a president should have the right to keep those medical records private. The new poll results are a change from the results in 2004, when just 38 percent of Americans said that a president should release all of his or her medical information, and 61 percent said that a president should be able to keep those records private, according to Gallup.

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:59:19 -0400
Drug Overdose Cluster in Canada Tied to Opioid-Laced Cocaine

Drug Overdose Cluster in Canada Tied to Opioid-Laced CocaineMore than 40 people in a Canadian city were treated for an opioid overdose this summer after they smoked crack cocaine that had been contaminated with an opioid drug related to fentanyl, according to a new report. In mid-July, a hospital in the city of Surrey, British Columbia, experienced a large spike in patients needing treatment for an opioid overdose about 11 patients per day needed treatment, up from the usual four patients per day. Most of the patients had become unconscious after smoking what they thought was crack cocaine, the report said.

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:58:32 -0400
Spaceflight Is Entering a New Golden Age, Says Blue Origin Founder Jeff Bezos

Spaceflight Is Entering a New Golden Age, Says Blue Origin Founder Jeff BezosEarly Monday (Nov. 23), the private spaceflight company Blue Origin made a major stride in the pursuit of fully reusable rockets, when it launched an uncrewed vehicle into space and then soft-landed the rocket booster on the ground. "It was one of the greatest moments of my life," said Jeff Bezos, Blue Origin's founder, speaking about the landing in a press briefing yesterday (Nov. 24). "And my teammates here at Blue Origin, I could see felt the same way.

Thu, 26 Nov 2015 07:40:42 -0500
Turkey and Football: How Astronauts Celebrate Thanksgiving in Space

Turkey and Football: How Astronauts Celebrate Thanksgiving in SpaceThanksgiving in space will be a lot like the holiday down here on the ground minus the gravity, of course. Like most Americans, NASA astronauts Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren have Thanksgiving (Nov. 26) off, and they'll spend the day aboard the International Space Station (ISS) watching football and enjoying a turkey-centric feast, agency officials said. Kelly and Lindgren gave viewers a look at that feast in a special Thanksgiving video this week, breaking out bags of smoked turkey, rehydratable corn, candied yams and potatoes au gratin.

Thu, 26 Nov 2015 07:40:32 -0500
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