Category «Science & Innovation»

Missions to probe exoplanets, galaxies, and cosmic inflation vie for $250 million NASA slot

From exoplanet atmospheres to the dynamics of galaxies to the stretch marks left by the big bang, the three finalists in a $250 million astrophysics mission competition would tackle questions spanning all of space and time. Announced last week by NASA, the three missions—whittled down from nine proposals—will receive $2 million each to develop a …

Scientists struggle to fit this strange vegetarian dinosaur into the family tree

When scientists said in 2015 they had found a plant-eating theropod dinosaur, it was as if a vegetarian had crashed a meat lovers’ barbecue. Almost all theropods—the group of fierce predators that included Tyrannosaurus rex—were hypercarnivorous, eating a diet of more than 70% meat. Now, researchers are reporting that the dinosaur in question—the parrot-beaked Chilesaurus diegosuarezi—wasn’t a theropod after …

Record-shattering 2.7-million-year-old ice core reveals start of the ice ages

Scientists announced today that a core drilled in Antarctica has yielded 2.7-million-year-old ice, an astonishing find 1.7 million years older than the previous record-holder. Bubbles in the ice contain greenhouse gases from Earth’s atmosphere at a time when the planet’s cycles of glacial advance and retreat were just beginning, potentially offering clues to what triggered …