Science & Health

The Two-Way
11:54 am
Sat May 16, 2015

Unmanned Russian Rocket Burns Up Carrying Mexican Satellite

A Proton-M rocket shown in 2013. The same type of rocket malfunctioned in mid-flight on Saturday and crashed over Siberia carrying a Mexican communications satellite.
PHOTO ITAR-TASS ITAR-TASS/Landov

Originally published on Sat May 16, 2015 12:56 pm

A Russian Proton-M rocket carrying a Mexican telecommunications satellite experienced a malfunction minutes after liftoff from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and subsequently burned up over eastern Siberia, the Russian space agency says.

According to Russian news agencies, the rocket crashed about eight minutes after launch in the sparsely populated Chita region of Siberia.

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Joe's Big Idea
4:31 am
Sat May 16, 2015

'Playing Around With Telescopes' To Explore Secrets Of The Universe

The 200-inch Hale Telescope, a masterpiece of engineering at Caltech's Palomar Observatory, was the world's largest telescope until 1993.
Scott Kardel/Palomar Observatory Courtesy of Palomar Observatory/California Institute of Technology

Originally published on Mon May 18, 2015 11:26 am

Shrinivas Kulkarni, an astronomy and planetary science professor at the California Institute of Technology, is a serious astronomer. But not too serious.

"We astronomers are supposed to say, 'We wonder about the stars and we really want to think about it,' " says Kulkarni — in other words, think deep thoughts. But he says that's not really the way it is.

"Many scientists, I think, secretly are what I call 'boys with toys,' " he says. "I really like playing around with telescopes. It's just not fashionable to admit it."

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Energy
4:19 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

'Not On My Land': Southern Residents Fight Building Of Palmetto Pipeline

Originally published on Fri May 15, 2015 5:58 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Science
4:19 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Beekeepers Reported Losing 42 Percent Of Honeybee Colonies Last Summer

Originally published on Fri May 15, 2015 5:58 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Energy
4:19 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

In Arctic Drilling Debate, A Dispute Over Cleanup Preparedness

Originally published on Mon May 18, 2015 8:12 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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The Two-Way
4:04 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

First In Fish: 'Fully Warmblooded' Moonfish Prowls The Deep Seas

NOAA Fisheries biologist Nick Wegner holds an opah caught during a research survey off the California coast. Researchers say the opah is the first fish known to be fully warmblooded, circulating heated blood throughout its body.
NOAA Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 21, 2015 2:12 pm

Over decades of studying the oceans' fishes, some species have been found to have partial warmbloodedness. But scientists say the opah, or moonfish, circulates heated blood — and puts it to a competitive advantage.

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The Two-Way
3:01 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Massive Antarctic Ice Shelf Will Be Gone Within Years, NASA Says

A 2008 view of the leading edge of the Larsen B ice shelf, extending into the northwest part of the Weddell Sea. Huge, floating ice shelves that line the Antarctic coast help hold back sheets of ice that cover land.
Mariano Caravaca Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri May 15, 2015 3:31 pm

In 2002, NASA released dramatic images that showed a portion of Antarctica's Larsen B ice shelf collapse and disappear. Now, the space agency says what's left of the massive feature will be gone before the end of the decade.

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Goats and Soda
1:14 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Why We Can Depend On The Kindness Of Strangers

They hunt, they gather, they're equal! An elderly Agta couple in the Philippines was part of the study on how communities are formed.
Sylvain Viguier Courtesy of University College London

Originally published on Fri May 15, 2015 4:48 pm

If this blog were Us magazine, we'd say: Hunter-gatherers, we're just like them.

Because seriously, we are.

Here's the story. Humans today live and work in communities with vast numbers of folks we're not related to.

And we often quite happily cooperate and share knowledge with strangers or mere acquaintances. These exchanges allow us to innovate and develop increasingly complex technologies.

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The Salt
12:59 pm
Fri May 15, 2015

Bistro In Vitro: A Virtual Playground To Ponder The Future Of Meat

The bistro imagines the day when will be possible to culture "meat thread" made from long strands of muscle tissue. On a "special knitting machine," meat is thread into a steak.
Submarine Channel/Next Nature Network/Bistro In Vitro

Flowering meat that unfolds when plopped into hot broth, beef "yarn" that can be knitted directly onto your plate and fried nuggets made from the extinct dodo bird are just a few of the menu options at the Bistro In Vitro.

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Goats and Soda
3:51 am
Fri May 15, 2015

What It Takes To Lift Families Out Of Poverty

More than 1 million people in Peru earn less than the equivalent of about $450 each year.
Courtesy of Michael Rizzo/CGAP

Originally published on Sun May 17, 2015 2:00 pm

Eighteen years ago, Dean Karlan was a fresh, bright-eyed graduate student in economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He wanted to answer what seemed like a simple question:

"Does global aid work?" Karlan says.

He was reading a bunch of studies on the topic. But none of them actually answered the question. "We were tearing our hair out reading these papers because it was frustrating," he says. "[We] never really felt like the papers were really satisfactory."

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The Two-Way
11:40 am
Thu May 14, 2015

Why Do Most Galaxies Die? It's A Case Of Strangulation, Scientists Say

The view of the universe known as the Hubble Deep Field, presented in 1996, shows classical spiral and elliptical shaped galaxies, as well as a variety of other galaxy shapes.
NASA AP

Originally published on Fri May 15, 2015 2:09 pm

Scientists think they may finally be resolving a decades-old cold case as to what is killing galaxies: They're being strangled.

Astronomers have long known that galaxies fall into two main categories — those that spawn new stars (like our own Milky Way) and those that don't.

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Shots - Health News
2:35 am
Thu May 14, 2015

A Database Of All Things Brainy

The Allen Cell Types Database catalogs all sorts of details about each type of brain cell, including its shape and electrical activity. These cells, taken from the visual area of a mouse brain, are colored according to the patterns of electrical activity they produce.
Courtesy of Allen Institute for Brain Science

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 11:15 am

When the brain needs to remember a phone number or learn a new dance step, it creates a circuit by connecting different types of neurons.

Scientists still don't know how many types of neurons there are or exactly what each type does.

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Shots - Health News
4:58 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

Smokers More Likely To Quit If Their Own Cash Is On The Line

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 2:25 pm

A new study finds that employer-based programs to help people stop smoking would work better if they tapped into highly motivating feelings — such as the fear of losing money.

This conclusion flows from a study involving the employees of CVS/Caremark. Some workers got postcards asking them if they wanted a cash reward to quit smoking. One card ended up in the hands of Camelia Escarcega in Rialto, Calif., whose sister works for CVS.

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Environment
3:53 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

Santa Fe Cuts Water Consumption By Imposing Tiered Pricing Model

Originally published on Wed May 13, 2015 5:56 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Now, to another city that's grown in population, but at the same time, has managed to cut its total water consumption, Santa Fe, N.M. We're going to find out how they've done that from Santa Fe's mayor, Javier Gonzalez. Welcome to the program.

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Around the Nation
3:33 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

California Builders Prepare For Future Water Needs As Population Grows

Originally published on Wed May 13, 2015 5:56 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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