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Australia's Aboriginal Martu people hunt kangaroos and set small grass fires to catch lizards, as they have for at least 2,000 years. A University of Utah researcher found such man-made disruption boosts kangaroo populations – showing how co-evolution helped marsupials and made Aborigines into unintentional conservationists.
When you look up at the moon’s pockmarked face, you’re actually staring at Earth’s early history. The rain of asteroids that pummeled the lunar surface hit our planet too — it’s just that erosion and plate tectonics blotted out the evidence. In fact, no rocks anywhere in the world survived to tell the story of the first 500 million years of Earth’s 4.5-billion-year existence, a tumultuous period of frequent impacts known darkly as the Hadean.
It took 50 million years of continual shrinking to turn massive, lumbering dinosaurs into the first small flying birds.
Forget emperor penguins, say hello to the colossus penguin. Newly unearthed fossils have revealed that Antarctica was once home to the biggest species of penguin ever discovered. It was 2 metres long and weighed a hefty 115 kilograms.
Even as he conquered rival kingdoms to create the first united Chinese empire in 221 B.C., China's First Emperor Qin Shihuang ordered the building of a glorious underground palace complex, mirroring his imperial capital near present-day Xi'an, that would last for an eternity.
Chemotherapy will be obsolete within 20 years, scientists have predicted after launching a landmark project to map 100,000 genomes to find the genes responsible for cancer and rare diseases.
Mosul has long been known for its religious diversity. Iraq's second largest city has been home to Persians, Arabs, Turks, and Christians of all denominations since it was first believed to have been settled in 6000 B.C. The ruins of Ninevah, one of the greatest cities in antiquity and former seat of the Assyrian Empire, lie within its modern city limits.
Related: Isis militants 'seize Iraq monastery and expel monks'
A talking robot assembled from household odds and ends is hitchhiking thousands of kilometers across Canada this summer as part of a social experiment to see if those of its kind can trust humans.
Big Bertha was all set to dig a nearly two-mile tunnel in Seattle, but just 1,000 feet into her journey she hit a mysterious object that halted her progress. Now, crews are beginning the process of rescuing her, in what could be the world's largest recovery mission.
Europe is getting out of the outer space delivery business. The European Space Agency's final uncrewed Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) is set to blast off tonight from Kourou, French Guiana, to the International Space Station. But lessons learned from operating the craft could help astronauts return to the moon.
Having a companion in old age is good for people—and, it turns out, might extend the chance for life on certain Earth-sized planets in the cosmos as well.
The icy Saturn moon Enceladus sports at least 101 geysers, which reach all the way down to the satellite's subsurface ocean, new research suggests.
It’s a well-kept secret that the vacuum of space is not — technically speaking — a vacuum. Strong winds generated from supernova explosions push material into the interstellar medium, tainting space with the heavier elements generated by nuclear fusion. These lonely molecules account for a significant amount of all the hydrogen, carbon, silicon, and other atoms in the Universe.
Earth and Mercury are both rocky planets with iron cores, but Mercury's interior differs from Earth's in a way that explains why the planet has such a bizarre magnetic field, UCLA planetary physicists and colleagues report. Measurements from NASA's Messenger spacecraft have revealed that Mercury's magnetic field is approximately three times stronger at its northern hemisphere than its southern one. In the current research, scientists have created a model to show how the dynamics of Mercury's core contribute to this unusual phenomenon. Mercury's peculiar magnetic field provides evidence that iron turns from a liquid to a solid at the core's outer boundary, say the scientists.
Scientists have recently gathered some of the strongest evidence to date to explain what makes the sun's outer atmosphere so much hotter than its surface. The new observations of the small-scale extremely hot temperatures are consistent with only one current theory: something called nanoflares -- a constant peppering of impulsive bursts of heating, none of which can be individually detected -- provide the mysterious extra heat.
In this month's issue of Physics World, Ashley Dale from the University of Bristol warns of the "catastrophic" and "long-lasting" impacts of "solar super-storms" and the dangers we face if the threat continues to go unnoticed.
It was a daring maneuver, but the plan to put Venus Express lower in the planet’s thick atmosphere has worked. For the past month, the European Space Agency steered the long-running spacecraft to altitudes as low as 81 miles (131 kilometers) for a couple of minutes at a time.
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