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June 25 2014

Two new articles on GrahamHancock.com


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June 25 2014

How Did This Ancient Civilization Avoid War for 2,000 Years?


The Harappan civilization dominated the Indus River valley beginning about five thousand years ago, its massive cities sprawling at the edges of rivers that still flow through Pakistan and India today. But its culture remains a mystery. Why did it leave behind no representations of great leaders, nor of warfare?

Archaeologists have long wondered whether the Harappan civilization could actually have thrived for roughly 2,000 years without any major wars or leadership cults.

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June 25 2014

2,500-Year-Old Greek Statues Sparkle After Facelift


Four marble maidens from ancient Greece have just gotten a facelift. Using a specially designed laser, conservators have labored since 2011 to strip away the black grime that encrusted the statues. Today the final figure to undergo the treatment is being revealed in all her splendor in the new Acropolis Museum in Athens, which celebrates its fifth anniversary this Friday, June 20.

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June 25 2014

Danish antler axe find reveals Neolithic German trade


During ongoing excavations of prehistoric settlements at Syltholm east of Rødbyhavn in Denmark, archaeologists have been investigating an area of land located on the periphery of a settlement. In the Mesolithic and Neolithic, the area was overgrown with reeds, but excavation has identified numerous tools and bones that prehistoric people had deliberately placed into this liminal zone.

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June 25 2014

4,000-Year-Old Burial with Chariots Discovered in South Caucasus


An ancient burial containing chariots, gold artifacts and possible human sacrifices has been discovered by archaeologists in the country of Georgia, in the south Caucasus.

The burial site, which would've been intended for a chief, dates back over 4,000 years to a time archaeologists call the Early Bronze Age, said Zurab Makharadze, head of the Centre of Archaeology at the Georgian National Museum.

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June 25 2014

Archaeo-astronomy steps out from shadows of the past


This week, a developing field of research that merges astronomical techniques with the study of ancient man-made features and the surrounding landscapes will be highlighted at the National Astronomy Meeting (NAM) 2014 in Portsmouth. From the 'Crystal Pathway' that links stone circles on Cornwall's Bodmin Moor to star-aligned megaliths in central Portugal, archaeo-astronomers are finding evidence that Neolithic and Bronze Age people were acute observers of the Sun, as well as the Moon and stars, and that they embedded astronomical references within their local landscapes.

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June 25 2014

Titan's Building Blocks Might Pre-date Saturn


A combined NASA and European Space Agency (ESA)-funded study has found firm evidence that nitrogen in the atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan originated in conditions similar to the cold birthplace of the most ancient comets from the Oort cloud. The finding rules out the possibility that Titan's building blocks formed within the warm disk of material thought to have surrounded the infant planet Saturn during its formation.

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June 25 2014

Titan: Clue to 'Magic Island' mystery on Saturn moon


Scientists have outlined their best explanations for a mysterious feature dubbed the "magic island", which has been spotted on Saturn's moon Titan.

The Cassini spacecraft captured the "island" during a flyby, but it had vanished by the time of the next pass.

The bright splodge is seen in Ligeia Mare, one of the seas of methane and ethane found at Titan's north pole.

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June 25 2014

'Waves' spotted on Titan's seas


Mysterious features that look like waves have been detected on the seas of Saturn's moon Titan, according to a new study.

The authors believe the features, which only appeared for a short time, are driven by seasonal winds that are generated as Titan's northern hemisphere moves into summer.

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June 25 2014

X-Ray Signal May Illuminate Dark Matter Mystery


Two spacecraft have detected a possible signal of dark matter, the mysterious, invisible stuff that makes up most of the material universe.

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton satellite spotted a spike of X-ray emission coming from more than 70 different galaxy clusters. While the origin of the X-rays remains unclear at the moment, they could be generated by the decay of a certain type of dark-matter particle, scientists said.

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June 25 2014

Should the Higgs boson have caused our universe to collapse? Findings puzzle cosmologists


British cosmologists are puzzled: they predict that the universe should not have lasted for more than a second. This startling conclusion is the result of combining the latest observations of the sky with the recent discovery of the Higgs boson.

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June 25 2014

When it rains, it pours ... on the sun


Just like on Earth, the sun has spells of bad weather, with high winds and showers of rain. But unlike storms on Earth, rain on the sun is made of electrically charged gas (plasma) and falls at around 200,000 kilometers an hour from the outer solar atmosphere, the corona, to the sun's surface. Now a team of solar physicists has pieced together an explanation for this intriguing phenomenon with imagery that shows a 'waterfall' in the atmosphere of the sun.

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June 25 2014

Astronomers literally discover diamond in the sky


Astronomers aren't being poetic when they say this star is a diamond.

Scientists have identified what is possibly the coldest white dwarf ever detected. In fact, this dim stellar corpse is so cold that its carbon has crystallized, effectively forming a diamond the size of Earth, astronomers said.

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June 24 2014

Weird Kind of Dust Found in Mars' Atmosphere


As nearby and familiar as it might seem these days, with rovers on its surface and spacecraft in orbit around it (and even more en route) Mars is very much an alien planet. Its landscapes may resemble parts of Earth but they’re much colder and drier, the sun may rise and set in its sky but its light is dimmer… and even the dust in its atmosphere is a bit unexpected, as recently discovered by an international team of researchers.

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June 24 2014

Earth's breathable atmosphere tied to plate tectonics?


The rise of oxygen is one of the biggest puzzle in Earth's history. Our planet's atmosphere started out oxygen-free. Then, around 3.5 billion years ago, tiny microbes called cyanobacteria (or blue-green algae) learned out to carry out photosynthesis. They began using energy from sunlight to make their food from carbon dioxide and water, giving off oxygen as waste.

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June 24 2014

Autism Risk Higher Near Pesticide-Treated Fields


Babies whose moms lived within a mile of crops treated with widely used pesticides were more likely to develop autism, according to new research.

The study of 970 children, born in farm-rich areas of Northern California, is part of the largest project to date that is exploring links between autism and environmental exposures.

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June 24 2014

Schizophrenia and cannabis use may share common genes


Genes that increase the risk of developing schizophrenia may also increase the likelihood of using cannabis, according to a new study led by King’s College London, published today in Molecular Psychiatry.

Previous studies have identified a link between cannabis use and schizophrenia, but it has remained unclear whether this association is due to cannabis directly increasing the risk of the disorder.

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