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Susannah Bodman
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Susannah Bodman

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Just a smidgeon of science in this post today. 
Sniff. Sniff. Can't smell the dead gray whale that washed ashore at Seaside Tuesday? Consider yourself lucky because it sounds like it was a real stinker. The whale, a 40-foot fully grown adult male, was buried by city of Seaside employees in the wee morning hours Wednesday, according to Seaside Aquarium.
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Susannah Bodman

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Pretty!
 
An Unusual Globule in IC 1396
Credit & Copyright: T. Rector (U. Alaska Anchorage) & H. Schweiker (WIYN, NOAO, AURA, NSF)
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap140414.html

Is there a monster in IC 1396? Known to some as the Elephant's Trunk Nebula, parts of gas and dust clouds of this star formation region may appear to take on foreboding forms, some nearly human. The only real monster here, however, is a bright young star too far from Earth to hurt us. Energetic light from this star is eating away the dust of the dark cometary globule near the top of the above image. Jets and winds of particles emitted from this star are also pushing away ambient gas and dust. Nearly 3,000 light-years distant, the relatively faint IC 1396 complex covers a much larger region on the sky than shown here, with an apparent width of more than 10 full moons.
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Susannah Bodman

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IPCC Report Released: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability

The +IPCC released its Working Group II report this week, which is focused on climate change impacts, adaptation and vulnerability. This is the most comprehensive assessment of how human-caused climate change has impacted life on Earth, and how human vulnerability and exposure shape climate risks in different parts of the world.

The summary of the report begins with the assessment that "In recent decades, changes in climate have caused impacts on natural and human systems on all continents and across the oceans."

The report was written by 309 authors from 70 countries. I was one of the Lead Authors of the chapter focused on North America (Chapter 26), and also helped lead the development of the regional climate figures that appear in the various regional chapters. It was a long process (three and a half years for most of the authors), but the dedication and commitment of the authors has resulted in an outstanding assessment.

The full report is available here:
http://ipcc-wg2.gov/AR5/

The image is one of the cover images of the report, and shows a class planting mangrove seedlings in Tuvalu.

#climatechange   #globalwarming #ipccreport    #science   #sciencecommunication  
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Washington state, frustrated by federal delays, issued its own plan Monday for cleaning up Hanford, the nation's most contaminated nuclear weapons site.
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"What We Know" About Climate Change: New Report Released

I have been serving on a panel convened by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (+AAAS ) to provide a succinct summary of the state of scientific knowledge of climate change. The "What We Know" report has just been released. The +AAAS  summary, along with videos and other materials, is here: http://whatweknow.aaas.org/

The full report is here:
http://whatweknow.aaas.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/AAAS-What-We-Know.pdf

The image shows tumbleweeds in California, and is from an article by Justin Gillis of +The New York Times about the report:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/18/science/scientists-sound-alarm-on-climate.html

#climatechange   #globalwarming   #whatweknow   #aaas      #science   #sciencecommunication  
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Susannah Bodman

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More veggies in spaaaace ... joining AstroZuke ... providing the zucchini's still alive. :)
 
Veggie Will Expand Fresh Food Production on Space Station! A plant growth chamber bound for the International Space Station inside the Dragon capsule on the SpaceX-3 resupply mission slated to launch Monday at 4:58 p.m. EDT may help expand in-orbit food production capabilities in more ways than one, and offer astronauts something they don't take for granted, fresh food.

Our Veg-01 experiment will be used to study the in-orbit function and performance of a new expandable plant growth facility called Veggie and its plant "pillows." The investigation will focus on the growth and development of "Outredgeous" lettuce seedlings in the spaceflight environment. This image is of Outredgeous red romaine lettuce plants growing inside a prototype Veggie flight pillow. The bellows of the hardware have been lowered to better observe the plants. A small temperature and relative humidity data logger is placed between the pillows small white box, central.

Image Credit: NASA/Gioia Massa

#iss #veggie #space #science #iss #spacex #dragon #spacestation #plants #nasa

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Watch How Fruit Flies Avoid Attack by Banking Like Fighter Jets

"Researchers have recorded a remarkable flight behavior in the fruit fly species Drosophila hydei, they report today in Science. When threatened by a predator, the spry critters can change course in just one one-hundredth of a second, rolling on their sides and banking hard. Normally flapping their wings 200 times a second, the flies accomplish this in almost a single wing beat.

“In addition,” write the researchers, “after changing their flight course, the animals quickly rotate back to attain a horizontal attitude and accelerate away from the looming threat.”

Learn more from +WIREDhttp://goo.gl/ZDxv8h
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Science communication and advocacy is not just for the big boys like Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson or Bill Nye. You can do it, too. Here's my new blog post about it.

http://sciwhatannex.blogspot.com/2014/04/get-out-there-for-science-science.html
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So, I finally got around to making a Facebook page for my Sci-what?! science news, blogging, outreach, etc., efforts. Check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/Sciwhat.Science
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As seen on #Cosmos: A spherical shell of icy bodies surrounding the solar system, now named the Oort Cloud, occupies space at a distance between 5,000 and 100,000 astronomical units. (One astronomical unit, or AU, is the mean distance of Earth from the sun: about 150 million km or 93 million miles.) The outer extent of the Oort Cloud is believed to be in the region of space where the sun's gravitational influence is weaker than the influence of nearby stars.

The Oort Cloud probably contains 0.1 to 2 trillion icy bodies in solar orbit. Occasionally, giant molecular clouds, stars passing nearby, or tidal interactions with the Milky Way's disc disturb the orbits of some of these bodies in the outer region of the Oort Cloud, causing the object to fall into the inner solar system as a so-called long-period comet. These comets have very large, eccentric orbits and take thousands of years to circle the sun. In recorded history, they are observed in the inner solar system only once.

This artist's concept puts solar system distances in perspective. The scale bar is in astronomical units, with each set distance beyond 1 AU representing 10 times the previous distance. One AU is the distance from the sun to the Earth, which is about 93 million miles or 150 million kilometers. Neptune, the most distant planet from the sun, is about 30 AU.

Informally, the term "solar system" is often used to mean the space out to the last planet. Scientific consensus, however, says the solar system goes out to the Oort Cloud, the source of the comets that swing by our sun on long time scales. Beyond the outer edge of the Oort Cloud, the gravity of other stars begins to dominate that of the sun.

NASA's Voyager 1, humankind's most distant spacecraft, is around 125 AU.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

#nasa #space #universe #oortcloud #solarsystem #planets

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Have her in circles
56 people
Joseph Anthony's profile photo
Barry Evans's profile photo
Daniel Irimia's profile photo
Shannon Moore's profile photo
CJ Tamu's profile photo
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Science blogger, freelance journalist, medical research lab volunteer
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aka Sciwhat on Twitter, Blogger and Facebook
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Science blogger, medical research lab volunteer and recent biology grad. Was both a journalist and an archaeologist in another life. Alumna of STS-135 NASA Tweetup. Dancer, swimmer and devout nerd.
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