Archive for July, 2006

Global Warming Link to Hurricane Intensity Questioned

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 28, 2006   View Article

An expert with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is questioning the connection between climate change and the appearance of more intense hurricanes in recent years.

Historical data on hurricanes is too crude to determine long-term trends in intensity, says Christopher Landsea, a science and operations officer with NOAA’s National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida.

Giant Dinosaur Discovered in Argentina

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 28, 2006   View Article

Argentinean scientists have discovered gigantic neck, back, and tail bones from one of the largest dinosaurs ever to roam the Earth.

Most impressive is a back vertebra that measures 3.48 feet (1.06 meters) tall and 5.51 feet (1.68 meters) wide, according to Fernando Novas. The paleontologist announced the find at the Argentine Museum of Natural Sciences in Buenos Aires on July 21.

Buzz Kill: Wild Bees and Flowers Disappearing, Study Says

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 21, 2006   View Article

Parents may soon be telling their kids about the birds and the … birds.

Bees—and the flowers they pollinate—are disappearing, according to a new study of bee diversity. The results raise concerns about food crops and plant communities that rely on animal pollinators to reproduce.

Scientists compared a million records on bees from hundreds of sites in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands before and after 1980.

Earthquake Proof Pipelines Tested in the Lab

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 20, 2006   View Article

The nightmare: A magnitude 6.7 earthquake rocks the neighborhood. Sidewalks buckle. Brick houses crumble. A water main snaps and floods the street.

And then, boom! A nearby house is engulfed in a ball of flames when its natural gas line ruptures.

Wailing sirens mute barking dogs and shrieking children, but with no water to douse the flames, the fire rages on unchecked.

Thomas O’Rourke, an engineer at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, is working to ensure this scenario never becomes reality.

Shuttle’s Human Experiments Pave Way for Moon, Mars Voyages

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 17, 2006   View Article

The space shuttle Discovery successfully finished its latest voyage today, touching down at Cape Canaveral, Florida, at 9:14 a.m. local time.

But science experiments started during the 13-day mission will continue.

Throughout their nearly two weeks in space, the crew kept diaries of their sleeping habits and filled containers with various bodily fluids.

The tasks were part of experiments designed to help better prepare astronauts to stay healthy during long-distance space flights to the moon and Mars.

Animals Inspire Next Generation of Body Armor

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 17, 2006   View Article

Animals’ natural defenses are providing inspiration for researchers developing the next generation of lighter, tougher body armor.

Benjamin Bruet, a graduate student in engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, is part of a team funded by the U.S. military to create new materials to protect soldiers in the field.

Rare Whales Can Live to Nearly 200, Eye Tissue Reveals

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: July 13, 2006   View Article

Scientists have looked into the eyes of rare bowhead whales and learned that some of them can outlive humans by generations—with at least one male pushing 200 years old.

“About 5 percent of the population is over a hundred years old and in some cases 160 to 180 years old,” said Jeffrey Bada, a marine chemist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, California.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach