Engineers make tiny, low-cost, terahertz imager chip

(—A secret agent is racing against time. He knows a bomb is nearby. He rounds a corner, spots a pile of suspicious boxes in the alleyway, and pulls out his cell phone. As he scans it over the packages, their contents ...

New class of stellar explosions discovered

They're bright and blue-and a bit strange. They're a new type of stellar explosion that was recently discovered by a team of astronomers led by the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Among the most luminous in ...

Super-Earth has an atmosphere, but is it steamy or gassy?

In December 2009, astronomers announced the discovery of a super-Earth known as GJ 1214b. At the time, they reported signs that the newfound world likely had a thick, gaseous atmosphere. Now, a team led by Jacob Bean (Harvard-Smithsonian ...

Supernova shrapnel found in meteorite

( -- Scientists have identified the microscopic shrapnel of a nearby star that exploded just before or during the birth of the solar system 4.5 billion years ago.

Synchronization of ice cores using volcanic ash layers

Thin, brownish layers of a thickness of about a millimeter or two are sometimes observed in the whitish/transparent ice cores. These brown layers consist of material originating from volcanic eruptions.

Sailors leave ancient 'fingerprints' across Polynesia

A long-standing debate on the colonisation process of Oceania has been put to rest with new research finding Polynesia was deliberately settled in one of the greatest maritime migrations in human history.

Detecting biomarkers on faraway planets

( —On Earth, life leaves telltale signals in the atmosphere. Photosynthesis is ultimately responsible for the high oxygen levels and the thick ozone layer. Microbes emit methane and nitrous oxide into the atmosphere, ...

Key link found in Cosmic Distance Ladder

( —When observing the bright explosion of a White Dwarf star in our neighbouring galaxy last year, researchers from The Australian National University collected the largest ever data set on what they recognised ...

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