Kids News - Science Articles

Watch Jupiter Up Close On May 8

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Tonight, (May 8) Earth will pass between the sun and Jupiter, putting our solar system’s largest planet directly in opposition to the star. This means that Jupiter will rise shortly after the sun sets and stay up all night, making it the best time of year to see the massive gaseous world. While the planet will shine its brightest tonight, it will not reach its closest distance — 409 million miles (658 million kms) — to Earth until May 10.

Seismologists Puzzle Over The Cause Of A Massive Crack In Kenya's Rift Valley

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In mid-March, following an extended period of heavy rainfall, residents of the Mai Mahiu settlement in Kenya woke up to a big surprise – a massive crack in the Earth that appeared to have opened up almost overnight. Running several miles long and measuring 50 feet deep and 65 feet wide in some places, the terrifying fissure damaged several homes and caused a portion of the busy Mai Mahiu Narok-Nairobi highway to collapse. What caused it? Depends on who you ask.

Zombie Ant Parasite Controls Its Victims Like A Puppeteer

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A parasite that can transform ants into zombies and make them do its bidding may sound like something straight out of a science fiction movie. However, that is precisely what the Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, or, zombie ant fungus does to unsuspecting carpenter ants. Now, a new study has discovered that the fungus accomplishes this ghoulish feat without infecting the ant’s brain.

Mysterious Arctic Ice Circles Puzzle NASA Scientists

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Every month, NASA Observatory’s Earth Matters challenges viewers to describe a mysterious satellite image, the answer to which is posted on the website a week later. However, even the experts could not come up with a definitive explanation for the April puzzler, a photo featuring mysterious ice circles in the Arctic.

Stunning "Fire Rainbow" Captured Over California's Pinnacle National Park

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Last week, a runner traversing the trails of California’s Pinnacle National Park, encountered a mesmerizing sight — a halo of rainbow colors emanating from the single cloud in the clear blue skies. While the phenomenon is commonly referred to as a “fire rainbow,” researchers say the name is misleading since the optical illusion is neither a rainbow, nor does it have anything to do with fire!

Special Retinal Proteins May Be The Reason Birds Never Lose Their Way

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While birds may appear to flutter about in the world, magically finding their way to food and other members of the flock, the reality is, species migrate to the same destination, time and again. Over the years, researchers have established that the animals use Earth’s magnetic fields as guides. However, how they sense these fields has been a mystery.

The Human Body's Largest Organ May Have Just Been Discovered

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Scientists have long maintained that the skin, which makes up roughly 15 percent of a person’s body mass, is the largest organ in the human body. However, now researchers from New York University's School of Medicine appear to have stumbled upon what they believe may be an even larger organ. Called the interstitium, it is not solid like the heart or liver, but a network of fluid-filled spaces that is present throughout the body to protect the rest of our organs.

Just In Time For Earth Day — A Plastic-Eating Enzyme!

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The Earth Day Network may have an unexpected ally in its quest to solve the global plastic pollution crisis: bacteria. More specifically, an enzyme produced by the Ideonella sakaiensis microbes. Dubbed PETase, it can expertly break down PET (polyethylene terephthalate), one of the most common types of plastic, within days, instead of the over 450 years it takes the synthetic material to decompose naturally.

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