After almost twenty years in space — thirteen of which were spent making extraordinary discoveries about the Saturn system, including its rings and natural satellites — NASA's Cassini spacecraft finally ran out of fuel. However, shortly before plunging into on September 15, 2017, the probe completed one final important mission: six close flybys of tiny moons located inside, or near, Saturn's rings.
While even the mention of a shark swimming close to shore is enough to send residents scurrying for cover, the "WasteShark" is being welcomed with open arms. The brainchild of South African entrepreneur Richard Hardiman, the aquatic drone is designed to devour all floating debris, including plastic and other non-biodegradable trash, that has accumulated along coastal waters, before it drifts out to sea.
Over the years, NASA has successfully deployed several rovers, landers, and orbiters to Mars. While the science laboratories continue to provide invaluable data about the Red Planet, their limited, or zero — as is the case with landers — mobility, restricts the space exploration vehicles to areas close to the original landing site. To obtain a more comprehensive view of Mars, the US Space Agency plans to send a fully-autonomous miniature test helicopter with the Mars 2020 rover, scheduled for launch in July 2020.
Termites are famous for their superior architectural skills. The mounds created by the industrious insects contain an elaborate network of tunnels with a series of chimneys that help regulate oxygen levels, temperature, and humidity to ensure the queen, who sits in a chamber underneath, is comfortable.
Female mosquitoes, which feed on human blood to obtain iron and amino acids required to produce eggs, are notorious for transmitting viruses responsible for deadly diseases, such as yellow fever, Dengue, and Zika. Over the years, researchers have devised various solutions, ranging from repellents to vaccines to to combat the vectors. Now, a team at New York's Rockefeller University has come up with a unique solution to fend off the dangerous insects - filling their little bellies with diet drugs to curb their appetite for human blood.
When a university intern stumbled upon a seven-foot fish washed up on the beach at the University of Santa Barbara's (UCSB) Coal Oil Point Reserve on February 19, 2019, scientists assumed it was the mola mola sunfish. One of the world's heaviest known bony fishes, the species, found in tropical and temperate waters around the globe, is common in the Santa Barbara Channel.
In early February 2019, 51-year-old Rainer Schimpf and his team set out to film South Africa's famous Sardine Run off the coast of Point Elizabeth. The annual migration of billions of Sardinops sagax, more commonly known as South African pilchards or sardines, is a big draw for predators, especially the Cape gannet, a beautiful, cream-colored seabird, and the common dolphin. The two species work together to herd the large group of fish and separate them into smaller shoals known as bait balls, which are then scooped up by not just the birds and the dolphins, but also other hunters such as copper sharks and Bryde's whales.
On Friday, March 15, 2019, hundreds of thousands of kids from over 80 countries, including the United States, Germany, and Malaysia, will skip school and take to the streets. However, the worldwide strike is not a protest against excessive homework or long school hours. It is a plea to government officials and business leaders to take immediate action against climate change.