Thursday, April 26, 2007



Noctilucent clouds form much, much higher than any other clouds and they
shine brightly against the night sky well after the sun has set. While those
may sound like good enough reasons for NASA to send up a satellite to look
at these clouds, there are in fact more pressing reasons why scientists want
to observe them...
Noctilucent Clouds

You can't look around when you're looking up,
so we've had a look around for you

We know very little about how and why Noctilucent clouds form and scientists are keen to find out more since. Traditionally seen only towards the poles, they are now being observed at lower latitudes and more frequently than ever before. This has led some scientists to speculate that they are indicators of global climate change. Hence the AIM satellite mission.

Short NASA video about the mission:

Video of the AIM launch:

More about the AIM launch to study Noctilucent clouds:

The Noctilucent Cloud Observers Homepage:

Getting closer to Noctilucent clouds

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Chinese make first artificial snowfall

clipped from

Chinese make first artificial snowfall

By Richard Spencer in Hong Kong

China claimed yesterday to have caused a snowfall for the first time as part of its increasingly ambitious attempts to control the weather.

Officials in the meteorological bureau in Tibet said they had used "rain-seeding" techniques to trigger a snowfall over the city of Nagqu last week.

"This proves it's possible for humans to change the weather on the world's highest plateau," said Yu Zhongshui. The bureau said it had produced just under half an inch of snow at a height of 15,000ft.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Cellphone radiation may be killing bees: study

clipped from

Cellphone radiation may be killing bees: study

Updated Mon. Apr. 16 2007 5:53 PM ET

TORONTO -- A mysterious malady that is causing honeybees to disappear en masse from their hives in parts of North America and Europe may be linked to radiation from cellphones and other high-tech communications devices, a study by German researchers suggests.

The small study, led by Prof. Jochen Kuhn of Landau University, suggests that radiation from widely used cellphones may mess up the bees' homing abilities by interfering with the neurological mechanisms that govern learning and memory. It also appears to disrupt the insects' ability to communicate with each other.

To conduct the study, Kuhn placed cellphone handsets near hives and observed that radiation in the frequency range of 900 to 1800 megahertz caused the bees to avoid their homes.

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Monday, April 09, 2007

Last word on climate is ours, scientists say

Diplomats from 115 countries and 52 scientists hashed out the most comprehensive and gloomiest warning yet about the possible effects of global warming, from increased flooding, hunger, drought and diseases to the extinction of species.

More than 2,500 scientists worldwide contributed to the report, relying on peer-reviewed studies to make their findings and subjecting them several times to outside review.

The language in the report had to be approved unanimously by governments. Among scientists, changes had to be by consensus. In addition, every change of wording had to be approved by all scientists who wrote the affected section.

The "technical summary," which eventually will be released to the public, will not be edited by diplomats. The technical summary, Rosenzweig said, contains "the real facts."

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Perfume experts help unmask remains as Egyptian mummy.

clipped from

Joan of Arc's relics exposed as forgery

Perfume experts help unmask remains as Egyptian mummy.

Declan Butler

The relics of St Joan of Arc are not the remains of the fifteenth-century French heroine after all, according to European experts who have analysed the sacred scraps. Instead, they say the relics are a forgery, made from the remains of an Egyptian mummy.

A vanilla smell of the alleged remains from Joan of Arc suggested natural decomposition, not burning.

Joan was burned at the stake in 1431 in Rouen, Normandy. The relics were discovered in 1867 in a jar in the attic of a Paris pharmacy, with the inscription "Remains found under the stake of Joan of Arc, virgin of Orleans". They were recognized by the Church, and are now housed in a museum in Chinon that belongs to the Archdiocese of Tours.
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Monday, April 02, 2007

Court Rebukes Administration in Global Warming Case

clipped from

Court Rebukes Administration in Global Warming Case
Published: April 2, 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court ordered the federal government on Monday to take a fresh look at regulating carbon dioxide emissions from cars, a rebuke to Bush administration policy on global warming.

In a 5-4 decision, the court said the Clean Air Act gives the Environmental Protection Agency the authority to regulate the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from cars.

Greenhouse gases are air pollutants under the landmark environmental law, Justice John Paul Stevens said in his majority opinion.

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