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Phoenix

Rare Massive Star, Eta Carinae, Produces Vast Winds Of Colliding Electrically-charged Particles

ESA's Integral has made the first unambiguous discovery of high-energy X-rays coming from a rare massive star at our cosmic doorstep, Eta Carinae. It is one of the most violent places in the galaxy, producing vast winds of electrically-charged particles colliding at speeds of thousands of kilometres per second.

Colliding wind binary system
©ESA / C. Carreau
This is an artist's rendition of a colliding-wind binary system. ESA's orbiting gamma-ray observatory, Integral, has made the first unambiguous discovery of high-energy X-rays coming from a colliding-wind binary system at our cosmic doorstep, Eta Carinae. It is one of the most violent places in the galaxy, producing vast winds of electrically-charged particles colliding at speeds of thousands of kilometres per second.
Star

Joint ESA And Russian Team In Moscow Ready To Support Jules Verne

When the Jules Verne Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) is launched in early March it will use several key spacecraft hardware items such as the docking and refuelling systems, and the Kurs radar, procured in Russia. European and Russian engineers have worked together to adapt them from their previous use on the Russian spacecraft Progress and Soyuz to the much larger 20-tonne ATV vessel.

ATV
©Unknown
During the Jules Verne mission, the ATV will perform automated manoeuvres which are closely monitored by almost 60 controllers in Toulouse, Houston and Moscow. For the first time in history, three space centres will interact from different sides of the world.
Clock

An Elegant Proposal for Near Earth Asteroid Deflection

Although the chances of an asteroid hitting Earth appear to be small for any given year, the consequences of such an event would be monumental. The science community has come up with some ideas and proposals for ways to mitigate the threat of an incoming asteroid hitting the Earth. Some proposals suggest almost Hollywood type theatrics of launching nuclear weapons to destroy the asteroid, or slamming a spacecraft into a Near Earth Object to blow it apart. But other ideas employ more simple and elegant propositions to merely alter the trajectory of the space rock. One such plan uses a two-piece solar sail called a solar photon thruster that draws on solar energy and resources from the asteroid itself.
Info

Biodiversity Doomsday Vault Inauguration Tuesday

Aimed at providing mankind with a Noah's Ark of food in the event of a global catastrophe, an Arctic "doomsday vault" filled with samples of the world's most important seeds will be inaugurated here Tuesday.

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and Nobel Peace Prize winning environmentalist Wangari Matai will be among the personalities present at the inauguration of the vault, which has been carved into the permafrost of a remote Arctic mountain, just some 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) from the North Pole.
Cut

Scientists find genetic keys to inherited hair loss

Researchers have found the genetic basis of two distinct forms of inherited hair loss, opening a broad path to treatments for thinning locks, according to a pair of studies released Sunday.

bald guy
©AFP/File/Mehdi Fedouach
A bald model displays an outfit at a fashion show. Researchers have found the genetic basis of two distinct forms of inherited hair loss, opening a broad path to treatments for thinning locks, according to a pair of studies released Sunday.
Fish

Ancient Puzzle Solved In Fossils From Canadian Rockies, Dating To Cambrian Explosion

Geologists at the University of Leicester have solved a puzzle found in rocks half a billion years old.

Some of the most important fossil beds in the world are the Burgess Shales in the Canadian Rockies. Once an ancient sea bed, they were formed shortly after life suddenly became more complex and diverse -- the so-called Cambrian explosion -- and are of immense scientific interest.

Cambrian explosion
©University of Leicester
Illustration of what life might have been like shortly after the Cambrian explosion in what is now the Canadian Rockies.
Telescope

Found! Biggest web of dark matter

The largest-ever structure of the enigmatic substance known as dark matter has been mapped by international astronomers who peered deep into the universe.

Web
©Source: iStockphoto
Cosmologists have found the largest web of dark matter so far. Their find supports the idea that galaxies and clusters of galaxies are embedded in giant filamentous structures of dark matter to form a 'cosmic web'
Better Earth

The catastrophic flood that cooled the Earth

Canadian geologists say they can shed light on how a vast lake, trapped under the ice sheet that once smothered much of North America, drained into the sea, an event that cooled Earth's climate for hundreds of years.

During the last ice age, the Laurentide Ice Sheet once covered most of Canada and parts of the northern United States with a frozen crust that in some places was three kilometres (two miles) thick.
Hourglass

China: Indecipherable Ancient Books Found in Chongqing

The Tujia have been known as an ethnic minority with its own spoken language but without a written language. Yet a succession of ancient books in the same written language have been found in the Youyang Tujia habitation straddling the borders of Hunan, Hubei, Guizhou Province, and Chongqing City. For the past two years none have been able to read the ancient books.

bookshot
©Epoch Times screen shot taken from 21 cn.com
Mysterious ancient books found in Chongqing. For the past two years no one has been able to read them.
Einstein

Einstein, Newton displayed autistic traits

Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton displayed symptoms of psychiatric disorders that may have been a key to their genius, a Dublin psychiatrist said.

Michael Fitzgerald, Professor of Psychiatry at Trinity College, Dublin, said characteristics linked to autism spectrum disorders such as Asperger's syndrome are the same as those associated with creative genius, The Daily Telegraph said.

Fitzgerald, author of the book, "Genius Genes: How Asperger Talents Changed the World," said Enoch Powell and Charles de Gaulle both appear to have had Asperger's syndrome.
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