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Mon, 18 Feb 2019
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Bug

Earth may have 'infected' Titan with life

The various meteoric slappings sustained by Earth over the millenia may have seeded other parts of the solar system with life, if calculations by Canadian scientists are to be believed.

Planetary scientist Brett Gladman and colleagues at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver worked out that for material to be thrown up with enough force to exit Earth's atmosphere, it would take an impact from a meteor 10 to 50km across. They reckon such impacts, which include the famous 'dinosaur-killer' that formed the Chicxulub crater, send about 600m potenitally life-bearing rock fragments into solar orbit.

Magnify

Alien particles found in 'comet rain' put under microscope at Welsh university

WELSH scientists have been spearheading the hunt for alien life that may have fallen to Earth in a shower of "red rain".

Astrobiologists will today continue to examine traces of matter that poured its blood-red deluge over the Indian state of Kerala for two whole months in 2001.

Family

Human quadrupeds discovered in Turkey

London- The discovery of a Turkish family that walks on all fours could aid research into the evolution of humans.

Researchers believe the five brothers and sisters, who can walk naturally only on all fours, may provide new information on how humans evolved from four-legged hominids to walk upright.

Bomb

France debates legalising Internet downloads

The French government and MPs prepared to do battle Tuesday over a digital copyright bill that could clear the way for the legal downloading of music and movie files from the Internet.

Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin's centre-right government is trying to block MPs from voting to give such permission to Internet users, who would pay a small extra monthly fee to their Internet service provider for the right.

Cloud Lightning

Moon Water: A Trickle of Data and a Flood of Questions

NASA is in the process of scripting how best to plant new bootprints on the Moon and take advantage of lunar resources that could prolong human stays on that barren ball of rock.

While the Moon is one desolate world, it could turn out to be a faraway faucet of sorts.

Robotic spacecraft--both the Pentagon's Clementine (1994) and NASA's Lunar Prospector (1998-1999) missions--point to the promise that the Moon is a literal watering hole for crews.

Permanently shadowed craters at the lunar poles, called "cold traps," might be repositories of water ice. More importantly, this reserve could be converted to oxygen, drinkable water, even rocket fuel.

Wall Street

Physicists Predict Stock Market Crashes

On Monday, October 19, 1987 – infamously known as "black Monday" – the Dow fell 508 points, or 22.9%, marking the largest crash in history. Using an analytical approach similar to the one applied to explore heart rate, physicists have discovered some unusual events preceding the crash. These findings may help economists in risk analysis and in predicting inevitable future crashes.

Meteor

Gigantic cosmic cataclysm in Stephan's Quintet of galaxies

Recent infrared observations made with NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope have revealed the presence of a huge intergalactic shock wave, or "sonic boom" in the middle of Stephan's Quintet, a group of galaxies which is now the scene of a gigantic cosmic cataclysm. This discovery, made by an international research team including scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics (MPIK) in Heidelberg, provides a local view of what might have been going on in the early universe, when vast mergers and collisions between galaxies were commonplace.

Family

Mom's Genetics Could Produce Gay Sons

The arrangement of a mother's genes could affect the sexual orientation of her son, according to a new study.

The finding, detailed in the February issue of the journal Human Genetics, adds fuel to the decade-long debate about whether so-called "gay genes" might exist.

The researchers examined a phenomenon called "X chromosome inactivation" in 97 mothers of gay sons and 103 mothers whose sons were not gay.

Family

Why We Have Sex: It's Cleansing

Scientists have long wondered why organisms bother with sexual reproduction. It makes a whole lot more sense to just have a bunch of females that can clone themselves, which is how asexual reproduction works.

Turns out sex might have evolved as a way to concentrate lots of harmful mutations into individual organisms so they could be easily weeded out by natural selection, a new computer model suggests.

Bomb

Ouch! Why Women Feel More Pain

Women feel more pain than men, studies have shown. New research reveals one reason why.

Women have more nerve receptors, which causes them to feel pain more intensely than men, according to a report in the October issue of the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

On average, women have 34 nerve fibers per square centimeter of facial skin. Men average just 17.