Posts

November 10, 2014

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2:24 PM | Rosetta’s Target Locked!
Philae…Are You Ready For This!? The above image shows the ‘Agilkia’ landing site (previously known as Site J) just days before the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft will release its Philae lander for a historic (as in ‘first-time-ever’!) descent to the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. The image was taken with Rosetta’s navigation camera on Nov […]
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12:57 PM | Tutta la scienza di Interstellar
“La fine della Terra non sarà la nostra fine”. C’è da credere alla tagline di Interstellar, l’attesissimo film di Christopher Nolan costato 165 milioni di dollari e in uscita nelle sale italiane oggi? Non lo sappiamo ancora. E probabilmente – anzi: auspicabilmente – non lo sapremo per ancora parecchio tempo. Nell’attesa, comunque, New Scientist ha provato a sondare il background scientifico del kolossal, che poggia sulle solide basi della […]
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12:08 PM | Giornata mondiale della prematurità: ospedali aperti per dare informazioni
L’Osservatorio Nazionale sulla salute della Donna (O.N.Da), in collaborazione con 75 ospedali premiati con i Bollini Rosa, organizza per il prossimo 17 Novembre, in occasione della Giornata mondiale della prematurità, il primo H-Open Day nazionale, con l’obiettivo di i nformare e sensibilizzare le donne sulle strategie di contenimento dei rischi correlati alla nascita pretermine e alle conseguenti complicanze. L’iniziativa, realizzata con il […]
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12:00 PM | Announcing Crash Course Astronomy!
I’ve been hinting for some time about a secret project I’ve been working on, and the time has finally come to announce it: I’m writing and hosting an online astronomy video series! The series will air on the PBS Digital Studios YouTube network starting in January, and — get this — is done as part of Hank and John Green’s Crash Course video series. Yes, that Hank and John Green, the Vlog Brothers. Hank approached me about it last summer, and we quickly […]
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9:43 AM | La terapia genica è in commercio
La terapia genica è uno di quei campi della medicina che fino a qualche decennio fa sembravano pura fantascienza: curare le malattie (o i tumori) modificando direttamente il dna dei pazienti. In effetti se ne parla dal 1972, ma i prime applicazioni pratiche sono cominciate ad arrivare solo negli ultimi anni. Ricorderete ad esempio i successi dell’Istituto San Raffaele-Telethon, dove i ricercatori coordinati da Luigi Naldini sono riusciti a curare in questo modo diversi bambini che […]
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9:00 AM | Guest Post: Affair of the Heart, VI. An Incident in the Pancreas
In early February this year, a few days after a magnetic resonance image confirmed that an aneurysm at the root of my aorta had reached a worrisome size, I received a phone call from the office of my primary care physician.  The MRI had picked up an “incidental” finding, unrelated to the aneurysm; could I […]
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8:12 AM | Come si formano i getti dei buchi neri
Come si cattura l'immagine di un getto relativistico, un potentissimo zampillo di plasma che a volte si sprigiona dal cuore di un buco nero supermassivo? Non è certo un'impresa facile, e finora gli astronomi non hanno avuto molta fortuna: riuscire a zoomare su una delle regioni in cui questi getti hanno origine è difficile perché le galassie che ospitano queste strutture sono piutttosto lontane da noi. Esistono però dei metodi indiretti per ottenere delle […]
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6:00 AM | The best of our news blog
A selection from our daily blog over the past week.
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6:00 AM | The quiet revolution in astronomy
Solving the mystery of the re-ionisation of the Universe.
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6:00 AM | Mavericks who broke the limits on microscopy
The techniques that take us inside living cells.
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6:00 AM | Space industry says setbacks won’t curb our ambitions
NASA will continue to rely heavily on commercial space ventures.
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6:00 AM | Murdering Miss Deboo
It takes murder to get PK Sargent out of bed on a winter’s night.
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4:00 AM | BICEP2, come ‘ripulire’ il segnale gravitazionale dalla polvere galattica
A Marzo di quest’anno, il gruppo di ricercatori che lavorano al programma scientifico BICEP2 riportarono possibili evidenze del passaggio delle onde gravitazionali primordiali, dopo aver analizzato i dati relativi alla polarizzazione della radiazione cosmica di fondo (post). Nonostante ciò, molti scienziati hanno sollevato tutta una serie di dubbi su una “scoperta” di tale portata poiché […]
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3:39 AM | Planetary Science’s Amazing 21st Century Role
Exploring and Defining Planetary Systems Now that we’re about a decade and a half into the “new” century, it’s not a bad time to look at where we are as we explore the cosmos. Planetary science has always been one of my great interests, so I’ll take a look at that in this musing (and […]
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1:24 AM | Interstellar: The movie that deserves to be called “Gravity”
Mat Kaplan gives his thoughts on the newest space film to hit theatres, "Interstellar."

November 09, 2014

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5:00 PM | Expedition 41 Set to Return to Earth Tonight
Tonight (Sunday night/Monday morning) at 00:31 UTC (19:31 Eastern), a Soyuz-13M space capsule will undock from the International Space Station. After moving away from the facility, it will begin a de-orbit burn, ram through Earth’s air, and then land in Kazakhstan three hours later, scheduled for 03:58 UTC. On board are three astronauts: American Reid Wiseman, Russian Maxim Suraev, and German Alexander Gerst. You can watch the procedure live on NASA TV, as well as NASA’s Ustream […]
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3:44 PM | The beauty of planetary birth
Many astronomical images are beautiful. People especially love pictures of spiral galaxies or planetary nebulas, but some others evoke a gradual sense of beauty. In science, beauty comes with knowledge: knowing what you see reveals why something is beautiful. The image above is one such: it’s fuzzy and not particularly colorful, but when you know […]
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12:00 PM | Follow-up: Interstellar Mea Culpa
Read more about Interstellar in Slate. Every now and again, I screw up. Sometimes it’s small, sometimes it’s big, and I try to admit it when I do. It helps you, the reader, understand things better when I ’fess up, and it keeps me honest. Also, after all, science is all about admitting mistakes and learning from them! Well, I made a mistake in my review of the movie Interstellar. It’s actually a big but subtle one, and I'm kicking myself for not thinking […]
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10:51 AM | Aurore polari, l'ottava meraviglia
Chi le ha viste non può dimenticarle. Lo stupefacente spettacolo delle aurore polari si rinnova da millenni, in particolare nei cieli del Circolo Polare Artico e dell’emisfero australe, al polo opposto del pianeta. Parliamo dei fenomeni luminosi e cangianti che nella storia hanno sempre incantato e incuriosito, spesso intimorito. E al quale Rovereto dedicherà presto una mostra, “Aurore polari, ottava meraviglia del pianeta?”, nata dalla passione e dagli studi […]
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10:17 AM | Cosmic Queries: Gravity
The pull of gravity (the force, not the movie) is irresistible as Neil deGrasse Tyson and Leighann Lord grapple with weighty fan questions about matter and the curvature of spacetime. Read more and listen to the full episode at http://www.startalkradio.net/show/cosmic-queries-gravity/
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12:31 AM | 'Interstellar': A Missed Opportunity: Movie Review
'Interstellar' promised a science-filled, epic space adventure. But it didn't deliver. Continue reading →

November 08, 2014

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3:09 PM | Images Of The Week (W45-14)
Fallstreak Hole Have you ever seen a Fallstreak Hole? I don’t think I have, I’m pretty sure I would remember that. On Nov 3 folks in the Gippsland area of Victoria, Australia were treated to this rare cloud formation at around 1.00pm. According to Wikipedia, a fallstreak hole, aka a ‘hole punch cloud’, is a […]
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12:17 PM | DNews: Interstellar: How Many Dimensions Does the Universe Have?
Dimensions are complicated. Wrapping your head around how many there are can give you a headache. Trace explains everything you should know about them.
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12:00 PM | Colbert on Climate
My love for Stephen Colbert increased by another huge jump today* when I saw this clip of him talking about what the Republican win of the Senate means for science. Every time I hear Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla) talk about climate change being a hoax I wonder where the line is between blindingly ideological denial and crackpottery… and which side his head is buried in. And he’s a favorite to be the chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee. My Slate colleague […]
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11:47 AM | E se non fosse stato osservato il bosone di Higgs?
Ciò che hanno osservato i fisici del CERN in merito alla scoperta di una nuova particella potrebbe non riguardare il bosone di Higgs (post), nonostante ci assomigli tanto (post), e forse potrebbe non essere l’unica. È quanto emerge da un recente studio che ha analizzato tutti i dati scientifici che sono stati pubblicati in merito al […]
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10:04 AM | Third International VLBI Technology Workshop
The Third International VLBI Technology Workshop will be hosted by the Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe and take place from November 10 to 13, 2014, in Groningen, the Netherlands; the venue of the second day will be Dwingeloo, where the headquarters of JIVE and its host insitute ASTRON are located. The International VLBI Technology […]
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10:00 AM | Yale Frontier Fields Workshop
Hubble and Spitzer have observed galaxies over 95% of the way back to the Big Bang, well into the epoch of reionization and close to the dawn of galaxy formation. The most distant galaxy candidates have been discovered using two complementary observational strategies: blank field observations such as CANDELS and the Ultra Deep Field; and […]
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10:00 AM | Multimessenger Astronomy in the Era of PeV Neutrinos
The Joint Space-Science Institute — a collaboration between the University of Maryland and NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center — is pleased to be hosting a conference on Multimessenger Astronomy in the Era of PeV Neutrinos.  The theme is inspired by the IceCube discovery of a significant sample of high-energy neutrinos from astrophysical sources, but the conference […]
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9:01 AM | The Last Word: October 3-7, 2014
As with the four previous, we kicked off the week with Colin Norman’s tale of undergoing heart surgery. He’s feeling good but has turned his thoughts to the genetic nature of heart disease. He perused his family album in his mind and fretted for his daughters’ future. Then Erik made several connections between the institutional capacity […]
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9:00 AM | Galaxy Groups: laboratories to study galaxy evolution
The main motivation of this mini-workshop is to discuss ideas/results/projects in the field of galaxy groups (and all the physical processes related with this topic). This mini-workshop will be held in La Serena, in order to motivate the participation of researchers and students working in different chilean institutions. Galaxy groups are ideal laboratories to study […]
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