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Friday, Mar 24th

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Scientists In Last-Minute Scramble To Save Environmental Data Before Trump Takes Over

scientific data in danger under TrumpScientists across the nation are in a frantic push to save as much environmental data as possible before a feared government information purge orchestrated by climate-change denier Donald Trump.

The Sierra Club on Thursday filed Freedom of Information Act requests, seeking information held by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy, Bloomberg reports. The organization is asking those agencies to turn over a multitude of documents, including data on greenhouse gas emissions and power plants. Even if the requests are ultimately denied, the move buys valuable extra time for a mounting effort to gather and preserve data before anything is lost.

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Mysterious fast radio bursts originate from distant dwarf galaxy

radio bursts from distant dwarf galaxyWe may not know exactly what they are, but we now know where one of them came from.

For the first time, astronomers have pinpointed the home galaxy of "fast radio bursts," which are very short-lived pulses of radio waves that come from outer space. The discovery pushes scientists closer to understanding what causes these powerful but fleeting pulses of radio waves, which some people speculate could be signals from alien life.

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Anti-surveillance clothing aims to hide wearers from facial recognition

Anti-surveillance fabricThe use of facial recognition software for commercial purposes is becoming more common, but, as Amazon scans faces in its physical shop and Facebook searches photos of users to add tags to, those concerned about their privacy are fighting back.

Berlin-based artist and technologist Adam Harvey aims to overwhelm and confuse these systems by presenting them with thousands of false hits so they can’t tell which faces are real.

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Vera Rubin, Astronomer Who Discovered The First Direct Evidence Of Dark Matter, Dead At 88

Vera Rubin, astronomer, dies at 88Vera Rubin, a U.S. astronomer who pioneered work on invisible dark matter in the universe and who some colleagues felt was overlooked for a Nobel Prize, has died at 88, her son said on Monday.

Rubin died on Sunday at an assisted living facility in Princeton, New Jersey, and had suffered from dementia for several years, Allan Rubin, a geosciences professor at Princeton University, said in an email.

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Greenland fossils showcase recovery from extinction event 252 million years ago

Greenland fossil goes back over 200 million yearsSome 252 million years ago, the planet suffered the most catastrophic mass extinction event in its 4.5 billion-year history.

A trove of newly discovered fossils -- unearthed in Greenland by a team of palaeontologists -- have offered scientists a snapshot of the ecological recovery closer to the poles.

Even biodiversity far from the equator was obliterated.

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Rosetta Spacecraft Safely Lands on Comet

Rosetta

Some space missions go out with a bang, others with a victorious return to Earth, but Rosetta’s final moment was marked simply by radio silence.

Shortly after noon (BST) on Friday, the European Space Agency (ESA) spacecraft finally collided with the duck-shaped comet that it has been pursuing through space for twelve-and-a-half years, switched off its transmitters and hung up the phone to its controllers on Earth.

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Stephen Hawking warns against seeking out aliens in new film

Stephen Hawking“We come in peace” might be the traditional opening gambit for aliens in science fiction, but we should be wary about beaming back a response to any advanced life-forms in real life, Stephen Hawking has warned.

Our first contact from an advanced civilisation could be equivalent to when Native Americans first encountered Christopher Columbus and things “didn’t turn out so well”, he cautioned.

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