Author: Monique Conrod

Cave On The Moon Could Be Base For Astronauts
News Science

Cave On The Moon Could Be Base For Astronauts

Scientists from JAXA, the Japanese space agency, say they have discovered an enormous underground cave on the moon.

The discovery is exciting because the cave could provide a safe place for astronauts to live and work on future missions to the moon.

In 2009, a lunar probe launched by JAXA sent back images of the cave’s entrance. The probe used radar to determine the underground structures below the entrance and sent the information back to JAXA to be analyzed.

In October, JAXA announced that there appears to be a cavern about 50 kilometres (31 miles) long and 100 metres (328 feet) wide leading from the opening.

Scientists say the cave could make an ideal base for astronauts. It would protect the astronauts and their equipment from the extreme heat and cold on the moon’s surface. It would also help keep them safe from micrometeorites (tiny particles of space dust) that land on the moon, and from the harmful rays of the sun.

Atom. Image: Halfden
News

33% Of Canadians Say They Are Science Illiterate: Survey

Science plays an important part in our everyday lives. But according to a recent survey, one out of three Canadians don’t feel they really understand it.

The Ontario Science Centre posted a “science literacy” survey online last August. People answered questions about how well they understand scientific information, and whether they believe and trust information they get about science from the media.

Most of the people who took the survey consider themselves “science literate.” That means they feel they have a reasonable knowledge of things like how science is done (scientific methods) and recent discoveries in science.

Mesentery: Four figures of the lacteals, the aorta & mesente. Image: Wellcome Images
Health News

Scientists Identify New Organ

Scientists have identified a new organ in the human body. It’s called the mesentery (pronounced mess’-en-tair-ee). An organ is a group of tissues that has a specific function in the body. Our bodies have 79 organs, including the heart, lungs, brain, skin and stomach. The mesentery is made of fatty tissue and is shaped a bit like a fan. It is attached to the back wall of the abdomen and it helps to support the intestines and hold them in place.

Saturn.  Photograph from Cassini, taken on October 2004. Image: NASA
News Science

Cassini Spacecraft Begins Last Stage Of 20-Year Mission

In October 1997, a spacecraft called the Cassini orbiter was launched on a mission to explore Saturn and its moons.
Now, after nearly 20 years in space, Cassini’s mission is coming to an end. Cassini is running out of fuel. Scientists expect it to burn up in Saturn’s atmosphere in September.
But before that happens, the spacecraft will make a series of dives between Saturn and its rings, sending photographs and other information back to Earth.

Image: Swissôtel Le Plaza Basel
Health News Science

Researchers Pay People To Stay In Bed

Getting paid to stay in bed all day sounds pretty good. But what if someone offered you $23,000 to stay in bed for two months? That’s the deal that a medical research team in Toulouse, France, is offering to 24 volunteers.
Researchers at MEDES, the Institute of Space Medicine and Physiology, are looking for volunteers to help them study the effects of weightlessness on the human body by spending 60 days lying down. Lying in bed isn’t exactly the same as being weightless, but the effects on the human body are similar.

Pittsburg High School's newspaper featuring the article about the principal.
News

High School Journalists Uncover Info About Principal

When a group of high school students set out to write a profile of their new principal for the school newspaper, they didn’t expect the principal would end up losing her job as a result.

On March 6, the school board in Pittsburg, Kansas in the United States, announced that it had hired Amy Robertson as the new principal for Pittsburg High School. Robertson was going to start her new job in July.

The decrease in sea ice in the Arctic is seen in this image, which compares 2012 sea ice levels with the yellow outline, which shows the average sea ice level from 1979 through 2010. Image: NASA
Environment News Science

Scientists Working To Save Arctic Ice Cap

A team of scientists has come up with a plan they say could help rebuild the Arctic ice cap. The ice cap is a huge area of sea ice that covers most of the Arctic Ocean all year round.
Usually, the sea ice gets thicker and spreads further each winter, but this hasn’t happened for the past few years.
Last month, the ice cap had shrunk to its smallest size since scientists began keeping records of it 38 years ago. The weather in the Arctic has been unusually warm this winter. Some days, temperatures have been 20 degrees Celsius higher than is normal for this time of year. This month, the temperature was above 0°C at least one day.

NASA capture seven planets. Image: NASA
News Science

NASA Discovery: 7 Earth-Sized Planets

Scientists from NASA announced on February 22 that they have discovered seven planets orbiting a nearby star. The planets are all about the same size as Earth, and three of them are in what scientists call the “habitable zone.”

(The habitable zone is the area of space around a star where a planet is most likely to have liquid water on its surface. Scientists believe water is necessary for anything to live on a planet.)