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Save the Elephants, Dinosaur Mummy,
Folding Proteins, Binary Star Planets,
Radio Waves in Outer Space & More!
|Triangular UFO Spotted! |
Trnava Slovakia October 16, 2002 (Slovak Spectator) - A three-sided UFO was recently spotted by a woman in the western Slovak town of Jaslovské Bohunice. The woman said she was awakened by strange sounds at 01:30, according to Miroslav Karlík, a member of a UFO club in Trnava.
When she looked out of her window, she spotted a lit triangular object moving above the town.
"It was moving east and west, stopping from time to time, and was visible from her window," Karlík said.
UFO Glimpse Sparks Dark Documentary
His latest project is a documentary examining the evidence available on UFO reports in Australia compared to the US. The objective of the documentary - UFOs: The Australian Connection - is to prove that UFOs are a worldwide phenomena and of alien origin.
"I have seen a few strange lights since then, but not recently," he said.
Mr. Groves said UFOs could be distinguished from other flying objects because of their distinctive saucer shape. He said there had also been reports of triangular-shaped UFOs.
The Australian UFO Research Network said it hadn't received any reports of UFOs in Sunbury and the Macedon Ranges but that they had received reports of "strange lights".
"Strange lights are different from other lights in the sky because of the way they move. The cases we received reports on mainly moved in zigzags. They were in one place at one moment and jumped distances to another place the next," Mr. Groves said. He said only 10% of cases reported would be of interest, but all unexplained phenomena was worth reporting for investigation purposes.
The unidentified flying object streaked in a north-to-south direction over Utah at 7:30 p.m.
No such luck. This UFO was determined to be a meteor. It was spotted anywhere from Bear Lake to Denver to Sevier County.
Family Spots UFO!
How To Fake Your Own UFO!
4. Scan the finished composition into your computer.
|Greenpeace Blasts Whaling Body Over Iceland Entry|
|By Gideon Long |
LONDON October 15, 2002 (Reuters) - Environmental group Greenpeace hit out at the International Whaling Commission (news - web sites) (IWC) Tuesday for readmitting Iceland despite the country's refusal to rule out a resumption of commercial hunting.
The British-based commission voted Monday to allow Iceland back in as a full member for the first time in 10 years.
Iceland joins Norway as one of only two countries in the world which have negotiated the right to hunt whales for commercial purposes while still being IWC members.
"The commission's decision is thoroughly disappointing and defies all common sense," Greenpeace oceans campaigner Richard Page told Reuters. "Iceland's stance, in joining the commission while having a reservation about the moratorium on commercial whaling, is an act of bad faith," he added, saying the lives of minke and fin whales in the North Atlantic were in danger.
The vote was extremely tight. Of the IWC's 50 members, 19 voted in favor and 18 against. The other member countries were either absent or ineligible to vote. Several key players, including Britain and the United States, opposed the decision.
Norway, which has long-standing objections to the worldwide moratorium on whale hunting, and Japan, which hunts whales for scientific purposes, backed Iceland.
Iceland left the IWC in 1992 in anger over the worldwide moratorium on commercial whale hunting, agreed in 1986 and implemented by the vast majority of IWC members. Later, it tried to renegotiate its way back in but was rebuffed several times in the 1990s. Each time, Iceland made further concessions in an attempt to be reaccepted.
This time, its bid succeeded after it agreed it would not resume commercial whaling until 2006 at the earliest, and only then under strict regulations.
"Under no circumstances will whaling for commercial purposes be authorized in Iceland without a sound scientific basis and an effective management and enforcement scheme," the Icelandic delegation said in its statement of adherence to the IWC.
But Greenpeace said all commercial whaling was wrong, regardless of how it is regulated, and warned Iceland it would endanger its own tourist industry if it started whaling again.
"Since the early 1990s they've had this truly sustainable industry grow up, namely whale-watching," Page said. "It seems to me extraordinary that they would want to jeopardize that by starting whaling again."
In a separate move, the IWC also voted Monday to allow indigenous people in Alaska to kill a limited number of bowhead whales as part of so-called subsistence hunting. They will be allowed to hunt 280 bowhead whales -- at a maximum of 67 per calendar year -- in the period between 2003 and 2006. The whales will be hunted in the Bering Strait, between Russia and the United States.
Visit Greenpeace at http://www.greenpeace.org
|Rich Should Save Elephants|
|By Alex Kirby |
BBC News Environment Correspondent
Kenya October 14, 2002 (BBC) - The Kenyan conservationist Richard Leakey says the developed countries have a responsibility to save the world's elephants. Dr Leakey told BBC News Online it was unfair to leave the job to the poor countries where the elephants live.
He urged a continuing ban on the sale of all ivory, including tusks obtained legally. He said poachers in central Africa were causing mayhem, while Asia's elephants were critically threatened.
Dr Leakey was speaking before a meeting of the United Nations Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) from 3 to 15 November in Santiago, Chile. Five southern African countries - Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe - want permission from Cites to sell stockpiled ivory.
This means moving elephants from Cites' Appendix I to Appendix II. Appendix I includes species threatened with extinction, and trade is allowed only exceptionally. Appendix II includes species not necessarily threatened with extinction, but where trade needs controlling to help their survival.
The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) says all elephants should be put on Appendix I. In a poll conducted in the UK, it says nine Britons in 10 support protecting them. The five countries say they have too many elephants and the money from ivory sales could help conservation.
Their opponents say there is no way to distinguish between ivory from legal sources and tusks which have been poached. So any legal trade would inevitably fuel a demand which only the poachers could satisfy. An experimental legal stockpile sale in 1999 is said to have prompted a clear surge in illegal trade and poaching.
Dr Leakey told BBC News Online: "All the evidence points to the world's elephants facing a huge threat. Ivory is flowing out to south-east Asia, where there's a big demand for it, and poaching in central Africa is causing havoc. For God's sake, let's not open up the ivory trade just now. I don't have a problem with the principle of selling ivory, but if you restart legal sales now, you'll drive the illegal trade too. If the trade restarts, we're heading down the slippery slope. I know these states say they have too many elephants, and we have exactly the same problem in some Kenyan parks. All I'm saying is that we mustn't put the ivory on the market."
Asked if the developed world was doing enough, Dr Leakey said: "I'm absolutely sure more could be done. Leaving the burden on developing countries is very unfair. The G8 countries, the most developed economies, should do more to help the third world."
IFAW - http://www.ifaw.org
|Iran Arrests Dogs in Anti-Corruption Drive|
|TEHRAN October 14, 2002 (Reuters) - Dogs and their owners could become the latest target of a clampdown on moral corruption in Iran after a hardline cleric called for canines of all shapes to be arrested. |
"I call on the judiciary to arrest all long-legged, medium- legged and short-legged dogs along with their long-legged owners," the newspaper quoted Gholamreza Hassani, Friday prayer leader in the northwestern city of Urumiyeh, as saying.
"Otherwise I'll do it myself," the Etemad newspaper on Sunday quoted the cleric as saying.
While canines are reviled by strict Muslims for being "unclean," dog-ownership has increased in Iran in recent years especially among well-to-do, Westernized Iranians.
"In our country there is freedom of speech, but not freedom for corruption," said Hassani, famous for his often eccentric outbursts. "Some evil people interpret freedom to promote un- Islamic and corrupt behavior."
Police and hard-line judiciary agents have carried out sporadic clampdowns on dogs in Iran, fining owners and confiscating their pets in streets and public parks.
In his latest comments, Hassani appeared to be widening the net of his anti-canine campaign since last year when he thanked police for confiscating short-legged dogs in Urumiyeh.
|UN Population Chief Warns of Catastrophic War|
|By Alex Kirby |
BBC News Environment Correspondent
Canterbury UK October 9, 2002 (BBC) - The head of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Dr Thoraya Obaid, says war on Iraq would be catastrophic. She said a recent warning that a conflict would "open the gates of hell" was absolutely right.
Dr Obaid said the only way to fight terrorism was to tackle the causes of injustice. She said the US decision to withhold funding from UNFPA would worsen the HIV/Aids crisis. Dr Obaid was speaking in a BBC News Online interview after taking part in a two-day meeting in Canterbury, UK, of the World Faiths Development Dialogue (WFDD).
The meeting, chaired by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, and the World Bank president, James Wolfensohn, involved participants from many religions, including Muslims, Jews, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Hindus and Bahais.
Dr Obaid, UNFPA's executive director, was born in Baghdad, but is a Saudi citizen.
She told BBC News Online: "Amr Moussa, the head of the Arab League, said last month that war against Iraq would 'open the gates of hell' in the Middle East, with instability across the region. He was right. Nobody wants war, and I pray that this one will be averted, because if it breaks out it will destroy people, lives and futures. To fight terrorism you have to fight the root causes of injustice - poverty, disease, joblessness. Nobody can live without hope. If by 2015 we can realize the Millennium Development Goals, which aim to halve global poverty, then we'll be turning our faces against injustice."
Earlier this year the US announced that it was withholding $34m in funding for UNFPA, because, it claimed, the agency was helping China to enforce a one-child policy and encouraging abortions among Chinese women.
Dr Obaid told BBC News Online: "That's 12% of our total funding. It really is a crisis for us. We have nothing to do with abortion at all. So our other programs are now going to suffer because of an issue we don't even touch. What the US decision will do is increase maternal mortality and worsen the HIV/Aids crisis. We're still hoping to find a way around it, and we're talking to the State Department in Washington. But so far we haven't succeeded."
Dr Obaid said the Canterbury meeting had been "a very harmonious and elevating experience. I felt both spiritually and intellectually elevated by it. In many communities, 50-60% of health and education services are provided by faith-based organizations, so there's great potential there. Life-and-death issues sometimes force change upon you - look at what the Christian churches are doing in Africa about HIV/Aids."
The Canterbury agenda devoted one session to discussing how to tackle HIV/Aids, which the agenda described as "the critical development challenge in today's world".
|Famous Shipwreck Tale Proves True|
|By Robin McKie |
London October 13, 2002 (Observer UK) - An eighteenth-century adventure story involving slavery on a desert island, violent death and escape became the literary sensation of its day and has been pronounced by experts since as exciting stuff but utter fiction.
Now a British archaeologist has discovered the startling truth about Robert Drury and the story of his escape from Madagascar. The experts were wrong. His fantastic, graphic tale of torture, enslavement, battles between rival tribes and shipwreck was true and has opened an unexpected new window on a lost period of history.
Drury's captain and crewmates were indeed slaughtered by violent islanders, while he survived only after enduring years of slavery before escaping, a tale that Drury detailed in his 1729 book, Madagascar: or Robert Drury's Journal During 15 Years' Captivity on that Island.
The truth of Drury's encounter, which he called a plain, honest narrative of matters of fact', has been pieced together by British archaeologist Mike Parker Pearson, who last year uncovered the wreckage of the East India Company ship Degrave in which the young midshipman sailed to the island. On the same field trip, Pearson, of Sheffield University, dug up the remains of the village in which Drury was a captive.
It is a remarkable piece of detective work, in which Pearson - in keeping with the Boys' Own nature of his material - was himself captured by local people and freed only after complex negotiations. 'Today white people are suspected by locals of being head-hunters who want their brains to find cures for Aids,' said Pearson, whose account of his expeditions, In Search of the Red Slave, was published last week. 'Once we convinced them we were no such thing, they let us get on.'
Drury's original story was published several years after Daniel Defoe achieved widespread success with Robinson Crusoe, the fictionalized account of the adventures of the Fife sailor Alexander Selkirk. Selkirk's tale, though, was relatively benign. By contrast, Drury had a very different, far more violent story to tell, as Pearson outlines in the current issue of British Archaeology.
Pursued by 2,000 enraged warriors, the sailors headed eastwards but were eventually caught. Only a handful escaped. All except four boys were slaughtered. Drury was one of the four youngsters. He was kept as a slave of the Tandroys in a village for eight years. Again he tried to escape, this time fleeing to the west. There he was recaptured, this time by the army of the neighboring Sakalava people. Again he was enslaved, and released only when an English ship arrived. Drury returned home on it.
'We have also found the site of the wreck of the Degrave,' said Pearson. 'Two iron cannon of the period lie on the reef and lobster divers report seeing several others and an anchor on the seabed.'
|Dinosaur Mummy Is 77 Million Years Old|
|By Hillary Mayell |
National Geographic News
Montana October 10, 2002 (National Geographic) - Leonardo, a mummified, 77-million-year-old duck-billed dinosaur was only about three or four years old when he died, but he's proving to be a bonanza for paleontologists today.
His fossilized skeleton is covered in soft tissue—skin, scales, muscle, foot pads—and even his last meal is in his stomach.
"For paleontologists, if you can find one complete specimen in a lifetime, you've hit the jackpot," said Nate Murphy, curator of paleontology at the Phillips County Museum, Montana, where Leonardo makes his home.
"To find one with so much external detail available, it's like going from a horse and buggy to a steam combustion engine. It will advance our science a quantum leap."
Judith River Dinosaur Institute - http://www.isgs.uiuc.edu/dinos/judithriver/judithriver_index.html
National Geographic - http://www.nationalgeographic.com
|New Inca Tomb Found in Peru Ruins|
|LIMA, Peru October 14, 2002 (AP) - Archaeologists at the famed Machu Picchu ruins uncovered an intact Incan tomb, one of the best preserved burial sites found at the ancient citadel, officials said Monday. |
Sabino Hancco, an archaeologist who is leading the dig, said the tomb apparently contained the remains of three people buried with traditional funeral "dowries" containing at least two ceramic vases and seven bronze objects, including brooches and pins.
Archaeologists have been excavating the site since it was found last week about 30 inches underground in a crevasse beneath a large boulder in the stone-block citadel, Machu Picchu park director Fernando Astete said.
In 1911, American Hiram Bingham became the first western explorer to locate the Machu Picchu ruins, perched on a mountaintop surrounded by jungle-shrouded peaks in Peru's southern Cuzco province.
In the following four years, archaeologists unearthed tombs containing 172 bodies as they cleared away vegetation and excavated the sprawling stone city, Astete said.
Another 30 have been found since then but those were poorly preserved and did not contain many artifacts, he said.
"This one, however, is in a very good state," Astete said. "It has an entire funerary dowry," he said.
The Incas ruled Peru from the 1430s until the arrival of the Spaniards in 1532, constructing stone-block cities and roads and developing a highly organized and militarized society.
Hancco said the find last week was made during routine excavations that his team carries out at Machu Picchu every year. He said it was still unclear how old or what gender the buried bodies were, although Astete said the first remains unearthed appeared to be of a young woman.
Machu Picchu, 310 miles southeast of Lima, Peru's capital, attracts 300,000 foreign visitors a year.
|New Nasca Geoglyphs Identified|
|By Gonzalo Castillero |
Peru October 8, 2002 (EFE) - Human and animal likenesses, a knife, and a sundial are among the "geoglyphs," or giant figures etched into the earth and discernible from the sky, most recently discovered in the Peruvian desert.
Peruvian archaeologist Johny Islas and German colleague Markus Reindel have identified new etchings made by the ancient Nasca people in the desert valleys of Palpa, about 460 kilometers (290 miles) south of Lima.
After five years of work, the scientists were able to identify more than 1,000 new geoglyphs.
The Nasca, whose culture flourished from around 200 B.C. to the middle of the seventh century A.D., made many of their etchings near the city of Nazca.
But the glyphs identified by the two archaeologists in Palpa, 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of the city, predate the geoglyphs previously discovered and appear to mark the beginning of that civilization.
Thanks to aerial photographs, the researchers were able to identify 650 archaeological sites as well as thousands of geoglyphs, petroglyphs, and cemeteries left by the Nasca people.
Islas and Reindel also found planks with etchings similar to the enormous drawings previously discovered in the desert sands.
"The technique is simple," Islas said. "The straight lines are traced with stakes attached with a string. The difficult part is translating the figures to the large scale while maintaining the correct proportions." The Nasca people created more than 1,000 figures of varying sizes, from a sundial 150 meters (500 feet) long to whales, foxes, and pelicans of 40 meters (130 feet) in length. They also etched human figures, apparently representing a family, each measuring 30 meters (100 feet) long.
The Nasca created these immense figures in an effort to differentiate themselves from their predecessors, the Paracas, whose art was on a much smaller scale.
The geoglyphs in the Palpa valley provide evidence that a new culture emerged in the region near the start of the Christian era, bringing with it new methods of building settlements and a new ideology.
The etchings in the desert make up a sacred landscape honoring water and fertility.
The cultural changes evident from the geoglyphs have also been noted by scientists studying the more than 600 archaeological sites in the region.
"We searched some tombs and in each we found funeral shrouds, vessels, shells, and necklaces made of semi-precious stones, but more importantly we found gold objects" similar to the giant whale figures etched in the desert, Islas said.
"The valleys of the south are not like those in the north. The south was a very dry region, almost an oasis. They only had water in the summer, and the accumulation of wealth was difficult," he explained.
"But the Nasca managed to organize a society and take advantage of resources from the ocean and the mountains. They were truly an advanced society," he added.
The tombs, located in two sites that were large administrative centers during the first four centuries of the Christian era, have revealed important information about the environment, lifestyle, and religion of the Nasca.
Each tomb is composed of several rectangular chambers with a labyrinthine structure of walls and passageways dedicated to the cult of the dead, where people left offerings and prepared food to sustain the deceased in the afterlife.
The buildings were adapted to the topography of the region, creating a large complex of terraces.
|LOS ALAMOS October 14, 2002 (Los Alamos Press Release) - Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory and the University of California, San Diego, have created the first computer simulation of full-system protein folding thermodynamics at the atomic-level. Understanding the basic physics of protein folding could solve one of the grand mysteries of computational biology. |
Proteins are the basic building blocks of life and protein folding, the process by which proteins reconfigure themselves - the actions that result in structural change - are the foundation of cellular growth and the health of a biological system. When proteins incorrectly fold the malfunction can give rise to a variety of diseases. The fact that proteins fold has been known since the 1960s, but an understanding of the chemical and physical properties of folding continues to elude scientists.
Understanding how proteins undergo the folding process has largely been studied from a biologist's point of view, probing actual proteins and studying them with high-powered microscopy techniques.
Now, Los Alamos theoretical biophysicist Angel Garcia, along with colleague Jose N. Onuchic of UC San Diego, have created a computer model of protein folding that focuses on the physics of the protein folding, specifically looking at the temperature changes that occur in the process.
|Redheads Resist Anesthesia|
|By LAURAN NEERGAARD |
WASHINGTON October 14, 2002 (AP) - The genetic quirk that makes red hair red may also make carrot-tops harder to knock out - in the operating room, that is.
A new study suggests people with naturally red hair need about 20 percent more anesthesia than patients with other hair colors.
It's a small study that will need confirmation. But it marks the first time scientists have linked a visible genetic trait to anesthesia doses, said Dr. Daniel Sessler of the University of Louisville, whose study will be presented Tuesday at a meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.
Inadequate doses of general anesthesia can allow people to recall surgery, or even wake up during it, problems that occur in 1 percent of cases, Sessler said.
"If redheads require more anesthesia and are not given more, their chances of having recall during surgeries increase," he said.
Determining a patient is properly anesthetized is a partly an art: Physicians must watch for sometimes subtle signs of an underdose, like slight movements or sweating, as well as overdose warnings such as low blood pressure or heart rate. So knowing if a particular group of people is more likely to need a higher- or lower-than-standard dose could be very useful.
Anesthesiologists have long grumbled that redheads can be a little harder to put under, but no one had ever studied if that was real or folklore, said Dr. Andrea Kurz of Washington University in St. Louis, who praised the new research.
It's likely the first of many yet-to-be-discovered genetic factors that will allow anesthesia to be fine-tuned for increased safety, added Dr. James Cottrell, president of the anesthesiology society. "It's a very exciting area."
But why would hair color possibly matter? The theory hinges on melanin, a pigment responsible for skin and hair color.
The sun triggers a hormone that in turn triggers the production of melanin to form a tan. Redheads seldom tan easily because they have a defective receptor for that hormone - a quirk with this "melanocortin-1 receptor" that also leaves their hair red. Without its intended receptor to dock in, the melanin-producing hormone may cross-react with a related receptor on brain cells that influences pain sensitivity, Sessler explained.
That's still a theory. Here's what Sessler can say for certain: He and colleagues gave 10 healthy women with naturally red hair and 10 with dark hair the common inhaled anesthetic desflurane. Then they administered electric shocks - not enough to do damage but enough to cause pain - and inched the desflurane dose up or down according to the pain response until each patient was judged to be at the optimum anesthetic dose. The redheads required a 20 percent higher dose.
Sessler said his lab first tested a few blondes and found they reacted the same as brunettes. That was expected since only redheads have the melanocortin-1 defect.
The study doesn't address if men would react similarly - there are gender differences for many drugs - or if redheads would be similarly affected by non-inhaled types of anesthesia.
Still, the research "gives us a window into what determines anesthetic requirements," said Sessler, whose lab is beginning more studies to see if the melanin theory is right.
|Genre News: Scoobie Returns, Maxtrix Sequels, Push Popped, Daredevil and More!|
|Warners Sets 'Scooby 3' |
By Zorianna Kit
Hollywood October 15, 2002 (Hollywood Reporter) - With a sequel to Warner Bros. Pictures' "Scooby-Doo" on the fast track, the studio is already moving forward on a third installment, hiring scribes Dan Forman and Paul Foley to write a script, tentatively titled "Scooby-Doo 3."
The duo recently turned in a rewrite on Warners' "The Jetsons," another animated television property being conceived for the big screen. Sources say the studio was happy with the "Jetsons" draft and was therefore prompted to hire Forman and Foley to pen "Scooby 3."
The first "Scooby-Doo" film, directed by Raja Gosnell and released June 16 in the United States, was expected to launch a franchise if it performed at the boxoffice, which it did, opening at $54.1 million and going on to gross more than $153 million domestically.
Official Warners Scoobie Site - http://promo.warnerbros.com/scoobydoo
Matrix Sequels to Come Out Only Months Apart Next Year
LOS ANGELES October 14, 2002 (Zap2it.com) - Joel Silver, producer of the next two "Matrix" movies, says that the cliffhanger between the first and second parts of the next installments is so compelling that people will be desperate to see the next film.
"I think we won't even have to advertise the third film, we'll just tell people the date, and they'll come," Silver tells Zap2it in an interview over the weekend. "The story is so fantastic."
Silver says "The Matrix Reloaded" is set for release next May 15, and the third part, "The Matrix Revolutions" will be out in October.
ABC Cancels Push, Nevada
Jolie Bites Bitten?
Alexander Stuart (The War Zone) will adapt the book for the screen, the trade paper reported.
She finally decides to suppress her animalistic tendencies for a normal human life, becomes a journalist and falls in love, but is drawn back to her pack when a rogue band of werewolves begins drafting criminals into its pack, the trade paper reported.
The program, initiated by Marvel's chief information officer Gui Karyo, will kick off in January with the publication of DAREDEVIL #41, the first chapter of “Lowlife,” the next story arc by writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alex Maleev.
Marvel Comics - http://www.marvel.com
|First Close-in Binary Star Planet|
|MCDONALD OBSERVATORY NEWS RELEASE October 10, 2002 - Astronomers with the McDonald Observatory Planet Search project have discovered the first planet orbiting a star in a close-in binary star system. The discovery has implications for the number of possible planets in our galaxy, because unlike the Sun, most stars are in binary systems. |
The team announced their finding in a news conference at the American Astronomical Society's Division of Planetary Sciences meeting.
The planet is 1.76 times as massive as Jupiter.
It orbits the star at about 2 Astronomical Units (A.U.), a little further than Mars's distance from the Sun. (An A.U. is the distance from Earth to the Sun.)
The second, relatively small star is only 25 to 30 A.U. from the primary star -- about Uranus' distance from the Sun. Astronomers have found planets orbiting stars in binary systems before, but the stars in those binary systems were a hundred times farther apart than those of Gamma Cephei, Cochran said.
"The stars were far enough apart to be essentially acting totally independently," he said.
The program is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and NASA.
|Cat's Eye Images of Jupiter's North Pole|
|October 8, 2002 (NASA) - Jupiter has a cold vortex in the upper atmosphere over its north pole resembling the vortex over Earth's south pole that enables depletion of Earth's stratospheric ozone, images from two NASA telescopes show. |
Composite versions of the images, which resemble cats' eyes, are available online at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA03864 with an explanatory description. Dr. Glenn Orton, an astronomer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., presented them today at the annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society's Division of Planetary Sciences, in Birmingham, Ala.
A cold air mass, that maintains a roughly hexagonal shape, extends vertically from Jupiter's stratosphere down into the next-lower layer of the atmosphere and rotates at a rate that takes about 300 days to complete a full circle. Scientists can refine models of how Earth's atmosphere works by comparisons with atmospheric dynamics on other planets, such as Jupiter.
Orton and other researchers obtained the images with the JPL-built Wide Field and Planetary Camera on NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and with JPL's Mid-Infrared Large-Well Imager on NASA's Infrared Telescope Facility.
|Radio Waves in Outer Space|
|By Bennett Daviss |
Georgia October 14, 2002 (New Scientist) - Huge buildings could be conjured up in space using nothing more than focused radio waves to push individual components into place. Radio-controlled construction would get around one of the obstacles to colonizing space- the need to ferry heavy construction equipment into orbit and support the people who will operate it.
Narayanan Komerath, an aeronautical engineer from the Georgia Institute of Technology, got the idea from a technique called "acoustic shaping", in which sound waves are used to build solid objects in weightless environments (New Scientist, 1 September 2001, p 32). Speakers in a closed chamber transmit sound waves that can push, say, plastic beads around.
The beads come to rest in acoustic dead spots called "nodes", which they can't easily escape from because the air pressure at all surrounding points is higher.
As a demonstration, he suggests sending a squad of solar-powered radio transmitters to the Earth's asteroid belt and blasting one of the rocks into small pieces. Radio waves from the transmitters would then shape the resulting debris into any desired structure. Individual parts could be fused together using focused sunlight or a more conventional adhesive, forming a space where astronauts could live and work shielded from radiation.