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World News

NASA astronaut Kate Rubins and Russian cosmonauts are returning to Earth

Just days after the International Space Station’s crew reached 10 people, three are ready to return to Earth. Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov and NASA astronaut Kate Rubins will end their 185-day mission on the space station Friday. Their departure in the Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft will air live on NASA’s TV channel and…

Must-watch videos of the week

A driver-less boat goes nuts, a pupper gets a horrific adoption ad and popcorn salad stuns the internet. These are the must-watch videos of the week. Berserk boat alert The Coast Guard had to stop a small craft that was out of control off the coast of Miami, after the owner and only passenger had…

Brood X is almost here. Billions of cicadas to emerge in eastern US

Love is in the air this spring in the eastern United States, where billions of cicadas will soon appear in the biggest emergence event since 2004. The insects are part of a group called Brood X — also known as the Great Eastern Brood — which is expected in a geographical range stretching from Tennessee…

Giant radio pulses and X-ray surges are coming from the Crab Nebula

The hauntingly beautiful Crab Nebula, located 6,500 light-years away in the Taurus constellation, is releasing an incredible amount of energy. The nebula is six light-years wide, and it’s a growing cloud of debris formed from a supernova explosion. (A light-year is six trillion miles). The light from this supernova first reached Earth in July 1054…

Researchers now have an estimate for just how many T. rex once roamed Earth

Billions of Tyrannosaurus rex roamed North America during their fascinating reign as top predators, according to a team of researchers that went about the daunting task of making the calculation. Paleontologists from the University of California, Berkeley, set out to put a number on how many T. rex lived during the Cretaceous period — about…

Habitat and species loss leaves just 3% of world’s land ecosystems intact, study suggests

Just under 3% of the world’s land remains ecologically intact, with undisturbed habitat and minimal loss of its original animal species, a new study suggests. The research, published Thursday in the journal Frontiers in Forests and Global Change, combined maps showing human damage to habitat with maps showing where animals have disappeared from their original…

The US could have 300M extra vaccines. Why won’t it share?

The United States could have around 300 million excess Covid-19 shots by the end of July, health policy experts at Duke University estimated in a report Thursday, calling on the country to share doses more widely to address the stark inequality around global vaccine distribution. The US has provided limited shipments of AstraZeneca’s vaccine —…

Why Mars? The fascination with exploring the red planet

The mystique of Mars is one that humans can’t seem to resist. The red planet has easily captured our interest for centuries, heavily featured in science fiction books and films and the subject of robotic exploration since the 1960s. In February, three spacecraft arrived at Mars after departing from different launch points on Earth in…

Johnson & Johnson rare blood clot concerns deal new blow to global vaccination drive

Reports that the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine may, in extremely rare cases, cause blood clots has dealt a fresh blow to the world’s vaccination drive, just weeks after similar concerns were raised over the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University. On Tuesday, Johnson & Johnson said it would suspend shots across the United…

Eat like an astronaut (or a TikTok star) with these tortilla hacks

For astronauts aboard the International Space Station, sourdough is off-limits and whole wheat is out of bounds. It’s not because anyone is on a gluten-free diet, however. Tortillas are preferred over bread in a weightless environment because they don’t crumble and leave crumbs floating around, according to NASA. Since the astronauts don’t have the luxury…

There’s a fix for what ails the Mars helicopter’s software

The first flight of the Ingenuity helicopter on Mars is still delayed, but the mission’s team is working on a solution to make it possible. The helicopter returned data to mission teams on Earth late Friday evening that caused NASA to reschedule the first flight. Ingenuity conducted a high-speed test of its rotors Friday, but…

What alien raindrops on other planets have in common with rain on Earth

Our solar system boasts a diverse range of planets, but some of them may share a common phenomenon with Earth: raindrops. Rain on other planets is something scientists are still striving to understand, but new research has suggested raindrops themselves are incredibly similar even in different planetary environments. The more scientists know about clouds and…

WHO calls for ‘reality check’ as global Covid-19 cases surge for seventh week

The World Health Organization has warned that the world needs a “reality check” on the state of the pandemic, as countries abandon restrictions despite four weeks of rising deaths and seven weeks of rising cases globally. Maria van Kerkhove, the WHO’s technical lead for coronavirus response, said 4.4 million Covid-19 infections had been recorded across…

Microplastics in our air ‘spiral the globe’ in a cycle of pollution, study finds

Tiny bits of plastic from your packaging and soda bottles could be traveling in the atmosphere across entire continents, carried by winds, a new study found. Most of our plastic waste gets buried in landfills, incinerated or recycled — but up to 18% ends up in the environment. Since plastic isn’t easily decomposable it instead…

Ingenuity helicopter’s first flight on Mars delayed

We’ll have to wait a little bit longer before the first powered, controlled flight occurs on another planet. NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter, originally scheduled to fly on Mars Sunday, is now set to take off no earlier than April 14, according to the agency. The helicopter returned data to mission teams on Earth late Friday evening…

Prince Charles pays tribute to his father Prince Philip

Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne, paid tribute to his late father Prince Philip on Saturday in a pre-recorded statement. “My dear Papa was a very special person who I think above all else would have been amazed by the reaction and the touching things that have been said about him, and from…

A final flyby for asteroid Bennu and 5 other top space and science stories this week

Coming soon: Watch out for the upcoming launch of Wonder Theory, the first-ever CNN space and science newsletter. Subscribe here and be among the first to receive the week’s most fascinating stories, delivered straight to your inbox every Saturday morning. Welcome to Wonder Theory, your weekly space and science digest. In a matter of days,…

NASA’s Artemis program will land the first person of color on the moon

The Artemis program will land the first person of color on the moon, according to NASA. The new goal for the program, which seeks to land the first woman and the next man on at the lunar south pole by 2024, comes from the Biden-Harris administration. The administration submitted US President Joe Biden’s priorities for…

The Ingenuity helicopter will fly on Mars this weekend. What to expect

The Ingenuity helicopter is preparing for its historic flight on Mars this weekend. The first powered, controlled flight on another planet will take place Sunday at 12:30 p.m. local Mars solar time, or about 10:54 p.m. ET. Unlike when the helicopter’s fellow traveler, the Perseverance rover, landed on Mars on February 18, we won’t be…

Russian cosmonauts, NASA astronaut successfully launch to the space station

The International Space Station is the place to be in April. Multiple arrivals and departures this month make the floating laboratory seem more like a hotel. Russian space agency Roscosmos cosmonauts Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov and NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei successfully launched to the space station from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on…

A third of Antarctic ice shelf risks collapse as our planet warms

More than a third of the Antarctic ice shelf risks collapsing into the sea if global temperatures reach 4 degrees Celsius (7.2 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels as climate change warms the world, a new study from the UK’s University of Reading has warned. In a forecasting study, scientists found that 34% of the area…

Mars Perseverance rover snaps selfie photo with Ingenuity helicopter

Just days after NASA’s Perseverance rover gently dropped the Ingenuity helicopter on the surface of Mars, the robot companions took a selfie together on Tuesday and beamed it back to Earth. The rover used its robotic arm, which has a camera mounted on the end, to capture the image. The helicopter can be seen 13…

One in three Covid survivors suffers ‘brain disease,’ study finds

A major study published Tuesday suggests as many as one in three people infected with Covid-19 are left with longer term mental health or neurological symptoms. Researchers found that 34% of coronavirus survivors received a diagnosis for a neurological or psychological condition within six months of infection, according to the research published in the journal…

NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission flies by asteroid Bennu one final time

A NASA spacecraft will bid farewell to its asteroid companion of the last few years. The OSIRIS-REx spacecraft is conducting a final flyby of the asteroid Bennu on Wednesday. The spacecraft made history when it briefly touched down on the asteroid on October 20, 2020, and collecting a hefty 2-ounce sample from the surface. The…

Hospitals notice a difference in Covid patients

The more contagious coronavirus variant first identified in the UK has now been reported in every state in the US. Experts are concerned this strain is hitting younger people hard and could fuel a new surge of the pandemic. Yet as the US rolls out a breakneck-speed vaccination program, many states have begun relaxing measures,…

NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter survives first freezing night on Mars

The Ingenuity helicopter survived its first night on the freezing-cold surface of Mars, a major milestone in the rotorcraft’s journey ahead of its historic first flight. Jezero Crater, an ancient lake bed on Mars and the current site of the Perseverance rover and Ingenuity helicopter, can drop to temperatures of minus 130 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s…

Neil deGrasse Tyson on stars, Santa’s location and jokes for third graders

Neil deGrasse Tyson is a man of many parts, constantly on the go. In his day job, he is the director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, as well as a noted astrophysicist who has made many contributions to cutting-edge space science. Tyson is better known, however,…

Iran, China, Russia, and Europe will discuss possible US return to nuclear deal

A virtual meeting of Joint Commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) will take place on Friday to discuss a possible US return to the Iran nuclear deal, said the EU in a statement released Thursday. “The Joint Commission will be chaired on behalf of EU High Representative Josep Borrell by the Deputy…

Scientists have discovered X-rays coming from Uranus

Uranus is emitting X-rays, and scientists want to take a closer look. That’s the mysterious conclusion of a new study, which analyzed two visuals of the planet and discovered X-ray activity for the first time. Astronomers looked at snapshots of the planet taken by NASA’s Chandra Observatory in 2002 and 2017, noticing a clear detection…

Ingenuity Mars helicopter: The historic journey to fly on another planet

When the Ingenuity helicopter takes flight this month, it will be a Wright brothers moment on Mars. This first powered, controlled flight on another planet has been years in the making — and it has roots in the first such flight on Earth. It has been 117 years since Orville Wright took flight in Flyer…

A meteorite exploded in the air above Antarctica 430,000 years ago

Tiny particles recovered from the summit of a mountain in Antarctica are clues that a meteorite more than 100 yards wide exploded in the sky 430,000 years ago, sending a fireball of vaporized extraterrestrial material to the icy surface, according to new research. Such “airbursts” are thought to occur more frequently than falling meteors or…

Galapagos airport officials find 185 baby tortoises hidden in a suitcase

Airport authorities in the Galapagos Islands seized 185 newborn tortoises that were found wrapped in plastic in a red suitcase. Officials discovered the tortoise hatchlings on Sunday when they X-rayed the suitcase, which was bound for the port city of Guayaquil, Ecuador, according to a statement from the Galapagos Ecological Airport. Galapagos giant tortoises are…

Mars Curiosity rover takes selfie with ‘Mont Mercou’

While the Perseverance rover is testing out its wheels in Jezero Crater before truly beginning its journey on Mars, the Curiosity rover has been busy snapping selfies of an intriguing rock formation. Perseverance, which landed on February 18, is preparing the Ingenuity helicopter for its first flights on Mars in April. Until Perseverance arrived, Curiosity…

Pristine interstellar comet came from a system containing giant planets

An interstellar comet that crossed into our solar system nearly two years ago is revealing more of its secrets. Researchers have determined that the comet, known as 2I/Borisov, is more pristine and unaltered than any of the comets that have been observed in our solar system. The dust around the comet is also intriguingly different…

Covid-19 PPE litter is killing wildlife

Waste from lifesaving personal protective equipment (PPE) is killing birds, fish and other wildlife across the globe, a study has found. Animals are fatally ingesting or becoming entangled in discarded latex gloves and disposable face masks, while others have started building their homes using the same material, researchers said. “As always with these single-use items,…

The full ‘worm moon’ helped break the logjam in the Suez Canal

A piece of celestial good luck likely made it easier for engineers to successfully refloat the giant container ship that blocked the Suez Canal for almost a week. Sunday’s so-called full “Worm moon” led to a high spring tide — about 18 inches (46 centimeters) above normal — on Monday, which eased the process of…

A sense of ‘impending doom’

Much of America’s recent progress against Covid-19 is being erased as infections, deaths and hospitalizations multiply nationwide. On Monday US President Joe Biden implored state and local officials to reinstate mask mandates, after Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), shared her feelings of “impending doom” at a White House…

The Covid-19 war in the Trump White House

No longer working under the Trump administration, leading US health officials have revealed to CNN the challenges they faced during the nation’s fight against Covid-19 over the past year, including tension behind closed doors and a lack of preparedness. Here are some of the most haunting revelations from CNN’s new documentary, “COVID WAR: The Pandemic…

This is how the human heart adapts to space

When astronaut Scott Kelly spent nearly a year in space, his heart shrank despite the fact that he worked out six days a week over his 340-day stay, according to a new study. Surprisingly, researchers observed the same change in Benoît Lecomte after he completed his 159-day swim across the Pacific Ocean in 2018. The…

What do Christians celebrate on Palm Sunday?

On Palm Sunday, Christians throughout the world celebrate the day Jesus triumphantly entered Jerusalem days before his crucifixion. Crowds left palm fronds and clothing in his path as a sign of praise and respect. But millions of American Christians will observe Palm Sunday at home this year, as the coronavirus pandemic has forced many US…

See the ‘Worm’ supermoon glow in the sky this weekend

See the “Worm” supermoon glow in the March sky this Sunday. The moon will be fullest at 2:48 p.m. ET on Sunday afternoon, according to NASA. This will be the year’s first supermoon, meaning the moon is slightly closer to Earth and therefore appears bigger and brighter in the sky. The Worm supermoon is the…

Asteroid Apophis won’t impact Earth for at least a century, NASA finds

An asteroid named for the Egyptian god of chaos and darkness won’t be wreaking any havoc on Earth — at least not this century. That’s the good news from NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies, released on Friday. Asteroid 99942 Apophis has been considered one of the most hazardous asteroids with the potential to impact…

Hubble spies colorful change of seasons on Saturn

Earth isn’t the only planet that experiences a changing of the seasons. The Hubble Space Telescope has revealed the colorful transition from summer to fall in Saturn’s northern hemisphere — a change years in the making. Saturn, the sixth planet from the sun and the second largest in our solar system, takes about 29 Earth…

Must-watch videos of the week

A teen builds an awesome backyard project, a groom makes a huge blunder and Dana Carvey has us rolling. These are the must-watch videos of the week. Beach discovery Beachgoers thought it was a missile, but it turned out to be a damaged US Air Force drone that washed ashore in Florida’s Palm Beach County.…

Chinese Ambassador to the US: China’s goal is not to replace United States

China’s goal is not to replace the United States as the world’s leading country, the Chinese Ambassador to the US said Thursday. “Our goal is to meet the growing inspiration of the Chinese people for better life. Our goal is not to compete with, or replace any other country,” Cui Tiankai told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour…

Do octopuses dream? Maybe. But they definitely change colors while they sleep

With its eight legs wrapped around itself as if in a hug and its eye pupils narrowed to a slit, the octopus breathes evenly, its body a uniform whitish gray. Moments later it begins to change color — a mesmerizing shift between burnt orange and rust red. Its eyes, muscles and sucker pads twitching as…

Younger Brazilians are dying of Covid

When Graciane da Silva died of Covid-19 at a Rio de Janeiro hospital last June, her death was seen as unusual — she was only 28 and, at the time, the coronavirus was mostly claiming the lives of the elderly. But something has shifted in Brazil, Matt Rivers writes. More younger Brazilians now appear to…

North Korea fires two ground-based ballistic missiles, South Korea says

North Korea launched two ballistic missiles Thursday — the second such launch in less than a week. South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff said in a statement that two short-range missiles had been fired from the Hamju area of South Hamgyong province toward the sea, off North Korea’s east coast, at 7:06 a.m. and 7:25…

Buy-back schemes and stricter gun laws: How other countries responded to mass shootings

Monday’s mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado is the latest tragedy to plague the United States’ tragic record on gun killings — which its government has long struggled to get a handle on. And while America’s unique relationship with firearms sits at the forefront of the national psyche, the US is far from the only country…

New image reveals supermassive black hole’s swirling magnetic field

Astronomers have a new, more complete picture of the supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy 55 million light-years from Earth — the first black hole ever to be imaged. While the first image of this black hole and its shadow was released in 2019, the new image released Wednesday shows the cosmic…

US states ignore Covid surge warnings

A top health official warned the US could see a surge in Covid-19 infections if Americans let up on restrictions now. He argued, however, that it was entirely avoidable. That was Monday. On Tuesday, Indiana and Virginia unveiled plans to loosen mitigation measures anyway, joining at least a dozen other states that had already done…

Ingenuity Mars helicopter prepares for the first flight on another planet

Humanity’s first Wright Brothers moment on another planet will happen in April. The Ingenuity Mars helicopter will attempt the first powered flight on Mars no earlier than April 8, according to NASA. It’s fitting that the mission, an experimental companion to the Perseverance rover, is carrying a piece of history. A postage stamp-size piece of…

Arrest warrants for two Iraqi government critics spark outrage

Iraq’s Supreme Judicial Council has issued arrest warrants for two prominent Iraqi political analysts, prompting backlash from activists and some politicians who say it’s an attempt to intimidate critics of the government. Political analysts Ibrahim al-Sumaidaie and Yahya al-Kubaisi were respectively accused of publicly “insulting” and “defaming” public authorities, according to copies of the warrants…

Atlanta spa attacks shine a light on anti-Asian hate crimes around the world

The outpouring of grief and anger over the news that six Asian women were among those killed in the shootings at three Atlanta area massage parlors has drawn attention to the rise of anti-Asian violence in the US. And it’s not just an American problem. From the UK to Australia, reports of anti-East and anti-Southeast…

Largest asteroid to pass by Earth this year will be moving unusually fast

The largest asteroid that has been predicted to make a close approach of Earth this year will zip by from a safe distance on Sunday, according to NASA. Scientists estimate the asteroid is between 1,300 and 2,230 feet wide. The near-Earth asteroid, known as 2001 FO32, will be 1.25 million miles, or more than five…

Iceland volcano remains hazardous after eruption near Reykjavík

Volcanic activity has “somewhat decreased” in the Reykjanes peninsula in Iceland, southwest of the capital Reykjavík, where a volcano erupted Friday night, the the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) announced Saturday. The current eruption is “small” with the “volcanic activity” having “decreased somewhat” in the area, the agency said on Twitter. The eruptive fissure is approximately…

Must-watch videos of the week

An angry snake, a fiery van, and a daring rescue. These are the must-watch videos of the week. ‘It almost got me’ An angry, reticulated python lunged at Jay Brewer, owner of The Reptile Zoo in Fountain Valley, California, while he was filming a video for Instagram. Brewer said the snake was just trying to…

Astronauts relocated a spacecraft outside the International Space Station

The astronauts on the International Space Station have already conducted five spacewalks so far this year — and now they have relocated a spacecraft outside of the orbiting laboratory. Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, along with NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, flew the Soyuz MS-17 capsule from its current port to another one on…

NASA successfully tests SLS rocket that will help Artemis astronauts reach the moon

The Space Launch System rocket that will launch NASA’s Artemis astronauts into space on their way to the moon went through a final and successful hot-fire test of the core stage on Thursday. The test took place at NASA’s Stennis Space Center outside Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, and began at 4:40 p.m. ET. The test…

Hear the Perseverance rover’s wheels crunch across the Martian surface

We first heard the sounds of Martian wind and a laser zapping rocks on Mars. Now, the Perseverance rover has returned audio of itself driving across the Martian surface. Every new sound sent back by the rover is an exciting first because none of the previous missions to Mars have carried microphones. As the rover’s…

Covid-19 reinfections are rare, unless you are over 65

Coronavirus reinfections are rare, but it’s more common for people 65 and older to get infected more than once, according to a study published Wednesday in the Lancet medical journal. The study, which looked at reinfection rates among 4 million people in Denmark, found that most people who have had Covid-19 seemed to have protection…

First images of the ‘cosmic web’ reveal hidden dwarf galaxies

Scientists have discovered a “myriad” galaxies that were of previously undetected. The newly found systems were observed with the world’s most advanced optical telescope. Cosmological models had long predicted the existence of filaments — gas in which galaxies are created — but no images had been captured of the phenomenon, except in the vicinity of…

Interstellar object ʻOumuamua may be a fragment of Pluto-like planet

The first observed interstellar object zipped through our solar system in October 2017 — and astronomers have been trying to understand it ever since. Scientists scrambled to observe the object before it disappeared, moving along at 196,000 miles per hour, and their observations caused more questions than answers about the “oddball,” as scientists dubbed it.…

Previously unknown bacteria discovered on the space station could help grow plants

After serving as a home away from home for astronauts over the last 20 years, the International Space Station has become the host for unique bacterial inhabitants. And these microbes could prove useful. Four strains of bacteria, three of which were previously unknown to science, have been found on the space station. They may be…

Scientists want to build a doomsday vault on the moon

Engineers want to build an underground lunar ark, filled with millions of seed, spore, sperm and egg samples from Earth’s species, hidden in a network of tubes on the moon to provide a genetic backup for the planet in the event of a doomsday scenario. Scientists from the University of Arizona have proposed an ark,…

Supermassive black hole spotted wandering through space

Supermassive black holes usually sit like stationary engines at the centers of galaxies, sucking in everything around them. Now astronomers have detected a highly unusual case of one wandering through space. Astronomers previously believed it was possible for supermassive black holes to be actively on the move, but it has been difficult to gather evidence…

Brazil’s Covid-19 resurgence is pushing hospitals to overflowing

Brazil is pulling ahead in the race that no one wants to win. Over the past month, the South American nation has blown past a series of grisly milestones, repeatedly setting new records for most Covid-19 deaths per day. In the past week, it set another record: 12,818 new deaths and more than 464,000 new…

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