Light Pollution Continues to Ruin View of Night Sky
More of us are becoming unable to witness the full breathtaking beauty and majesty of the sparkling Milky Way because of a growing problem called light pollution.
According to oxforddictionaries.com, light pollution is defined as the brightening of the night sky caused by street lights and other man-made sources, which has a disruptive effect on natural cycles and inhibits the observation of stars and planets.
An international team of scientists say they have analyzed five years of advanced satellite images and found evidence that the problem of light pollution is growing at an approximate rate of two percent per year.
The scientists who published their findings, in the journal Science Advances, finds both light pollution and energy consumption, from artificial lighting, is increasing steadily over much of Earth.
Sand Not Water Flows on Mars
On September 28, 2015, NASA said they had confirmed evidence of liquid water flowing on present-day Mars.
The space agency said their Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter identified the chemical signature of hydrated salts and minerals in the mysterious dark streaks that are seen flowing down the slopes of a number of Martian hills, mountains, and craters.
But a new study from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) suggests that the evidence supporting the existence of water on the Red Planet was misinterpreted.
The study proposes that the dark streaks, called recurring slope lineae, are now understood as being the result of dry, granular flows of sand and dust from recurring avalanches.
U.S. Geological Survey scientist and study lead author Colin Dundas says the new findings suggest that the surface of Mars is quite dry today.
Sun’s Activity Steady during Solar Minimum
Scientists have learned, over many years, that the Sun goes through a roughly 11-year cycle of being active to less active.
When the sun is most active with a growing number of sunspots, coronal mass ejections, and blasts of solar flares, this is called a solar maximum.
And, when the sun becomes calmer with not as many sunspots and solar activity this is called the solar minimum.
A new study from Japanese astronomers has determined that while the degree of the Sun’s activity varies during a solar maximum, there was very little variation in activity for each solar minimum observed for the last 60 years.
Studying microwave transmissions from the sun over the last five cycles of solar minimums, the astronomers found the level of microwaves has been the same each time, unlike during the solar maximums.
Keeping Cows Happy
A new Brazilian study provides suggestions on how to keep cows happy.
Farmers and ranchers maintain fenced-in areas or enclosures to corral their livestock when they need to weigh or vaccinate the herd.
Most of the study’s suggestions involve this corral environment.
The researchers from Brazil’s Institute of Animal Husbandry Sertãozinho proposes that the best way to appease livestock is to remove bursts of colors, objects that cast shadows or water puddles from corrals.
The study also found that keeping noise at low levels as well as keeping your dogs out of the way and not using those electric prods can provide a significant reduction in bovine stress.