“Planet Earth Report” provides descriptive links to headline news by leading science journalists about the extraordinary discoveries, technology, people, and events changing our knowledge of Planet Earth and the future of the human species. Our caffeine-inspired curation team scours the world, doing your work for you –all in one place.
‘Dark Emulator’ –Scientists Are Generating Virtual Universes to Study Strange Gigantic Structures, writes Becky Ferreira for Motherboard/Vice. ‘Dark Emulator’ churns out virtual universes in seconds, so scientists can probe mysterious large-scale dark matter structures that may be key to galaxy formation. Humans have decoded the basic structure of our home planet, our solar system, and even our galaxy, the Milky Way. Now, we have scaled our observations up to the entire universe, which is the biggest entity known to science and among the most challenging to map out and define.
When will the coronavirus outbreak peak? –Officials want to know but predictions vary wildly, from now to after hundreds of millions of people are infected, reports David Cyranoski for Nature. Coronavirus infections in China continue to swell by thousands a day, prompting epidemiologists to estimate when the outbreak will peak. Some suggest the climax, when the number of new infections in a single day reaches its highest point, will happen any time now. Others say that it is months away and that the virus will infect millions — or in one estimate hundreds of millions — of people first.
The search for extraterrestrial intelligence moves up a gear. And we might even get answers soon –A clue—and an indicator that life not only exists on Earth, but has also developed intelligence. This came from the narrowband electromagnetic radiation that was streaming from Earth’s surface—in other words television and radio channels leaking into space. “That, as far as we know, is an unmistakable indicator of technology and an unmistakable indicator of life,” says Andrew Siemion, an astrophysicist at the Berkeley SETI Research Center in California. “And indeed, it is the most detectable signature of life on this planet as viewed from a distant vantage.”
To Prevent Next Coronavirus, Stop the Wildlife Trade, Conservationists Say –Conservationists see a persistent threat of epidemics so long as tens of millions of animals are traded in Southeast Asia, writes Rachel Nuwer for The New York Times.The coronavirus spreading from China has sickened at least 73,000 people and killed at least 2,000, setting in motion a global health emergency. But humans aren’t the only species infected.
Until the End of Time tries to use physics to find the meaning of life –-How did life happen and where is it headed? Greene’s new book argues that life is rare and extraordinary, probably transient, and that in the search for purpose, the only significant answers are ones we create Greene, director of the Center for Theoretical Physics at Columbia University, New York, hunts for humanity’s place in a universe when everything is governed by unwavering physical laws, to which we are no exception. He asks: “Could life be such a long-shot possibility that it arose only once… Or is life the natural outcome, perhaps even the inevitable outcome?
You Can’t Sleep While Traveling Because Your Brain Acts Like a Dolphin’s. –On the first night in a new place, half your brain stays awake to watch out for danger. You Can’t Sleep While Traveling Because Your Brain Acts Like a Dolphin’s On the first night in a new place, half your brain stays awake to watch out for danger This phenomenon, though, might be an evolutionary advantage in disguise, a new study in Current Biology suggests. The grogginess may happen because one side of the brain forgoes sleep to act as a “night watch” capable of alerting us to potential dangers, a team from Brown University shows
Scientists discover Neanderthal skeleton that hints at flower burial –The fossils found in Iraqi cave provide fresh evidence the species buried their death with mortuary rituals. Scientists said they had discovered the well-preserved upper body skeleton of an adult Neanderthal, who lived about 70,000 years ago, in Shanidar Cave in the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region of northern Iraq on Tuesday. The individual – dubbed Shanidar Z – was perhaps in his or her 40s or 50s with their sex undetermined. The cave was a pivotal site for mid-20th century archaeology. Remains of 10 Neanderthals – seven adults and three infants – were dug up there 60 years ago, offering insight into their physical characteristics, behaviour and diet.
New Explosive Theory About What Doomed the Civil War Submarine Hunley –A blast-injury expert takes aim at the mystery of what sank the most famous—and lethal—submarine of the Civil War. The HL Hunley was lying in wait to the east of Charleston Harbor, off the coast of South Carolina. The submarine had been there for months, practicing for its crucial mission and waiting patiently for flat seas.