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Science

The James Webb Space Telescope Has Its First Image of The Most Distant Known Star

A little under 13 billion years ago, a large blue star lit up the early cosmos. Across countless light years of expanding space that light has shone, reduced to shadow wherever it met dust and rock.   What little remained of those ancient photons was pulled out of shape by the growth of space itself, […]

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Scientists Glimpse The Earliest Dark Matter Ever Observed in The Universe

What little we know of dark matter comes from calculations based on the glow of surrounding galaxies. The further away we look, however, the dimmer that starlight gets, making it harder to see the subtle influence of this most mysterious of forces.   Now a collaboration between astronomers from Japan and the US has found […]

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Not All ‘Shrunken Heads’ in Museums Are Real. But There’s a Way to Tell

Reduced to the size of an apple with their eyes and lips stitched shut, it’s easy to forget that these iconic shrunken heads are, in fact, the remains of real humans who once lived and breathed.   For centuries, the famous relics (known as tsantsas) of the indigenous Ecuadorean Shuar people have been sold as […]

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Decades Ago, A Woman Survived Being ‘Frozen Solid’. Here’s The Science

Early one New Year’s Eve morning in Minnesota, back in 1980, a man named Wally Nelson stumbled across the body of his friend, lying in the snow just a few meters from his door.   Nineteen-year-old Jean Hilliard’s car had stalled while returning to her parents’ house after a night out. Dressed in little more […]

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We Must Start Preparing Now For How Climate Change Might End Civilization, Says Report

Speculating over humanity’s demise is a sport we humans have enjoyed since forever. We build religions on our eschatological hopes, weave fiction out of our dystopian fears, and even write songs about the end of the world as we know it.   So it’s surprising that in the midst of an escalating global climate crisis, […]

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Physicists Have Simulated The Primordial Quantum Structure of Our Universe

Peer long enough into the heavens, and the Universe starts to resemble a city at night. Galaxies take on characteristics of streetlamps cluttering up neighborhoods of dark matter, linked by highways of gas that run along the shores of intergalactic nothingness.   This map of the Universe was preordained, laid out in the tiniest of […]

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Trap-Jaw Ants Risk Blowing Themselves Apart When They Hunt. Here’s Why They Don’t

When you’re barely the size of an eyelash and on the hunt for fast-moving prey, having a bear trap strapped to your head might seem like a good idea. Of course, it’s all fun and games until it actually goes off. Even the slightest wobble in that trap’s arc could send your face on a […]

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Huge New Study Suggests Depression Isn’t a Serotonin Imbalance After All

For millions of people around the world, salvation from long periods of dark thoughts and oppressive feelings comes in pill form, with each dose doing its bit to ensure the balance of a humble neurotransmitter called serotonin remains relatively in check.   In spite of their popularity as a treatment for mood disorders, much of […]

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Chemists Just Rearranged Atomic Bonds in a Single Molecule For The First Time

If chemists built cars, they’d fill a factory with car parts, set it on fire, and sift from the ashes pieces that now looked vaguely car-like.  When you’re dealing with car-parts the size of atoms, this is a perfectly reasonable process. Yet chemists yearn for ways to reduce the waste and make reactions far more […]

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A Strange Fossil in South China Reveals an Intriguing Link With The First Americans

Remains recovered from a cave in the Chinese province of Yunnan more than 10 years ago have finally given up their secrets, with a DNA analysis revealing not just who left them, but ultimately where their ancestors would go.   Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences evaluated nuclear and mitochondrial sequences extracted from a […]