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Extraterrestrial life, that familiar science-fiction trope, that kitschy fantasy, that CGI nightmare, has become a matter of serious discussion, a “risk factor”, a “scenario”. How has ET gone from sci-fi fairytale to a serious scientific endeavour modelled by macroeconomists, funded by fiscal conservatives and discussed by theologians? Because, following a string of remarkable discoveries over
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In the bewildering quagmire that is the gas between the stars, the Hubble Space Telescope has identified evidence of ionised buckminsterfullerene, the carbon molecule known colloquially as “buckyballs”. Containing 60 carbon atoms arranged in a soccer ball shape, buckminsterfullerene (C60) occurs naturally here on Earth – in soot. But in 2010, it was also detected in
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You can be thankful that we orbit a placid, main sequence, yellow dwarf star. Astronomers recently spied a massive superflare on a diminutive star, a powerful, radiation spewing event that you wouldn’t want to witness up close. The ‘star’ was ULAS J224940.13-011236.9, an L-type sub-stellar brown dwarf near the Aquarius-Pisces border. The cumbersome, phone number-style
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In February of 2016, scientists at the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) announced the first-ever detection of gravitational waves (GWs). Since then, multiple events have been detected, providing insight into a cosmic phenomena that was predicted over a century ago by Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity. A little over a year ago, LIGO was taken
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SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk hinted at what could be the announcement of a brain-machine interface that could one day hook human brains up to computers on Sunday. In response to a question asking for an update on Neuralink, a neurotechnology startup he founded in 2016, Musk replied that new information would be ”coming soon”. A “direct cortical interface,” according to
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California is notorious for its earthquakes, but a stunning new discovery reveals for the first time just how much we’ve underestimated its omnipresent earth-shaking potential. By the time you just about finish reading this story, in fact, Southern California will probably have experienced another quake – based off a new, unprecedented deep dive into 10