суббота, 1 февраля 2020 г.

The salt of the comet


More than 30 years ago, the European comet mission Giotto flew past Halley's comet. The Bernese ion mass spectrometer IMS, led by Prof. em. Hans Balsiger, was on board. A key finding from the measurements taken by this instrument was that there appeared to be a lack of nitrogen in Halley's coma - the nebulous covering of comets which forms when a comet passes close to the sun.

The salt of the comet
Gas and dust rise from "Chury's" surface as the comet approaches the point
of its orbit closest to the sun [Credit: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM]
Although nitrogen (N) was discovered in the form of ammonia (NH3) and hydrocyanic acid (HCN), the incidence was far removed from the expected cosmic incidence. More than 30 years later, researchers have solved this mystery thanks to a happy accident.


This is a result of the analysis of data from the Bernese mass spectrometer ROSINA, which collected data on the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, called Chury for short, on board the ESA space probe Rosetta (see info box below).

Risky flight through the comet Chury's dust cloud

Less than a month before the end of the Rosetta mission, the space probe was just 1.9 km above the surface of Chury as it flew through a dust cloud from the comet. This resulted in a direct impact of dust in the ion source of the mass spectrometer ROSINA-DFMS (Rosetta Orbiter Sensor for Ion and Neutral Analysis-Double Focusing Mass Spectrometer), led by the University of Bern. Kathrin Altwegg, lead researcher on ROSINA and co-author of the new study published in the prestigious journal Nature Astronomy, says: "This dust almost destroyed our instrument and confused Rosetta's position control."

The salt of the comet
A plume of dust from Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, seen by the OSIRIS Wide Angle Camera on ESA's Rosetta
spacecraft on 3 July 2016. The shadow of the plume is cast across the basin, which is in the Imhotep region
[Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA]
Thanks to the flight through the dust cloud, it was possible to detect substances which normally remain in the cold environment of the comet on the dust particles and therefore cannot be measured. The amount of particles, some of which had never before been measured on a comet, was astonishing. In particular, the incidence of ammonia, the chemical compound of nitrogen and hydrogen with the formula NH3, was suddenly many times greater.


"We came up with the idea that the incidence of ammonia in the ROSINA data could potentially be traced back to the occurrence of ammonium salts," explains Altwegg. "As a salt, ammonia has a much higher evaporation temperature than ice and is therefore mostly present in the form of a solid in the cold environment of a comet. It has not been possible to measure these solids either through remote sensing with telescopes or on the spot until now."

Ammonium salt and its role in the emergence of life

Extensive laboratory work was needed in order to prove the presence of these salts in cometary ice. "The ROSINA team has found traces of five different ammonium salts: ammonium chloride, ammonium cyanide, ammonium cyanate, ammonium formate and ammonium acetate," says the chemist on the ROSINA team and co-author of the current study, Dr. Nora Hanni.

The salt of the comet
Ammonium chloride is one of five different ammonium salts the ROSINA team has found traces of
[Credit: University of Bern]
"Until now, the apparent absence of nitrogen on comets was a mystery. Our study now shows that it is very probable that nitrogen is present on comets, namely in the form of ammonium salts," Hanni continues.

The ammonium salts discovered include several astrobiologically relevant molecules which may result in the development of urea, amino acids, adenine and nucleotides. Kathrin Altwegg says: "This is definitely a further indication that comet impacts may be linked with the emergence of life on Earth."

Source: University of Bern [January 20, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Bizarre craft over Cuba

2544 views   54 likes   5 dislikes  

Channel: Terry's Theories  

Very strangely designed craft seen in broad daylight in the skies of Cuba.Video was uploaded on July 8th of this year by YouTube channel Joel H. other than that I hate to say that is all the information available on this video.
Source video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NYqV3nV6FNs

Video length: 2:42
Category: Science & Technology
45 comments

Ring Shaped UFOs Where Do They Come From??

618 views   41 likes   1 dislikes  

Channel: Terry's Theories  

I have found a new video of this ringed shaped object seen through a telescope from Mexico City. I have shown you guys several examples of there UFOs in the past. So guys where do these objects come from and what are there purpose.Leave me a comment and let's talk about it.

Source video 1 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmk9u4tBhiU&list=WL&index=5&t=0s
Source video 2 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WhKiMxq21Xs
Source video 3 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvoqtEF2o_s
Source video 4 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlIF0P9j0cM&t=230s
Source video 5 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nsvJWW3prS0&t=28s

Video length: 7:59
Category: Science & Technology
30 comments

Researchers create novel platform to standardize paleoclimatology data


Sometimes the most unrelated things can produce the most innovative results. Take, for instance, aikido—a Japanese martial art that can be translated as the "way of unifying energy"—and paleoclimatology, a scientific field examining climate evolution.

Researchers create novel platform to standardize paleoclimatology data
Researchers from ISI and USC Dornsife create novel platform to standardize
paleoclimatology data [Credit: Cassidy Joyes]
Julien Emile-Geay, an associate professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, got a direct taste of this in 2011 when staying with a friend for an aikido camp in San Francisco. His friend was developing semantic databases for biomedical data and Emile-Geay found that this approach could also work for the extremely idiosyncratic data collected by paleoclimatologists.

After a serendipitous 2012 meeting with Yolanda Gil, director of Knowledge Technologies at USC's Information Sciences Institute (ISI) and a research professor at USC Viterbi's Department of Computer Science, the researchers created a proposal to integrate Gil's AI expertise with Emile-Geay's Earth sciences background, developing a new platform that gives paleoclimatologists a way of unifying the disparate datasets of paleoclimate data, aikido style.


Along with Emile-Geay, the paleoclimatology group includes Deborah Khider, a postdoc at USC's Department of Earth Sciences and ISI data scientist, and Nicholas McKay, associate professor at the School of Earth Sciences and Environmental Sustainability at North Arizona University. On the AI side, Gil collaborated with Daniel Garijo and Varun Ratnakar, computer scientist and research programmer at ISI, respectively. The teams worked to create a new approach to standardize paleoclimatology data so that Earth scientists can better predict future climate to understand the causes and effects of climate change.

Their research was a feature article in the American Geophysicist's Union (AGU) Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology journal and was highlighted at the AGU Centennial conference, held December 9-13 in San Francisco.

The Lone Wranglers

Paleoclimatology is the study of climate history, with researchers using imprints and indicators to reconstruct past climates. These indicators are usually physical samples collected from natural sources, such as glacier ice cores, tree rings, shells, cave deposits, and lake and ocean sediments. After integrating the resulting diverse datasets, researchers can reconstruct climate variables, like temperatures and rainfall levels. By recreating past climates, Earth scientists are able to predict future climates.

However, ironically, a major issue with the discipline lies in one of its strengths: the diversity of datasets. While the various datasets aid the creation of complicated model simulations to help researchers understand climate progression, the idiosyncrasies of each dataset can be difficult to integrate.


Earth scientists have their own approaches, processes, and data collection and coding methods that may not always be complementary or intuitive, and transforming the data into a usable format for research and analysis, or "data wrangling," can be a cumbersome task. Some researchers can spend up to 80% of their time wrangling data, such as identifying outliers and missing values or looking for dispersed records in multiple databases. The need for standardization in the field was clear. "Life without standards is miserable!" Emile-Geay said.

"Imagine needing a different plug type for every single item in your house-that's currently the state of paleoclimate data, forcing early-career folks who want to integrate their data to spend months of their life reinventing the wheel every time they do something." Especially as funding is getting scarcer, Emile-Geay noted, this data wrangling is essentially a waste of time. "We were sick and tired of it and wanted to save future generations from wasting their Ph.D. brains that way."

A Socio-Technical Approach

To address these concerns, the paleoclimatology and AI teams developed a novel platform. This new platform is part of the NSF's LinkedEarth project (funded by EarthCube), and is based on a "controlled crowdsourcing" approach, where the crowd (i.e., the paleoclimatology experts using the system) can develop terms, or properties, to code their data, which are then made available immediately to other users. By creating new properties, users can choose the appropriate terms to define the dataset they're working with.

Researchers create novel platform to standardize paleoclimatology data
Example of polls on (a) the LinkedEarth platform and (b) Twitter (@Linked_Earth)
[
Credit: D. Khider et al. 2019]
The process is controlled in that a select group of users representing a wide array of paleoclimatology fields establish an editorial board, which reviews requests for new or changed properties and determines whether the users' proposals are to be incorporated into the Paleoclimate Community reporTing Standard, or PaCTS. All decisions made regarding PaCTS involve the input of paleoclimatology researchers, making it a transparent, inclusive and bona fide community effort.


The system implements AI to help draw links between data and make them more accessible. "The AI techniques that we use are semantic technologies that allow us to represent scientific knowledge," explained Gil. "We also construct what we call the "Linked Earth knowledge graph' that expresses connections among datasets, researchers, locations, publications, etc." She noted that, additionally, users can ask "sophisticated queries of the ontologies and knowledge graph to easily access the data they are interested in."

The platform is described as a socio-technical system. Along with all the technical aspects, the approach has strong social aspects, as the value of the platform relies on information sharing. A key incentive for users is that they receive recognition for everything they contribute to the platform, which is tracked and displayed on their profile pages. Additionally, they can upload metadata specifications and existing datasets in multiple standards formats, making it easier to contribute to, access, and unify the data.

Setting the Standard

Developing the platform was no walk in the park. Khider explained, "One of the challenges was to come up with the framework for the standard," which is made up of three elements: data representation, vocabulary and reporting requirements. "The second [challenge] was to get the community engaged," she continued. "We all want standards to advance the science, but no one really wants to talk about them." Another issue was figuring out where and how to start. As Khider noted, "In the end, we decided that the standard should reflect the needs of a specific community in order to do the most rigorous and exciting science."

Researchers create novel platform to standardize paleoclimatology data
Example of a survey question for a new data set. The histogram represents the number of votes on each
 platform (orange: LinkedEarth, purple: Twitter, and green: Google survey). The pie chart represents
the fraction of the votes for essential (green), recommended (pink), and desired (blue)
[Credit: D. Khider et al. 2019]
There were also hurdles from an AI perspective. "The biggest challenge is that scientific knowledge is always evolving, so as scientists develop a better understanding of the data and their models, they may change how they want the data to be described and organized in the Linked Earth platform," Gil said. "[We needed] to accommodate the evolution of the ontologies and knowledge graph while not losing the work that users had done in the platform using previous versions of that knowledge."

But the hard work paid off. Not surprisingly, the platform has received positive feedback from the paleoclimate community. As of 2019, the controlled crowdsourcing wiki has 692 datasets, with 150 registered users and over 50 contributors. More than 14,000 pages have been created, as the paleoclimatology and AI teams continue their work to improve the platform and get more users involved.


The recognition from the AGU came after the project was implemented. "The editors at Paleoceanography and Paleoclimatology were instrumental in getting this project visibility within the community by selecting the manuscript for their Grand Challenges series," Khider remarked. "Having publishers pushing for standards is helping with community engagement for the second version of the standard, since they see interest in this type of work."

The platform can also be applied to other fields. "We are using [the platform] now to describe neuroscience data in an NIH-funded project that we have with the ENIGMA collaboration," said Gil. "A novel aspect of this domain is that each dataset describes data for a cohort of people who are part of a study, and contains a collection of observations and not just a particular one."

Moreover, PaCTS is only one third of the standardization process, as it accounts for the reporting requirements. Standardizing data representation and terminology round out the process. The latter entails vocabulary and associated spelling, Khider noted, as most of the databases contain identical concepts spelled out in different ways, which can make querying for a particular dataset challenging. "The most obvious next step is to build a library of exemplar notebooks showing how these standards and code help solve common research problems in paleoclimatology, and how they open the door to new investigations," Emile-Geay said. "It's now time to make these standards work for [scientists]."

Source: University of Southern California [January 20, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Mars' water was mineral-rich and salty


Presently, Earth is the only known location where life exists in the Universe. This year the Nobel Prize in physics was awarded to three astronomers who proved, almost 20 years ago, that planets are common around stars beyond the solar system. Life comes in various forms, from cell-phone-toting organisms like humans to the ubiquitous micro-organisms that inhabit almost every square inch of the planet Earth, affecting almost everything that happens on it. It will likely be some time before it is possible to measure or detect life beyond the solar system, but the solar system offers a host of sites that might get a handle on how hard it is for life to start.

Mars' water was mineral-rich and salty
NASA's Curiosity rover has obtained the mineralogical and chemical data of ancient lake deposits at Gale Crater, Mars.
The present study reconstructs water chemistry of the paleolake in Gale based on the Curiosity's data
[Credit: NASA]
Mars is at the top of this list for two reasons. First, it is relatively close to Earth compared to the moons of Saturn and Jupiter (which are also considered good candidates for discovering life beyond Earth in the solar system, and are targeted for exploration in the coming decade). Second, Mars is extremely observable because it lacks a thick atmosphere like Venus, and so far, there are pretty good evidence that Mars' surface temperature and pressure hovers around the point liquid water--considered essential for life--can exist. Further, there is good evidence in the form of observable river deltas, and more recent measurements made on Mars' surface, that liquid water did in fact flow on Mars billions of years ago.


Scientists are becoming increasingly convinced that billions of years Mars was habitable. Whether it was in fact inhabited, or is still inhabited, remains hotly debated. To better constrain these questions, scientists are trying to understand the kinds of water chemistry that could have generated the minerals observed on Mars today, which were produced billions of years ago.

Mars' water was mineral-rich and salty
One of the clay minerals, smectite, can trap ions in water through ion exchanges in the presence of water.
Even after loss of water, smectite records ion compositions within interlayers of its structure
[Credit: Keisuke Fukushi et al. 2019]
Salinity (how much salt was present), pH (a measure of how acidic the water was), and redox state (roughly a measure of the abundance of gases such as hydrogen [H2, which are termed reducing environments] or oxygen [O2, which are termed oxidising environments; the two types are generally mutually incompatible]) are fundamental properties of natural waters. As an example, Earth's modern atmosphere is highly oxygenated (containing large amounts of O2), but one need only dig a few inches into the bottom of a beach or lake today on Earth to find environments which are highly reduced.


Recent remote measurements on Mars suggest its ancient environments may provide clues about Mars' early habitability. Specifically, the properties of pore water within sediments apparently deposited in lakes in Gale Crater on Mars suggest these sediments formed in the presence of liquid water which was of a pH close to that of Earth's modern oceans. Earth's oceans are of course host to myriad forms of life, thus it seems compelling that Mars' early surface environment was a place contemporary Earth life could have lived, but it remains a mystery as to why evidence of life on Mars is so hard to find.

The findings are published in Nature Communications.

Source: Tokyo Institute of Technology [January 21, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Mars?

315 views   40 likes   2 dislikes  

Channel: Terry's Theories  

Mars holds so many secrets and mysteries so many what ifs and maybes. One day we will know the truth. Is it possible there is an ancient civilization that time has forgotten on Mars?
MOC narrow-angle image AB1-08405 SOUTHEAST FLOOR OF WEST CANDOR CHASMA MOC narrow-angle image AB1-08405 is where you can find what appears to be an artificial structure found on Mars surface.
Source : http://asimov.msss.com/moc_gallery/ab1_m04/images/AB108405.html
///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
City Grid on Mars photograph found on Gigapan, compiled by Neville Thompson.
Source : http://www.gigapan.com/gigapans/217147
///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
Please Donate if you can. Proceeds will go towards a external hard drive and webcam to help better me in my research thank you. Paypal https://www.paypal.me/Franklin1275?locale.x=en_US

Video length: 10:09
Category: Science & Technology
31 comments

2020 February 1 Apollo 14 Heads for Home Image Credit Apollo...



2020 February 1

Apollo 14 Heads for Home
Image Credit Apollo 14, NASA, JSC, ASU (Image Reprocessing: Andy Saunders)

Explanation: When leaving lunar orbit in February 1971, the crew of Apollo 14 watched this Earthrise from their command module Kittyhawk. With Earth’s sunlit crescent just peaking over the lunar horizon, the cratered terrain in the foreground is along the lunar farside. Of course, while orbiting the Moon, the crew could watch Earth rise and set, but the Earth hung stationary in the sky over Fra Mauro Base, their landing site on the lunar surface. Rock samples brought back by the Apollo 14 mission included a 20 pound rock nicknamed Big Bertha, later determined to contain a likely fragment of a meteorite from planet Earth.

∞ Source: apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap200201.html



* This article was originally published here

The riddle of the heavenly bursts


This cosmic lightning storm is happening all around us. Somewhere in the earthly sky, there is a pulse that flashes and extinguishes in the next moment. These bursts, which must be measured with radio telescopes and last one thousandth of a second, are one of the greatest mysteries of astrophysics. Scientists doubt that militant aliens are fighting "Star Wars" in the vastness of space. But where do these phenomena—dubbed "fast radio bursts" by the experts—come from?

The riddle of the heavenly bursts
The radio telescope in Effelsberg is also part of the European VLBI network that searches for radio bursts
[Credit: © MPI for Radio Astronomy/Norbert Tacken]
In the city of Parkes, gigantic lattice mesh bowl rises into the sky. In 2001, this 64-meter diameter radio telescope (once the largest fully mobile radio telescope in the southern hemisphere) registered a mysterious radio burst—and nobody noticed it! It wasn't until five years later that astrophysicist Duncan Lorimer and his student David Narkevic found the signature of the signal in the telescope data more or less by chance. Even then, the specialists could not make sense of the phenomenon. But this was not the only "Lorimer burst."

"We now know of more than a hundred," says Laura Spitler. Since March 2019, the researcher has headed a Lise Meitner group on this topic at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy. Spitler has dedicated herself to these fleeting flickers in space for many years. Under her leadership, an international team discovered the first fast radio burst (FRB) on the northern celestial sphere in the Fuhrmann constellation in 2014. Astronomers had used the dish of the Arecibo telescope on Puerto Rico. The antenna, which measures 305 m in diameter, is firmly anchored in a natural valley and can only ever focus on a relatively small section of the firmament.

"Statistically speaking, there should be only seven eruptions per minute spread across the sky. It therefore takes a lot of luck to align your telescope to the right position at the right time," said Spitler after the discovery was announced. Both the properties of the radio bursts and their frequency derived from the measurements were in high agreement with what astronomers had found out about all the previously observed eruptions.


In fact, statistical assumptions were confirmed; according to these, approx. 10,000 of these unusual cosmic phenomena were thought to flare up in the earthly firmament each day. The surprisingly large number results from calculations of how much of the sky would have to be observed and for how long in order to explain the comparatively few discoveries made so far.

The Arecibo measurement also removed the last doubts about whether the radio bursts really came from the depths of the universe. After the first registered bursts, scientists concluded that they were being generated in an area far outside the Milky Way. This was deduced from an effect called plasma dispersion. When radio signals travel a long distance through the universe, they encounter numerous free electrons located in the space between the stars.

Ultimately, the speed of propagation of radio waves at lower frequencies decreases in a characteristic manner. For example, during the aforementioned radiation burst discovered with the Arecibo telescope, this dispersion was three times larger than one would expect from a source within the Milky Way. If the source were located in the galaxy, interstellar matter would contribute roughly 33% for the Arecibo source.


But what is the origin of the radio bursts? The astrophysicists have designed various scenarios, all more or less exotic. Many of them revolve around neutron stars. These are the remnants of massive explosions of massive suns as supernovae, only 30 km in size. In these spheres, matter is so densely packed that on Earth, one teaspoonful of its matter would weigh about as much as the Zugspitze massif. The neutron stars rotate quickly around their axes. Some of them have exceptionally strong magnetic fields.

For example, fast radio bursts could occur during a supernova—but also during the fusion of two neutron stars in a close binary star system—when the magnetic fields of the two individual stars collapse. In addition, a neutron star could collapse further into a black hole, emitting a burst.

These scientific scripts sound plausible at first glance. However, they have one flaw: They predict only one radio burst at a time. "If the flash was generated in a cataclysmic event that destroys the source, only one burst per source can be expected," says Laura Spitler. Indeed, in the early years, there were always single outbreaks—until in 2014 a burst called FRB 121102 went online. In 2016, Spitler and her team observed this to be the first "repeater," a burst with repeating pulses. "This refuted all models that explain FRB as the consequence of a catastrophic event," says Spitler.

The FRB 121102, discovered at the Arecibo telescope, was further observed by the researchers with the Very Large Array in New Mexico. After 80 hours of measuring time, they registered nine bursts and determined the position with an accuracy of one arc second. At this position in the sky, there is a permanently radiating radio source; optical images show a faint galaxy about three billion light years away.

With a diameter of only 13,000 light years, this star system is one of the dwarfs; the Milky Way is about ten times larger. "However, many new stars and perhaps even particularly large ones are born in this galaxy. This could be an indication of the source of the radio bursts," says Spitler.


The researcher thinks of pulsars—cosmic lighthouses that regularly emit radio radiation. Behind them are again fast rotating neutron stars with strong magnetic fields. If the axis of rotation and the axis of the magnetic field of such an object deviate from each other, a bundled radio beam can be produced. Each time this natural spotlight sweeps across the Earth, astronomers measure a short pulse.

The bursts of most radio pulsars are too weak for them to be detected from a great distance. This is not the case with the particularly short and extremely strong "giant pulses." A prime example of this class of objects is the crab pulsar, which was born in a supernova explosion observed in 1054 AD. Its pulses would be visible even from neighboring galaxies.

"A promising model suggests that fast radio bursts are much stronger and rarer than giant pulses from extragalactic neutron stars similar to the crab pulsar. Or even younger and more energetic ones like this one," says Spitler. "The home galaxy of FRB 121102 fits this model because it has the potential to produce just the right stars to become neutron stars at the end of their lives."

But whether this model is correct is literally written in the stars. The clarification is not getting any easier. Nevertheless, the observations continue. For example, the radio antennas of the European VLBI network examined another repeater in summer 2019. FRB 180916.J0158+65 showed no less than four radiation outbursts during the five-hour observation. Each lasted less than two milliseconds.

The home of this radio burst is in a spiral galaxy about 500 million light-years away. This makes it the closest observed so far even though this distance seems "astronomical." It also turns out that there is apparently a high rate of star births around the burst.

The position in the galaxy differs from that of all other bursts investigated so far. In other words: Apparently, the FRB flare up in all kinds of cosmic regions and diverse environments. "This is one of the reasons why it is still unclear whether all bursts have the same source type or are generated by the same physical processes," says Spitler. "The mystery of their origin remains."

Source: Max Planck Society [January 21, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Triangular Shaped UAP of Saint Pierre Reunion Island

576 views   35 likes   0 dislikes  

Channel: Terry's Theories  

On May 14th 2018 on Saint Pierre, Reunion Island which is part of a small group of island in the North Atlantic Ocean. There was a sighting of a triangular shaped UFO. My question to you... what is it. What do you believe this is do you think that we built this craft, Sightings of triangular crafts have been reported all over the world. Granted i'm sure many may be false but surely not all.
Source video Mufon case number 92020

Video length: 3:37
Category: Science & Technology
23 comments

Gravitational wave echoes may confirm Stephen Hawking’s hypothesis of quantum black holes


Echoes in gravitational wave signals suggest that the event horizon of a black hole may be more complicated than scientists currently think.

Gravitational wave echoes may confirm Stephen Hawking’s hypothesis of quantum black holes
An artist’s conception of a black hole, surrounded by gas
[Credit: Gerd Altmann, Pixabay]
Research from the University of Waterloo reports the first tentative detection of these echoes, caused by a microscopic quantum "fuzz" that surrounds newly formed black holes.

Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space-time, caused by the collision of massive, compact objects in space, such as black holes or neutron stars.

"According to Einstein's Theory of General Relativity, nothing can escape from the gravity of a black hole once it has passed a point of no return, known as the event horizon," explained Niayesh Afshordi, a physics and astronomy professor at Waterloo. "This was scientists' understanding for a long time until Stephen Hawking used quantum mechanics to predict that quantum particles will slowly leak out of black holes, which we now call Hawking radiation.


"Scientists have been unable to experimentally determine if any matter is escaping black holes until the very recent detection of gravitational waves," said Afshordi. "If the quantum fuzz responsible for Hawking radiation does exist around black holes, gravitational waves could bounce off of it, which would create smaller gravitational wave signals following the main gravitational collision event, similar to repeating echoes."

Afshordi and his coauthor Jahed Abedi from Max-Planck-Institut fur Gravitationsphysik in Germany, have reported the first tentative findings of these repeating echoes, providing experimental evidence that black holes may be radically different from what Einstein's theory of relativity predicts, and lack event horizons.

They used gravitational wave data from the first observation of a neutron star collision, recorded by the LIGO/Virgo gravitational wave detectors.


The echoes observed by Afshordi and Abedi match the simulated echoes predicted by models of black holes that account for the effects of quantum mechanics and Hawking radiation.

"Our results are still tentative because there is a very small chance that what we see is due to random noise in the detectors, but this chance becomes less likely as we find more examples," said Afshordi. "Now that scientists know what we're looking for, we can look for more examples, and have a much more robust confirmation of these signals. Such a confirmation would be the first direct probe of the quantum structure of space-time."

The study was published in the Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics.

Author: Matthew Grant | Source: University of Waterloo [January 21, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Possible Tic-Tac UFOs Over Mexico

464 views   28 likes   1 dislikes  

Channel: Terry's Theories  

Hey guys if you are able to donate to the cause that would be a great help with the UFO research. https://www.paypal.me/Franklin1275?locale.x=en_US
This video takes place in Atizapán de Zaragoza, edomex that is just outside of Mexico City in 2017. YouTube channel Elizabeth Rios did a great job recording this video. The video also shows three white or very reflective highly maneuverable unidentified flying objects over Mexico. Also Elizabeth Rios caught a white or reflective fourth unidentified object in erratic flight in her video as well. So please leave me your comments about this video and guys please try to refrain from using profanity in your comments, I try to keep it family oriented as best as I can and as always thank you for watching.
Source video :https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hid9rjaj1w8

Video length: 3:24
Category: Science & Technology
25 comments

Global river deltas increasingly shaped by humans, study says


A new study of nearly every delta on the planet shows how river delta shapes and sizes around the world are changing due to human activity—both for the good and bad.

Global river deltas increasingly shaped by humans, study says
Oblique view of the heavily tide-influenced Ganges-Brahmaputra Delta in Bangladesh,
with Himalayas in the background [Credit: Google Earth]
The study, carried out by a Dutch/American team that includes present and former Tulane University researchers, demonstrates how the interaction of river flow, waves and tides can transform the shape of river mouths and their associated deltas, including land gain and loss. The study reveals that many deltas globally are still building land today, but that this trend is unlikely to continue due to the acceleration of sea-level rise and other human-induced impacts.


The new paper, published in Nature, considers about 11,000 deltas worldwide and takes advantage of the wealth of information that is presently available from global datasets on river drainage basins, sediment fluxes, wave climate and tidal range, among others.

"One of the exciting aspects of this study is that it offers a novel and fully quantitative way to predict delta shape based on newly developed theory," said Torbjorn Tornqvist, Vokes Geology Professor at Tulane and co-author of the paper.


The lead author, Jaap Nienhuis, an assistant professor at Utrecht University in The Netherlands, developed the portion of the theory that predicts the effect of tidal influence on deltas while he was a postdoc in Tornqvist's group at Tulane.

The researchers use a recently developed tool known as the Aqua Monitor to determine land loss and land gain over the past 30 years from satellite imagery. While this shows that about 1,000 deltas worldwide, including the Mississippi Delta, are losing land, about 1,500, most of which are located in Southeast Asia, are actually growing due to increased sediment delivery. This is mainly due to deforestation that increases erosion rates.

The study also offers a piece of information that is of particular interest for regions—such as the Mississippi Delta—that seek to rebuild coastal land. On average, for every square foot of new land, about 150 cubic feet of sediment is needed.

Author: Barri Bronston | Source: Tulane University [January 22, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Deep diving scientists discover bubbling CO2 hotspot


Diving 200 feet under the ocean surface to conduct scientific research can lead to some interesting places. For University of Texas at Austin Professor Bayani Cardenas, it placed him in the middle of a champagne-like environment of bubbling carbon dioxide with off-the-chart readings of the greenhouse gas.

Deep diving scientists discover bubbling CO2 hotspot
A researcher collects gas samples at Soda Springs in the Philippines
[Credit: University of Texas at Austin]
Cardenas discovered the region - which he calls "Soda Springs" - while studying how groundwater from a nearby island could affect the ocean environment of the Verde Island Passage in the Philippines. The passage is one of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world and is home to thriving coral reefs.

The amazing bubbling location, which Cardenas captured on video, is not a climate change nightmare. It is linked to a nearby volcano that vents out the gases through cracks in the ocean floor and has probably been doing so for decades or even millennia. However, Cardenas said that the high CO2 levels could make Soda Springs an ideal spot for studying how coral reefs may cope with climate change. The site also offers a fascinating setting to study corals and marine life that are making a home among high levels of CO2.

"These high CO2 environments that are actually close to thriving reefs, how does it work?" said Cardenas, who is a professor in the Jackson School of Geosciences at UT Austin. "Life is still thriving there, but perhaps not the kind that we are used to. They need to be studied."


Cardenas and his coauthors from institutions in the Philippines, the Netherlands and UT described Soda Springs along with multiple scientific findings about groundwater in a paper published this month in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

The scientists measured CO2 concentrations as high as 95,000 parts per million (ppm), more than 200 times the concentration of CO2 found in the atmosphere. The readings range from 60,000 to 95,000 and are potentially the highest ever recorded in nature. The CO2 levels fall quickly away from the seeps as the gas is diluted in the ocean, but the gas still creates an elevated CO2 environment along the rest of the coastline of the Calumpan Peninsula, with levels in the 400 to 600 ppm range.

Cardenas is a hydrologist and not an expert on reef systems. He discovered Soda Springs while researching whether groundwater from the nearby land could be discharging into the submarine ocean environment, which is a phenomenon that is generally ignored by scientists looking at the water cycle, Cardenas said.


"It's an unseen flux of water from land to the ocean," he said. "And it's hard to quantify. It's not like a river where you have a delta and you can measure it."

The team tracked groundwater by testing for radon 222, a naturally occurring radioactive isotope that is found in local groundwater but not in open ocean water. Along with the CO2 bubbles, the team also found hotspots in the sea floor where groundwater was being discharged into the ocean. This is significant, said Cardenas, because the connection between the groundwater and ocean means that there is a pathway for pollutants from the island to make it to the reef system.

This is particularly important for a place like the Philippines, he said, where coastal development is booming largely because of ecotourism driven by the nearby reefs, but the communities almost always depend on septic tanks instead of modern sewage systems. This means the development could drive pollution to the same reefs the economy relies on.


Cardenas has been scuba diving since his college days in the Philippines. Training in deep diving has allowed him to open up a portion of the ocean that is rarely studied.

"It's really a big part of the ocean that is left unexplored because it's too shallow for remotely operated vehicles and is too deep for regular divers," he said.

Conducting field work under water has also led Cardenas to develop new technical skills and techniques to collect samples under water. Elco Luijendijk, a lecturer at the University of Gottingen in Germany who reviewed the study for the journal, said that these techniques - and the findings they enabled -represent major scientific strides.

"Underwater fieldwork is 10 times harder than above water, as I have also recently found out during a diving campaign in the Caribbean," he said. "Even simple measurements and collecting samples require a lot of care, let alone measurement of radon isotopes, which even onshore is tricky. This [study] really widens our knowledge on what happens in these environments and has shown that these vents can change seawater chemistry over large areas."

Source: University of Texas at Austin [January 22, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

Here, there and everywhere: Large and giant viruses abound globally


While the microbes in a single drop of water could outnumber a small city's population, the number of viruses in the same drop--the vast majority not harmful to humans--could be even larger. Viruses infect bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes, and they range in particle and genome size from small, to large and even giant. The genomes of giant viruses are on the order of 100 times the size of what has typically been associated with viruses, while the genomes of large viruses may be only 10 times larger. And yet, while they are found everywhere, comparatively little is known about viruses, much less those considered large and giant.

Here, there and everywhere: Large and giant viruses abound globally
Illustration capturing giant virus genomic diversity
[Credit: Zosia Rostomian/Berkeley Lab]
In a recent study published in Nature, a team led by researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Joint Genome Institute (JGI), a DOE Office of Science User Facility located at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) uncovered a broad diversity of large and giant viruses that belong to the nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDV) supergroup. The expansion of the diversity for large and giant viruses offered the researchers insights into how they might interact with their hosts, and how those interactions may in turn impact the host communities and their roles in carbon and other nutrient cycles.

"This is the first study to take a more global look at giant viruses by capturing genomes of uncultivated giant viruses from environmental sequences across the globe, then using these sequences to make inferences about the biogeographic distribution of these viruses in the various ecosystems, their diversity, their predicted metabolic features and putative hosts," noted study senior author Tanja Woyke, who heads JGI's Microbial Program.


The team mined more than 8,500 publicly available metagenome datasets generated from sampling sites around the world, including data from several DOE-mission relevant proposals through JGI's Community Science Program. Proposals from researchers at Concordia University (Canada), University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the Georgia Institute of Technology focused on microbial communities from freshwater ecosystems, including, respectively, the northern Lakes of Canada, the Laurentian Great Lakes, Lake Mendota and Lake Lanier were of particular interest.

Sifting Out and Reconstructing Virus Genomes

Much of what is known about the NCLDV group has come from viruses that have been co-cultivated with amoeba or with their hosts, though metagenomics is now making it possible to seek out and characterize uncultivated viruses. For instance, a 2018 study from a JGI-led team uncovered giant viruses in the soil for the first time. The current study applied a multi-step approach to mine, bin and then filter the data for the major capsid protein (MCP) to identify NCLDV viruses. JGI researchers previously applied this approach to uncover a novel group of giant viruses dubbed "Klosneuviruses."

Here, there and everywhere: Large and giant viruses abound globally
Metagenomic expansion of the diversity of the Nucleocytoplasmic Large DNA Viruses. The phylogenetic tree
shows 2,074 giant virus metagenome-assembled genomes (in green) together with 205 previously
published viral genomes (in white) [Credit: Frederik Schulz]
Previously known members of the viral lineages in the NCLDV group infect mainly protists and algae, and some of them have genomes in the megabase range. The study's lead and co-corresponding author Frederik Schulz, a research scientist in Woyke's group, used the MCP as a barcode to sift out virus fragments, reconstructing 2,074 genomes of large and giant viruses.


More than 50,000 copies of the MCP were identified in the metagenomic data, two-thirds of which could be assigned to viral lineages, and predominantly in samples from marine (55%) and freshwater (40%) environments. As a result, the giant virus protein space grew from 123,000 to over 900,000 proteins, and virus diversity in this group expanded 10-fold from just 205 genomes, redefining the phylogenetic tree of giant viruses.

Metabolic Reprogramming a Common Strategy for Large and Giant Viruses

Another significant finding from the study was a common strategy employed by both large and giant viruses. Metabolic reprogramming, Schulz explained, makes the host function better under certain conditions, which then helps the virus to replicate faster and produce more progeny. This can provide short- and long-term impact on host metabolism in general, or on host populations impacted by adverse environmental conditions.

Function prediction on the 2,000 new giant virus genomes led the team to uncover a prevalence of encoded functions that could boost host metabolism, such as genes that play roles in the uptake and transport of diverse substrates, and also photosynthesis genes including potential light-driven proton pumps. "We're seeing that this is likely a common strategy among the large and giant viruses based on the predicted metabolism that's encoded in the viral genomes," he said. "It seems to be way more common than had been previously thought."


Woyke noted that despite the number of metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs) reconstructed from this effort, the team was still unable to link 20,000 major capsid proteins of large and giant viruses to any known virus lineage. "Getting complete, near complete, or partial giant virus genomes reconstructed from environmental sequences is still challenging and even with this study we are likely to just scratch the surface of what's out there. Beyond these 2,000 MAGs extracted from 8,000 metagenomes, there are still a lot of giant virus diversity that we're missing in the various ecosystems. We can detect a lot more MCPs than we can extract MAGs, and they don't fit in the genome tree of viral diversity - yet."

"We expect this to change with not only new metagenome datasets becoming available but also complementary single-cell sorting and sequencing of viruses together with their unicellular hosts," Schulz added.

Source: Berkeley Lab — Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory [January 22, 2020]



* This article was originally published here

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