Ryan Wallace

Finding Bright Solutions to Smog in the ‘City of Lights’

Can’t find the Eiffel Tower? It appears that most of Paris is choking on a thick smog that is plaguing most of northern France. In recent months French authorities have claimed that major cities in northern France, such as Paris, have been contributing greatly to an ever-growing problem of air pollution in the area. So in order to combat the haze of smog, French officials are coming up with a bright solution to save the tarnished facade of the “City of Lights”.

Supernovae Dust ‘Goldmine’ Found at the Center of the Milky Way

One of the largest questions to date has been what building materials were present at the formation of our Milky Way galaxy? Astronomers have long theorized that the building material may have come from the death of supermassive stars, however, the galaxy-building dust is thought to burn up in a supernova like that. But now researchers are saying that may not be the case at all. In a new study published this week in the journal Science Express, researchers with Cornell University have made the first direct discovery of dust used to build the cosmos at the center of the Milky Way, and they believe it may have resulted from an ancient supernova.

‘Water Man of India’ Takes Prize for Bringing Hope to A Dry Future

While the Nobel Peace Prize may applaud many great acts of human kindness and perseverance, not every year’s winners are designated as those that feed the masses or even bring essential components of life, such as water, to those in need. In order to applaud these efforts, the Stockholm Water Prize was created as the unofficial “Nobel Prize for water”, and each year it recognizes those fighting in the most impoverished nations for potable water to be brought to masses. This year’s laureate, however, is one for the record books as he alone has brought water to 1,000 villages across northern India.

Tide of the Decade Sweeps Across France’s Atlantic Coast, Turning Islets into Islands

How strong are the sun and the moon’s pull on the tides? A lot stronger than you may have ever believed. In what happened to be a perfect trifecta of cosmic events, this Friday’s alignment allowed for a supermoon, a total solar eclipse, and perhaps one of the greatest ocean surges our generation has seen since the turn of the 21st century. In fact, in what happened to be a tourist’s dream, the picturesque Mont Saint Michel Abbey on the coast of France was turned into a island for a brief while as the “tide of the century” submerged the path that leads to its fortified walls.
Organic Molecules found on surface of Comet 67P.

Molecular Nitrogen on Comet 67P Reveals a Frigid Start to Our Solar System

For the past several months the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Rosetta spacecraft mission has been tailing the famous Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko with many answers at the core of its research. While in orbit the mission has been able to gather an immense amount of data, creating a never-before-seen view of comets as the first spacecraft to ever successfully orbit one in our history. Yet, many molecular ingredients that are thought to have given rise to comets have not been found.

Total Solar Eclipse 2015—Were You Underwhelmed?

It’s the start to the spring today, and with the vernal equinox came a celestial event unlike those in common occurrence. But while flocks of sky-watchers and astronomers ventured north into the Arctic, where a total solar eclipse would be visible for the last time until 2026 in continental Europe, many were left disappointed at the less than “thrilling” display.
Total Solar Eclipse

Solar Eclipse Guide March 2015—How To Watch it Tonight From Anywhere on Earth

A rather rare occurrence, happening once every year or two, a total eclipse of the sun is a pretty big deal in the sky-watching community. Not only is it special because the sun’s disk entirely covered by the moon, but also because it’s a cosmic occurrence right in our back yard. But for those not living in the Arctic or on the Faroe Islands archipelago between Norway and Iceland, tonights events may be a little hard to see.

Eclipse Tourists—Beware of Polar Bear Attacks

Think of star-gazing and astronomy as a particularly safe hobby? Think again. It turns out that while looking at the cosmos, hundreds of thousands of light-years away, local astronomers may be too preoccupied to realize the threats much closer to home.

How a Beaked Whale Fossil May Reveal Origins of Humanities First Steps

In a study published this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers with the University of Potsdam in Germany say that they may have found the origin of man’s first steps on land with the rediscovery of a 17 million year old fossil of a beaked whale once native to East Africa. The fossil, which was original unearthed in 1964, but lost for nearly half a century after the skull was misplaced, is the oldest known fossil of a beaked whale and strongly suggests an exact time for when the East African plateau was once turned into a savannah.

Research Provides Al Gore With a Climate Change Platform for Election

For years now former Vice President of the United States, Al Gore has been the the man professing the end of the world as we know it. In fact, while his predictions and commentary on the matter of global climate change may have sent scientists and the rest of the American public into a frenzy, they also happened to win him an Academy Award for his film “An Inconvenient Truth”. But with a changing industry and a change in the global conversation, Gore’s recent tone has been a lot more hopeful than it once was. And with news this weekend of an even greater shift towards green energy, with a discovery made by researchers at Brown University, some are hopeful that Gore will once again reclaim an office in the White House with election campaigns starting right around the corner.

How One Innovation May Change the Solar Energy Game Forever

If you’ve ever ventured out into the middle of the desert, you’ve likely encountered a solar field of sorts. On the way to Las Vegas, for example, there exists a solar plant that leverages thousands of glass reflectors to burn hot with the power of the sun. But when it comes to more domesticate uses of the sun, researchers and consumers have been limited by the capabilities of light-absorbing perovskite films used in solar cells. Now, however, thanks to a PhD researcher at Brown University, the tides may have changed.

First Successful Penis Transplant Raises Questions around South African Circumcision Ceremonies

While a South African patient’s identity is being protected for ethical reasons, according to Tygerberg Hospital, news of his successful procedure and sexual history are making headlines nonetheless. Fully recovered from a nine-hour operation that occurred on Dec. 11, 2014, the young man whose name is not being disclosed at this time, marks a great achievement in that doctors were the first to successfully complete a penile transplant operation in his case.

Listeriosis Outbreak Now Poses Threat to Ice Cream—Blue Bell Creameries Recalls Products

It’s in the popcorn, in the caramel apples, and now it’s in the ice cream. It appears that Listeria monocytogenes has some pretty great tastes, seeing as how it has infected all of our favorite treats. And now, in what happens to be the company’s first recall in a successful 108-year history, a new outbreak of Listeriosis has caused Blue Bell Creameries to take its ice cream off of the shelves.

Tropical Cyclone Pam Devastates Vanuatu in the South Pacific

In the midst of unimaginable destruction, meteorologists say that a cyclone, designated “Cyclone Pam”, will continue to devastate islands in the South Pacific even after the storm brought torrential rains and fierce winds hour after hour since the start of the weekend.
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