Archives

November 2018


"The last two days have been pretty nice weather-wise, and very productive."

A Star Trek-inspired handheld device based on a silicon chip could help make rapid, sophisticated medical diagnostics more accessible to people around the world, scientists say.

"The weather improved today with sunshine and light winds greeting us this morning, a nice change of pace from the constant pounding we have had the last few days."

Over the past decade, the study of exoplanets has shifted from their detection to the characterization of their atmospheres.

Changes in solar irradiance and in its spectral distribution are among the main natural drivers of the climate on Earth. However, irradiance measurements are only available for less than four decades, while assessment of solar influence on Earth requires much longer records.

Could there be another planet out there with a society at the same stage of technological advancement as ours?

"We are still recovering from the damaging winds that trashed the camp, but as soon as things calm down we will get busy and pull it all back together."

Earth's water may have originated from both asteroidal material and gas left over from the formation of the Sun, according to new research. The new finding could give scientists important insights about the development of other planets and their potential to support life.

"Our winds have continued unabated likely hitting 40-50 m/s at times."

The presence of water on Mars has been theorized for centuries. Early telescopes revealed ice caps, and early astronomers noted channels that were hypothesized to be natural rivers or creature-created canals.

If extraterrestrial intelligence exists somewhere in our galaxy, a new MIT study proposes that laser technology on Earth could, in principle, be fashioned into something of a planetary porch light -- a beacon strong enough to attract attention from as far as 20,000 light-years away.

The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) has now made continuous in-situ meteorological measurements for several martian years at Gale crater, Mars.

Scientists at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) have found an explanation for a periodicity in the sequence of the genomes of all eukaryotes, from yeast to humans.

The formyl radical HCO has been proposed as the basic precursor of many complex organic molecules such as methanol (CH3OH) or glycolaldehyde (CH2OHCHO).

"Just after getting a couple of tents set up today, the winds started pounding us with 60 knot gusts, and probably increasing this evening to what are likely 75-80 knot winds."

NASA has awarded funding for a new interdisciplinary project called the Laboratory for Agnostic Biosignatures (LAB). The award, totaling nearly $7 million dollars, will be used to develop new, non-Earth like life detection approaches for use on Mars and on Jupiter and Saturn's icy moons.

Resonating oscillations of a planet's atmosphere caused by gravitational tides and heating from its star could prevent a planet's rotation from steadily slowing over time, according to new research by Caleb Scharf, who is the Director of Astrobiology at Columbia University.

Scientists have reported a theoretical and experimental characterization of DHPT (N(1)‐(2′,3′‐dihydroxypropil)thymine). DHPT is a potential prebiotic nucleoside analogue for the molecule 5-methyluridine.

"Today was a pretty productive day. We turned in early yesterday, everyone was pretty tired from the traverse the day before followed by a day of getting two more tents up and a first cut at organizing the camp."

Update from Dale Andersen via Garmin inReach: Nov 2, 20182:56:30 PM: "Arrived Untersee 3pm UTC, all ok first tent up"

Spending long periods in space not only leads to muscle atrophy and reductions in bone density, it also has lasting effects on the brain. However, little is known about how different tissues of the brain react to exposure to microgravity, and it remains unclear whether and to what extent the neuroanatomical changes so far observed persist following return to normal gravity.

To better support the broad, interdisciplinary field of astrobiology - the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe - NASA is announcing a new programmatic infrastructure for the Astrobiology Program.