Archive for October, 2006

Hubble Repair Mission Approved by NASA

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 31, 2006   View Article

Yes, the Hubble Space Telescope will stay in business, at least until 2013.

NASA announced today that the U.S. space agency has found a way to safely service the aging telescope, which is famous for capturing spectacular images of the universe.

Elephants Recognize Selves in Mirror, Study Says

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 30, 2006   View Article

Elephants can recognize themselves in mirrors, according to a new study. Humans, great apes, and dolphins are the only other animals known to possess this form of self-awareness.

All of these animals also lead socially complex lives and display empathy—concern and understanding of another’s feelings—researchers report.

Illegal Ivory Trade Boosted by Angola Craft Markets, Conservationists Say

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 27, 2006   View Article

Sky-high demand is feeding a renewed flood of illegal ivory sales in Africa, posing a serious threat to the continent’s elephants, conservationists say.

“The ivory trade is starting to come back, and it’s really a concern,” said Tom Milliken, eastern and southern Africa director for TRAFFIC who is based in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Wind Energy Boom Sweeping U.S., Industry Watchers Say

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 25, 2006   View Article

U.S. citizens are beginning to come to terms with the country’s energy needs and are finding an answer blowing in the wind, according to electric power industry experts.

“Last year, and again this year, wind is going to be the second largest source of new power generation coming online,” said Christine Real de Azua, a spokesperson for the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) in Washington, D.C.

Seagulls May Inspire New Airplane Wings, Scientists Say

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 24, 2006   View Article

Want to see the future of flight? Then visit the beach.

Scientists have found that airplane wings shaped similarly to those of some seagulls may reduce drag during flight.

Drag reduction saves fuel, explains Barry Lazos, an aeronautics research engineer at the NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.

Iceland Breaks Whale-Hunt Ban, Kills Fin Whale

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 23, 2006   View Article

Icelandic whalers killed an endangered fin whale Saturday, breaking a 20-year moratorium on commercial whaling in the Scandinavian country.

Television images Sunday showed a 65-foot-long (20-meter-long) fin whale being towed into an Icelandic harbor. The whale was harpooned in the North Atlantic about 200 miles (320 kilometers) west of the country.

Not So Fast: Greenland Ice Melting, But Slower Than Thought

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: October 19, 2006   View Article

The Greenland ice sheet is rapidly wasting away—but not as quickly as some recent studies have found, according to a new analysis.

Several recent studies have suggested that the island has been losing ice at a rate sufficient to push global sea levels up by 0.02 inch (0.5 millimeter) a year.

The new analysis cuts that rate in half, but the ice-mass loss is still happening fast enough to alarm scientists.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach