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Alien atmospheres recreated on Earth

Image copyright European Southern Observatory Image caption Super-Earths and mini-Neptunes have a radius between one to four times that of Earth Researchers have recreated the chemistry of atmospheres on distant planets for the first time in the lab, according to two new papers. They found that hazes, such as the hydrocarbons that shroud Saturn’s moon […]

Jupiter’s winds run deep into the planet

Image copyright NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/ASI/INAF/JIRAM Image caption The central cyclone at the planet’s north pole is encircled by eight other storms We are finally getting a look inside the biggest planet in the Solar System – Jupiter. And it is very strange. The American space agency’s Juno probe has been studying the variations in the pull of […]

Climate change ‘impacts women more than men’

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Over 70% of those displaced by flooding in Pakistan in 2010 were women and children Women are more likely than men to be affected by climate change, studies show. UN figures indicate that 80% of people displaced by climate change are women. Roles as primary caregivers and providers of […]

Ocean mappers line up for XPRIZE final

Image copyright XPRIZE Woodruff Patrick Laputka Image caption Japan’s Kuroshio team brings together technologies from universities, institutes and companies The $7m XPRIZE competition to find the innovative technologies that can map the world’s oceans in rapid time has named its nine finalists. The teams come from the US, Japan, New Zealand, and a group of […]

Red squirrel numbers boosted by predator

Image copyright Tim Blackburn Image caption There are an estimated 140,000 red squirrels in the UK, compared with more than two million greys The pine marten has emerged as an unlikely ally for the beleaguered native red squirrel in its battle with the grey squirrel. This is according to scientists at the University of Aberdeen, […]

Cars buck falling CO2 emissions trend

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Emissions from coal use are down while emissions from motor vehicles have risen Britain’s carbon emissions have sunk to the level last seen in 1890 – the year before penalties were first awarded in football. In 2017, CO₂ emissions from fossil fuels fell by 2.6%. This was mainly driven […]

Satellite links to optimise European airspace

Image copyright Getty Images The European Space Agency and London’s Inmarsat company are moving to the next phase of their project to improve the efficiency of European airspace. The pair’s Iris programme would see air traffic controllers route planes via robust and secure satellite data links. At the moment, this management involves VHF radio voice […]

Alzheimer’s researchers win brain prize

Image copyright SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY Image caption Alzheimer’s disease brain (left) compared to normal (right) Four dementia scientists have shared this year’s 1m Euro brain prize for pivotal work that has changed our understanding of Alzheimer’s disease. Profs John Hardy, Bart De Strooper, Michel Goedert, based in the UK, and Prof Christian Haass, from Germany, […]

Industry ‘exaggerates plastics recycling success’

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Mangoes sit on a supermarket shelf wrapped in soft plastic jackets to prevent bruising The packaging industry in England has been accused of exaggerating the amount of its plastic that gets recycled. Waste consultancy Eunomia estimates official figures over-state the quantity of plastic packaging sent for recycling by about […]

Penguin super-colony spotted from space

Media captionLargest population of penguins found in Antarctic Peninsula Scientists have stumbled across a huge group of previously unknown Adélie penguins on the most northerly point of the Antarctic Peninsula. Numbering more than 1.5 million birds, they were first noticed when great patches of their poo, or guano, showed up in pictures taken from space. […]