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Posted inSci/Tech

Dynamic rivers contribute to Amazon’s rich bird diversity

One of the most contentious questions in evolutionary biology is: how did the Amazon become so rich in species? A new study focused on birds examines how the movements of rivers in the Amazon have contributed to the area’s exceptional biological diversity. The U.S. National Science Foundation-funded team, led by American Museum of Natural History scientists, found that […]

Posted inEnviro

More than 1 in 5 reptile species are threatened with extinction

Conservation efforts for other animals have likely helped protect many reptile species, according to a new study led by scientists at NatureServe and other organizations. The study, published in the journal Nature, presents an analysis of the first comprehensive extinction risk assessment for reptiles on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species. It […]

Posted inSci/Tech

We got it! Astronomers reveal first image of the black hole at the heart of our galaxy

Washington, D.C.  –  During a press conference hosted by the U.S. National Science Foundation with the Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration in Washington, D.C. today, astronomers unveiled the first image of the supermassive black hole at the center of our own Milky Way galaxy. This result provides overwhelming evidence that the object is indeed a black hole […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Microplastic pollution lingers in rivers for years before entering oceans

Microplastics can deposit and linger in riverbeds for as long as seven years before washing into the ocean, a new study has found. The research was supported in part by the U.S. National Science Foundation. Because rivers are in near-constant motion, researchers previously assumed that lightweight microplastics quickly flowed through rivers, rarely interacting with riverbed sediments.  […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Climate change could lead to blackouts, higher power costs on U.S. West Coast

Two new studies led by North Carolina State University researchers offer a preview of what electricity consumers on the West Coast could experience under two different future scenarios: one where excessive heat due to climate change strains power supplies, and one where the grid shifts toward renewable energy while the climate follows historic trends. In […]

Posted inSci/Tech

The glacier of greatest concern

Antarctica’s massive Thwaites Glacier is melting because of climate change, and a collapse of the glacier could raise sea levels significantly around the world. To glaciologists, it’s “the glacier of greatest concern” and the focus of the largest-ever joint U.S.-U.K. Antarctic field research program – the International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration. The U.S. National Science Foundation and […]

Posted inSci/Tech

The Stars Within Us

February 8, 2021 – Humans have always looked to the stars and studied them. Over the past century, science has revealed the fundamental role stars play for nearly everything in existence, including the elements on the Periodic Table. The birth, life and death of every star creates and disseminates the elements of the Periodic Table throughout […]

Posted inSci/Tech

After the hurricane: Maria’s far-reaching effects on Puerto Rico’s watersheds and forests

Dec. 10, 2018 – With fierce winds and flooding rains, hurricanes can be disasters for people — and for ecosystems. These devastating storms have major effects on tropical forests, demolishing tree canopies and leaving behind debris that piles up in watershed streams and on forest floors. Scientists at the National Science Foundation (NSF) co-located Luquillo […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Scientists fly above wildfires this summer to clarify chemistry of smoke

July 20, 2018 – On August 11, 2018, the WE-CAN team will host a research aircraft media event at the Boise Airport, featuring two aircraft: the NSF/NCAR C-130 and the University of Wyoming King Air. This summer, a four-engine cargo plane laden with scientists and sophisticated equipment will make flights straight into hazy smoke from Western wildfires. […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Hidden “rock moisture” possible key to forest response to drought

February 27, 2018 – A little-studied, underground layer of rock may provide a vital reservoir for trees, especially in times of drought, report scientists funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and affiliated with The University of Texas (UT) at Austin and the University of California, Berkeley. The study, published today in the journal Proceedings […]

Posted inSci/Tech

Analysis of fossilized Antarctic bird’s ‘voice box’ suggests dinosaurs couldn’t sing

October 13, 2016 – Birds are direct descendants of dinosaurs and considered “living dinosaurs” by scientists. “This finding helps explain why no such organ has been preserved in a non-bird dinosaur or crocodile relative,” said Julia Clarke, a paleontologist at The University of Texas at Austin’s Jackson School of Geosciences. Clarke, whose research is funded […]