A Chinese rover has found evidence that there was liquid water on Mars far more recently than we thought — a discovery that could affect plans to one day colonize the Red Planet.
Researchers: The emergence of a mysterious area in the South Atlantic where the geomagnetic field strength is decreasing rapidly, has led to speculation that Earth is heading towards a magnetic polarity reversal. However, a new study that pieces together evidence stretching back 9,000 years, suggests that the current changes aren’t unique, and that a reversal may not be in the cards after all.
Professor Granville Sewell appeals to common sense and the limitations of natural forces to argue the obvious: “Unintelligent forces cannot rearrange atoms into computers and airplanes and nuclear power plants and smartphones.”
Jenny Morber: Theoretical research suggests that quantum effects could drive mutations in human DNA. This is the latest development in an emerging field called quantum biology.
Ethan Siegel: Thanks to its unique, unprecedented capabilities, JWST might answer five currently open questions about the Universe in very surprising ways.
Author and design theorist, Eric Anderson, clarifies the limitations of randomness in producing biological novelty.
Witze: More than fifteen months after landing in Jezero Crater on Mars, NASA’s Perseverance rover has finally begun its hunt for ancient life in earnest.
The second law of thermodynamics is among the most sacred in all of science, but it has always rested on 19th century arguments about probability. New arguments trace its true source to the flows of quantum information.
Theoretical physicist Marcelo Gleiser raises the issue that the multiverse hypothesis suffers from the unscientific property of non-falsifiability. Embedded in his article is a solid acknowledgement of the fine-tuning of physical parameters for life to exist in our universe.
In his lengthy article, Bell draws attention to evolutionary hurdles to the origin of eukaryotic cells. The “chasm” between eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells is causing a re-think of the universal common ancestor notion.
Davide Castelvecchi: Chemists say they have solved a crucial problem in a theory of life’s beginnings, by demonstrating that RNA molecules can link short chains of amino acids together.
In an article summarized at The Conversation, recent research affirms the suite of conditions involving plate tectonics and resultant mountain-building, coupled with erosion and volcanic activity, that has helped to maintain a habitable climate on our planet.
Astrophysicist Jeff Zweerink reminds us that the theoretical prediction of black holes and their subsequent discovery highlights the comprehensibility of the universe by human minds–even relating to phenomena far beyond anything in our experience.
The next couple of nights will offer early-morning sky-watchers the opportunity to view our nearest planetary neighbors (going outward from the sun) appearing to be separated by only about the width of a full moon.
An updated giraffe genome, published March 17, 2021 in Science Advances, reveals new insights into how the species accommodates a “blatantly strange body architecture.”