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Science

The latest science news, photos and videos covering space, the environment, human development and more.

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2d ago

China defends handling of rocket that fell to Earth

Booster rockets usually fall back to Earth soon after takeoff. China’s space agency hasn’t said why the Long March was sent temporarily into orbit.
Image: Long March 5B rocket
Image: Long March 5B rocket

String of satellites baffles residents, bugs astronomers

This month, SpaceX has already launched dozens of satellites. It is all part of a plan to bridge the digital divide and bring internet access to underserved areas of the world.
A string of SpaceX StarLink satellites passes over an old stone house near Florence, Kan., on May 6, 2021.
A string of SpaceX StarLink satellites passes over an old stone house near Florence, Kan., on May 6, 2021.

A giant sequoia in California is still smoldering from last year's wildfires

The burning tree was found by the National Park Service during surveys in the area to assess damage from the 2020 Castle Fire.
A single burning giant sequoia in Board Camp Grove from the 2020 Castle Fire in the southwestern area of Sequoia National Park.
A single burning giant sequoia in Board Camp Grove from the 2020 Castle Fire in the southwestern area of Sequoia National Park.
5d ago

Huge Chinese rocket is hurtling toward Earth — but no one knows where

There is a tiny chance the debris could hit New York, Los Angeles, Madrid, Rio de Janeiro, the Nigerian capital of Abuja or Beijing.
Image: FILE PHOTO: Long March-5B Y2 rocket, carrying the core module of China's space station Tianhe, takes off from Wenchang
Image: FILE PHOTO: Long March-5B Y2 rocket, carrying the core module of China's space station Tianhe, takes off from Wenchang

Is San Francisco on the verge of a herd immunity breakthrough? Experts are optimistic

The city kept case numbers low, and it has one of the highest vaccination rates of any major U.S. city. Now comes the real test.
San Francisco Giants fans Dave Harding, center, and his wife, Nancy Faltisek, check in at one of the vaccination/negative test verification booths before being admitted to Oracle Park on April 9, 2021, in San Francisco.
San Francisco Giants fans Dave Harding, center, and his wife, Nancy Faltisek, check in at one of the vaccination/negative test verification booths before being admitted to Oracle Park on April 9, 2021, in San Francisco.

China’s emissions exceed those of U.S. and developed countries combined, report says

The findings come after a climate summit during which Chinese President Xi Jinping reiterated his pledge to make sure the nation’s emissions peak by 2030.
People tend to vegetables growing in a field as emission rises from cooling towers at a coal-fired power station in Tongling, Anhui province, China, on Jan. 16, 2019.
People tend to vegetables growing in a field as emission rises from cooling towers at a coal-fired power station in Tongling, Anhui province, China, on Jan. 16, 2019.
6d ago

Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin is auctioning off a seat on its first space tourism flight

The first flight of the company's New Shepard rocket and capsule will take place July 20 and one seat will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.
The same New Shepard booster that flew to space and then landed vertically in November 2015 has now flown and landed again.
The same New Shepard booster that flew to space and then landed vertically in November 2015 has now flown and landed again.
6d ago

SpaceX launches and lands Starship in first successful flight

The previous four test flights ended in fiery explosions. Success came on the 60th anniversary of the flight of first American in space, Alan Shepard.
Image: CORRECTION-US-SPACE-SPACEX-STARSHIP
Image: CORRECTION-US-SPACE-SPACEX-STARSHIP

Mysterious structures in Saudi Arabia thousands of years older than Stonehenge, pyramids

Researchers think the region’s "mustatils" form the oldest ritual landscape in the world. But exactly what they were for isn’t clear.
The landscape is dotted with ancient mustatils, which are named after the Arabic word for a rectangle. More than 1000 have been documented and more are still being found.
The landscape is dotted with ancient mustatils, which are named after the Arabic word for a rectangle. More than 1000 have been documented and more are still being found.
7d ago

King Henry VIII's ship reveals racially diverse Tudor England

"For us it reinforces this idea that England was a much more diverse society," said Dr. Alexzandra Hildred of the Mary Rose Trust.
The Mary Rose, flagship of the fleet of Henry VIII.
The Mary Rose, flagship of the fleet of Henry VIII.

Climate pledges see world closing on Paris goal, researchers say

The Climate Action Tracker, compiled by a group of researchers, projects that the world is currently set to overshoot the Paris accord’s target by 0.9 degrees.
Image: Illegal Steel Factories Dodge China Emissions Laws
Image: Illegal Steel Factories Dodge China Emissions Laws