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Will.i.am song will be broadcast on Mars from NASA’s Curiosity rover

Pop star Will.i.am was writing a song to endorse Barack Obama at the conventions four years ago, but this election cycle he’s decided to back a nerdier candidate: NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover. Will.i.am released a new single called “Reach For The Stars,” which NASA plans to broadcast from the rover…

How China may be the next to land on the moon

Neil Armstrong’s 1969 lunar landing marked a pinnacle of US technological achievement, defining what many saw as the American century, but the next person to set foot on the moon will likely be Chinese. As the United States has scaled back its manned space programme to cut costs — a…

Neil Armstrong’s death prompts yearning for America’s past glories

Death of first man on the moon sparks tributes and expressions of regret over comparative lack of space travel since 1972 The death of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, has prompted a bout of soul-searching about America’s national destiny as well as mourning for an…

Scientists warn food shortages could turn us all into vegetarians

Leading water scientists have issued one of the sternest warnings yet about global food supplies, saying that the world’s population may have to switch almost completely to a vegetarian diet over the next 40 years to avoid catastrophic shortages. Humans derive about 20% of their protein from animal-based products now,…

California, Arizona hit by unusual swarm of small-to-midsize quakes

LOS ANGELES — A series of earthquakes measuring up to 5.4 rattled southern California, Arizona and the Mexican border region Sunday, seismologists said, although no damage or injuries were immediately reported. The small- and medium-level quakes were felt from San Diego and Orange County in California east into Arizona, and…

Researchers develop sci-fi helmet that creates an alternative reality

Christopher Nolan’s 2010 blockbuster Inception is set in a distant future where military technology enables one to infiltrate and surreptitiously alter other people’s dreams. Leonardo Di Caprio plays Dom Cobb, an industrial spy tasked with planting an idea into the mind of a powerful businessman. The film has a complex,…

Study: Troops suffer concussions during combat training

By Joaquin Sapien, ProPublica, and Daniel Zwerdling, NPR From reporting by NPR, ProPublica and Frontline, Sept. 8, 2010 This story was co-produced with NPR and is slated to air on All Things Considered. (Check local listings.) It was also co-published with Stars and Stripes. A new military study has found…

Telescopes may be forced to shut down due to astronomy budget crisis

Which telescopes could lose out in astronomy's big budget crunch? (via The Christian Science Monitor) For astronomers in the United States it’s déjà vu with a wrenching twist – the possible closure of some of the most heavily used observatories the federal government funds. In 1995, the prospect of flat…

Extreme events prompt experts to link weather to climate change

Heatwaves, drought and floods that have struck the northern hemisphere for the third summer running are narrowing doubts that man-made warming is disrupting Earth’s climate system, say some scientists. Climate experts as a group are reluctant to ascribe a single extreme event or season to global warming. Weather, they argue, has to be assessed over…

U.S. finds lead poisoning from Ayurvedic medicines

WASHINGTON — US health researchers said Thursday that they have documented lead poisoning risks among pregnant women who took Ayurvedic medicine and issued a new warning on the safety of traditional pills. New York City health authorities probed six cases since last year of women — all but one born…

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