Featuring the latest in daily science news, Verge Science is all you need to keep track of what’s going on in health, the environment, and your whole world. Through our articles, we keep a close eye on the overlap between science and technology news — so you’re more informed.
Popular Science magazine shifted to an all-digital format a couple of years ago, and now even that’s gone.
Food, fine dwarven food straight from Orzammar!
The Verge science reporter Justine Calma visited the conservationists who are part of a project moving thousands of the reef-building animals out of the sea to climate-controlled labs on land. High temperatures drive off the photosynthetic algae corals rely on for nutrients, causing coral bleaching that can be deadly.
In this video, you’ll also see a gene bank growing a new generation of baby corals, and the 3D photomosaic maps used to track their replanting efforts in the open ocean.
The European Space Agency’s test-fire of Ariane 6’s Vulcain 2.1 engine will start at 3:30PM ET, and will run for the full 470 seconds of the first stage of a real launch.
As Space notes, the Ariane 6 replaces the Ariane 5, which had a 27-year stint before going to pasture. Its first launch is planned for 2024 following years of delays.
The ESA livestream starts at 3PM ET.
The Psyche spacecraft that’s heading to study a metal asteroid has successfully test-fired a communications laser back at the Earth from nearly 10 million miles away — a first for NASA’s Deep Space Optical Communications (DSOC) system.
NASA said in its announcement that the DSOC test is “one of many critical DSOC milestones” that will make higher throughput communication possible ahead of an eventual manned Mars mission.
The Environmental Protection Agency announced what it says is the “single largest investment in environmental justice going directly to communities in history.” The money is supposed to benefit “disadvantaged communities that are marginalized by underinvestment and overburdened by pollution” through projects that deploy clean energy, cut down pollution, and help communities adapt to climate change. Applications for funding, which comes from the Inflation Reduction Act, will be open over the next year.
The US government is once again offering a round of four at-home covid tests you can get for free. You can place an order directly from the USPS website, which will start shipping the week of November 27th.
The feels-like temperature in Rio de Janeiro reached a blistering 138.7 degrees Fahrenheit (59.3 degrees Celsius) over the weekend. Taylor Swift postponed her Saturday show after 1,000 fans fainted from the heat and one person died at her concert on Friday. The brutal conditions have also sparked wildfires and raised the risk of power outages.
From the SpaceX livestream, the team there said about 15 minutes into the 8AM ET launch that Starship’s signal had disappeared, and it appears the craft’s flight termination system ended its journey soon after the planned engine shutdown.
The ship made it much farther along than the previous attempt earlier this year.
SpaceX’s rocket launched just after 8AM CT. The rocket is currently heading towards space. The booster exploded seconds after the stage separation, but Starship itself continued.
The Department of Energy announced funding today for nine different heat pump projects across 15 sites in the US. This is the first round of funds stemming from Joe Biden’s authorization of the use of the Defense Production Act in 2022 to boost domestic manufacturing of clean energy technologies including heat pumps. It’s a more environmentally friendly appliance that’s starting to replace traditional heating and air conditioning.
After sending its Project Kuiper test satellites into space last month, Amazon confirmed its systems achieved “nominal or better performance.” It even successfully connected to the internet through the satellite and conducted a two-way video call.
Sustainably charging electric vehicles and providing power to over 250 people for eight days in the middle of the desert is no easy task. Renewable Innovations has the answer.
Called GraphCast, Google’s new AI model was able to make 10-day weather forecasts faster and with greater precision than a traditional model. It outperformed the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) in 90 percent of test cases. How? Google’s model was trained on historical data and leverages deep-learning hardware to make forecasts more efficiently.
[MIT Technology Review]
Americans have a worse opinion of science now than they did before the covid-19 pandemic. It doesn’t come as a surprise after all the disinformation that’s been swirling around since then. Now we can see how much trust in science has eroded in the latest survey by the Pew Research Center. The number of participants who say science “has had a mostly positive impact on society” fell from 73 percent in 2019 to 57 percent today.
NASA says coronal gasses can corrupt signals NASA sends to its automated explorers, so the agency is playing it safe. In the meantime, the two rovers and the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter will continue collecting data while parked on the surface.
The FAA still hasn’t cleared SpaceX to attempt another Starship orbital launch from its Boca Chica, TX, site after the first one caused significant damage to the pad and surrounding environment. SpaceX’s website and this teaser trailer indicate it’s ready to try again as soon as November 17th.
Those are also popping up on the same day as a report from Reuters documenting 600 injuries to SpaceX workers since 2014.
The records included reports of more than 100 workers suffering cuts or lacerations, 29 with broken bones or dislocations, 17 whose hands or fingers were “crushed,” and nine with head injuries, including one skull fracture, four concussions and one traumatic brain injury.
Musk himself at times appeared cavalier about safety on visits to SpaceX sites: Four employees said he sometimes played with a novelty flamethrower and discouraged workers from wearing safety yellow because he dislikes bright colors.
iFixit did some digging on the new MacBook Pro and found that Apple’s anodization and dying process must have taken “a huge amount of effort, and trial and error,” according to metallurgist David Niebuhr.
Under a microscope, Space Black had higher peaks and lower valleys from an etching process than Space Gray. It still shows light fingerprints, but iFixit gives Apple an “A-for-effort.”