T/science

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Inside the Spittlebug’s Bubble Home
Science, Today

Those foamy eruptions on garden plants protect a slow and steady sap drinker that is growing into a froghopper. But it has to stick its hind end out to breathe.

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How the Spittlebug Builds Its Bubbly Fortress
Video, Today

Spittlebugs feed on plant sap and then excrete bubbly foam to create a protective fortress around themselves. Later, they emerge as adult froghoppers.

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For a Black Mathematician, What It’s Like to Be the ‘Only One’
U.S., Yesterday

Fewer than 1 percent of doctorates in math are awarded to African-Americans. Edray Goins, who earned one of them, found the upper reaches of the math world a challenging place.

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Saving the Bats, One Cave at a Time
Science, Yesterday

Biologists are searching caves and abandoned mines in the West, hoping to spare many species of the winged creatures from the devastating fungus, white-nose syndrome.

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Where’s the Nobel Prize for the Bureaucrats?
Science, February 15

In science, as in sports, some of the most important action happens off season and on the sidelines.

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An Intrepid Explorer of Mars Falls Silent
Opinion, February 15

How the jaunty rover Opportunity captured the world’s imagination.

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Searching Tardigrades for Lifesaving Secrets
Health, February 15

Researchers are drawing inspiration from the proteins that they think let hearty water bears cheat time by decelerating their biology.

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Photos From the Opportunity Rover’s Mission on Mars
Science, February 14

Scientific highlights and snapshots from the journey of NASA’s long-lasting robotic explorer.

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An Icy Superhighway Once Carried Glaciers From Namibia to Brazil
Science, February 14

Researchers matched up a jigsaw puzzle of ice that once flowed between two landmasses now separated by an ocean.

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The Perfect Valentine? A Math Formula
Science, February 14

Nothing says ‘I love you’ like a customizable algebraic equation.

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Can Big Science Be Too Big?
Science, February 13

A new study finds that small teams of researchers do more innovative work than large teams do.

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NASA’s Opportunity Rover Dies on Mars
Interactive, February 13

Fifteen years and 28 miles on the red planet.

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NASA’s Mars Rover Opportunity Concludes a 15-Year Mission
Science, February 13

Silent since a giant dust storm last summer, the rover was the longest-lasting robot on another planet ever.

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Manfred Eigen, 91, Nobel Winner Who Put a Clock to Chemicals, Dies
Obituaries, February 12

He shared the 1967 prize for finding a way to time “immeasurably fast” chemical reactions. His research advanced the study of enzymes, among other things.

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What’s Pink and Pinstriped and Digests Wood? This New Shipworm
Science, February 12

Scientists are eager to learn more about the bacteria that live in this recently-discovered clam with an extremely-long digestive system.

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Birds of a Feather May Stick Together, but This Bird’s Foot Got Stuck in Amber
Science, February 12

Known as “Ugly Foot” or “Hobbit Foot,” researchers say the feathered specimen offers long-sought clues to the evolutionary path of birds.

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Hong Kong, Crossroads of the Criminal Wildlife Trade
Science, February 12

Despite reforms, the territory is a linchpin in the global traffic in illegal animal parts.

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Everywhere in the Animal Kingdom, Followers of the Milky Way
Science, February 11

As scientists learn more about milk’s evolution and compositional variations, they are redefining what used to be a signature characteristic of mammals.

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Think You’ve Gained Weight This Winter? Check Out These Squirrels
Science, February 11

Some species pack increase their size by more than 50 percent as temperatures cool.

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Ancient European Stone Monuments Said to Originate in Northwest France
Science, February 11

Research on Stone Age tombs throughout Europe offers a new answer to an old debate on where and when the iconic stone works were first built.

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A Rare Bird Indeed: A Cardinal That’s Half Male, Half Female
Science, February 9

In a backyard in Erie, Pa., an unusual cardinal has appeared, displaying both male and female traits. Scientists say it may be a so-called gynandromorph.

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A Young Island on Earth May Reveal Clues to How Water Shaped Mars
Science, February 9

NASA has closely studied the island, created four years ago by a volcanic eruption in the Pacific. Recently, one of its scientists was able to travel there to take on-the-ground measurements.

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Andromeda Is Coming for Our Milky Way Galaxy, Eventually
Science, February 8

Traveling at 68 miles per second, a nearby galaxy is still coming to consume us, just 600 million years later than expected.

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Yellowstone’s Steamboat Geyser Is Gushing at a Record Pace
Science, February 8

It’s the talk of the national park these days, erupting a record 32 times last year and keeping up its showstopping pace this winter.

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Aboriginal Hunters’ Fires Help Restore an Australian Desert
Science, February 8

A study of how the Martu shaped their land presents an example where humans seem to benefit an environment perceived as wilderness.

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Islands Helped Penguins Evolve. Then Hungry Humans Showed Up.
Science, February 8

The discovery of two extinct penguin subspecies in New Zealand is a cautionary tale of the threats faced by the waddling birds in the wild.

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Beaked Whales Are the Deepest Divers
Science, February 7

Cuvier’s beaked whales off Cape Hatteras dive farther and stay underwater longer than any other marine mammal.

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The Patient Had Bone Cancer. The Diagnosis Arrived 240 Million Years Too Late.
Science, February 7

The fossil of an ancient animal teaches a sad lesson: Cancer has been around for a very, very long time.

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The Northern and Southern Lights Are Asymmetric Dancers in the Dark
Science, February 6

Our planet’s auroras do not mirror one another, and their varying shapes result from the interplay of the sun and Earth’s magnetic fields.

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What Lunar New Year Reveals About the World’s Calendars
Science, February 5

Rather than a scientific given, calendars say a lot about the history and cultural values of the societies that created them.

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The Deadliest Quake of 2018 Was Among the Fastest Ever
Science, February 5

Last September, an earthquake triggered a deadly tsunami in Indonesia. Scientists now have clocked the speed of rupture at a blistering 9,600 miles per hour.

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The Hummingbird as Warrior: Evolution of a Fierce and Furious Beak
Science, February 5

Winsomely captured in poems and song, the birds are yielding new secrets about their astounding beaks and penchant for violence.

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How the Hummingbird Bill Evolved for Battle
Video, February 5

In the South American tropics, where hummingbirds must compete for food, evolution has drastically reshaped their bills.

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From Black Holes to Breakfast, Three Books Show How Einstein’s Legacy Lives On
Books, February 5

The revolutionary advances in physics pioneered by Einstein are at the heart of new books that cover phenomena both celestial and mundane.

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The North Magnetic Pole’s Mysterious Journey Across the Arctic
Science, February 4

Scientists accelerated the update of a model of Earth’s fluctuating magnetic field, which is needed to keep navigational systems functioning. Many wondered what’s happening inside the planet’s core.

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Many Children Are Overdoing It on the Toothpaste, C.D.C. Study Says
Science, February 3

A new study found that nearly 40 percent of children ages 3 to 6 used more toothpaste than is recommended by dental professionals.

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The Worth of Physics Research
Opinion, February 1

Physicists take issue with an Op-Ed article arguing against expensive upgrades to the super collider at CERN.

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Flying Squirrels That Glow Pink in the Dark
Science, February 1

While ultraviolet fluorescence is common in birds, butterflies and sea creatures, scientists haven’t often observed it in mammals.

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You Flushed the Toilet. They Made Some Bricks.
Science, January 31

Converting biosolids into building materials could keep a lot of leftovers of the waste process out of landfills, and provide other environmental benefits, too.

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How NASA’s Curiosity Rover Weighed a Mountain on Mars
Science, January 31

With a bit of technical improvisation, scientists worked out that the bedrock of Mount Sharp appeared to be less dense than had been expected.

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We Tried 5 Cold-Weather Experiments. Instant Slushies, Frozen Bubbles and More.
Science, January 31

With schools closed and temperatures well below zero, one family learned some hard lessons about the scientific process.

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High Ceilings and a Lovely View: Denisova Cave Was Home to a Lost Branch of Humanity
Science, January 30

The mysterious Denisovans may have occupied a cave in what is now Siberia for more than 250,000 years.

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A Closer Look at the Polar Vortex’s Dangerously Cold Winds
Interactive, January 30

Chicago will be as cold as the Arctic on Wednesday. We’ll show you why.

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Seeking Superpowers in the Axolotl Genome
Science, January 29

The smiling salamanders can regrow most of their body parts, so researchers are building improved maps of their DNA.

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Germs in Your Gut Are Talking to Your Brain. Scientists Want to Know What They’re Saying.
Health, January 28

The body’s microbial community may influence the brain and behavior, perhaps even playing a role in dementia, autism and other disorders.

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The Week in Business: The Shutdown Ends (for Now), and Venezuela Has One More President Than It Needs
Business, January 27

The government shutdown ends (for now), and China comes to the trade talk table.

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Don’t Kiss Your Pet Hedgehogs, C.D.C. Warns
Science, January 27

Eleven people across eight states have been infected with a strain of salmonella linked to pet hedgehogs, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

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‘This Could Be the End’ for NASA’s Mars Opportunity Rover
Science, January 25

The agency has received only silence from the intrepid explorer since contact was lost during a global dust storm on the red planet last June.

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How Long Is a Day on Saturn?
Science, January 25

The answer was hiding in the planet’s rings.

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Shutdown Leaves Uninflated Space Sculpture Circling in Orbit
Arts, January 24

Trevor Paglen’s “Orbital Reflector” is waiting for F.C.C. clearance before it can be activated. The artist says it might not survive the wait.

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And You Thought the Platypus Was Odd
Science, January 24

“When I first saw it, I just said ‘What?!’ and didn’t speak for a while,” said one of the researchers who studied the fossils of a prehistoric marine reptile.

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Dark-Sky Tourism: Under the Idaho Sky, a Sense of Belonging
Business, January 24

For a transcendant trip, head away from light pollution and crane your neck towards the stars.

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The Uncertain Future of Particle Physics
Opinion, January 23

Ten years in, the Large Hadron Collider has failed to deliver the exciting discoveries that scientists promised.

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During the Lunar Eclipse, Something Slammed Into the Moon
Science, January 23

A flash spotted on livestreams was likely caused by the crash of a tiny, fast-moving meteoroid left behind by a comet.

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3 Newborn Endangered Right Whales Seen After Year With No Births
Science, January 22

The sighting this winter of newborn whales off the coasts of Florida and Georgia is being greeted with mild optimism, as the North Atlantic population has dwindled.

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Where Sloths Find These Branches, Their Family Trees Expand
Science, January 22

A study showed that when some animals find a crucial resource, they can survive in changing environments and even thrive.

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Oceans Are Getting Louder, Posing Potential Threats to Marine Life
Science, January 22

Increasing ship traffic, sonar and seismic air gun blasts now planned for offshore drilling may be disrupting migration, reproduction and even the chatter of the seas’ creatures.

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How Ants Sniff Out the Right Path
Science, January 22

They may seem like automatons, but ants are surprisingly sophisticated in their navigational strategies.

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How Ants Get a Taste for the Trail
Video, January 22

Ants use their antennas to sniff out food, and other ants. It’s how they make sense of the world. But how exactly do they use them?

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Coming Soon to a Police Station Near You: The DNA ‘Magic Box’
Science, January 21

With Rapid DNA machines, genetic fingerprinting could become as routine as the old-fashioned kind. But forensic experts see a potential for misuse.

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Lunar Eclipse and Supermoon: Photos From Around the World
Science, January 21

Photographers captured scenes in the skies as the Earth’s shadow covered the moon.