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Articles filed under Science

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  • ’Aliens of sea’ provide new insight into evolution May 21, 2014 6:35 PM
    Exotic sea creatures called comb jellies may reshape how scientists view early evolution — as their genes suggest nature created more than one way to make a nervous system. These beautiful but little-known translucent animals often are called “aliens of the sea,” for good reason. Somehow, they rapidly regenerate lost body parts. Some even can regrow a very rudimentary brain.

  • States move to expand access to experimental drugs May 17, 2014 4:33 PM
    Gov. John Hickenlooper on Saturday signed Colorado’s “Right To Try” bill, which was passed unanimously in the state Legislature.Similar bills await governors’ signatures in Louisiana and Missouri, and Arizona voters will decide in November whether to set up a similar program in that state.

  • Jupiter’s Great Red Spot shrinking before our eyes May 15, 2014 5:29 PM
    Jupiter’s Great Red Spot seems to be on a cosmic diet, shrinking rapidly before our eyes. Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope calculate that the spot, a giant long-lasting storm, is narrowing by about 580 miles a year, much faster than before.

  • Quinn attends climate meeting in Iowa May 14, 2014 3:57 PM
    Gov. Pat Quinn has attended another meeting of President Barack Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience. In a statement, Quinn says Illinois has faced a record number of natural disasters and he wants to make sure the state is prepared.

  • Cracks in concrete slab delay opening of new Oakton science building May 10, 2014 8:01 AM
    The opening of Oakton Community College’s $39 million Science and Health Career Center is being delayed until next year because a portion of a concrete slab under the building is experiencing cracking, settlement and underground utility issues, officials said. Problems with an 8,000-square-foot section of the slab on grade at the west end of the building have moved the opening to January 2015.

  • Harper College holds Astronomy Day with full lineup May 8, 2014 4:09 PM
    Replica planets. Big telescopes. Expert analysis. It's all part of Harper College's Astronomy Day, a roundup of free events exploring the celestial Saturday. The popular day draws hundreds to the Palatine campus each year, along with suburban groups devoted to astronomy. Catch the action from 5:30 to 10 p.m., rain or shine.

  • Federal report: Warming disrupts Americans’ lives May 6, 2014 8:00 PM
    Most Americans are already feeling man-made global warming, from heat waves to wild storms to longer allergy seasons. And it is likely to get worse and more expensive, says a new federal report that is heating up political debate along with the temperature. Shortly after the report came out Tuesday, President Barack Obama used several television weathermen to make his point about the bad weather news and a need for action to curb carbon pollution before it is too late.

  • New national brain science building named after former suburban congressman May 4, 2014 4:54 PM
    More than a dozen years after he left his northern suburban congressional seat, the National Institutes of Health has named major brain science building after former Republican U.S. Rep. John Porter.

  • Local robotics teams in world competition Apr 29, 2014 4:09 PM
    The VEX Robotics World Championship last weekend at the Anaheim Convention Center in Rockwall, Texas, drew more than 15,000 participants from 27 countries on 760 of the world’s best student-run robotics teams.

  • Lincolnshire junior high schoolers compete in national science contest Apr 26, 2014 7:20 PM
    Lincolnshire students Saturday made the top 16 teams competing in a prestigious science contest in Washington, D.C. James Wei, Conrad Oberhaus, David Liang and Haoyang Yu are representing Daniel Wright Junior High against 50 other teams. They did not advance to the championship rounds, but will race electric model cars in another competition Sunday.

  • Drones unearth more details about Chaco culture Apr 22, 2014 10:58 AM
    Recently published research describes how archaeologists outfitted a customized drone with a heat-sensing camera to unearth what they believe are ceremonial pits and other features at the site of an ancient village in New Mexico. The discovery of the structures hidden beneath layers of sediment and sagebrush is being hailed as an important step that could help archaeologists shed light on mysteries long buried by eroding desert landscapes from the American Southwest to the Middle East.

  • Barrington conservation group looks to the skies Apr 22, 2014 1:00 PM
    More than two dozen stargazers recently took part in a spring astronomy program presented by Barrington-based Citizens for Conservation as part of its youth education class offerings. Families listened as amateur astronomer Edith Auchter discussed phases of the moon, exploration of the moon, its surface features, and its rotation about its own axis and the Earth.

  • NASA’s space station Robonaut finally getting legs Apr 19, 2014 6:17 PM
    Until a battery backpack arrives on another supply ship later this year, the multimillion-dollar robot will need a power extension cord to stretch its legs, limiting its testing area to the U.S. side of the space station. Testing should start in a few months.

  • NASA’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down Apr 18, 2014 9:29 AM
    NASA’s robotic moon explorer, LADEE, is no more. Flight controllers confirmed Friday that the orbiting spacecraft crashed into the back side of the moon as planned, just three days after surviving a full lunar eclipse, something it was never designed to do. Researchers believe LADEE likely vaporized upon contact because of its extreme orbiting speed of 3,600 mph, possibly smacking into a mountain or side of a crater. No debris would have been left behind.

  • Astronomers spot most Earth-like planet yet Apr 17, 2014 2:59 PM
    Astronomers have discovered what they say is the most Earth-like planet yet detected — a distant, rocky world that’s similar in size to our own and exists in the Goldilocks zone where it’s not too hot and not too cold for life. The find, announced Thursday, excited planet hunters who have been scouring the Milky Way galaxy for years for potentially habitable places outside our solar system.

  • Cost of fighting warming ‘modest,’ says U.N. panel Apr 13, 2014 6:28 PM
    The cost of keeping global warming in check is “relatively modest,” but only if the world acts quickly to reverse the buildup of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, the head of the U.N.’s expert panel on climate change said Sunday. Such gases, mainly CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels, rose on average by 2.2 percent a year in 2000-2010, driven by the use of coal in the power sector, officials said as they launched the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change’s report on measures to fight global warming.

  • Space station computer outage demands spacewalk Apr 12, 2014 1:48 PM
    NASA has ordered spacewalking repairs for a serious computer outage at the International Space Station.

  • Artificial cooling tricky topic for climate panel Apr 10, 2014 6:46 PM
    It’s Plan B in the fight against climate change: cooling the planet by sucking heat-trapping CO2 from the air or reflecting sunlight back into space. Called geoengineering, it’s considered mad science by opponents. Supporters say it would be foolish to ignore it, since plan A — slashing carbon emissions from fossil fuels — is moving so slowly.

  • Americas get front-row seat for lunar eclipse Apr 8, 2014 6:50 PM
    North and South America, get ready for the first eclipse of the year— in color. Next Tuesday morning, the moon will be eclipsed by Earth’s shadow. This total lunar eclipse will be visible across the Western Hemisphere. The total phase will last 78 minutes, beginning at 2:06 a.m. CDT and ending at 3:24 a.m. CDT.

  • UOP in Des Plaines sponsors chemistry competition Apr 4, 2014 2:03 PM
    UOP volunteers and $10,000 in grant money from Honeywell Hometown Solutions recently helped more than 3,000 students from Chicago-area middle schools learn more about science through the Chemical Educational Foundation’s You Be The Chemist program. “The You Be The Chemist program is a terrific annual event that aims to generate enthusiasm for science in the critical middle school age group,” said Doug Nafis with Des Plaines-based UOP.

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