Month: May 2020

Crew Dragon launches today! For the first time in nearly a decade, the US will launch 2 passengers into space from US soil.

It's really happening! Today NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley will board a SpaceX capsule named Crew Dragon. The capsule will be carried from Florida into orbit by a Falcon 9 rocket. They will travel to the International Space Stations (ISS) as a major test of SpaceX's new Dragon 2 spacecraft. The event is historic for various reasons. It's the first time since 2011 that the US launched astronauts from its own soil. Also, this historic flight is a new type of partnership between a public entity (NASA) and a private aerospace firm (SpaceX). If all goes well, we can expect much more from these guys in the future. The flight is currently targeted for 4:33PM ET on Wednesday, May 27th. That may change if the

Ultra-rare metallic blue bee spotted for first time in years in Florida.

Researchers in Florida have spotted a rare bee that has been missing for so long, it was feared to be extinct. The Blue Calamintha Bee was spotted on March 9 by a researcher from a Florida museum. It was the first time one has been seen since 2016. The shiny little blue bee was observed on a flower "rubbing its head on the top portion of the flower". This sort of behavior is unusual for most bees but a common characteristic of the blue calamintha bee. It has unusual facial hairs that it uses to collect pollen. Sources: USA Today

This new scientifically accurate 3D model of the SARS-CoV-2 (coronavirus) is the most detailed 3D model yet – and it’s a beauty!

Visual Science has done it again creating the most detailed and scientifically accurate 3D model of the full coronavirus (officially named SARS-CoV-2) to date. Scientists created the model using the latest scientific research into the structure of the coronavirus. Ivan Konstantinov, CEO, and founder of Visual Science, said, "The model reflects scientists' current understanding of the virus's architecture. It includes surface protein spikes that interact with the receptors on the surface of the human cell to get inside, lipid envelope with an integrated layer of matrix proteins, and a genome assembly, reconstructed based on the available scientific data" You can check out an animated model of the coronavirus on their website.

Nuclear bomb testing in the 1950’s charged the atmosphere and caused changes in weather patterns thousands of miles from the test sites.

Scientists say that nuclear bomb testing during the 1950's and 1960's Cold War changed rainfall patterns thousands of miles from the detonation sites. The electric charge released by nuclear radiation impacted rainclouds, causing them to thicken and produce 24% more rain. Radioactivity ionizes the air and releases an electric charge. The massive electric charge created by an atomic bomb causes water droplets in the atmosphere to collide and combine making even larger water droplets. Scientists were able to confirm this by studying historical weather patterns compared to nuclear testing activities. Sources: Eurekalert