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Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

It's about time that Science News got it's own thread.

I'm starting it off with a big one:


'Planet Nine': Evidence of new giant planet lurking beyond Neptune.

Our solar system may have a ninth planet about 10 times the mass of Earth far out beyond Neptune, astronomers say.

Although the planet, dubbed "Planet Nine", has not been directly observed, computer simulations of the orbits of several distant objects beyond Neptune indicate it exists, scientists from the California Institute of Technology said. 


How do you misplace a planet?  Ask the Daleks.  8)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-21/planet-nine-new-giant-planet-may-lurk-beyond-pluto/7103838

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January 20, 2016 at 8:56 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Rumpole
Moderator
Posts: 21249

With all the telescopes trained on the sky it's amazing it hasn't been seen.

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January 20, 2016 at 9:07 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Photon at January 20, 2016 at 8:56 PM

It's about time that Science News got it's own thread.

I'm starting it off with a big one:


'Planet Nine': Evidence of new giant planet lurking beyond Neptune.

Our solar system may have a ninth planet about 10 times the mass of Earth far out beyond Neptune, astronomers say.

Although the planet, dubbed "Planet Nine", has not been directly observed, computer simulations of the orbits of several distant objects beyond Neptune indicate it exists, scientists from the California Institute of Technology said. 


How do you misplace a planet?  Ask the Daleks.  8)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-21/planet-nine-new-giant-planet-may-lurk-beyond-pluto/7103838

Anyone interested in the mathematical theory behind this discovery can view the original scientific paper here:  ;)


EVIDENCE FOR A DISTANT GIANT PLANET IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM - http://dx.doi.org/10.3847/0004-6256/151/2/22

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January 20, 2016 at 10:03 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Rumpole
Moderator
Posts: 21249

Tardis001 at January 20, 2016 at 10:03 PM

Photon at January 20, 2016 at 8:56 PM

It's about time that Science News got it's own thread.

I'm starting it off with a big one:


'Planet Nine': Evidence of new giant planet lurking beyond Neptune.

Our solar system may have a ninth planet about 10 times the mass of Earth far out beyond Neptune, astronomers say.

Although the planet, dubbed "Planet Nine", has not been directly observed, computer simulations of the orbits of several distant objects beyond Neptune indicate it exists, scientists from the California Institute of Technology said. 


How do you misplace a planet?  Ask the Daleks.  8)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-21/planet-nine-new-giant-planet-may-lurk-beyond-pluto/7103838

Anyone interested in the mathematical theory behind this discovery can view the original scientific paper here:  ;)


EVIDENCE FOR A DISTANT GIANT PLANET IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM - http://dx.doi.org/10.3847/0004-6256/151/2/22

Can you give us an English translation ?


:)

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January 20, 2016 at 10:55 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

English translation:


https://shar.es/1h2uPx

The giant planet, discovered through mathematical modeling and computer simulations, is nicknamed Planet Nine and traces a bizarre, highly elongated orbit in the outer solar system.

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January 21, 2016 at 12:10 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Rumpole
Moderator
Posts: 21249

Tardis001 at January 21, 2016 at 12:10 AM

English translation:


https://shar.es/1h2uPx

The giant planet, discovered through mathematical modeling and computer simulations, is nicknamed Planet Nine and traces a bizarre, highly elongated orbit in the outer solar system.

I'll believe it when  I see it .

:)


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January 21, 2016 at 12:23 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Rumpole
Moderator
Posts: 21249

'Dark noodles' between stars in the Milky Way could be missing matter


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-22/dark-noodles-discovered-in-the-milky-way/7105344

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January 21, 2016 at 3:36 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Rumpole at January 21, 2016 at 3:36 PM

'Dark noodles' between stars in the Milky Way could be missing matter


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-22/dark-noodles-discovered-in-the-milky-way/7105344

Bring your own Chop Sticks.    :)

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January 21, 2016 at 3:41 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Scientific advances over the past 20 to 30 years have underpinned an estimated $330 billion of Australia's economic growth, according to a new report by the Australian Academy of Science.


Key Points:

* Findings demonstrate importance of science, outgoing chief scientist says.

Biological advances contributing $65 billion to economy annually.

* Medical advances valued at more than $83 billion.           

                             

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January 21, 2016 at 3:50 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Photon at January 21, 2016 at 3:50 PM

Scientific advances over the past 20 to 30 years have underpinned an estimated $330 billion of Australia's economic growth, according to a new report by the Australian Academy of Science.


Key Points:

* Findings demonstrate importance of science, outgoing chief scientist says.

Biological advances contributing $65 billion to economy annually.

* Medical advances valued at more than $83 billion.           

                             

An extremely important report.  It is worth reading the contents of the report that is attached to the news article.  Economic benefits should not be the only measure of the value of science, but I'm afraid it is the only measure that is meaningful to politicians.

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January 21, 2016 at 5:25 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Warning: Contains cute animal photos  ........  :)


Sniffer dogs helping fight to save endangered mountain pygmy possums from feral cats

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-23/sniffer-dogs-saving-endangered-mountain-pygmy-possums/7108200

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January 22, 2016 at 6:06 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Photon at January 22, 2016 at 6:06 PM

Warning: Contains cute animal photos  ........  :)


Sniffer dogs helping fight to save endangered mountain pygmy possums from feral cats

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-23/sniffer-dogs-saving-endangered-mountain-pygmy-possums/7108200

It's a compromise solution.  When used properly, sniffer dogs can be very effective in protecting endangered populations or species.  Dogs are used effectively to guard endangered populations of Little Penguins that nest near St Kilda in Melbourne and at North Head in Sydney against introduced predators such as foxes and cats.  Sniffer dogs were also used to detect rabbits in burrows on Macquarie Island, which has led to the rabbits being almost eradicated from the island.  The down side is that dogs patrolling an area, even when on a lead, can disrupt normal behaviours of native animals.  Still, if it is a choice between predation and disturbance, I'd choose disturbance any day.

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January 23, 2016 at 6:16 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Tardis001 at January 23, 2016 at 6:16 PM

Photon at January 22, 2016 at 6:06 PM

Warning: Contains cute animal photos  ........  :)


Sniffer dogs helping fight to save endangered mountain pygmy possums from feral cats

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-23/sniffer-dogs-saving-endangered-mountain-pygmy-possums/7108200

It's a compromise solution.  When used properly, sniffer dogs can be very effective in protecting endangered populations or species.  Dogs are used effectively to guard endangered populations of Little Penguins that nest near St Kilda in Melbourne and at North Head in Sydney against introduced predators such as foxes and cats.  Sniffer dogs were also used to detect rabbits in burrows on Macquarie Island, which has led to the rabbits being almost eradicated from the island.  The down side is that dogs patrolling an area, even when on a lead, can disrupt normal behaviours of native animals.  Still, if it is a choice between predation and disturbance, I'd choose disturbance any day.

Those Pygmy Possums rate really high on the cuteness scale !   :)

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January 23, 2016 at 6:27 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Five things we know about the universe that will make you feel very small.


One thing we know about the universe is that it's really big.

Another is that thinking about it and trying to understand it will make your brain hurt.


Please Note:  Some people with large egos will disagree with # 3.  :roll:


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-25/five-things-we-know-about-the-universe/6994612

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January 24, 2016 at 8:34 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Photon at January 24, 2016 at 8:34 PM

Five things we know about the universe that will make you feel very small.


One thing we know about the universe is that it's really big.

Another is that thinking about it and trying to understand it will make your brain hurt.


Please Note:  Some people with large egos will disagree with # 3.  :roll:


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-25/five-things-we-know-about-the-universe/6994612

I was disappointed, rather than in disagreement, with the revelation of Point No. 3.  ;)

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January 24, 2016 at 9:11 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Next time you visit the UK - look out for wild hippos!


https://theconversation.com/the-last-time-earth-was-this-hot-hippos-lived-in-britain-thats-130-000-years-ago-53398

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January 24, 2016 at 9:24 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Photon
Member
Posts: 7774

Tasmanian Bushfires: Seed Bank could be saviour as bushfires ravage Tasmania's ancient wilderness.


As fears grow about the impact of widespread fires in Tasmania's north and north-west, researchers say it could be possible to restore ancient plant species feared destroyed.

Seed Bank coordinator James Wood said it would be possible to replant forests that had been lost.

Just last year, during a rare flowering, the Seed Bank collected thousands of seeds from native conifers.


That sounds like good news to me.   :)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-26/seed-bank-could-be-the-saviour-of-tasmanias-wilderness/7114590

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January 25, 2016 at 6:51 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Rumpole
Moderator
Posts: 21249

Photon at January 25, 2016 at 6:51 PM

Tasmanian Bushfires: Seed Bank could be saviour as bushfires ravage Tasmania's ancient wilderness.


As fears grow about the impact of widespread fires in Tasmania's north and north-west, researchers say it could be possible to restore ancient plant species feared destroyed.

Seed Bank coordinator James Wood said it would be possible to replant forests that had been lost.

Just last year, during a rare flowering, the Seed Bank collected thousands of seeds from native conifers.


That sounds like good news to me.   :)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-26/seed-bank-could-be-the-saviour-of-tasmanias-wilderness/7114590

It is good news but it doesn't help the animals that got burned to death.

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January 25, 2016 at 7:22 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Tardis001
Member
Posts: 4412

Photon at January 25, 2016 at 6:51 PM

Tasmanian Bushfires: Seed Bank could be saviour as bushfires ravage Tasmania's ancient wilderness.


As fears grow about the impact of widespread fires in Tasmania's north and north-west, researchers say it could be possible to restore ancient plant species feared destroyed.

Seed Bank coordinator James Wood said it would be possible to replant forests that had been lost.

Just last year, during a rare flowering, the Seed Bank collected thousands of seeds from native conifers.


That sounds like good news to me.   :)


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-01-26/seed-bank-could-be-the-saviour-of-tasmanias-wilderness/7114590

It's a bit of a simplistic solution.  The real answer is to try and manage the landscape so that the frequency and magnitude of wildfires approximate what happens naturally.  Most Australian plant communities are adapted to a certain fire regime - they require bushfires to enable seeds in the soil to germinate, but fires can't be too frequent because the plants don't mature enough to produce seed that drop into the soil, or because they are too physiologically stressed to produce enough seed.  Conversely, if fires are too infrequent, then not enough native seed in the soil germinates and so the vegetation community becomes degraded or diminished over the longer time period.  Most native seed sets in the soil can survive up to 30 years, so you need wildfires of at least that frequency to ensure enough seeds germinate.


It is always preferable to rely on the seed set in the soils of a vegetation community for rehabilitation of that community, rather than from a stored seed bank.  The main reason for this is that the seeds in the local soils are from plants that have adapted to growing in the local environmental conditions, so have a better chance of survival.  It is also important to maintain the natural genetic structure of the vegetation community if we are to maintain natural biodiversity at the genetic level.  If you are introducing plants germinated from a stored seed bank, you are contaimnating the natural genetic diversity of the vegetation community that your are trying to revegetate.


But even if you do use the seed bank to restore a vegetation community, you still have to have wildfires at the required frequencies to ensure the long-term survival of those plants, because they too grow into plants that are fire-adapted and hence rely on fire for germination of seed that they produce.


Unfortunately, we have altered the fire frequencies in most bushland remnants in Australia.  We either cool burn each year, which stresses the plants and they don't produce enough seed because of poor health, or the cool burning occurs before they have a chance to produce seeds for the year.  Or we try to stop fires from occurring altogether, which reduces the likelihood of seeds in the local soils germinating.  There have also been some fantastic studies over the last few years that cool-burning each year not only burns ground fuels (e.g. leaf litter and fallen branches), but also kills the small invertebrates that naturally break down those ground fuels and release the nutrients from those fuels (e.g. nitrogen) into the soil for plants to use.  Therefore, cool-burning increases the rate at which ground fuels build up because the trees are physiologically stressed (from the soils being too dry and warm and not having enough soil nutrients), the trees drop more leaves and branches when they are stressed, but there are no or few invertebrates or soil microbes to break down the added leaf litter, so ground fuels build up over time, thus increasing the fire hazard.


 

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January 25, 2016 at 7:32 PM Flag Quote & Reply

gusset
Member
Posts: 16233

The logic of what you write is very clear Tardis.  The seed bank is probably better than nothing at all but the whole pattern is much more complicated than that and needs far greater thought, study and resources applied to the problem instead of engendering a false sense of security and saying "she'll be right, mate".

January 25, 2016 at 9:28 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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