MIT's Desalination Device Turns Seawater Into Drinking Water With A Push Of A Button

Water scarcity is one of the world's biggest challenges. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that one in three people globally do not have easy access to clean water. Desalinating ocean water could help. But the currently-available devices are too energy-intensive and expensive to deploy on a large scale. Now, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have developed a portable desalination machine that is both affordable and sustainable....

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Commemorating Memorial Day

Memorial Day, which will be observed on May 30, 2022, is often considered the "unofficial" start of summer by Americans. However, the US federal holiday, celebrated annually on the last Monday of May, has a solemn purpose. It honors the men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. This includes those in the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy....

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Snap's Flying Camera Promises To Capture All Your Adventures

Self-portrait photographs, or "selfies," are a great way to document and share precious memories. However, the images, which only capture a moment in time, can be somewhat limiting. That may change soon, thanks to Pixy, a tiny camera drone that autonomously captures pictures and videos of all your adventures....

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Rare Asiatic Cheetah Cubs Born In Captivity In Iran

The birth of three rare Asiatic cheetah cubs in Iran is being hailed as a victory by conservationists worldwide. The May 1, 2022, announcement by Ali Salajegheh, head of Iran's Department of Environment (DOE), marks the first time the critically-endangered cheetah subspecies has reproduced in captivity....

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Ukrainian Bomb-Sniffing Dog Gets A Medal From President Volodymyr Zelenskyy

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict has produced an unlikely hero — a Jack Russell Terrier named Patron. The two-year-old pooch is credited with detecting over 200 Russian explosives since the war began in February. On May 8, 2022, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy honored Patron and his owner, Mykhailo Iliev, with a presidential medal for their service to the country....

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Meet The New Millipede Species Named After Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift has received numerous music awards and even an Emmy. Now, the popular American singer-songwriter can add an unusual achievement to her growing list of accolades — a new millipede species named after her. The Nannaria swiftae (N. swiftae) is one of 17 new twisted-claw millipede species recently identified by Dr. Derek Hennen and his team at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia....

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NASA Astronaut Jessica Watkins Begins Her Historic ISS Mission

All space missions are significant. However, SpaceX's Crew-4 mission, which docked at the International Space Station (ISS) on April 28, 2022, was particularly historic. The approximately 16-hour flight was SpaceX's fastest Dragon astronaut trip to the space lab yet. More importantly, the crew of four included Jessica Watkins — the first African American woman assigned to the ISS on a long-term mission....

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Daring Red Bull Stunt Doesn't End As Planned

Energy drink company Red Bull is famous for sponsoring daring stunts. However, the April 24, 2022, mid-air "plane swap" by a pair of experienced pilots and skydiving masters promised to be like none other ever witnessed. Though the widely-publicized event did not go quite as planned, the stuntmen — cousins Luke Aikins and Andy Farrington — luckily emerged unscathed....

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Birch Trees Can Soak Up Microplastics From The Soil

The proliferation of microplastics in our oceans has received worldwide attention. However, the abundance of the tiny plastic fragments in the soil has largely gone unnoticed. A 2018 study by German scientists found terrestrial microplastic pollution — caused by wastewater irrigation and sewage — far exceeds marine microplastic pollution....

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Four Planets And The Moon Will Line Up In The Sky This Month

Stargazers, get ready! Starting April 23, 2022, Saturn, Mars, Venus, and Jupiter will form a straight line behind the crescent Moon. The perfect alignment will provide earthlings a relatively rare opportunity to see multiple planets in the sky with the naked eye. Experts say the celestial treat can be best observed by gazing southeast — in the direction of the sunrise — about an hour before the Sun comes out....

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The White House Easter Egg Roll Is Back!

Despite biting cold rain, close to 30,000 ticketed guests descended upon the South Lawn of the White House for the annual Easter Egg Roll on April 18, 2022. The beloved tradition was canceled for the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fun event featured a variety of Easter-themed activities, along with appearances by popular costumed characters and celebrities....

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First All-Private Astronaut Team Welcomed Aboard The ISS

On April 9, 2022, four civilians made history as the first all-private "astronaut" team to reach the International Space Station (ISS). Former NASA astronaut Michael López-Alegría and three first-time fliers, Mark Pathy, Larry Connor, and Eytan Stibbe — who each paid $55 million for the trip — will spend eight days on the orbiting science laboratory. They are scheduled to return to Earth aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule on April 19, 2022....

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Smile! It’s Almost April Fools’ Day

For pranksters, there is no better holiday than April Fools' Day. Celebrated annually on April 1, it is the only day of the year when fun, harmless hoaxes go unpunished. The mischievous holiday has murky origins. Some believe it started in 1582 when France transitioned from the Julian calendar — which began the year around April 1 — to the currently used Gregorian calendar. Those unaware, or unwilling, to accept the date change were pranked. Others think the holiday started as a cheerful way to mark the start of spring....

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Powerful Tornado Causes Widespread Damage In New Orleans

The residents of New Orleans can't seem to catch a break from natural disasters. Just over a year after being battered by Hurricane Ida, the beautiful city has been hit by a powerful tornado. The twister, which boasted wind speeds of 160 mph, made landfall shortly before 8:00 pm local time on March 22, 2022....

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Saharan Dust Storm Casts Eerie Orange Glow Over Parts Of Europe

A massive plume of dust and sand from the Sahara Desert engulfed parts of Europe in mid-March. Storm Celia blew into Spain on March 14, 2022, turning the skies into an eerie rusty orange and covering the ground and vehicles with fine sand particles. The thick dust layer lingered for several days, causing officials to issue extremely poor air quality ratings in the capital city of Madrid and across large parts of Spain's southeast coast....

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Rogue Rocket Carves A New Crater On The Moon

A school-bus-sized object, which has been orbiting in space at about 5,600 miles per hour since 2014, crashed-landed on the Moon on March 4, 2022. The 40-foot-long, 3,000-kilogram piece of space debris is believed to have carved a massive — 60 to 100-feet-wide — hole near the Hertzsprung Crater on the Moon's far side. However, since the exact impact location is unknown, it may take NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter a few months to identify and image the new crater....

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Rainbows Smile Too!

Mention rainbows, and the image that comes to mind is that of a beautiful translucent arc of bright colors bending towards the horizon. But in a recent image captured by Italian astrophotographer Marcella Giulia Pace and shared by NASA on March 11, 2022, the rainbow is turned around — making it appear like it is smiling! Magical as it sounds, the reason for the stunning phenomenon, called a circumzenithal arc, is rooted in science....

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Unique Ways People Are Helping Support Ukraine

Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24, 2022, is showing no signs of ending. While the brave Ukrainians have thus far succeeded in keeping the Russian army from taking over major cities like Kyiv, Kharkiv, and Mariupol, the war is taking a toll on the Eastern European nation. Thousands of residential buildings, cemeteries and even hospitals have been razed by Russian airstrikes. Over two million Ukrainians have fled to neighboring countries, and as many as 4,000 soldiers and civilians are believed to have perished....

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