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Unassuming farmland in Østfold County, Norway, was hiding a secret for centuries – and now it’s been rumbled. Using high-resolution ground-penetrating radar, archaeologists have found an ancient Viking cemetery, complete with what appears to be a well-preserved ship burial. A popular mode of interment among the Norse Vikings, ship burials consisting of a longboat covered
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A revolution in genomics is creeping into economics. It allows us to say something we might have suspected, but could never confirm: money trumps genes. Using one new, genome-based measure, economists found genetic endowments are distributed almost equally among children in low-income and high-income families. Success is not. The least-gifted children of high-income parents graduate
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For almost two centuries, scientists have theorized that life may be distributed throughout the Universe by meteoroids, asteroids, planetoids, and other astronomical objects. This theory, known as Panspermia, is based on the idea that microorganisms and the chemical precursors of life are able to survive being transported from one star system to the next. Expanding on
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It’s been a big week for NASA. First the much-loved Hubble Space Telescope entered “safe mode” after one of the gyroscopes that points it in the right direction failed. Then there was a mid-flight failure of a Russian Soyuz rocket on Thursday morning, resulting in the (safe!) emergency landing of cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin and astronaut Nick
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Biologists have grown human retina tissue from scratch to learn how the cells that let us see in color are made. The work may lay the groundwork for therapies for eye diseases such as color blindness and macular degeneration. It also establishes lab-created “organoids”—artificially grown organ tissue—as a model to study human development on a cellular
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The genetic sleuthing approach that broke open the Golden State Killer case could potentially be used to identify more than half of Americans of European descent from anonymous DNA samples, according to a provocative new study that highlights the unintended privacy consequences of consumer genetic testing for ancestry and health. The idea that people who
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An astronaut and cosmonaut survived a harrowing mid-flight failure of a Russian Soyuz rocket on Thursday morning. But human access to space is now on hold indefinitely while authorities investigate the launch failure. After NASA retired its space shuttle fleet in 2011 without a replacement, the US had no American spaceship to fly people to and from the International
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For thousands of years, the chief danger of Europe’s most active volcano has been the threat of something akin to hellfire. In the future, the peril could be the exact opposite: water. That’s because Mount Etna, on the Italian island of Sicily, is slowly, inevitably sliding into the Mediterranean Sea – a creeping movement scientists have observed