The night sky is changing before our eyes

The wet dress rehearsal, as NASA calls it, was canceled twice this week. as the team encountered various problems, and the rocket withstood some lightning. However, officials said the team “accomplished quite a bit” and hasn’t given up on a June launch. Another attempt at the test is scheduled for this weekend.

This is Katie Hunt, filling in for Ashley Strickland, on this week’s CNN Science Bulletin.

It’s easy to think of the night sky as a constant source of wonder that has changed little since the dawn of mankind.

But our view of the cosmos is changing due to the proliferation of satellites, like those launched by Elon Musk’s SpaceX. In less than a decade, 1 out of every 15 points of light in the night sky will actually be a moving satellite, a big problem when Consider that you can only see about 4,000 stars with the naked eye.

This satellite contamination could hamper our ability to detect, and possibly deflect, asteroids.

It’s easy to miss the changes if, like me, you live in a big city where light pollution darkens the night sky. my colleague from cnn Kristin Fisher traveled to Saskatchewan, Canada, where the scale of the problem is clearer.

Curiosities

Ever wonder why beer bottles are often made of brown glass? It has something to do with skunks. Well, something like that.

If you’ve ever served a beer in a clear glass and left it out in the sun, it can taste unpleasant. This is because when the hops in beer are exposed to strong light, a photo-oxidation reaction takes place that creates the compound 3-methyl-2-butene-1-thiol. This is a chemical compound similar to the stinky odor produced by skunks.

Dark tinted glass can help prevent this process, which has been dubbed “skunk” by brewers.

dig this

In Assam, India, dozens of enormous megalithic stone jars have been unearthed, ranging from 2 to 3 meters (around 3.2 to 9.8 feet) in height.

While the British discovered some similar ancient jug sites in the 1920s, an excavation that took place in 2020 uncovered four previously unknown sites.

Similar jars have been found in the Southeast Asian country of Laos, and researchers have been lucky enough to find jars that were still intact, with artifacts like beads and human remains inside.

However, these more recent discoveries they were empty, so it is difficult to know from which culture and when they originated. The researchers hope to find some unopened jars that shed light on its mysterious origins.

critical mission

Indigenous communities around the world have used fires for thousands of years to clear the land of additional debris.

Now, California is calling on Native American tribes to bring back the once-banned practice to help prevent the devastating wildfires that have ravaged the state.

Fighting fire with fire may sound counterintuitive, but the practice removes dry vegetation that can easily catch fire and creates intense flames that are more difficult to fight. It also makes forests more resilient, making future wildfires less likely.

Long time ago

Our Stone Age ancestors also fell in love with these irresistible eyes.

I love cats, but I’m not immune to a pair of soulful puppy dog ​​eyes. Neither, it seems, were our Stone Age ancestors.

It turns out that humans selectively bred dogs to have such compelling eyes, and started about 33,000 years ago.

Compared to their genetic cousin, the wolf, domesticated dogs have more “fast-twitch” facial muscles that allow them to more closely mimic our expressions, or at least look at us in a heart-melting way.

once upon a planet

Don’t miss these interesting reads:

— Listening to a favorite song can instantly transport you to another time in your life, with amazing clarity. Here’s the science behind how our minds connect music with memory.
— Handwritten notebooks belonging to Charles Darwin were returned to Cambridge University with a mysterious message — 20 years after his disappearance.
— Nice alert. American zoos have celebrated the birth of two endangered primates. A blue-eyed black lemur made it to Florida, while a black lion tamarin was born at the Jersey Zoo.
Do you like what you have read? Oh, but there is more. sign up here to get the next issue of Wonder Theory, hosted by CNN Space and Science writer, delivered to your inbox ashley stricklandthat finds wonders on planets beyond our solar system and discoveries of the ancient world.

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