Smart News Science

Officials have been working toward the designation for four years.

Oregon Is Now Home to the World's Largest Dark Sky Sanctuary

The Oregon Outback International Dark Sky Sanctuary covers 2.5 million acres in the southeastern part of the state

This artistic interpretation shows what Pebanista yacuruna might have looked like some 16 million years ago.

New Extinct Species of Giant Dolphin Discovered in Peru From a 16-Million-Year-Old Skull

Pebanista yacuruna is the largest freshwater dolphin ever found, but it is more closely related to today's river dolphins of South Asia than those in the Amazon

Wildflowers, spongy tundra grass and Brooks Range mountains emerge from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge on Alaska's North Slope.

Alaska's Frigid North Slope Was Once a Lush, Wet, Dinosaur Hotspot, Fossils Reveal

Conditions north of the Arctic Circle, where dinosaurs roamed in abundance during the mid-Cretaceous, were warmer than today, with rainfall comparable to “modern-day Miami”

The document was signed by 24 contributors to the Manhattan Project, including J. Robert Oppenheimer.

Manhattan Project Report Signed by J. Robert Oppenheimer Sells at Auction

The document was "likely the very first publicly available report on the creation of the bomb," according to RR Auction

Preserved brains tend to look like normal brains, but they're often one-fifth of the typical size.

Archaeologists Keep Finding Preserved Human Brains. But How Do the Organs Remain Intact?

Scientists have unearthed more than 4,400 human brains—some more than 12,000 years old—making them less rare than thought, a new study finds

Humans produce about 400 million metric tons of plastic waste each year. Some chemicals in plastics have been linked to health problems for humans and animals.

Plastics Contain Thousands More Chemicals Than Thought, and Most Are Unregulated, Report Finds

A new database catalogs 16,000 chemicals found in plastics and identifies more than 4,200 that are potentially hazardous to human health and the environment

While spiders can have up to eight eyes, daddy longlegs, which belong to a different order of arachnids called harvestmen, usually have just two eyes.

Daddy Longlegs Have Four Extra, Hidden Eyes, Researchers Say

The new discovery could help scientists unravel the mystery of how the arachnids evolved across some 537 million years

Aboard the International Space Station, astronauts experience near-weightlessness—and fluid accumulates in their heads as a result, which could potentially be one cause of headaches.

Most Astronauts Experience 'Space Headaches' While on the ISS, Study Finds

Surveys of 24 astronauts who traveled to the International Space Station found that nearly all of them reported headaches, and many of these occurred past the first week in space

Lava erupts from a nearly two-mile-long fissure on Iceland's Reykjanes Peninsula in the fourth eruption for the region since December.

Iceland Volcano Spews Lava in Fourth and Most Powerful Eruption in Three Months

Officials detected signs of an eruption only 40 minutes before fountains of lava burst from the ground

The scientists studied more than 4,600 Burmese and reticulated pythons on farms in Vietnam and Thailand.

Python Meat Could Be a Sustainable, Nutritious Food Source, Scientists Say

The snakes may be some of the most resource-efficient animals to farm on the planet, a new study suggests

The 2017 total solar eclipse as seen from Madras, Oregon

Five Fascinating Science Projects Using the Total Solar Eclipse to Illuminate New Discoveries

The NASA-supported experiments are mobilizing legions of researchers and volunteers to capture wide-ranging observations during totality, from amateur radio operations to elusive solar plumes to unusual animal behavior

Curator Frances McIntosh says the collection's survival is "nothing short of a miracle."

Cool Finds

Shells From Captain Cook's Final Voyage Were Rescued From a Dumpster

Long presumed lost, the collection of rare shells is now on display in England

SpaceX's third test flight of its Starship rocket was conducted Thursday morning. For the first time, the rocket made it to orbit.

Starship Reaches Orbit in Third Test Flight, a Success for SpaceX and the Future of Lunar Travel

As it returned to Earth, the spacecraft likely broke apart or burned up, and the booster was lost in the Gulf of Mexico

Mars' orbit has an impact on Earth's oceans and climate in cycles of 2.4 million years, new research finds.

Mars Has an Unexpected Influence on Earth's Oceans and Climate, Repeating Every 2.4 Million Years, Study Finds

The gravitational interactions between Mars and Earth as they orbit the sun may have periodically promoted a warmer climate and changes in ocean circulation on our home planet

Beluga whales are one of five species of whale that undergo menopause. The new study finds that females in these five species live decades longer than females of similarly sized species.

Whales That Go Through Menopause Live Longer and May Help Care for Grandchildren

Alongside humans, five species of toothed whales are known to experience menopause. A new study suggests they evolved the trait to increase their lifespan

For rabbits and hares, females typically weigh more than males, according to a new study.

For Most Mammal Species, Males Actually Aren't Larger Than Females, Study Finds

New research upends a long-held theory that male mammals tend to be bigger than their female counterparts

Art historian Federica Gigante examines the device at the Fondazione Museo Miniscalchi-Erizzo in Verona, Italy.

Cool Finds

Long Overlooked, This 11th-Century Astronomical Device Documents Scientific Exchange Among Muslims, Jews and Christians

The astrolabe features Hebrew and Latin inscriptions added by different owners over time

Roughly every 71 years, the bright periodic comet 12P/Pons-Brooks passes by the sun and Earth. At its brightest, it can be seen with the naked eye in fairly dark skies.

You Can See a Rare, Bright Comet This Month. Will It Be Visible During the Solar Eclipse?

Comet 12P/Pons-Brooks is a frigid, volcanic ice ball that won’t pass near Earth again until 2095

Europa’s icy surface hides an ocean of liquid water underneath, making it a prime target in the search for extraterrestrial life.

See the Messages NASA Will Send to Space on Its Upcoming Mission to Europa

A metal plate affixed to the Europa Clipper is engraved with a poem, tributes to scientists and waveforms representing the word "water" in 103 languages, among other drawings

Paul Alexander died on March 11 at age 78.

Texas Man Who Lived 70 Years in an Iron Lung Dies at 78: 'I Never Gave Up'

Paralyzed by polio in 1952, Paul Alexander led a full life despite being confined to a large steel ventilator

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