TW - page 93


Researcher, journalist and editor of The Watchers. You can reach me at desk[at]

TW's articles


Active volcanoes in the world: January 8 - January 14, 2014

New activity was observed at 5 volcanoes in last 7 days. During the same period, ongoing activity was observed at 9 volcanoes. New activity/unrest:  | Asosan, Kyushu | Cleveland, Chuginadak Island | Pacaya, Guatemala | San Miguel, El Salvador |

January 15, 2014


Key species of algae shows effects of climate change over time

Historical comparison of competition among algae in waters around the Pacific Northwest provides more evidence for increased ocean acidification. A study of marine life in the temperate coastal waters of the northeast Pacific Ocean shows a reversal of competitive

January 15, 2014


West African lion on the verge of extinction

A new study published in PLOS One journal last week warns that a dramatic decline of West African lions has placed them on the verge of extinction. Study authors call for urgent intervention to save them. The lion (Panthera leo) was the most

January 15, 2014


Sinabung roars - largest pyroclastic flows, thick ash layer, major hazard from lahars

The eruption of Indonesian Sinabung volcano intensified again today and produced pyroclastic flows reaching more than 5 - 6 km in length, the largest so far. Associated ash plumes rose to approximate altitude of 8 km (25 000 ft). Yesterday, the official

January 14, 2014

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Strong and shallow M 6.4 earthquake struck off the coast of Puerto Rico

A strong and shallow earthquake registered as M 6.4 struck off the coast of Puerto Rico on January 13, 2014 at 04:01 UTC. USGS measured depth at 28 km (17.4 miles), EMSC at 20 km. Numerous aftershocks followed (M3.1 - 3.7). Epicenter was located 57 km

January 13, 2014

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Comet-hunting probe Rosetta about to wake up, zero in and land on a comet

This month, after 10 years of traveling through our solar system, the first space mission designed to study and deliver a lander on a comet is up for a major milestone. Launched by European Space Agency (ESA) back in 2004, the

January 12, 2014


The cyborgs era has started - KIT scientists discuss the state of the art of research, opportunities, and risks

Medical implants, complex interfaces between brain and machine or remotely controlled insects: Recent developments combining machines and organisms have great potentials, but also give rise to major ethical concerns. In their review entitled "Chemie der

January 10, 2014


Active volcanoes in the world: January 1 - January 7, 2014

New activity was observed at 5 volcanoes in last 7 days. During the same period, ongoing activity was observed at 12 volcanoes. New activity/unrest: | Cleveland, Chuginadak Island | Pagan, Mriana Islands | Raung, Eastern Java (Indonesia) | San Miguel,

January 08, 2014

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Major solar flare measuring X1.2 erupted from geoeffective region, bright CME generated

Geoeffective Active Region 1944 (beta-gamma-delta) erupted with major solar flare measuring X1.2 at 18:32 UTC today. The event started at 18:04, peaked at 18:32 and ended at 18:58 UTC. A Type II radio emission was registered at 18:17 UTC with estimated

January 07, 2014


Strong M7.2 solar flare erupted from big central region on the Sun

Huge central region on the Sun, AR 1944 (Fkc/beta-gamma-delta) erupted with strong solar flare measuring M7.2 at its peak time today. The event started at 10:07, peaked at 10:13 and ended at 10:37 UTC. Region 1944 is the largest and most magnetically complex

January 07, 2014


Strong eruption of Mount Sinabung triggers more evacuations, preparing for worst-case scenario

Indonesian authorities are reporting that activity at Mount Sinabung volcano is still very high. Current eruptive phase started on January 4, when at least 5 pyroclastic flows traveled down on the southeastern side and reached lengths of up to 4 km.

January 05, 2014


When mind games masquerade as physics

While sensational news headlines sometimes laud definitive breakthroughs such as the so-called discovery of the God particle, more and more scientists are warning that physics has reached a state of crisis. In the video below, physicist Wal Thornhill

January 05, 2014

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Moderate solar activity continues - big sunspot delivers goodies

One of the biggest active regions of this solar cycle, AR 1944 (S08E38, Fkc/beta-gamma-delta), responsible for 6 M-class solar flares in last 4 days, is rotating into more geoeffective position. The largest event it produced so far was a long

January 05, 2014

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Southern berm of Louisiana sinkhole sagging

An increasing trend of seismic activity at the Bayou Corne sinkhole near Oxy 3 cavern placed the sinkhole staff back on highest level alert late December 2013. Since August 2012 the sinkhole grew from 1 to more than 25 acres (10 hectares / 100 000

January 03, 2014

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Minor geomagnetic storming, first auroras of 2014 - moderate solar activity to continue

High speed solar speed is creating brief periods of geomagnetic storming. High latitude skywatchers should be alert for auroras. Solar activity has been at moderate levels for the most of the day. There are 8 active sunspot regions on the Earth side of the

January 02, 2014


Newly discovered asteroid "2014 AA" burned up over the Atlantic

Newly discovered asteroid "2014 AA", approximately 2 - 4 meters in diameter, burned in our atmosphere around 05:00 UTC today. JPL's Steve Chesley noted that impact locations are widely distributed, most likely falling on an

January 02, 2014


Intense Tropical Cyclone Bejisa approaching Reunion and Mauritius

At 21:00 UTC on January 1, 2014 Tropical Cyclone "Bejisa", was located approximately 136 NM (251 km) northwest of St. Denis, La Reunion, and has tracked south- southeastward at 08 KT (14 km/h, 9.2 mph) over the past six hours. It is expected to

January 02, 2014

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Strong M9.9 solar flare erupted from AR 1936

At 18:52 UTC today (January 1, 2014) strong solar flare measuring M9.9 erupted from Region 1936. R2 Moderate solar radiation storm was reported: area of impact centered primarily on sub-solar point on the sunlit side of Earth, limited blackout of HF

January 01, 2014


Night sky guide for January 2014

January 1 - New Moon - 11:14 UTC. The Moon will be directly between the Earth and the Sun and will be completely unilluminated. January 2, 3 - Quadrantids Meteor Shower peak nights. The Quadrantids have the potential to be

January 01, 2014


Active volcanoes in the world: December 25 - December 31, 2013

New activity was observed at 3 volcanoes between December 25 and 31. During the same period, ongoing activity was observed at 9 volcanoes. New activity/unrest: | Nishimo-shima, Japan | San Miguel, El Salvador | Sinabung, Sumatra

January 01, 2014

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Moderately strong M6.4 solar flare erupted from geoeffective region, glancing blow possible

Geoeffective AR 1936 (S16W36, Eac/beta-gamma-delta) produced an M6.4 solar flare on Tuesday, December 31, 2013. The event started at 21:45 and peaked at 21:58 UTC. It is possible that Earth-directed CME was associated, a glancing blow to our planet is

January 01, 2014


Researcher says extensive use of antibiotics in agriculture creating public health crisis

University of Calgary's Aidan Hollis advocates user fees on non-human antibiotics use Citing an overabundance in the use of antibiotics by the agriculture and aquaculture industries that poses a threat to public health, economics professor Aidan Hollis has

December 30, 2013

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Massive storm surges expected as Severe Tropical Cyclone "Christine" makes landfall in Western Australia

Australian officials have issue red alert warnings as Severe Tropical Cyclone "Christine" moved toward the Western Australian coast of Pilbara with winds of up to 200 km/h today. Christine is expected to bring massive storm surges of up to five meters,

December 30, 2013

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Surprising, strong eruption of San Miguel volcano, El Salvador

After 11 sleepy years, San Miguel volcano (Chaparrastique) in El Salvador experienced a strong eruption on December 29, 2013 at 16:50 UTC (10:50 am local time). Eruption column was estimated rising up to 9 km (29 500 feet) and civil alert status for the area around...

December 29, 2013

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Moderate M3.1 solar flare erupted from AR 1936 located at the center of the disk

Moderate solar flare reaching M3.1 erupted from beta-gamma Region 1936 on December 29 at 07:56 UTC. Region 1936 is located at the center of the disk, it is in almost perfect geoeffective position and is currently the only flaring region on Earth side of

December 29, 2013

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Japanese volcanologists: several nuclear power plants at risk if major eruptions happen

In a survey conducted by Mainichi Shimbun Japanese volcanologists said that several nuclear power plants around the country face dangers from potential large-scale volcanic eruptions. Survey was done by questionnaires distributed to nationwide

December 28, 2013

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Shaking, cracks and dangerous rockfalls from strong M 5.4 quake near El Hierro, Canary Islands

A strong earthquake registered as M 5.4 by USGS (mb 5.4 EMSC / mbLg 5.1 local IGN) struck 31 km northwest of La Frontera (El Hierro / Canary Islands) on December 27, 2013 at 17:46 UTC. IGN measured shallow depth of 11

December 28, 2013


Quantum craziness - Space news from Electric Universe

A new paper published by an MIT physicist claims to theoretically prove that so-called "quantum entanglement" -- two particles seemingly occupying more than one state simultaneously -- gives rise to a wormhole that allows particles to communicate through a

December 27, 2013


Active volcanoes in the world: December 18 - December 24, 2013

New activity was observed at 2 volcanoes between December 18 and 24. During the same period, ongoing activity was observed at 11 volcanoes. New activity/unrest: | Kliuchevskoi, Central Kamchatka (Russia) | Palena Volcanic Group, Central

December 26, 2013


Heavy rain, floods and landslides reported in Eastern Caribbean on Christmas Eve

Although official hurricane season is over, low pressure area in the northeastern Caribbean brought heavy rain, floods and landslides on islands of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia and Dominica on December 25, 2013.At least eight people died and dozens were f

December 26, 2013

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Heavy downpours in southeastern Brazil forced over 46 000 people to evacuate

Heavy rains which began last week in Brazil affected 45 southeastern municipalities and caused flooding, mudslides and crumbled some of the major roads. The worst affected states were Minas Gerais and Espírito Santo. By latest reports, at least 22

December 26, 2013

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New Japanese island Niijima merged with Nishino-shima

Only a narrow channel of water appeared to separate Japanese islands Nishino-shima and newly created Niijima on satellite images from December 24. The water around the islands was discolored by volcanic minerals and gases, as well as by seafloor

December 25, 2013


Deadly storms caused chaotic Christmas in Europe and USA

It seems the weather acted accordingly to chaos felt in the heads of many Europeans and Americans today. Over a million homes and businesses were left without power on Christmas and hundreds of flights were canceled as deadly storms continued to sweep the two

December 25, 2013


Severe winter storm hit Britain and France

A severe winter storm, named Dirk by Berlin's institute for meteorology, has caused major problems in Britain and France. Latest reports mention 4 deaths in Britain and one in France. UK's Environment Agency issued hundreds of flood warnings across all of

December 24, 2013


Uptick in solar activity, SDO HMI/AIA data distribution center under emergency repairs

Solar activity is picking up again. After M3.5 on December 19 at 23:19 UTC and M1.6 on December 20 at 11:57 UTC Sun unleashed more M-class flares today and it looks like it's going to continue. Today, Region 1928 (S18W55, Ekc/beta-gamma) produced M1.9 at

December 22, 2013


Sudden increase in seismic activity at El Hierro, Canary Islands

ER is reporting a sudden increase of seismicity at El Hierro, Canary Islands, today. It's too soon to talk about a new crisis, but with five 2+ magnitude earthquakes on 13 earthquakes this looks more than the usual small M1 quakes reported in the recent

December 22, 2013


Unconditional basic income for all Europeans

A movement to give every citizen “unconditional basic income”—no work required—is gathering speed in Europe.  For the last 11 months, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI)  has been spearheading a one-year campaign

December 21, 2013


Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory welcomes researchers interested in collaboration

Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (QuAIL) is NASA’s hub for an experiment to assess the potential of quantum computers to perform calculations that are difficult or impossible using conventional supercomputers. They welcome researchers at

December 21, 2013


Disaster-response robots competition - DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials 2013

The DARPA Robotics Challenge (DRC) is extremely difficult competition of robot systems and software teams vying to develop robots capable of assisting humans in responding to natural and man-made disasters. Seventeen teams from around the world will be

December 20, 2013

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Impulsive solar flare measuring M3.5 erupted from eastern limb

Impulsive solar flare measuring M3.5 erupted on December 19 at 23:19 UTC. The source of the event was centered around new active region in close proximity to AR 1931 located on eastern limb. This region is not yet in position to cause Earth directed

December 20, 2013