Mexico Celebrates Independence Day and Remember El Grito de Dolores
Despite what your typical drunk college student would tell you, the 5th of May is not Mexican Independence Day. In fact, Cinco de Mayo isn't even a national public holiday, though Mexican school children do get the day off. Rather, May 5 is simply the anniversary of an underdog victory by Mexican troops over the French at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, and is celebrated mostly in the U.S. as an excuse to wear gaudy sombreros and drink Corona beer.
The real Mexican Independence Day is celebrated today, September 16, and commemorates the 1810 declaration of revolt against the Spanish by Catholic priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla. Father Hidalgo's rallying cry took place in the town of Dolores so the event is remembered as el Grito de Dolores (the Cry of Dolores).
The above photo portrays a calaca (skeletal) recreation of the event.
For more on Mexican Independence Day and El Grito de Dolores, visit Mexconnect.
Photo credit: katiebordner / Flickr
Here's the science of black holes, from supermassive monsters to ones the size of ping-pong balls.
- There's more than one way to make a black hole, says NASA's Michelle Thaller. They're not always formed from dead stars. For example, there are teeny tiny black holes all around us, the result of high-energy cosmic rays slamming into our atmosphere with enough force to cram matter together so densely that no light can escape.
- CERN is trying to create artificial black holes right now, but don't worry, it's not dangerous. Scientists there are attempting to smash two particles together with such intensity that it creates a black hole that would live for just a millionth of a second.
- Thaller uses a brilliant analogy involving a rubber sheet, a marble, and an elephant to explain why different black holes have varying densities. Watch and learn!
- Bonus fact: If the Earth became a black hole, it would be crushed to the size of a ping-pong ball.
Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.
In a breakthrough for nuclear fusion research, scientists at China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor have produced temperatures necessary for nuclear fusion on Earth.
- The EAST reactor was able to heat hydrogen to temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius.
- Nuclear fusion could someday provide the planet with a virtually limitless supply of clean energy.
- Still, scientists have many other obstacles to pass before fusion technology becomes a viable energy source.
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