How Is the Weather in Space?

Enhancing our understanding of complex space weather, N.A.S.A. scientists have gleaned new insights into the origins of fast-moving electrons during substorms in the Earth's magnetosphere.

New data from the THEMIS probe launched in 2007 is giving us insight into weather patterns in space: "Back in 2008, data from THEMIS helped overturn a long-standing hypothesis about when the magnetopshere is the most 'leaky.' Scientists thought that when the sun's magnetic field was aligned with that of the earth, there were fewer 'leaks' allowing solar particles to penetrate the 'shield.' But it turns out that the opposite is true: 20 times more solar particles penetrated the Earth's magnetophere during periods of alignment, as opposed to when the two magnetic fields were directly opposite."

Car culture and suburban sprawl create rifts in society, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

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Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
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How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
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NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller on ​the multiple dimensions of space and human sexuality

Science and the squishiness of the human mind. The joys of wearing whatever the hell you want, and so much more.

Flickr / 13winds
Think Again Podcasts
  • Why can't we have a human-sized cat tree?
  • What would happen if you got a spoonful of a neutron star?
  • Why do we insist on dividing our wonderfully complex selves into boring little boxes
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