Friday Science Headlines! February 13th, 2015

Graveyard - 2013-11-28_236543_places.jpgWeather seems to dominate our conversation these days- too cold, too hot, way to much snow!  So here’s a couple of the latest headlines around the weather! Let’s talk about Milky Rain, the SpaceX Rocket, and is that the universe smiling at us?


What is Milky Rain? Scientists in the Pacific Northwest are working to conduct tests on some rather unusual precipitation that fell in the area last weekend. The rain, coined “milky rain” by just about everyone, is puzzling.

Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Benton Clean Air Agency have collected samples for testing. Some believe that the rain is carrying volcanic ash from volcano erupting in Japan, while others think the dust may originate from much closer: central Oregon. The National Weather Services believes the rain was a byproduct of dust storms in Nevada.

Regardless of the source, scientists agree the rain is not hazardous. Air monitoring stations did not detect any issues.

The unmanned Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from launch pad 40 the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape CanaveralSpaceX Rocket Launches! The SpaceX rocket launched on Wednesday, February 11th with a U.S. satellite that will monitor solar storms and Earth from almost a million miles away.

The satellite, the Deep Space Climate Observatory, or DSCOVR, is a $340 million project backed by NASA, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the U.S. Air Force. It replaces a 17 year old satellite and will take 110 days to reach it’s destination. It could provide up to an hour’s notice of advancing solar activity that could disrupt GPS signals, block radio communication and impact power grids.

And finally, just for fun and because it’s Valentine’s Day this weekend, we offer you this image:

A smiling lens

Hubble scientists recently discovered a galaxy cluster that looks very much like a face- including a smile!  So, yes, the universe is smiling at us!




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