Monday one more time. Science talk returns to brighten your day with selections from science sites across the globe. New discoveries, new takes on old knowledge, and other bits of news are all available for the perusing in today's information world. Today's tidbits include distant galaxy spotted in its infancy, sea surface temperatures reach record highs on Northeast continental shelf, massive Roman mosaic uncovered in southern Turkey, stratosphere targets the deep sea to shape the climate, and a new way to produce nylon.
Pull up that comfy chair and grab a spot on the porch. There is always plenty of room for everyone. Another session of Dr. Possum's science education, entertainment, and potluck discussion is set to begin.
Astronomers may have spotted the most distant galaxy seen to date.
The far-off galaxy existed within an important era when the universe began to transition from the so-called "Dark Ages." During this period, the universe went from a dark, starless expanse to a recognizable cosmos full of galaxies. The discovery of the faint, small galaxy accordingly opens up a window into the deepest, most remote epochs of cosmic history.The Northeast Continental Shelf extends along a long stretch of U.S. territory.
Light from the primordial galaxy traveled approximately 13.2 billion light-years before reaching NASA's telescopes. In other words, the starlight snagged by Spitzer and Hubble left the galaxy when the universe was just 3.6 percent of its present age. Technically speaking, the galaxy has a redshift, of "z," of 9.6. The term "redshift" refers to how much an object’s light has shifted into longer wavelengths as a result of the expansion of the universe. Astronomers use "redshift" to describe cosmic distances.
Unlike previous detections of galaxy candidates in this age range, which were only glimpsed in a single color, or waveband, this newfound galaxy has been seen in five different wavebands. As part of the Cluster Lensing And Supernova survey with Hubble (CLASH) program, the Hubble space telescope registered the newly described, far-flung galaxy in four wavelength bands, and Spitzer in a fifth band via its Infrared Array Camera (IRAC), placing the discovery on firmer ground.
During the first six months of 2012, sea surface temperatures in the Northeast Shelf Large Marine Ecosystem were the highest ever recorded, according to the latest Ecosystem Advisory issued by NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC). Above-average temperatures were found in all parts of the ecosystem, from the ocean bottom to the sea surface and across the region, and the above average temperatures extended beyond the shelf break front to the Gulf Stream.In the process of continued excavation of the ancient city of Antiochia ad Cragum on the southern Turkish coast archeologists uncovered a very large Roman mosaic.
...massive Roman mosaic in southern Turkey – a meticulously crafted, 1,600-square-foot work of decorative handiwork built during the region’s imperial zenith.Periodic changes in winds in the stratosphere lead to deep ocean currents and changing circulation patterns which affect Earth's climate.
It’s believed to be the largest mosaic of its type in the region and demonstrates the reach and cultural influence of the Roman Empire in the area in the third and fourth centuries A.D.
...simulations of weather to show a surprising association between decade-scale, periodic changes in stratospheric wind patterns known as the polar vortex, and similar rhythmic changes in deep-sea circulation patterns. The changes are:Cancer researchers may have uncovered a new and more environmentally friendly way to produce nylon.
– “Stratospheric sudden warming” events occur when temperatures rise and 80-mph “polar vortex” winds encircling the Arctic suddenly weaken or even change direction. These winds extend from 15 miles elevation in the stratosphere up beyond the top of the stratosphere at 30 miles. The changes last for up to 60 days, allowing time for their effects to propagate down through the atmosphere to the ocean.
– Changes in the speed of the Atlantic circulation pattern – known as Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation – that influences the world’s oceans because it acts like a conveyor belt moving water around the planet.
Nylon is a ubiquitous material, used in carpeting, upholstery, auto parts, apparel and other products. A key component for its production is adipic acid, which is one of the most widely used chemicals in the world. Currently, adipic acid is produced from fossil fuel, and the pollution released from the refinement process is a leading contributor to global warming.The cancer researchers found an enzyme which, if scaled up enough, allows easier production of adipic acid.
Knucklehead's Photo of the Week
Tiger Sea Cucumber
©Knucklehead, all rights reserved, presented by permission. (Click on the image to see more in the same series.)
Other Worthy Stories of the Week
More species should have awesome names like Raspberry Crazy Ant Photo blog.
Hubble sees NGC7090, an actively star-forming galaxy
One degree imager debuts at WIYN teloscope at KPNO
Humans were recycling 13,000 years ago
Evidence of early human dentistry
New thermoelectric material is best at converting heat waste to electricity
Invisible plastic particles in seawater damaging to sea animals
New processes for cost-efficient solar cell production
Manmade marshes poorer in plant life than natural ones
Royal observatory picks best astronomy photos of the year
Ancient life could return to a warmer Arctic
Study shows ancient relations between language families
For even more science news:
General Science Collectors:
BBC News Science and Environment
Eureka Science News
A Few Things Ill Considered Techie and Science News
Cantauri Dreams space exploration
Coctail Party Physics Physics with a twist.
Deep Sea News marine biology
Laelaps more vertebrate paleontology
List of Geoscience Blogs
Tetrapod Zoologyvertebrate paleontology
Science RSS Feed: Medworm
The Skeptics Guide to the Universe--a combination of hard science and debunking crap
At Daily Kos:
This Week in Science by DarkSyde
Overnight News Digest:Science Saturday by Neon Vincent. OND tech Thursday by rfall.
Pique the Geek by Translator Sunday evenings about 9 Eastern time
All diaries with the DK GreenRoots Tag.
All diaries with the eKos Tag
A More Ancient World by matching mole
SciTech at Dkos.
Sunday Science Videos by palantir