Huge mysterious UFO disc-shaped object captured crossing moon’s surface was alien spaceship, say ET hunters

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Huge mysterious UFO disc-shaped object captured crossing moon’s surface was alien spaceship, say ET hunters

The full moon is seen in the night sky above Sydney, Australia, November 13, 2016, on the eve of the "supermoon" spectacle. Picture taken November 13, 2016. (REUTERS/Jason Reed)

Video shows what it’s like to get attacked by a crocodile and to see inside its mouth

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Video shows what it’s like to get attacked by a crocodile and to see inside its mouth

9/16/15 3:02pm

Man. These crocs come out of nowhere and attack with such a quickness that you don’t even know what’s happening until you’re already clamped down inside the terrifying and unrelenting jaws of the crocodile. National Geographic made some flotation devices that held cameras to capture exactly what it’s like to get attacked and be inside a crocodile’s mouth.

I’m Not Sure Who Won This Octopus vs Eel vs Human Fight

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I’m Not Sure Who Won This Octopus vs Eel vs Human Fight

Tuesday 8:17pm

Hot damn. A snorkeler in Hawaii stumbled on this underwater scrap between an octopus and a terrifying moray eel and it looks like it’s going to be a tangled fight to death. The moray eel looks like it has the clear advantage because, well, it’s a big ass bully with the octopus in its jaws but after a few whips around, the octopus grapples the eels with its tentacles and then unleashes an ink bomb in time to confuse the eel and escape. Phew.

It’s not exactly a victory for the octopus though because it loses a tentacle (which it can admittedly grow back later) but it’s not exactly an L for the eel either because it got itself a tasty snack. But the murderous eel isn’t happy with just a tie so it looks for something else to fight: the snorkeling cameraman.

The moray eel starts charging at the cameraman and rams its open mouth and jams its frightening teeth at the guy until the dude just makes a break for it. I think if the snorkeler was any slower, things would be a lot worse for everyone involved.

So who wins? The octopus without a tentacle, the super aggro eel who picks a fight with everything, or the snorkeler who will have nightmares for the rest of his life?

The Polar Vortex Has Returned to North America

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The Polar Vortex Has Returned to North America

Yesterday 10:00am

Last week, cold Arctic air (dark blue) descended into the Plains states and reached Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. That cold air then moved east into the Ohio Valley and New England. This trough of cold air is now expected to bring very chilly temperatures to the US East coast from New England to the Mid-Atlantic. (Image: NASA JPL, Ed Olsen)

A huge expanse of cold, Arctic air is sweeping through parts of Canada and the United States. Known as a “polar vortex,” the weather system is expected to deliver record-setting low temperatures and a particularly nasty wind chill.

This visualization was made from data collected by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) instrument onboard NASA’s Aqua satellite, and it shows temperature data in the infrared spectrum.

From December 1 to 11, AIRS tracked the cold snap as it swept across North America. On December 7, the polar vortex had descended into the Plains states and reached Colorado, Kansas, and Missouri. The cold air continued to make its way from west to east, reaching into the Ohio Valley and New England on December 9. These regions are now feeling the brunt of this cold air mass, which is expected to deliver frigid record-setting temperatures this week.

Wind chill temperature forecast for Thursday December 15. (Image: Accuweather)

Subzero temperatures are expected across the Upper Midwest today and tomorrow. By Thursday morning, Minnesota, Wisconsin, parts of the Dakotas, and Chicago are set to feel wind chills colder than -20 degrees F (-29 degrees C). Records for cold temperatures are also expected in northern Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia. Parts of Canada are also bracing for the big chill, including Manitoba and Ontario. New England and parts of the US East Coast can expect the cold temperatures to hit hard on Thursday and Friday, with wind chills ending up in the -10 to -25 degrees F range.

It sounds dramatic, but the polar vortex is nothing new. It’s a fundamental feature of our atmosphere, and an indelible component of our planet’s “global circulation.” This circulation serves as the Earth’s heat pump, moving extra energy from the tropics towards the poles, which keeps the planet’s temperatures in relative balance. The last time a major polar vortex event occurred was in January 2014, when the system delivered record low temperatures across much of North America.

[NASA, Washington Post]

George is a contributing editor at Gizmodo and io9.

Here’s What Would Happen If a Giant Asteroid Struck the Ocean

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Here’s What Would Happen If a Giant Asteroid Struck the Ocean

Image: Los Alamos National Laboratory

Seventy percent of Earth’s surface is covered by water, meaning if we were unfortunate enough to be struck by an enormous asteroid, it’d probably make a big splash. A team of data scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratoryrecently decided to model what would happen if an asteroid struck the sea. Despite the apocalyptic subject matter, the results are quite beautiful.

Galen Gisler and his colleagues at LANL are using supercomputers to visualize how the kinetic energy of a fast-moving space rock would be transferred to the ocean on impact. The results, which Gisler presented at the American Geophysical Union meeting this week, may come as a surprise to those who grew up on disaster movies like Deep Impact. Asteroids are point sources, and it turns out waves generated by point sources diminish rapidly, rather than growing more ferocious as they cover hundreds of miles to swallow New York.

The bigger concern, in most asteroid-on-ocean situations, is water vapor.

“The most significant effect of an impact into the ocean is the injection of water vapor into the stratosphere, with possible climate effects” Gisler said. Indeed, Gisler’s simulations show that large (250 meter-across) rock coming in very hot could vaporize up to 250 metric megatons of water. Lofted into the troposphere, that water vapor would rain out fairly quickly. But water vapor that makes it all the way up to the stratosphere can stay there for a while. And because it’s a potent greenhouse gas, this could have a major effect on our climate.

Of course, not all asteroids make it to the surface at all. Smaller sized ones, which are much more common in our solar neighborhood, tend to explode while they’re still in the sky, creating a pressure wave that propagates outwards in all directions. Gisler’s models show that when these “airburst” asteroids strike over the ocean, they produce less stratospheric water vapor, and smaller waves. “The airburst considerably mitigates the effect on the water,” he said.

Overall, Gisler says, asteroids over the ocean pose less of a danger to humans than asteroids over the land. There’s one big exception, however, and that’s asteroids that strike near a coastline.

“An impact or an airburst [near] a populated shore will be very dangerous,” Gisler said. In that case, the gigantic, city-devouring tsunami every B-list disaster movie has primed you for might actually arrive.

Correction: An earlier version of this post misspelled Dr. Gisler’s last name. The text has been updated.

Maddie is the science editor at Gizmodo

A treasure hunter found 3 tons of sunken gold — and can’t leave jail until he says where it is

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 Tommy G. Thompson holds a $50 pioneer gold coin in 1989. (Lon Horwedel/Columbus Dispatch via AP)Tommy G. Thompson was once one of the greatest treasure hunters of his time: A dark-bearded diver who hauled a trove of gold from the Atlantic Ocean in 1988 — dubbed the richest find in U.S. history.

Years later, accused of cheating his investors out of the fortune, Thompson led federal agents on a great manhunt — pursued from a Florida mansion to a mid-rent hotel room booked under a fake name.

Now Thompson’s beard has grayed, and he lives in an Ohio jail cell, held there until he gives up the location of the gold.

But for nearly two years, despite threats and fines and the best exertions of a federal judge, no one has managed to make Thompson reveal what he did with the treasure.

The wreck of the S.S. Central America waited 130 years for Thompson to come along. The steamer went down in a hurricane in 1857, taking 425 souls and at least three tons of California gold to the sea floor off South Carolina.

Many tried to find it, but none succeeded until a young, shipwreck-obsessed engineer from Columbus, Ohio, built an underwater robot called “Nemo” to pinpoint the Central America, then dive 8,000 feet under the sea and surface the loot.

“A man as personable as he was brilliant, Thompson recruited more than 160 investors to fund his expedition,” Columbus Monthly noted in a profile. He “spent years studying the ship’s fateful voyage … and developing the technology to plunge deeper in the ocean than anyone had before to retrieve its treasure.”

Thompson’s crew pulled up rare 19th-century coins, the ship’s bell and “gold bars . . . 15 times bigger than the largest California gold bar previously known to exist,” the Chicago Tribune reported in 1989.

And 95 percent of the wreck site was still unexplored — potentially worth $400 million in gold alone, The Washington Post reported a year later. “The treasure trove is the richest in American history and the deepwater salvage effort the most ambitious ever undertaken anywhere.”

The expedition’s loot captured the country’s attention, as did the peculiarities of its leader — a scientist-seafarer hybrid who worked on nuclear submarine systems before he hunted treasure.

“Thompson is not exactly the romantic, swashbuckling sort,” Forbes wrote during the years-long recovery of the ship’s treasure. “He is scientific and methodical, with none of the P.T. Barnum that infuses (and inflates) other salvors.”

In his late 30s, during the height of his fame, Thompson said little in public and tended to play down his role in the discovery.

“This gold is part of the largest treasure trove in American history,” he told reporters in 1989. “But the history of the S.S. Central America is also a rich part of our nation’s cultural treasury.”

He added: “It’s a celebration of American ideals: free enterprise and hard work.”

But before long, some of Thompson’s bankrollers began painting a very different picture of the man.

Two of the expedition’s biggest investors took him to court in the 2000s, accusing him of selling nearly all the gold and keeping the profits to himself.

When a federal judge ordered Thompson to appear in 2012, he didn’t show. An arrest warrant was issued, but the man who found a long-lost shipwreck had disappeared.

There followed a two-year manhunt for what a top U.S. Marshal called “perhaps one of the smartest fugitives” the agency had ever chased.

Thompson had “almost limitless resources and approximately a ten year head start” in the chase, U.S. Marshal for the Southern District of Ohio Peter Tobin said in a statement.

Thompson and his girlfriend had been living for years in a Florida mansion, paying rent with cash that was damp and moldy from the earth it had been buried in, The Post’s Abby Phillip reported last year. The couple had fled by the time authorities found the house.

Government records detailed what they’d left behind: disposable cellphones, money straps stamped “$10,000” and a guide on evading law enforcement titled “How to be Invisible.”

Thompson was finally caught in January 2015, after agents tracked his girlfriend to a $200-a-night hotel near West Palm Beach, The Post reported at the time.

In a celebratory statement, Tobin said the U.S. Marshals had used “all of our resources and ingenuity” to find the treasure hunter.

But they didn’t find the treasure.

Thompson’s investors, who originally expected to make tens of millions of dollars from the venture, said that they believe he had hundreds of gold coins secreted in a trust account for his children. At first, their search for the coins looked promising. Thompson pleaded guilty to contempt of court in April 2015, according to the Columbus Dispatch. He said the coins were in Belize and agreed to reveal their exact location.

But that didn’t happen.

Thompson’s attorney said last month that his client couldn’t remember who he gave the gold to, even after poring over thousands of pages of documents related to the treasure, according to the Dispatch.

A federal judge ruled that Thompson was faking memory problems, the newspaper reported, and has held him in an Ohio jail cell for a year.

Thompson could remain behind bars until he talks, the Associated Press reported, and is being fined $1,000 a day in the meantime.

“Who knows — he might have an epiphany,” U.S. District Judge Algenon Marbley remarked Monday when he ordered Thompson to answer questions about the gold’s location.

But so far, the S.S. Central America’s treasure remains missing for the second time in two centuries.

And perhaps the only man able to find it remains as silent as the lost sailors of that old wreck.

December 14 at 12:01 PM