Bizarre ‘Headless Chicken Monster’ Drifts Through Antarctic Deep


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Bizarre ‘Headless Chicken Monster’ Drifts Through Antarctic Deep

By Mindy Weisberger October 22, 2018

A swimming pink sea cucumber gets its unusual nickname from its resemblance to a plucked, decapitated chicken.(Image: © Australian Antarctic Program)

Meet the real-life “chicken of the sea”: a strange, pinkish-red creature with a body like a plump-breasted and decapitated chicken, earning the creature the name “headless chicken monster.”

In truth, it is neither a chicken nor a monster. It’s the swimming sea cucumber Enypniastes eximia, and scientists recently captured video of this bizarre, hen-mimicking swimmer in the Southern Ocean near eastern Antarctica, where it has never been seen before.

Footage shows the colorful sea cucumber drifting through the water; fins at the top and bottom of its tubby, translucent body almost resemble the stubby wings and legs on plucked, pink poultry ready for the pot. If you squint, you might think you’re looking at the result of an ill-fated tryst between a chicken and Aquaman. [In Photos: Spooky Deep-Sea Creatures]

Not everyone recognizes the gelatinous sea cucumber’s similarity to a chicken, though its appearance is undeniably peculiar. Photos of the crimson creature that were shared around the Live Science newsroom prompted comparisons to “a frilly pillow case,” “a bloody flying squirrel,” “a raw steak with fins” and “what you’d get if you asked a machine learning algorithm to make you a picture of a fish.” [Editor’s note: All of these are wrong; it looks like a floating chicken head.]

The so-called headless chicken monster, previously found only in the Gulf of Mexico, was recently detected by scientists with the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD), part of the Australian Department of the Environment dedicated to investigating Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. The researchers used new camera technology to detect the swimming sea cucumber at a depth of about 9,800 feet (3 kilometers) below sea level, AAD representatives said in a statement.

On average, E. eximia measures between 2 and 8 inches (6 to 20 centimeters) in length; adults’ colors can range from dark reddish brown to crimson, though juveniles are typically a paler shade of pink, according to a study published in 1990 in the journal Smithsonian Contributions to the Marine Sciences.

While most types of sea cucumbers spend the majority of their time on the sea bed, swimming sea cucumbers like E. eximia land only to feed, researchers reported in the 1990 study.

Cameras designed for the AAD expedition were deployed on fishing lines, according to a YouTube video the agency shared yesterday (Oct. 21). The equipment is durable enough to be tossed over the side of a boat and can operate reliably for extended periods of time in the total darkness and crushing pressures of the deep ocean, AAD program director Dirk Welsford said in the statement.

“Some of the footage we are getting back from the cameras is breathtaking, including species we have never seen in this part of the world,” Welsford said.

In addition to offering glimpses of unusual marine life such asE. eximia, the new camera system reveals the complex interplay of life in Southern Ocean depths, Welsford said. It will help scientists to advise policy makers about conserving vulnerable ecosystems that are threatened by commercial fishing, Welsford explained.

Originally published on Live Science.

Small World: Gallery of Microscopic Beauty


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Small World: Gallery of Microscopic Beauty

By Stephanie Pappas 

Kangaroo Rat Kidneys

(Image credit: Dr. Lynne Chang, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA )

Keratin filaments in the cytoplasm and nucleus of rat kidney cells help the cells maintain their shape in this Nikon Small World image by Harvard’s Lynne Chang. The annual photograph competition highlights microscopic images, and winners will be announced in October. [Gallery of Last Year’s Winners]

Tiny Trap

(Image credit: Mr. Jose R. Almodovar, Microscopy Center, Biology Department, UPR Mayaguez Campus, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico )

Jose R. Almodovar of the UPR Mayaguez Campus took this photo of a bladderwort bladder for the 2011 Nikon Small World photography contest. Bladderworts are carnivorous plants that trap tiny organisms in their bladders for digestion.

Silver Wattle Anther

(Image credit: Dr. Marta Guervos, Image Processing Unit, Scientific-Technical Facilities, University of Oviedo Asturias, Spain )

Dr. Marta Guervos of the University of Oviedo in Asturias, Spain zoomed in on the anther of a silver wattle or mimosa tree for the 2011 Nikon Small World photography competition.

Red Velvet

(Image credit: Dr. David Maitland, http://www.davidmaitland.com, Feltwell, UK )

Dr. David Maitland of Feltwell, UK gets very close to a red velvet mite, a tiny arachnid, for his Nikon Small World entry.

Earworms

(Image credit: Dr. Witold Kilarski, EPFL-Laboratory of Lymphatic and Cancer, Lausanne, Switzerland )

Parasitic filaria worms (in red) inside the lymphatic cells of a mouse’s ear, taken for the 2011 Nikon Small World competition by Dr. Witold Kilarski of the EPFL-Laboratory of Lymphatic and Cancer in Lausanne, Switzerland. The worms are a parasitic nematode. Some species are known to infect humans.

Cow Cells

(Image credit: Dr. Torsten Wittmann, University of California, San Francisco)

The University of San Francisco’s Dr. Torsten Wittmann captured this shot of bovine pulmonary artery cells stained so that actin, mitochondria and DNA appear in yellow and blue.

For more photos, and to vote on your favorite, visit www.nikonsmallworld.com.

Saved by the Whale! Humpbacks Play Hero When Orcas Attack


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Saved by the Whale! Humpbacks Play Hero When Orcas Attack

By Mindy Weisberger August 03, 2016

A humpback whale protects a Weddell seal from an attacking killer whale.(Image: © Robert L. Pitman)

The photo is extraordinary. In waters near the Antarctic peninsula, an enormous humpback whale floats on its back, cradling a Weddell seal on its chest and elevating it above the ocean surface. Only moments earlier, the seal was perilously close to becoming dinner for a group of hungry killer whales.

Biologist Robert Pitman snapped the image while on a research expedition in 2009 — but it wasn’t the first time he had observed this unusual protective behavior.

Just one week earlier, Pitman, a researcher with the Southwest Fisheries Science Center in the NOAA Fisheries Service in California, saw a pair of humpbacks aggressively confronting killer whales that were circling a lone seal on an isolated ice floe. The humpbacks plowed between the killer whales and the trapped seal, vocalizing and churning the water with their flippers, and shielding the seal until the orcas gave up and swam away. [Daring Duos: Unlikely Animal Friends]

Pitman wrote about both encounters in an article published in the November 2009 issue of the magazine Natural History, but that was only the beginning of a much longer and more in-depth investigation. In a new study, Pitman explores dozens of examples presenting humpback whales as unlikely marine vigilantes, ganging up on predatory killer whales that try to attack other species.

His research analyzed 115 interactions that took place between humpbacks and killer whales, observed by more than 54 individuals — scientists and non-scientists — in ocean locations around the world and spanning 62 years, from 1951 through 2012.

The study found that large and powerful humpback whales, the only whales known to attack orcas, will band together and sometimes travel great distances to interrupt and terminate a killer whale attack, regardless of what type of animal the orca is attacking.

Humpbacks to the rescue

Adult humpbacks usually don’t have much to fear from killer whales. Observers’ accounts suggested that when killer whales approached humpbacks, they were targeting the more vulnerable calves or juveniles as prey, the study authors wrote.

But humpbacks frequently turned the tables on their would-be attackers. Observers also described numerous reports of humpbacks — alone and in groups — making the first move, approaching killer whales that were already pursuing other prey. Sometimes the orcas’ victims were humpback mothers with young calves. But belligerent humpbacks also appeared when orcas pursued other whale species, or even seals and sea lions. The humpbacks would slap their tail flukes and flippers in the water, and make loud “bellowing” sounds to drive the orcas away.

Humpbacks’ whale-deterring moves typically lasted for at least one hour and could extend for as long as seven hours, the authors wrote. And according to observers, the whales’ intervention often allowed the orcas’ prey to escape.

One account in the study described a killer whale attacking a gray whale mother and calf, when “out of nowhere, a humpback whale came trumpeting in.” Four more humpbacks shortly followed, which the observer found odd because no humpbacks had been sighted in the area before then. Their timely arrival allowed both calf and mother to flee to safety, the researchers said. [Real-Life ‘Zootopia’: Mongooses and Warthogs Are Unlikely Pals]

Heeding distress calls

The sounds made by attacking orcas may be what draw humpbacks to the scene — even when they’re nearly a mile away, the authors suggested. Killer whales are silent and stealthy when stalking their prey, but become highly vocal once they attack. Humpbacks could recognize this sound from orca attacks on their own young, and respond even when they don’t know what species the killer whale is targeting.

But why would humpbacks put themselves at risk to protect animals that aren’t even their close relatives? They aren’t known to mingle with seals and other whales under normal circumstances, Pitman told Live Science in an email.

“Sometimes different species will collect in an area of abundant prey,” he said. “But usually there are no direct interactions.”

The protection the humpbacks’ behavior offers to other species is probably very welcome — but is likely unintended, the study authors said.

“A simple behavioral rule like ‘interfere with attacking killer whales’ may prevent a related calf from being killed,” Pitman explained, “and it may also help out other species at times.”

Since the risk to a healthy adult humpback from a killer whale is low, the benefit of possibly saving a humpback calf could outweigh the high-energy cost of putting themselves in harm’s way — even if the animal they’re saving isn’t always a humpback, Pitman said. [Whale Album: Giants of the Deep]

Friends and allies?

There is indeed a great deal yet to be learned about the motivations of these hero humpbacks, but is the idea of animal altruism really so unusual? Animals of the same species that live in groups are known to band together to drive off a threat, to collaborate in complex construction projects, to hunt for food or to attack rivals.

And even different species that would typically never interact can form close bonds when introduced at a young age — such as a leopard and golden retriever that were raised together in South Africa.

But do animals in the wild experience compassion or concern for other species that go beyond the need to protect themselves and their young? Animals can’t tell scientists about their intentions. And while it may be tempting to interpret their behavior through a human lens, there is still much that eludes easy explanation, according to the researchers.

“I think we need to consider the possibility that altruism can be unintentional and arise out of self-interest, as we suggest for the humpbacks,” Pitman said.

He said that current understanding of whale behavior is also hampered simply because whales are scarce. Whaling throughout the 20th century drastically reduced their numbers, and many populations that were nearly eliminated are only recently beginning to rebound.Advertisement

“As their populations continue to recover, and we learn more about how they interact with each other and their environment, we could be in for some surprises,” he added.

The findings were published online July 20 in the journal Marine Mammal Science.

Original article on Live Science.

Countries around the world want a Space Force — but why?


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Space.com

Countries around the world want a Space Force — but why?

By Chelsea Gohd – Space.com a day ago

“Nobody wants a war in space.”

The U.S. Space Force isn't the only military space branch popping up around the world.

The U.S. Space Force isn’t the only military space branch popping up around the world.(Image: © U.S. Space Force)

As perceived security threats mount in Earth’s orbit, countries around the world are following the example of the United States and creating their own “space forces.” 

Nine months ago, in December 2019, the U.S. Space Force was born. The new military branch was created with a focus to protect the nation’s satellites and other space assets, which are vital to everything from national security to day-to-day communications. 

Now, countries including France, Canada and Japan are following suit, as leaders from those countries’ “space force” analogs said Thursday (Sept. 10) during the 2nd Summit for Space Sustainability, an online event hosted by the nonprofit Secure World Foundation.

So, why do these countries, as well as nations like Russia and China, want a military presence in space? 

Related: The most dangerous space weapons ever

According to Maj. Gen. John Shaw, the combined force space component commander of the U.S. Space Command and commander of space operations command for the U.S. Space Force, it’s analogous to asking “why do ocean-going or seafaring nations want a Navy?” They want “to secure that domain for all activity and to deter threats in that domain,” he said during the summit on Thursday. “Nobody wants a war in space.”

Space torpedoes

The threats that the U.S. Space Force aims to deter are not theoretical and have already started popping up, Shaw explained. 

For example, in April and again in July, the Space Force detected an anti-satellite missile test conducted in low Earth orbit by Russia. The April test “provides yet another example that the threats to the U.S. and allied space systems are real, serious and growing,” Space Force commander Gen. John “Jay” Raymond stated following that incident.

Satellite tests are no uncommon occurrence in low Earth orbit. However, according to Shaw, Russia was testing what looked like a “space torpedo.” 

Video: Watch Russia launch the two mysterious satellites

“And I could add many other threats that we’ve seen along the continuum of space counter-space capabilities,” Shaw added, citing “the proliferation of electromagnetic spectrum jammers” as an example. Jammers deliberately interfere with information beaming to or from Earth-orbiting satellites.

And, while the U.S. Space Force is actively working to combat these threats, other countries are following suit. “We share the same concerns,” French Space Command major general and commander Michel Friedling said during the summit. 

“We want to make sure that we’re not riding coattails,” Brig. Gen. Mike Adamson, the director general and Space/Joint Force Space Component Commander for the Canadian Department of National Defence added during the summit. Canada wants to “maintain our place at the table,” Adamson said.

Satellite swarm threats

However, intentional, nefarious threats from other nations are not the only concern for the U.S. Space Force and other countries’ growing military space efforts. Constellations of satellites from private companies here on Earth can also pose serious issues.

The “proliferation in low Earth orbit of commercial satellites, in some ways, might be the greatest threat to space sustainability,” Shaw said, adding that this will only really be a threat if not done properly. 

Recently, SpaceX began launching large numbers of satellites to low Earth orbit, in an effort to grow a huge constellation called Starlink that’s designed to provide internet access around the globe. 

SpaceX has already lofted more than 700 Starlink satellites. But Elon Musk’s company has approval from the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to launch as many as 12,000 satellites into orbit and may want to grow the constellation even larger than that someday.  

And SpaceX isn’t the only one with such ambitions. For example, Amazon aims to launch about 3,200 satellites for its own internet constellation, Project Kuiper.

Putting so many satellites into orbit raises a number of potential concerns, including the proliferation of “space junk.” While SpaceX’s Starlink satellites are designed to fall out of orbit and burn up in Earth’s atmosphere over time, the presence of so many spacecraft in orbit at once increases the possibility of collisions, which would generate huge swarms of debris. These swarms would then pose a potential threat to other satellites in orbit.

Related: In photos: SpaceX launches third batch of 60 Starlink satellites to orbit

As Shaw mentioned, the Space Force also expects to see more and more “academic” or science-focused satellites launched into orbit. 

With all of these new satellites expected to launch, the Space Force wants to ensure that they are made with a “responsible design so that they don’t become a navigational hazard,” Shaw said. “As we continue to expand across all sectors…how do we do that in a responsible way?” 

This is a concern for other countries dipping their toes into space-focused military branches as well. 

These emerging military enterprises have to consider things such as, “How do we coordinate with the private actors in space?” Friedling said. 

Friedling also brought up the issue of security for these private or science-focused satellites. “Do they want to be protected or escorted?” he asked, comparing these craft to private ships that were escorted in convoys during World War I to keep them safe from enemy attack from  newly introduced submarines.  

The space military representatives, which also included Maj. Gen. Hiroaki Sakanashi, the director general of the project promotion group for emerging domains and programs in the Air Staff Office in Japan, seemed to agree that these are concerns that should be addressed by space-focused military efforts. 

“You invite conflict when there’s weakness, and I believe you deter conflict when there is strength, and that is the path we’re on,” Shaw said. Taking this approach “will lead us, I believe, to a more strategically stable situation that deters conflict in space,” he added.

“Certainly, Canada is going along those lines as well,” Adamson agreed.

Email Chelsea Gohd at cgohd@space.com or follow her on Twitter @chelsea_gohd. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.


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No Escape: Dive Into a Black Hole (Infographic)

Scientists spot flash of light from colliding black holes. But how?


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Scientists spot flash of light from colliding black holes. But how?

Incredible time-lapse video shows 10 years of the sun’s history in 6 minutes


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Incredible time-lapse video shows 10 years of the sun’s history in 6 minutes

In Photos: The Wonders of the Deep Sea


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In Photos: The Wonders of the Deep Sea

Scientists just sampled the most pristine air on Earth. Here’s what they found.


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Scientists just sampled the most pristine air on Earth. Here’s what they found.

(Image: © Shutterstock)

The Southern Ocean is a vast band of open water that encircles the entire planet between Antarctica and the Southern Hemisphere landmasses. It is the cloudiest place on Earth, and the amount of sunlight that reflects off or passes through those clouds plays a surprisingly important role in global climate. It affects weather patterns, ocean currents, Antarctic sea ice cover, sea surface temperature and even rainfall in the tropics.

But due to how remote the Southern Ocean is, there have been very few actual studies of the clouds there. Because of this lack of data, computer models that simulate present and future climates overpredict how much sunlight reaches the ocean surface compared to what satellites actually observe. The main reason for this inaccuracy is due to how the models simulate clouds, but nobody knew exactly why the clouds were off. For the models to run correctly, researchers needed to understand how the clouds were being formed.

To discover what is actually happening in clouds over the Southern Ocean, a small army of atmospheric scientists, including us, went to find out how and when clouds form in this remote part of the world. What we found was surprising — unlike the Northern Hemisphere oceans, the air we sampled over the Southern Ocean contained almost no particles from land. This means the clouds might be different from those above other oceans, and we can use this knowledge to help improve the climate models.

 

Scientists just sampled the most pristine air on Earth. Here’s what they found.

Antarctica's ice sheets responded most strongly to the angle of Earth's tilt on its axis when the ice extends into the oceans.

(Image: © Shutterstock)

The Southern Ocean is a vast band of open water that encircles the entire planet between Antarctica and the Southern Hemisphere landmasses. It is the cloudiest place on Earth, and the amount of sunlight that reflects off or passes through those clouds plays a surprisingly important role in global climate. It affects weather patterns, ocean currents, Antarctic sea ice cover, sea surface temperature and even rainfall in the tropics.

But due to how remote the Southern Ocean is, there have been very few actual studies of the clouds there. Because of this lack of data, computer models that simulate present and future climates overpredict how much sunlight reaches the ocean surface compared to what satellites actually observe. The main reason for this inaccuracy is due to how the models simulate clouds, but nobody knew exactly why the clouds were off. For the models to run correctly, researchers needed to understand how the clouds were being formed.

To discover what is actually happening in clouds over the Southern Ocean, a small army of atmospheric scientists, including us, went to find out how and when clouds form in this remote part of the world. What we found was surprising — unlike the Northern Hemisphere oceans, the air we sampled over the Southern Ocean contained almost no particles from land. This means the clouds might be different from those above other oceans, and we can use this knowledge to help improve the climate models.

Ice clouds and liquid clouds

Clouds are made of tiny water droplets or ice crystals, or often a mixture of the two. These form on small particles in the air. The type of particle plays a big role in determining whether a liquid droplet or ice crystal forms. These particles can be natural — like sea spray, pollen, dust or even bacteria — or from human sources like cars, stoves, power plants and so on.

To the untrained eye, an ice cloud and a liquid cloud look much the same, but they have very different properties. Ice clouds reflect less sunlight, precipitate more and don’t last as long as liquid clouds. It matters to the weather — and to climate models — what kinds of clouds are around.

Climate models tend to predict too many ice clouds over the Southern Ocean and not enough liquid clouds when compared to satellite readings. But satellite measurements around the poles are hard to make and less accurate than other regions, so we wanted to collect direct evidence of how many liquid clouds are actually present and determine why there were more than the models predict.

This was the mystery: Why are there more liquid clouds than the models think there are? To solve it, we needed to know what kinds of particles are floating around in the atmosphere around Antarctica.

Before we went down there, we had a few clues.

Antarctica's ice sheets responded most strongly to the angle of Earth's tilt on its axis when the ice extends into the oceans.

(Image: © Shutterstock)

The Southern Ocean is a vast band of open water that encircles the entire planet between Antarctica and the Southern Hemisphere landmasses. It is the cloudiest place on Earth, and the amount of sunlight that reflects off or passes through those clouds plays a surprisingly important role in global climate. It affects weather patterns, ocean currents, Antarctic sea ice cover, sea surface temperature and even rainfall in the tropics.

But due to how remote the Southern Ocean is, there have been very few actual studies of the clouds there. Because of this lack of data, computer models that simulate present and future climates overpredict how much sunlight reaches the ocean surface compared to what satellites actually observe. The main reason for this inaccuracy is due to how the models simulate clouds, but nobody knew exactly why the clouds were off. For the models to run correctly, researchers needed to understand how the clouds were being formed.

To discover what is actually happening in clouds over the Southern Ocean, a small army of atmospheric scientists, including us, went to find out how and when clouds form in this remote part of the world. What we found was surprising — unlike the Northern Hemisphere oceans, the air we sampled over the Southern Ocean contained almost no particles from land. This means the clouds might be different from those above other oceans, and we can use this knowledge to help improve the climate models.

<iframe src=”//content.jwplatform.com/players/Qz8OfmEM-pBYGc5Ws.html” width=”480″ height=”270″ frameborder=”0″ scrolling=”auto”></iframe>

Ice clouds and liquid clouds

Clouds are made of tiny water droplets or ice crystals, or often a mixture of the two. These form on small particles in the air. The type of particle plays a big role in determining whether a liquid droplet or ice crystal forms. These particles can be natural — like sea spray, pollen, dust or even bacteria — or from human sources like cars, stoves, power plants and so on.

To the untrained eye, an ice cloud and a liquid cloud look much the same, but they have very different properties. Ice clouds reflect less sunlight, precipitate more and don’t last as long as liquid clouds. It matters to the weather — and to climate models — what kinds of clouds are around.

Climate models tend to predict too many ice clouds over the Southern Ocean and not enough liquid clouds when compared to satellite readings. But satellite measurements around the poles are hard to make and less accurate than other regions, so we wanted to collect direct evidence of how many liquid clouds are actually present and determine why there were more than the models predict.

This was the mystery: Why are there more liquid clouds than the models think there are? To solve it, we needed to know what kinds of particles are floating around in the atmosphere around Antarctica.

Before we went down there, we had a few clues.

Previous modeling studies have suggested that the ice–forming particles found over the Southern Ocean may be very different from those found in the Northern Hemisphere. Dust is a great ice cloud seeder, but due to the lack of dusty land sources in the Southern Hemisphere, some scientists have hypothesized that other types of particles might be driving ice cloud formation over the Southern Ocean.

Since most models are based on data from the Northern Hemisphere, if the particles in the atmosphere were somehow different in the Southern Hemisphere, that might explain the errors.

Bacterial maps

It’s hard to directly measure the composition of particles over the Southern Ocean — there simply aren’t very many particles around. So, to help us track down what is inside the clouds, we used an indirect approach: the bacteria in the air.

The atmosphere is full of microorganisms that are carried hundreds to thousands of kilometers on air currents before returning to Earth. These bacteria are like airborne license plates, they are unique and tell you where the car — or air — came from. Since scientists know where most bacteria live, it’s possible to look at the microbes in an air sample and determine where that air came from. And once you know that, you can predict where the particles in the air came from as well – the same place the bacteria usually live.

In order to sample airborne bacteria in this remote ocean region, one of us headed out on the Australian Marine National Facility’s R/V Investigator for a six-week expedition. The weather was unruly and the waves were often white-capped, but for one to two days at a time, we sucked air from the bow of the ship through a filter that caught the airborne particles and bacteria. We then froze the filters to keep the bacterial DNA intact.

Ocean bacteria alone

In most ocean regions around the world, especially in the Northern Hemisphere where there is a lot of land, the air contains both marine and terrestrial particles. That’s what we expected to find down south.

With the frozen filters safely back at our lab in Colorado, we extracted DNA from the bacteria and sequenced it to determine what species we had caught. Much to our surprise, the bacteria were essentially all marine species that live in the Southern Ocean. We found almost no land-based bacteria.

If the bacteria were from the ocean, then so were the cloud-forming particles. This was the answer we were looking for.

Ice nucleating particles are very rare in seawater and marine particles are very good at forming liquid clouds. With mostly marine-based particles in the air, we’d expect the clouds to mostly be made of liquid droplets, which is what we observed. Since most models treat clouds in this region the same way they do clouds in the dustier Northern Hemisphere, it’s no wonder the models were off.

Going forward

Now that we know the summertime Southern Ocean clouds are being formed from purely marine particles, we need to figure out if the same is true in other seasons and at higher altitudes. The larger project, which involved planes as well as ships, has given atmospheric scientists a much better idea of the clouds both close to the ocean surface and high up in the atmosphere. The climate modelers among us are already incorporating these new data into their models and will hopefully have results to share soon.

Discovering that the airborne particles over the Southern Ocean are mostly coming from the ocean is a remarkable finding. It not only improves global climate models, it also means we confirmed the Southern Ocean is one of the most environmentally pristine regions on Earth — a place that has probably changed very little due to human activities. Our work will hopefully improve climate models, but has also given researchers a baseline for what a truly pristine marine environment looks like.

[You’re smart and curious about the world. So are The Conversation’s authors and editors. You can get our highlights each weekend.]

Thanks to this ingenious trick with boiling water you can do this for your car


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Thanks to this ingenious trick with boiling water you can do this for your car

Thanks to this ingenious trick with boiling water you can do this for your car

Body shops and garages don’t want you to know about this amazing trick with boiling water

A car accident is an awful ordeal for all parties involved. First of all, it can be really scary, even if it’s just a small collision. You never know what could happen or if the person in the other car is hurt. And then there are the financial consequences…

Damage to your car can cost you quite a bit of money.

Expensive

Besides scary and potentially traumatic, car accidents are also expensive. Getting a considerable dent removed from your car can easily cost you a few hundred bucks. Most people have no idea what an appropriate price for this service is, which means body shops and garages can cut you a bad deal very easily. You come to get a dent removed, but somehow they find all kinds of other issues with your car that need to be resolved and it all starts to add up. That’s not what you asked for… Life’s expensive enough as it is! Luckily, we’ve found a trick that will help you get rid of that ugly dent in your car and it won’t cost you a dime!

Boiling water

It’s very easy to repair a dent by yourself! All you need is a kettle with hot water and a toilet plunger. So, how do you do it? We’ll explain!

  • Fill a kettle with water and boil it.
  • As soon as the water is boiling, you take the kettle out to your car and pour the water onto the dent and the surrounding area. Do be careful because the water is very hot, of course!
  • Now it’s time to use the toilet plunger. Put the plunger around the dent and carefully pull it towards you. Slowly and carefully repeat this step a couple of times, making your way towards the dent.
  • After a few minutes of careful work, the dent will be completely gone! It’s just as if there never was any dent in the first place.

Take a look at the video below to see the very easy trick in action!