Mysterious News Briefly — June 8, 2021
For the first time, scientists have replicated auroral lights in a lab by generating powerful electromagnetic waves known as Alfvén waves in a cylindrical vacuum chamber and watched as some electrons underwent ‘resonant acceleration’ just like those that form auroras along magnetic field lines. The toughest part was figuring out where to stand in the lab to make them either northern or southern lights.
From the “What could possibly go wrong?” file comes news from Russia where scientists thawed tiny multicellular animals called rotifers that had been frozen for 24,000 years, and they not only came back to life but began reproducing. Should frustrated spouses start leaving the electric blanket on all year?
In a new study, scientists found babies with less balanced gut microbiomes – reflecting greater abundances of certain bacteria in the gut – tended to show increased fear behavior in an experiment, as compared to infants whose gut bacteria were more balanced overall. To be safe, load your kids up with yogurt before going out on Halloween.
Oceanographer Dr. Deo Florence Onda from University of the Philippines’ Marine Science Institute descended over six miles to the bottom of the Philippine Trench and found it filled with human-made plastic waste, plastic bags, a pair of pants, a shirt, and a teddy bear. The only thing more depressing would be seeing depressed squid hugging the teddy bear.
Paleontologists in China discovered a nearly complete skeleton of a 25-foot-long Lufengosaurus dinosaur which lived 180 million years ago. That puts in in the Jurassic period, so get ready for a new movie.
Sad news from Washington DC where people are reporting an unusual number of blind birds found dead or dying, and wildlife officials are at a loss to explain it. If this is a new form of the Havana syndrome, it’s time to toss your Cuban cigars.
From the “Duh” file comes a new study which found that snakes court their mate differently in the water than they do on land, which has caused male sea snakes to evolve enlarged touch receptors to replace their sense of smell. Warning: saying you were just testing a new theory on sea snakes won’t prevent you from getting banned from the neighborhood pool.
Robin Carhart-Harris of the Centre for Psychedelic Research Interest, opened just last month, predicts that psychedelic therapy will be licensed sometime in the next five to 10 years and possibly even sooner. Some people won’t believe it until there are more pharmacists named Alice.
The U.S. Navy announced the first successful aerial refueling operations between a manned receiver aircraft and unmanned drone fuel tanker. When the drones start refueling each other, it may be time to cut a defenses deal with those aliens living under the ocean.
For the first time since 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a weight-loss drug which must be injected weekly. If your doctor says you’re better off with a different drug called Pfizer-Zero … get suspicious.