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Science News

Check back often to see all the happenings in the world of Science.

2-13-16 – We’ve Detected Gravitational Waves, So What?
Before the historic announcement on Thursday morning at a National Science Foundation (NSF) meeting in Washington D.C., there were only rumors that the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) had discovered this key component of Albert Einstein’s General Relativity, but now we know that the reality is even more profound.

2-12-16 – NSF’s LIGO Has Detected Gravitational Waves
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced the detection of gravitational waves by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO), a pair of ground-based observatories in Hanford, Washington, and Livingston, Louisiana.

1-21-16 – Ninth planet may have been discovered.
You might have a replacement, Pluto. There could be another planet in our solar system.

Researchers at the California Institute of Technology have found evidence in the outer solar system of an object that could be a real ninth planet.

Nicknamed Planet Nine, it “has a mass about 10 times that of Earth and orbits about 20 times farther from the sun” than Neptune.  That means “it would take this new planet between 10,000 and 20,000 years to make just one full orbit around the sun,” according to Caltech.  Researchers Konstantin Batygin and Mike Brown haven’t actually seen the planet, but other research helped lead them to conclude that there is one.  Basically, they found that certain objects in the Kuiper Belt — the field of icy objects and debris beyond Neptune — had orbits that peculiarly pointed in the same direction.

 4-27-15 – Lina Nilsson (Innovation Director, Blum Center for Developing Economies at UC-Berkeley): How to Attract Female Engineers (New York Times).
Girl Scout Generation STEM study discovered that girls who are interested in STEM fields want to help people. Recent study by Lina Nilsson, Innovation Director, Blum Center for Developing Economics at UC-Berkley confirms this. See article below.

Why are there so few female engineers? Many reasons have been offered: workplace sexism, a lack of female role models, stereotypes regarding women’s innate technical incompetency, the difficulties of combining tech careers with motherhood. Proposed fixes include mentor programs, student support groups and targeted recruitment efforts. Initiatives have begun at universities and corporations, including Intel’s recent $300 million diversity commitment. But maybe one solution is much simpler, and already obvious. An experience here at the University of California, Berkeley, where I teach, suggests that if the content of the work itself is made more societally meaningful, women will enroll in droves.

3-26-15 – Linda D. Hallman (CEO, AAUW) & Scott A. McGregor (President & CEO, Broadcom Corporation): The XX Factor: Getting More Young Women Ready For STEM Jobs (Forbes) .  More girls and women than ever before are studying are excelling in [STEM], but those gains are not being reflected in the workforce, according to a new research report published today by the American Association of University Women (AAUW). The number of women working as computer scientists is actually declining, and women still make up only 12 percent of working engineers, according to the AAUW report, “Solving the Equation: The Variables for Women’s Success in Engineering and Computing.” Even more troubling, qualified women are leaving the STEM workforce in large numbers, even though there is rising demand for their skills and even though STEM jobs offer more flexibility for balancing work-life issues than many other professions, according to the AAUW research

3-12-15 – Enceladus Has Potentially Life-Giving Hydrothermal Activity.  Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus is showing definite signs of hydrothermal activity — similar activity that is found along deep sea vents on Earth where water is heated and minerals are formed. Known to have a sub-surface ocean of salty water, the new findings described in two recent papers have boosted the moon’s life-giving potential.

1-12-15 – Click here to read the Girls and STEM by Andrea Beaty.  Andrea Beaty is the New York Times bestselling author of Rosie Revere, Engineer (Harry N. Abrams); Iggy Peck, Architect (Harry N. Abrams); and Attack of the Fluffy Bunnies (Amulet Paperbacks). Beaty presents lectures to thousands of school kids every year to share her love of writing and STEM. She acts as an advocate for girls in STEM and for the global education of girls.

1-12-15 – Never a dull moment with Saturn!’ Get your Dr. Dee Dee Dynamo’s Saturn Surprise to learn more about Saturn!  Click here to read the full article The Sad Story of Peggy, Saturn’s Newest Moon by Nadia Drake.

11-12-14 – Rosetta mission: Philae lander is on its way for comet touchdown.