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February 28, 2014

Thai school bus crash kills fifteen

Thai school bus crash kills fifteen – Wikinews, the free news source

Thai school bus crash kills fifteen

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Friday, February 28, 2014

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A school bus taking students on a field trip crashed into a truck early this morning in eastern Thailand, killing thirteen students and two teachers.

The top deck of the bus was crushed on one side after hitting the truck and spinning. The students aboard ranged from ten-year-olds to young teens and had been headed from their Nakhon Ratchasima school to Pattaya. The bus driver fled and is unaccounted for.

The bus was carrying around 60 female students, with a boys’ bus from the school following behind. The second bus escaped the accident. The crash was on a narrow, busy road in Prachinburi. The road is in a national park which prevents upgrade works like widening, according to Nuttapong Boontob of the Thailand Accident Research Center.

Police Lieutenant Colonel Anukarn Thammavijarn said police theorise the vehicle’s “brakes may have failed or the driver might have fallen asleep.” Thammavijarn said the bus was out-of-control and going downhill when it struck the 18-wheeled truck from behind. He cited the old appearance of the vehicle as a reason to suspect brake failure for the accident.

The crash injured a further 47 people. A row of covered bodies was formed beside the wreckage. Of the injured, 23 were hospitalised. Wounds include broken bones.

Road accident rates are among the world’s highest in Thailand; last December a bus fell off a bridge, killing 29. Road accidents killed 8,600 on the nation’s roads last year. Legislation does not require bus passengers to wear seatbelts.



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Researcher discovers 39 new cockroach species, increasing genus Arenivaga fivefold

Researcher discovers 39 new cockroach species, increasing genus Arenivaga fivefold

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Friday, February 28, 2014

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Sexual dimorphism in Arenivaga.
Image: Heidi Hopkins.

Arenivaga distribution before and after the study.
Image: Heidi Hopkins.

Heidi Hopkins, a taxonomic researcher and PhD candidate at the Museum of Southwestern Biology of the University of New Mexico, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States, conducted a four-year study revising the Arenivaga genus of cockroaches, discovering 39 new species in the genus previously thought to contain 9 species. ZooKeys journal published her findings Wednesday.

The study involved examining over 5200 specimens from universities and collections throughout the United States. The researcher had to dissect the specimens’ genitalia to accurately distinguish the species as their external features were often not enough for identification. Hopkins was advised by Dr Kelly Miller during the investigation.

The species are also sexually dimorphic, making morphological association of females with males a challenge. The researcher published a key for adult males in the genus.

The study revealed a vaster distribution area than was previously thought, including additional regions in Southern US and over a half of Mexico.

Hopkins remarked about potential of further studies of the genus and Corydiidae, its parent family, “The extent of the radiation of this genus is quite surprising. These animals have remarkable adaptations that allow them to succeed in some of the harshest places on earth. I suspect that the thorough application of modern collection methods would reveal many more species of Arenivaga across Mexico, and many more species of Corydiidae in the deserts and dry places of the rest of the world.”

The study was a first revisit of the genus since 1920 with only one new species discovered since then. The study was supported by grants from American Museum of Natural History, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, National Museum of Natural History, and University of New Mexico.



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News Briefs: February 28, 2014

Filed under: Archived,JustinRLaw (Wikinewsie),Miharris (Wikinewsie) — admin @ 5:00 am

News Briefs: February 28, 2014 – Wikinews, the free news source

News Briefs: February 28, 2014

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Friday, February 28, 2014

Wikinews Audio Briefs
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Friday, February 28, 2014
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Today on Wikinews: We briefly recap some of the stories appearing on Wikinews last week and from around the world.

Today is Friday, February twenty eighth – twenty fourteen. We are Meredith Harris and Justin Law and this is Wikinews.

Briefs

Indiana legislators vote for state constitutional ban on same-sex marriage

Indiana’s Senate passed a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriage, which is already prohibited by law, on February seventeenth. Both chambers removed a sentence banning civil unions from the proposed amendment. The proposed amendment now has to pass through the next elected legislature with this exact same wording — possibly in twenty fifteen or twenty sixteen — before Indiana voters have a chance to weigh in on the issue.

UK’s Northumbria Police arrest, bail man over murder of seven-year-old

Twenty-two years after the murder of child Nikki Allan a suspect has been arrested and released on bail last week. The seven-year-old’s body was found close to her home in the Old Exchange Building in Sunderland, England with thirty-seven stab wounds and blunt force trauma to the head from a brick. Two years after the murder, a male neighbor who had been charged with Allan’s murder was found not guilty.

Researchers survey planet-sized space weather explosions at Venus

Scientists from three continents have discovered Hot Flow Anomalies at Venus, which were observed seven times during the two year observation period. Hot Flow Anomalies are discontinuities in the solar wind, which Venus does not have adequate protection against. “… as Venus doesn’t have a magnetic field to protect itself, the hot flow anomalies happen right on top of the planet. They could swallow the planet whole”, Glyn Collinson of NASA said.

Researchers identify protein responsible for malaria transmission

UK research councils, the Spanish government, the U.S. National Institute of Health, and the European Commission, among others, have funded scientific research that has helped to identify the protein that transmits malaria to mosquitoes. Malaria is transmitted by a parasite to the mosquitos by the sex cells of the parasite. Two groups of independent researchers discovered the AP2-G protein is directly responsible for transmission.

Arabs react to Israeli debate on Jerusalem’s Holy sites

Control of holy sites in the Old City of Jerusalem was debated by Israeli parliament. The area is significant to both Jews and Muslims, however Muslims currently have control there. This being a topic up for debate, could get in the way of peace talks. The parliament did not vote on the issue.

Thai school bus crash kills fifteen

A girls’ school bus wrecked on the way to a field trip due either to bad brakes or the bus driver falling asleep, which killed fifteen students in Thailand today. The students ranged from ten-years-old to early teenagers. Forty-seven people were injured, with twenty-three of them hospitalized.

Researcher discovers 39 new cockroach species, increasing genus Arenivaga fivefold

Taxinomic researcher Heidi Hopkins, at the Museum of Southwestern Biology of the University of New Mexico, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States, discovered thirty-nine new cockroach species in the genus Arenivaga which, prior to the four year study, was thought to contain only nine species. The new species were separated from the previously known species of cockroaches by their genitalia.

Evidence of natural gas deposit found off Gaza Coast

What was originally mistaken for fish bubbling underwater was announced this week to be evidence of natural gas in the Gaza Strip. This region, which has been experiencing its worst energy crisis to date, is hopeful this new discovery will provide potential solutions to the crisis. Deputy Hamas Prime Minister Mr. Ziad Al-Zaza said, “[W]e need to conduct further studies to confirm that there is any gas…This requires probing by specialist companies because we don’t have the adequate laboratories and experts here”.

Outro

And those are the headlines from Wikinews.

This has been the Audio Wikinews brief. To receive the latest news, please visit wikinews.org, presenting up-to-date, relevant, newsworthy and entertaining content without bias. Wikinews is a free service and it is funded by your generous donations. Click on the donate link on our homepage to learn how you can contribute. This recording has been released under the Creative Commons 2.5 License.

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Evidence of natural gas deposit found off Gaza Coast

Filed under: Archived,Environment,Middle East,Palestine — admin @ 5:00 am

Evidence of natural gas deposit found off Gaza Coast

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Friday, February 28, 2014

Palestine
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  • 22 May 2015: FIFA president ‘on a mission of peace’
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In statements to the press on Monday and Tuesday, Dr. Salem Salama, a member of the Hamas Palestinian Legislative Council’s economic committee, said signs of a natural gas deposit were found off the coast of the Gaza Strip.

Dr. Salama said the gas field had been found by Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip, who noticed bubbling in the water which they first assumed was from fish or plants moving underwater. He added, samples from the site had been taken by navy personnel to the Islamic University, where they were verified. In a statement to AFP he said “preliminary tests carried out by experts from the Islamic University suggest that there is a natural gas field near the coast”.

In an interview to the Gazan radio station Sout Al-Aqsa, Salama said the gas deposit lies only 200 to 300 meters from the central coast of the Gaza Strip, which would “facilitate the work of any company that might invest in this field. The return will be great for the Gaza Strip, in economic terms”.

Deputy Hamas Prime Minister Mr. Ziad Al-Zaza calmed down the excitement regarding the issue in a comment to AFP. “[W]e need to conduct further studies to confirm that there is any gas”, he said. “This requires probing by specialist companies because we don’t have the adequate laboratories and experts here”.

The Gaza Strip, which has been governed by Hamas since 2007, is now experiencing the most severe energy crisis in its history. Following the lack of fuels, the residents of the Gaza Strip sometimes need to manage with only 12 hours of electricity a day. This evidence of natural gas fields may offer a resolution to the crisis.


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February 27, 2014

Wikinews Shorts: February 27, 2014

Wikinews Shorts: February 27, 2014 – Wikinews, the free news source

Wikinews Shorts: February 27, 2014

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A compilation of brief news reports for Thursday, February 27, 2014.

Asiana Airlines fined US$500K for not helping families after crash

Smoke billows from the wreckage after the crash last year.
Image: Jkhoo.

South Korea-based Asiana Airlines was fined US$500,000 on Tuesday by the United States Department of Transportation for failing to provide support for victims’ families after Asiana Airlines Flight 214 crashed at San Francisco airport in July 2013. Foreign airlines are to abide by a federal law called the “family assistance plan”. The law states an airline must promptly assist and provide a toll-free number for calls from the passengers’ families. It took the airline five days to contact the 291 families of the passengers aboard.

Of 307 on board, three Chinese teens died and over 200 people were injured. The jet hit a seawall on approach, tearing the rear of the plane off, and throwing three flight attendants onto the runway.

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US prepares to withdrawal troops from Afghanistan

United States President Barack Obama has ordered the Pentagon to make plans to pull all the nation’s troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014. The Obama administration notified Afghan president Hamid Karzai that it would prefer to keep a residual military presence in Afghanistan for training and counterterrorism missions, but Karzai is refusing to sign the agreement for some US forces to remain. Once NATO ends hostilities in November, a contingency plan for a full departure will begin.

US-Afghan relations have worsened over the past few months. Obama told Karzai the US will move forward with additional contingency planning if the bilateral agreement to maintain a US presence is not signed.

Sources



Killers of UK soldier sentenced

Drummer Lee Rigby, from an official portrait.
Image: UK Ministry of Defence.

After an attack in the London streets last year on British soldier Lee Rigby, two men were sentenced on Wednesday. The leader of the attack, Michael Adebolajo, was sentenced to life behind bars. Michael Adebowale was given a life sentence, but with the possibility of parole after serving a minimum of 45 years. In court, the two Islamic converts indicated the killing was for Allah.

Bystanders watched Adebolajo and Adebowale hit Rigby with a car then butcher him with a meat cleaver and knives. The attack was recorded on closed-circuit TV and by bystanders. Both men were convicted of murder in December 2013.

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Arabs react to Israeli debate on Jerusalem\’s Holy sites

Arabs react to Israeli debate on Jerusalem’s Holy sites

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Palestine
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  • 29 May 2015: Tony Blair resigns as envoy of Quartet to Middle East
  • 22 May 2015: FIFA president ‘on a mission of peace’
  • 29 April 2015: UN publishes report on 2014 Gaza conflict
  • 18 March 2015: Netanyahu’s Likud party wins election in Israel
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Thursday, February 27, 2014

In Jewish tradition, the rock upon which Abraham built his altar for the sacrifice of Isaac (Dome of the Rock interior).
Image: OSU Special Collections & Archives.

Islamic and Jordanian leaders responded yesterday to a debate conducted by the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, addressing current Arab control over holy sites in the Old City of Jerusalem including Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock.

Last week, members of the Jordanian Parliament condemned the plan for a debate in the Knesset on the issue, but yesterday after the debate in Israel almost 50 of them had petitioned the Jordanian government to stop the enforcement of the 1994 Israel–Jordan peace treaty. The treaty allowed for the exchange of ambassadors and on that point, the Jordanian parliament voted on the recall of the nation’s ambassador to Israel. Jordan’s Prime Minister Abdullah Nsur said, in remarks to Qatari newspaper Al-Watan, any Israeli action affecting Jordanian control of the Holy sites would violate the treaty and Jordan could review whether or not the treaty had been invalidated. Meanwhile, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation criticized the Knesset debate as a provocation.

Before the Israeli debate Tuesday, Palestinian protesters took to one of the Gates of the Temple Mount in the Old City, used by Jews, armed with firecrackers and rocks and were met by Israeli police.

On Tuesday, members of the Israeli Knesset began a debate on an issue it had never before broached. MK Moshe Feiglin of Likud started the debate about one of Jerusalem’s holiest sites, The Temple Mount. Feiglin spoke to freedom of religion and the right of Israelis to pray on the site controlled by the Arabs while opponents addressed their fears the sensitive topic could harm ongoing peace talks. He said, “Any terror organization can raise its flag there, [but] there can be no trace of the Israeli flag. Only Jews are forbidden to pray at this place.”

During the debate, Labor MK Eitan Cabel reacted to Feiglin’s motion, “Why stop at the Temple Mount? If you are the new messiah of our times, what about” — he named various specifics of the holy promise of the lands of the Greater Israel — “Why leave them behind?” A “Greater Israel” promised by God is generally considered off limits in civic discourse inside Israel. The Knesset did not vote on the issue.

Al-Aqsa Mosque ranks just behind Mecca and Medina as the holiest of Islamic sites. Jews consider the Temple Mount to be their holiest site.


AlAqsaFromKotel.JPG

The Al-Aqsa Mosque from the Western Wall Plaza.
Image: Wilson44691.

Israel-2013(2)-Aerial-Jerusalem-Temple Mount-Temple Mount (south exposure).jpg

Southern aerial view of the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Image: Godot13.

Israel-2013(2)-Jerusalem-Temple Mount-Al-Aqsa Mosque, portal (north exposure).jpg

The portal of the Al-Aqsa Mosque from the north.
Image: Godot13.

Israel-2013-Jerusalem-Temple Mount-Al-Fakhariyya Minaret & Islamic Museum.jpg

Al-Fakhriyyah Minaret & Islamic Museum.
Image: Godot13.

Al Aksa Mosque, Mount of Olives.jpg

The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
Image: Jane Fresco.

Al-Aqsa 6.jpg

The Dome of the Rock (close).
Image: بلال الدويك.

Pulpit of the Cadi Borhan-ed-din Jerusalem Holy Land.jpg

The outdoor Islamic Pulpit of the Cadi Borhan-ed-din Jerusalem Holy Land at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem.
Image: Snapshots of The Past.

Al aqsa moschee.jpg

Al Aqsa Mosque from the Dome of the Rock.
Image: MatthiasKabel.

Israel-2013-Jerusalem-Temple Mount-Dome of the Rock & Chain 02.jpg

The Dome of the Chain (Arabic: قبة السلسلة, Qubbat al-Silsila) in front of The Dome of the Rock.
Image: Godot13.

Temple Mount south, Jerusalem 2010 4.jpg

Southern Wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
Image: Wknight94.



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February 25, 2014

Researchers identify protein responsible for malaria transmission

Researchers identify protein responsible for malaria transmission

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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

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Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes.

Two groups of researchers have independently identified the the protein responsible for malaria transmission to mosquitoes in studies published in journal Nature on Sunday.

The scientists found a direct relationship between the protein AP2-G’s with malaria gametocytes (male and female sexual forms) production, which is necessary for the transmission. Only the sexual forms infect mosquitoes and sexual reproduction occurs within the mosquito digestive tract.

Malaria is caused by Plasmodium parasites. The initially separate teams looked at different plasmodium species. One, an international group led by Manuel Llinás of Penn State University in the US, examined Plasmodium falciparum, which is responsible for the worst form of human malarial infections; the other, led by UK scientists Oliver Billker from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in England and Andy Waters from University of Glasgow in Scotland, looked at Plasmodium berghei, which infects rodents.

The P. falciparum group was kickstarted by research in Spain which found different organisms from the same strain with identical DNA had varying levels of AP2-G, with a strong correlation to their levels of sexual activity. The more AP2-G, the higher the rate of gametocyte formation. Researchers in England, later also drawn into the international team, analyzed the genomes of two mutated strains of P. falciparum which were both unable to form gametocytes. They found that the gene responsible for producing the AP2-G protein was the only common non-functioning gene.

The international team found found the AP2-G protein catalyzes the transmission by activating a relevant gene set in the parasite.

Women tend to their malaria-infected babies in Angola.
Image: USAID Africa.

Both teams confirmed the finding by gene therapy — both by adding the gene into a mutated strain and observing its ability to form gametocytes, and the other way round.

The parasites exist in a mosquito, then in a human, and require subsequent transmission for the parasite to spread. The transmission can only happen through gametocytes. The parasite triggers formation of the sexual gametocytes into the human’s circulatory system every two days in small quantities — not wasting energy on the process at the dry time of year when few mosquitoes are available — but little was known about the mechanism.

Dr. Oliver Billker commented on the potential of getting the transmission of malaria under control, unlike the existing focus on addressing the phrase causing the clinical symptoms, “Current drugs treat patients by killing the sexless form of the parasite in their blood — this is the detrimental stage of the malaria lifecycle that causes illness. However, it is now widely accepted that to eliminate malaria from an entire region, it will be equally important to kill the sexual forms that transmit the disease.”

The researchers hope to continue research toward drugs to prevent the transmission of the disease. The science was funded by groups including UK research councils, the Spanish government, the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and the European Commission.



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News Briefs: March 25, 2014

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News Briefs: March 25, 2014 – Wikinews, the free news source

News Briefs: March 25, 2014

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Wikinews Audio Briefs
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Tuesday, February 25, 2014
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Today on Wikinews: We briefly recap some of the stories appearing on Wikinews during the last two weeks and from around the world.

Today is Wednesday, March twenty five – twenty fourteen. I am Jordan Bayes and this is Wikinews.

Briefs

Community members host fundraiser to help family of slain Texas woman

After the body of missing nineteen-year-old Alicia Benefield of Deberry, Texas was discovered, community members hosted a bake sale to support her family. Benefield was allegedly killed by her boyfriend Rodris Webster, who was arrested last week. Webster was charged with one count of murder and one count of felon in possession of a firearm. The bake sale was organized by Sharon Jernigan and was a big success.

Kansas anti-gay church leader Fred Phelps dies at 84

The founder and leader of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas died last Wednesday. Fred Phelps founded the church in nineteen fifty-five. Since then, the church has gained a reputation by picketing funerals of dead US soldiers and other events like concerts by famous pop acts. The Church has received many negative responses from community members, but the US Supreme Court has upheld their right to petition at funerals in twenty eleven. Phelps was excommunicated from the Church last year.

Docudays UA eleventh edition opens

On Friday, The Eleventh International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival opened in Kyiv, Ukraine. The films entered into the festival are separated into different categories and will be judged by famous human rights activists, writers, film producers, critics, etc. The festival will continue until Friday, March twenty-eight. The best films in the festival will also be shown at the Docudays UA Traveling Festival.

Arch Enemy singer Angela Gossow quits

Angela Gossow announced her departure from Swedish extreme metal band Arch Enemy via the band’s Facebook page Monday, March seventeen. Gossow intends to pursue other goals and interests in her life. Arch Enemy will replace Gossow with Alissa White-Gluz, the lead singer of a Canadian extreme metal band, The Agonist. Fans of Arch Enemy have had mixed reactions about the replacement; the most popular Facebook comment read: “Arch Enemy without Angela Gossow is not Arch Enemy anymore.” Gossow does intend to stay and manage Arch Enemy and other acts as well.

Labour politician Tony Benn dies aged 88

A British Labour Party politician and left-wing campaigner died in his London home Friday, March fourteen due to health issues. Tony Benn’s health had been weakening since a stroke in twenty twelve. Benn became a Member of Parliament in 1950 following in his father’s and both grandfathers’ footsteps. Benn was often referred to as “the most dangerous man in Britain” because of his strong left-wing political views.

Fire burns at Barangaroo construction site, Sydney, Australia

An apparent welding accident in the basement of a building caused a large fire at the Barangaroo construction site in Sydney, Australia on Wednesday, March twelve. A large traffic jam developed in the Sydney Central Business District as the Western Distributor motorway and part of the Sydney Harbour Bridge were closed. All workers at the site and people in the neighboring buildings were evacuated with no injuries reported.

Guantanamo inmate challenges force-feeding practices by suing U.S. president

On Tuesday, March eleven, Guantanamo Bay inmate Emad Hassan filed a lawsuit against US president Barack Obama regarding the military’s practice of force-feeding inmates while on hunger strikes. Hassan and other inmates reported experiencing water torture techniques, having large nose tubes inserted to deliver food, and force-feeding. Hassan has been on a hunger strike since two thousand seven, and this lawsuit is the first of its kind to proceed.

Israel jails teen bomber Mohammed Mafarja for 25 years

During a brief war between Israel and Gaza in twenty twelve, Mohammed Mafarja, a minor at the time, placed a bomb on a bus in Tel Aviv, severely injuring two, wounding eight, and sending fourteen into shock. On Monday, March ten, twenty fourteen, Mafarja was sentenced to twenty-five years in jail by Israel’s court. By dropping a charge of aiding an enemy in war in December twenty thirteen, Mafarja was spared a life sentence.

Outro

And those are the headlines from Wikinews.

This has been the Audio Wikinews brief. To receive the latest news, please visit wikinews.org, presenting up-to-date, relevant, newsworthy and entertaining content without bias. Wikinews is a free service and it is funded by your generous donations. Click on the donate link on our homepage to learn how you can contribute. This recording has been released under the Creative Commons 2.5 License.

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February 22, 2014

Researchers survey planet-sized space weather explosions at Venus

Researchers survey planet-sized space weather explosions at Venus

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Saturday, February 22, 2014

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Space scientists located on three continents have published a survey of hot flow anomalies (HFAs) observed at the bow shock of Venus, in Journal of Geophysical Research on Tuesday. HFAs, discontinuities in the solar wind, were found to have much larger repercussions for Venus than for Earth.

While the common HFA space weather phenomenon is deflected by the Earth’s magnetosphere, Venus does not have such a reliable protection against the constant solar wind. Venus’s ionosphere is generally in a sensitive balance with the outside pressure from the solar wind, and is regularly disrupted by the anomalies.

The survey was conducted using data collected during roughly three Venusian days (about two Earth years) by the European Space Agency’s Venus Express, expanding on an initial case study of a HFA at Venus published in 2012. “Not only are they gigantic,” said Glyn Collinson of NASA, the first author of the papers published in 2012 and 2014, “[b]ut as Venus doesn’t have a magnetic field to protect itself, the hot flow anomalies happen right on top of the planet. They could swallow the planet whole.” Seven events were observed during the surveyed time.



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February 21, 2014

UK\’s Northumbria Police arrest, bail man over murder of seven-year-old

UK’s Northumbria Police arrest, bail man over murder of seven-year-old

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Friday, February 21, 2014

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A 43-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murdering 7-year-old girl Nikki Allan in the UK 21 years ago, and released on bail, yesterday. Her murder, in which she was hit in the head and stabbed dozens of times, has not resulted in anyone being convicted thus far.

Nikki Allan disappeared after leaving her grandparents’ apartment in the city of Sunderland in the North East of England to walk back to her own, which was in the same block, on October 7, 1992. She failed to return and was found dead the next day in the Old Exchange Building, which was derelict at the time and close to her home, with 37 stab wounds and damage to her head by a brick.

Until now, no individual has been convicted in connection with Allan’s death. A male neighbour previously charged with her murder was found not guilty in 1994 when a judge determined police had used “oppressive methods” in getting him to make a confession.

Northumbria Police collaborated last year with the BBC to reconstruct the last sightings of Nikki Allan in an appeal on a September 2013 edition of Crimewatch. Nikki Allan’s mother Sharon Henderson held a vigil to mark the 21st anniversary of her daughter’s death in October last year.



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