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joi, 8 noiembrie 2012

Were Dinosaurs Destined to Be Big

In the evolutionary long run, small critters tend to evolve into bigger beasts-at least according to the idea attributed to paleontologist Edward Cope, now known as Cope's Rule. Using the latest advanced statistical modeling methods, a new test of this rule as it applies dinosaurs shows that Cope was right-sometimes.

"For a long time, dinosaurs were thought to be the example of Cope's Rule," says Gene Hunt, curator in the Department of Paleobiology at the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) in Washington, D.C. Other groups, particularly mammals, also provide plenty of classic examples of the rule, Hunt says.

Huge eruption adds new perspective to past climate

Scientists have found matching traces of a giant prehistoric volcanic eruption in ice cores from Greenland and Antarctica. The discovery sharpens our understanding of past climate.

Danish climate researchers are currently fixing their gaze on Sumatra in Indonesia. Here lie the remains of the Toba volcano, which 74,000 years ago erupted in what was to become the largest volcanic eruption on Earth in the last two million years.

Last week, Michael Storey of Roskilde University published a study, which dated the eruption with hitherto unseen precision: the volcano erupted 73,880 years ago.

Небесная ось действительно существует

 Ученые обнаружили, что Вселенная вращается. И теперь теряются в догадках, кто и когда ее закрутил?

Еще совсем недавно принято было считать:  Вселенная, по всем направлениям  однородна. Куда ни кинь взгляд  - выглядит примерно одинаково. А энергия и материя более-менее равномерно распределены в пространстве.

В 90-е годы прошлого века выяснилось, что Вселенная расширяется, причем  с ускорением.