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Extinction: Humans played big role in demise of the cave bear

Extinction: Humans played big role in demise of the cave bear

Science
The arrival of human ancestors in Europe some 40,000 years ago coincided with the downfall of the cave bear, scientists have revealed.New evidence suggests humans hunted the bear and drove it from caves, putting it on the road to extinction.The fate of the species was sealed by other pressures, such as the onset of the last Ice Age, and shrinking food resources.The bear eventually died out 24,000 years ago."We see this dramatic drop in the population of the cave bear starting from 40,000 years ago, which coincides with the arrival of anatomically modern humans in Europe," said Prof Verena Schuenemann of the University of Zurich, who led the study."It is the clearest evidence we have so far that humans might have played a big role...
Physicists say they’ve discovered a new state of matter

Physicists say they’ve discovered a new state of matter

Science
Aug. 15 (UPI) -- Physicists at New York University claim they have uncovered a new state of matter that could boost the storage capacity of electronic devices and pave the way for the first generation of quantum computers. "Our research has succeeded in revealing experimental evidence for a new state of matter -- topological superconductivity," Javad Shabani, an assistant professor of physics at New York University, said in a news release. "This new topological state can be manipulated in ways that could both speed calculation in quantum computing and boost storage." Traditional computers process bits, which can only assume the value of a zero or a one. Quantum computers use quantum bits or qubits, which can assume the value of one, zero or both -- and an infinite number of values in bet...
Greta Thunberg: Caroline Lucas reports Arron Banks to Twitter

Greta Thunberg: Caroline Lucas reports Arron Banks to Twitter

Science
Green Party MP Caroline Lucas has complained to Twitter over a tweet by Brexit campaigner Arron Banks aimed at climate change activist Greta Thunberg.On Wednesday, Mr Banks referred to Ms Thunberg's sea voyage across the Atlantic and tweeted: "Freak yachting accidents do happen in August..."Ms Thunberg, who chooses not to fly, is sailing from the UK to attend UN climate summits in New York and Chile.Ms Lucas said she reported his comment, while Mr Banks said it was a joke."Arron Banks' vile tweet about @GretaThunberg makes me sick to the stomach," Ms Lucas wrote on Twitter on Thursday morning. "I have made a formal complaint to Twitter." A spokeswoman from Twitter said: "We don't comment on individual accounts for privacy...
Spaceplane gets a ride for space station trips

Spaceplane gets a ride for space station trips

Science
The Dream Chaser spaceplane, which will ferry cargo to the International Space Station (ISS), now has a rocket to launch on.Sierra Nevada, the private company that builds the spaceplane, has chosen the Vulcan rocket as its ride into orbit.The company hopes to start launching missions by 2021, to deliver supplies to astronauts on the ISS.Neither the Dream Chaser vehicle, nor the Vulcan rocket, has yet flown to space.Sierra Nevada was recently awarded the contract by Nasa to re-supply the ISS.It joins two other private companies that already ship cargo and experiments to the station - SpaceX and Orbital ATK.The Vulcan Centaur rocket, built by United Launch Alliance (ULA), is currently in production.Under its Nasa contract, Dream Ch...
Plastic particles falling out of sky with snow in Arctic

Plastic particles falling out of sky with snow in Arctic

Science
Media playback is unsupported on your device Even in the Arctic, microscopic particles of plastic are falling out of the sky with snow, a study has found.The scientists said they were shocked by the sheer number of particles they found: more than 10,000 of them per litre in the Arctic.It means that even there, people are likely to be breathing in microplastics from the air - though the health implications remain unclear.The region is often seen as one of the world's last pristine environments.A German-Swiss team of researchers has published the work in the journal Science Advances.The scientists also found rubber particles and fibres in the snow.How did the researchers carry out the study? ...