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Neanderthals made first cave paintings 20,000 years before modern humans

Neanderthals made first cave paintings 20,000 years before modern humans

Science
Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Modern humans weren't the first hominin with an artistic side. New research suggests Neanderthals were painting the walls of caves at least 64,000 years ago, roughly 20,000 years before modern humans began populating Europe.Archaeologists discovered a series of ancient cave paintings in Spain. The artwork was made with paint derived from rich red-colored minerals. Scientists were able to date the paintings by analyzing the layers of carbonate deposited atop the paint.The analysis method, called deuranium-thorium dating, proved the paintings were made more than 64,000 years ago."Our results show that the paintings we dated are, by far, the oldest known cave art in the world," Chris Standish, an archaeologist at the University of Southampton, said in a news release.[embedded...
Amateur astronomer captures supernova's first light

Amateur astronomer captures supernova's first light

Science
Feb. 21 (UPI) -- An amateur astronomer has captured the fleeting first light of an exploding star. It's the first time anyone has documented the "first optical light" of a supernova.Stars explode all the time, but they do so at random, making it extremely difficult to document the sudden burst of light that proceeds their explosion.Victor Buso, an amateur astronomer from Rosario, Argentina, was just testing out his new camera and telescope in Sept. 2016, when he lucked his way into before-and-after images of an exploding star inside NGC 613, a spiral galaxy located 67 million light-years from Earth.While analyzing the images captured by his new camera, Buso noticed a unique flash of light. He got in touch with professional astronomers and shared his discovery with them. The researchers mob...
Teenager Atkin wins GB's first ever skiing medal – highlights & round-up

Teenager Atkin wins GB's first ever skiing medal – highlights & round-up

Sports
Media playback is not supported on this device XXIII Olympic Winter GamesVenue: Pyeongchang, South Korea Dates: 9-25 FebruaryCoverage: Watch live on BBC TV, Red Button, Connected TVs, BBC Sport website and mobile app. Full coverage timesIzzy Atkin won a historic bronze in the women's ski slopestyle to claim Great Britain's second medal of the Winter Olympics.The 19-year-old, born in the United States, scored 84.60 on a strong final run to claim a first British Winter Olympic medal on skis.Switzerland's Sarah Hoefflin won gold with a score of 91.20 and compatriot Mathilde Gremaud took silver."I'm speechless and stoked to win the bronze," Atkin said.Fellow Briton Katie Summerhayes finished seventh in the final.Live coverage of day eightThe...
Mirai Nagasu becomes first American woman to land triple axel at Olympics

Mirai Nagasu becomes first American woman to land triple axel at Olympics

Sports
Feb. 11 (UPI) -- Figure skater Mirai Nagasu became the first American woman to land a triple axel at the Olympics on Monday in Gangneung, South Korea.The 24-year-old pulled off the move during her free skate at the Gangnueung Ice Arena. She was the first of five women to perform the skate on the final day of competition for an Olympics team medal. It was her first jump in a 4.5 minute program.Her skate helped put Team USA on the podium for a bronze medal in the mixed team final. Canada won the event and the Olympic Athletes from Russia finished with a silver medal.Nagasu began her routine with the U.S. team sitting in third place. She completed the triple axel and several other rotations, wrapping up a smooth skate with an explosion of emotion.Nagasu pumped her firsts before her final scor...
DNA story of when life first gave us lemons

DNA story of when life first gave us lemons

Science
All citrus fruits can trace their roots to the southeast foothills of the Himalayas, according to DNA evidence.The first citrus trees appeared about eight million years ago, before spreading around the world, say international scientists.The trees eventually gave rise to the fruit on our kitchen tables, from sweet oranges to bitter lemons.Citrus trees are among the most widely cultivated fruit trees in the world, but their history has been unclear.To get a better understanding of where citrus trees came from, scientists in the US and Spain analysed the genomes of over 50 varieties of citrus fruit, from the Chinese mandarin to the Seville orange.The study, published in Nature journal, found that modern citrus trees derive from several natural species found in a region that includes the east...