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Tag: planets

Largest-of-its-kind coral study offers plan to save the planet’s reefs

Largest-of-its-kind coral study offers plan to save the planet’s reefs

Science
Aug. 12 (UPI) -- A new survey of coral communities -- the largest of its kind, according to the research team -- has offered a roadmap for protecting Earth's reefs. The international team of scientists, including researchers with conservation groups, government agencies, and universities, identified three main strategies that can be quickly enacted to save reefs from climate change and human impacts. To identify where and how to save reefs, researchers measured coral abundance on more than 2,500 reefs along the coasts of 44 countries in the Indian and Pacific oceans. Their analysis proved a majority of reefs host functioning coral communities with a diverse and architecturally complex cover of species. After the El NiƱo event that lasted from 2014 to 2017, which triggered the largest cor
Commercial fishing to blame for planet’s declining shark numbers

Commercial fishing to blame for planet’s declining shark numbers

Science
Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Shark populations are shrinking across the globe and new research suggests commercial fishing is to blame. Scientists with the Zoological Society of London analyzed shark population dynamics in ecosystems throughout the world's oceans. The data suggests shark numbers are lowest in areas closest to population centers and large fish markets. Sharks aren't just less abundant in places featuring significant commercial fishing activity, they're also smaller. The data showed marine predators are smaller and less abundant within 750 miles of populations with more than 10,000 people. The new analysis -- detailed this week in the journal PLOS One Biology -- showed sharks are also smaller in warmer waters. "Human activity is now the biggest influence on sharks' distribution, overt...
Astronomers identify 121 giant planets likely to host habitable moons

Astronomers identify 121 giant planets likely to host habitable moons

Science
June 14 (UPI) -- Astronomers have identified 121 giant planets that potentially host habitable moons. Scientists believe the next generation of telescopes will be able to target alien moons in search of signs of life. Scientists identified the candidates among exoplanet data collected by NASA's Kepler telescope. Kepler's main goal is to help astronomers locate habitable planets outside the solar system. Exoplanets are said to exist in the habitable zone when they orbit their host star at a distance that allows water to persist in solid, liquid and gas forms. Earth-like rocky planets are the first choice for astronomers searching for potentially habitable alien worlds, but as recent studies inside the solar system have revealed, moons surrounding gas giants also possess the potential for ...
NASA spacecraft begins search for new planets

NASA spacecraft begins search for new planets

Technology
NASA's Tess spacecraft has blasted off from Earth in a search for new planets that could support life.Tess lifted off from Cape Canaveral in Florida on Wednesday evening local time, riding a SpaceX Falcon rocket.The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite will spend two years scouring 85% of the sky and hundreds of thousands of its brightest stars.The satellite, about the size of a washing machine, will scan the stars for signs of periodic dimming, which may mean that planets are orbiting around them.It is hoped that Tess will find around 20,000 exoplanets - planets outside our solar system - with more than 50 expected to be Earth-sized.There are already 3,700 exoplanets that we know of, with another 4,500 on the not-yet-verified list.Tess is looking for the ones that are Earth-like and clos...