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Join host Rick Pantaleo to examine global issues in science, technology, health, agriculture, and the environment on Science World.

July 2014

July 25, 2014

Globally, June 2014 Was the Hottest June on Record says NOAA

This week (July 21, 2014), US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that this past June was the hottest June since record keeping began in 1880.  On today's One on One segment we'll talk with Dr. Jessica Blunden, the author of that report, to learn more about the record breaking temperatures and the conditions that control our climate. And... Leading space experts recently gathered at NASA headquarters here in Washington DC to discuss the search for life beyond Earth.  We'll hear what the experts had to say about discovering potentially habitable worlds out in the cosmos. The weeklong 20th International Aids Conference came to a close on Friday. Seals are foraging for food at offshore wind farms and underwater pipes according to a study that describes this new behavior.   Social media and email user who represent themselves through 2D photos or cartoon images may soon have new 3D avatars to use. A fossil found in Inner Mongolia may prove that birds did not evolve from dinosaurs, as many scientists have believed, but from a creature that existed long before.   A fly with a remarkable sense of hearing is the model for what may be a new generation of hypersensitive hearing aids and other sonic devices.   These stories and more are coming up for you on VOA's science, health and technology magazine, "Science World."


July 19, 2014

New Technology Provides Hope to Those with Spinal Cord Injuries

On today’s program we'll learn how a new device that was recently implanted into a young quadriplegic man allowed him to move his paralyzed hands and fingers by using only his thoughts.  We'll talk with one of the lead researchers of project that led to the development of this device. And… Throughout the world non-native species, such as plants, animals and insects cost an estimated $1.4 trillion in damage every year.  Today we'll hear how U-S scientists are trying to control invasive insect species, by pitting these insects against each another. U.S. scientists, experimenting with a harmless virus have created what they describe as a "biological" pacemaker to keep the human heart beating normally. Researchers, studying the teeth of our pre-historic ancestors in Africa, have learned they not only used plants for food, but also as medicine. We’ll tell you about a new United Nations report that warns our privacy is being threatened by digital surveillance.   Today on our Science World Quick Quiz we mark the 45th Anniversary of the first moon landing. These stories and more are coming up for you on VOA's science, health and technology magazine, "Science World."


July 12, 2014

Climate Change is Impacting the Food Supply of Marine Life on the West Antarctic Peninsula

A new long-term study, recently published by the journal Nature, is linking changing climate with marine life along the rapidly warming West Antarctic Peninsula.  The paper discloses how factors such as fluctuations in wind speed and sea-ice cover can set off a chain of events up through the local food chain, impacting all living creatures from single-celled algae to penguins.  Dr. Grace Saba, an Assistant Research Professor at Rutgers University’s Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences is the lead author of the new study. She joins us today for our One on One segment to talk about her team’s research and the impact climate change is having and will have on marine life in the West Antarctic Peninsula. And... Wednesday, July 16, 2014, marks the forty-fifth anniversary of the launch of the Apollo 11...the mission that put the first humans on the moon.  This feat was the climax of an incredibly fierce competition between the U.S. and the former Soviet Union. We'll take a look back at what became known as the 'Space Race'. By the time the international whaling moratorium went into effect in 1986, the commercial whaling industry had nearly wiped out the world's whale population.  Since then the population of whales has made a comeback. And, we'll find the ways the whale population is serving to improve the ocean environment. Children are becoming sick with tuberculosis at a much higher rate than previously estimated, according to a new study.  The new study presents the first-ever estimate of the scope of new TB infections among children: nearly 8 million in 2010.   The versatile papyrus plant is a light but strong reed that grows well in shallow, fresh water.  Restoring the papyrus swamps, where the reeds were grown centuries ago, could hold the key to solve many of today's problems, from pollution to water wars. Researchers say they have evidence that the malaria parasite lurks in bone marrow, the spongy tissue inside bones where blood cells are produced. The scientists say that their discovery offers hope that new treatments can be found to fight the disease.    These stories and more are coming up for you on VOA's science, health and technology magazine, "Science World."


July 04, 2014

New Horizons is Zooming Across the Solar System for July 2015 Rendezvous With Pluto

Today, we talk with Hal Weaver, the project scientists of NASA’s New Horizons mission to Pluto and beyond.   The mission's spacecraft will travel five Billion kilometers for its rendezvous with the Pluto, its moons and a couple of Kuiper Belt Objects in about a year from now. Also… NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 was launched earlier this week and will monitor atmospheric carbon dioxide - the heat-trapping gas thought to be responsible for much of Earth's global warming. International public health officials have announced plans to eliminate TB in the more than 30 countries that already have low rates of infection.   In the scramble for a slice of the $200-Billion commercial satellite launch industry, India took another step this past week by launching satellites from four nations.   We'll hear about a new study that shows Malaria may make people smell more alluring to mosquitoes... something that researchers think just might increase the spread of this dreaded disease. Members of the public recently got a sneak preview of futuristic immersive media technologies that are being developed by film and game industry artists along with computer scientists at the University of Southern California's Mixed Reality Lab. Health ministers from across West Africa met in an emergency conference to discuss the regional outbreak of Ebola virus disease.  The highly infectious disease, according to the WHO has killed more than 400 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. These stories and more are coming up for you on VOA's science, health and technology magazine, "Science World."

July 2014

Science World is VOA’s on-air and online blog covering science, health, technology and the environment.

Rick PantaleoHosted by Rick Pantaleo, Science World‘s informative, entertaining and easy-to-understand presentation offers the latest news, features and one-on-one interviews with researchers, scientists, innovators and other newsmakers.


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Science World begins after the newscast on Friday at 2200, Saturday at 0300, 1100 and 1900 and Sunday at 0100, 0400, 0900, 1100 and 1200. The program may also be heard on some VOA affiliates after the news on Saturday at 0900 and 1100. (All times UTC).
 

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Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
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Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
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Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
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Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
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Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
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Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
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Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
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Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
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Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
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Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
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Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
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Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
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Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
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Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
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Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
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Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

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