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Storms in the Machine
Topic: Climate
12/17/12
NASA researchers are constructing a statistical typhoon model that can quickly generate millions of synthetic typhoons from birth through termination. Their work could provide new details about the climate of Earth, and what the future may hold for life on our planet.

At Last, How Many Alien Civilizations are There?
Topic: Alien Life
11/30/12
Frank Drake’s famous equation for estimating alien life has been altered by one scientist to create the “Statistical Drake Equation”. The results provide good news for the SETI community.

Do Aliens Use Hairspray?
Topic: Alien Life
11/22/12
Chemicals such as those found in hairspray might one day serve as signs that aliens have reshaped distant worlds, researchers say.

A 3.45-Million-Year-Old Diet
Topic: Geology
11/20/12
Researchers are providing new information about the ‘diet’ of microorganisms on the early Earth. By studying 3.45-billion-year-old rocks, the team uncovered clues about ancient microbial metabolism.

Life on Earth’s Ceiling
Topic: Extreme Life
11/15/12
Studies have previously discovered microbes in the upper atmosphere, but little is known about the diversity of life up there. New research aims to take a census at the top of the sky.

Colors of ExoEarths Could Indicate Habitability
Topic: Alien Life
11/09/12
When direct detection of Earth-like planets becomes possible, scientists want to be able to easily characterize these planets and see which ones might be suitable for alien life. A new technique shows how the unique colors of particular environments known to harbor extremophile life on Earth can be detected remotely.

How Hot are Super-Earths?
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
09/27/12
A new study suggests that rocky super-Earths might cool down very slowly after their formation, making them hotter than previously thought. The research could have implications in understanding how "Earth-like" these planets truly are.

Meteors Might Add Methane to Exoplanet Atmospheres
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
09/17/12
Researchers says that methane generated by meteors could make alien worlds look like they are inhabited by life -- even though they are not.

Does Triton Have a Subsurface Ocean?
Topic: Outer Solar System
09/06/12
Neptune’s largest moon Triton is most likely a captured Kuiper Belt Object. The capture of icy Triton and the subsequent taming of its orbit likely led to the formation of a subsurface ocean through tidal heating. New research suggests that this ocean could still exist today.

How Old are the First Planets?
Topic: Cosmic Evolution
08/30/12
Heavy elements – ‘metals’ in astronomer-speak – are created within stars and then spewed out across the cosmos by supernovae. Scientists are now asking: when did the Universe have enough metals to start building planets?
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