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In a first, astronomers detect giant planet orbiting a dead star – CNET

The white dwarf, WD 1856, provides a snapshot of the fate that awaits our own solar system.

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A tiny white dwarf, WD 1856, is orbited closely by a huge planet. 
NASA Goddard
Around 80 light-years from Earth lies the white dwarf WD 1856, a dead star that entered the final stages of its life around 6 billion years ago. This slow death is typically quite lonely. In the process of dying, some stars will drastically expand, becoming a huge “red giant,” like Betelgeuse, and engulfing any of the planets orbiting close by. Eventually, they use up all their fuel and collapse back into white dwa…

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Are Humans Still Evolving? Scientists Weigh In – ScienceAlert

As a species, humans have populated almost every corner of the earth. We have developed technologies and cultures which shape the world we live in.

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As a species, humans have populated almost every corner of the earth. We have developed technologies and cultures which shape the world we live in.
The idea of ‘natural selection’ or ‘survival of the fittest’ seems to make sense in Stone Age times when we were fighting over scraps of meat, but does it still apply now?
We asked 12 experts whether humans are still evolving. The expert consensus is unanimously ‘yes’, however scientists say we might have the wrong idea of what evolution actually i…

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Alien planets in deep space could be made of diamonds, researchers suggest – Fox News

Newly published research suggests that some exoplanets in deep space largely comprised of carbon could turn into diamonds.

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They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but what about an entire planet made of diamonds?
Newly published research suggests that some exoplanets in deep space largely comprised of carbon could turn into diamonds.
The research, published in The Planetary Science Journal, suggests that these “carbon-rich” planets could have the right conditions, such as water, heat and pressure, to turn the carbon into diamonds. These planets could also form other minerals that are found on Earth, such as si…

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“Out of the Blue” – Evidence That Sea Ice Triggered the Little Ice Age – SciTechDaily

Sea ice can act as an agent of climate change on a variety of timescales and spatial scales—it’s not just a passive responder to change. The Little Ice Age may have arisen “out of the blue,” from internal variability within the climate system, rather than in …

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  • Sea ice can act as an agent of climate change on a variety of timescales and spatial scales—it’s not just a passive responder to change.
  • The Little Ice Age may have arisen “out of the blue,” from internal variability within the climate system, rather than in response to an external push from volcanic eruptions or other factors.
  • A far-flung pulse of sea ice may have contributed to the demise of the Norse colonies in Greenland in the 14th and 15th centuries.

A new …

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