Top stories Vanishing insects merging neutron stars and why we havent made

first_img Merging neutron stars generate gravitational waves and a celestial light showFour times in the past 2 years, physicists working with mammoth gravitational-wave detectors have sensed something go bump in the night, sending invisible ripples through spacetime. This week, they announced the detection of a fifth such disturbance—but this time astronomers saw it, too, at every wavelength of light from gamma radiation to radio waves. Just as physicists had predicted, the unprecedented view of the cosmic cataclysm—in which two superdense neutron stars spiraled into each other—brought with it a cornucopia of insights, each of which by itself would count as a major scientific advance.Analysis of China’s one-child policy sparks uproar Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) By Giorgia GuglielmiOct. 20, 2017 , 12:10 PM Email (Left to right): Tim Fitzharris/Minden Pictures; NASA; SMITHGROUPJJR Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country Top stories: Vanishing insects, merging neutron stars, and why we haven’t made alien contact A new study of China’s one-child policy is roiling demography, sparking calls for the field’s leading journal to withdraw the paper. The controversy has ignited a debate over scholarly values in a discipline that some say prioritizes reducing population growth above all else. Chinese officials have long claimed that the one-child policy—in place from 1980 to 2016—averted some 400 million births, which they say aided global environmental efforts. Scholars have contested that number as flawed. But the new paper argues that the figure may, in fact, have merit.Germany’s insects are disappearingIn just 3 decades, insect populations—everything from parasitic wasps to hoverflies and wild bees—have plummeted by more than 75% in German nature reserves, according to a new study. The reasons for the decline aren’t clear, but the pattern is consistent over a swath of western and northern Germany, and it’s likely having wide-ranging effects on plants and other animals, such as insect-eating birds.Can the Museum of the Bible overcome the sins of the past?Next month, the lavish Museum of the Bible will open its doors in Washington, D.C. The grandiose new venture is bankrolled by the Greens, the billionaire family that owns the arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby and that has donated to the museum hundreds of artifacts purchased on the antiquities market. But although the Museum of the Bible is trying to establish itself as a legitimate academic enterprise by hiring respected curators and consultants, scholars worry that it will use its artifacts to further an evangelical view of the Bible as historically accurate and immutable, and they wonder how many items in the museum’s collection may have been looted from archaeological sites.Why haven’t we had alien contact? Blame icy ocean worldsMight ET be buried under too much ice to phone Earth? That’s what one planetary scientist has concluded may be delaying our contact with alien civilizations. Most extraterrestrial creatures are likely deep inside their home planets, in subsurface oceans crusted over in frozen water ice. The hypothesis could explain the lack of signals from other technologically advanced civilizations, especially if they think that everyone else is trapped in their own icy bubbles.Why wolves are better team players than dogsDogs may be social butterflies, but wolves are top dog when it comes to working together as a team. That’s because, unlike dogs, wolves haven’t evolved to avoid conflict; instead, members of a pack “sort things out” as they forage together, according to a new study. The work calls into question a long-held assumption that domestication fostered more cooperative individuals.last_img read more