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27-Nov-2014 20:32
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Funding provided by the William T. Golden Endowment Fund for Program Innovation at AAAS


Kid-Friendly Feature Stories

Getting to know the fungus among us
Researchers studied almost 15,000 soil samples from 365 different sites around the world to paint the most vivid picture of Earth's fungi yet. It's important to understand how fungi are distributed around the world -- and how it responds to human activities -- because this group of organisms plays a serious role in human health, they say.

Contact: Science Press Package
American Association for the Advancement of Science

A model of magnetism for faraway planets
Researchers designed a model that measures the magnetic field of a distant exoplanet, or a planet outside of the solar system, and they suggest that it could be used to estimate the magnetic strength of other exoplanets as well. These magnetic fields can't be seen with the naked eye, but the invisible shields protect some planets, including Earth, from charged particles sent from the stars.

Contact: Science Press Package Team
American Association for the Advancement of Science

Deforestation: Making the world a wetter place
The removal of trees from wetlands around the world, such as swamps, bogs, and marshes, is making these environments even wetter, according to a new study. Actually, researchers say that the ongoing deforestation of wetlands may even be creating new wetlands in certain parts of the world. But this phenomenon goes largely unnoticed because most studies of the environment have not been designed to look for it, they say.

Contact: Science Press Package
American Association for the Advancement of Science

Moody's Mega Math Challenge kicks off 10th anniversary; opens registration
Moody's Mega Math Challenge, a hands-on learning experience and high school math modeling competition in its 10th year, opens team registration today. Teams from across the country will present real-world solutions for a chance to win a portion of $125,000 in scholarships this spring.

Contact: Frank Kunkle
Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics

Rollercoaster ride back to Earth
You might think the hardest part of a mission to space is the launch, but landing offers its own kind of challenge. The Soyuz spacecraft begins plummeting to Earth at almost 30,000 kilometers per hour. (That's 100 times quicker than the fastest train!) To return the astronauts home safely, this speed needs to be greatly reduced before they hit the ground. But how do we manage this?

Contact: Sarah Eve Roberts
Leiden University

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News for and About Kids

Public Release: 24-Nov-2014
Too much turkey: What happens when you overeat? (video)
The season of giving is often also the season of over-indulging at the dinner table. As Thanksgiving approaches, Reactions takes a look down at our stomachs to find out what happens when you overeat. Put on your 'eating pants' and enjoy the video here:

Contact: Michael Bernstein
American Chemical Society

Public Release: 20-Nov-2014
3-D printer powered up on the International Space Station
This week, NASA took a big step toward changing the way we plan for long-duration space voyages when astronaut Barry 'Butch' Wilmore successfully installed and prepared the first 3-D printer for upcoming manufacturing operations on the space station.

Contact: Tracy McMahan
NASA/Johnson Space Center

Public Release: 17-Nov-2014
The chemistry of cats: On catnip, pheromones and kitty litter (video)
They are seemingly the most popular thing on the Internet, the subject of millions of videos and hundreds of memes: cats. This week Reactions answers some of the biggest kitty questions out there: Why does catnip make most cats go crazy? How does kitty litter clump? And what does it mean when your cat rubs against your leg?

Contact: Michael Bernstein
American Chemical Society

Public Release: 17-Nov-2014
Frontiers in Psychology
Magic tricks created using artificial intelligence for the first time
Researchers working on artificial intelligence at Queen Mary University of London have taught a computer to create magic tricks.

Contact: Will Hoyles
Queen Mary, University of London

Public Release: 10-Nov-2014
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
The cat's meow: Genome reveals clues to domestication
Cats and humans have shared the same households for at least 9,000 years, but we still know very little about how our feline friends became domesticated. An analysis of the cat genome by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis reveals some surprising clues. The research appears Nov. 10 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.
NIH/National Human Genome Research Institute , National Science Foundation, Morris Animal Foundation, European Research Council, Government of Spain, National Center for Resarch Resources, Winn Feline Foundation

Contact: Diane Duke Williams
Washington University School of Medicine

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