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Microbes leave “fingerprints” on Martian rocks

At the Department of Biophysical Chemistry at the University of Vienna, Tetyana Milojevic and her team have been operating a miniaturized “Mars farm” in order to simulate ancient and probably extinct microbial life — based on gases and synthetically produced Martian regolith of diverse composition. The team investigates interactions between Metallosphaera sedula, a microbe that inhabits extreme environments, and different …Continue reading →


How dinosaur dung fertilised the world

Whether it started with exhibits at the Natural History Museum or fun-terrified screams watching Jurassic Park, humans have always been awestruck by dinosaurs. Over millions of years, dinosaurs like Alamosaurus may have played a crucial role in dispersing nutrients  [Credit: Northern Arizona University]But little is known about what, if any, role dinosaurs and other large animals like mammoths or elephants …Continue reading →


Whales and dolphins have rich ‘human-like’ cultures and societies

Whales and dolphins (Cetaceans) live in tightly-knit social groups, have complex relationships, talk to each other and even have regional dialects — much like human societies. Dolphins have rich ‘human-like’ cultures and societies due to size of their brains  [Credit: University of Manchester]A major new study, published in Nature Ecology & Evolution, has linked the complexity of Cetacean culture and …Continue reading →


Evidence of early ritualistic violence in ancient Andean societies

Researchers excavating an ancient ceremonial site in the Andes say the culture that thrived there engaged in violent, non-lethal rituals that led to lots of bloodletting. Individuals with trauma found at Pacopampa [Credit: Tomohito Nagaoka et al., PLOS ONE, 2017]Skeletal remains from the 13th century B.C. to the sixth century B.C. all bore appalling injuries. The researchers said it is …Continue reading →


Ancient child tombs found in China

A total of 110 tombs dating back more than 2,000 years have been discovered in northern China’s Hebei Province. Aerial views of the ancient tomb site in Huanghua city, North China’s Hebei province [Credit: Xinhua]The tombs were used to bury the remains of children, and archaeologists estimate there might be 500 to 700 more such tombs in the surrounding area. …Continue reading →


World Monuments Fund announces 25 at-risk monuments

Historical gems around the globe, ranging from a Syrian bazaar and the last active synagogue in Alexandria to England’s Blackpool Piers and Alabama civil rights buildings, are threatened by war, disasters and urbanization, a monument conservation group said on Monday. A general view after earthquake that levelled the town in Amatrice, central Italy, September 1, 2016  [Credit: Reuters/Stefano Rellandini]Days after …Continue reading →


‘The Sacred Way and Eleusis’ at the Acropolis Museum, Athens

A temporary exhibition dedicated to the Eleusinian Mysteries – one of the most important religious rites of ancient Greece – is to be held at the Acropolis Museum in Athens under the title “The Sacred Way and Eleusis”. The exhibition is scheduled to begin on December 15, 2017 and run until May 16, 2018. Credit: ANA-MPASome 60 ancient works of …Continue reading →


Prehistoric burial ground unearthed at UK army base

Prehistoric remains have been unearthed in at Larkhill Garrison. The finds were uncovered at the Royal School of Artillery in Larkhill, where the majority of Army Basing Programme construction work is underway. Three prehistoric burials were found at the site of a new sports pitch. Prone inhumation found at Larkhill Barracks, Bronze Age  [Credit: Wessex Archaeology]Prior to work starting at …Continue reading →


Early Christian churches unearthed in Eritrea

In the Horn of Africa Christianity spread very early on, consolidating itself after the edict of Constantine who, in 313 AD, decriminalized Christian worship. An Italo-Eritrean mission has found the remains of two early Christian churches dating back to the second half of the fourth century. The discovery also aroused the interest of the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology, which …Continue reading →


DISTRO: Researchers create digital 3D objects from incomplete 3D scanning data

Researchers from Germany’s Saarland University and Max Planck Institute for Informatics have joined Intel to improve digital 3D object creation using incomplete 3D scanning data. “VConv-DAE” is a convolutional volumetric auto encoder that learns volumetric representation from noisy data. via,


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