Accessible Articles via links on Cosmic Tusk

At www.cosmictusk.com April 9th ... there is an article on the YD boundary event and it's impact on Arizona, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Many sites in Arizona have evidence of the Clovis culture which apparently thrived in the centuries immediately before the Younger Dryas period. A raft of large animals became extinct at the boundary, the dividing line being a thin black layer in the geology (they are below but not above the black layer).

Gulf dry and wide

At www.gulf-times.com April 11th there is a story in which a team of archaeologists from Birmingham University (who pioneered research on the North Sea bottom) have been in Qatar and looking at the sea floor of the Gulf (in conjunction with the Qatar Natural History Museum). They have been able to demonstrate how the Gulf has changed during the last ten thousand years as a result of sea level rise. During the Ice Age the peninsular of Qatar was part of a huge plain stretching all the way across to Iran - broken just by a couple of fresh water lakes.

Electricity in Clouds

At http://sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/59172 April 11th ... it is thought ash particles generated lightning storms when Mount Rinjani in Indonesia erupted in 1995. Now, this idea is being expanded in a Nature Physics paper to suggest colliding dust grains charge each other to create electricity.

Mount St Helens - 30 years after

Science News April 10th ... this is a preview of a paper to be published on April 24th in Science News volume 177. If you have ever wondered what happened in the Mount St Helens landscape in the 30 years since it blew it's top so dramatically this is the article to read - www.sciencenews.org/view/feature/id/58034/title/A_fresh_look_at_Mount_St_Helens.htm , an interesting read but is largely concerned with the recovery of flora and fauna.

Time Dilation

At www.physorg.com/print190027752.html there is a story with the title, 'Discovery that quasars don't show time dilation mystifies astronomers' ... which sounds like a question mark against the Big Bang Theory. The phenomenon of time dilation is explained by i) the speed of light is constant, and ii) the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate which causes light from distant objects to redshft. As space expands the interval between light pulses also lengthens.

Venus in the Sky

At www.physorg.com/print189959182.html is an article to warm the cockles of old time SIS stalwarts. It has the title, 'Venus is Alive - geologically speaking' and refers to images sent back from the Venus Express spacecraft that show young lava flows on the surface of the planet. There is also a video that can be clicked on with a visual insight of the discovery - refuting some scientists who claim it is geologically inactive because the surface of the planet is too smooth.

This Week in Science

This Week in Science April 8th (Science volume 328 issue 5975) ... our genus Homo is thought to have evolved a little more than 2 million years ago from the earlier hominid Australopithecus - but there are few fossil remains that can inform us about the transition. Two skeletons found in a cave in South Africa, it is hoped, will provide more information on the subject as they belong to a new species of Australopithecus.

Out of Africa - new episode

At www.english.globalarabnetwork.com April 9th ... a British archaeologist, Jeremy Rose, has found evidence of human settlement in Oman at 125,000 years ago. However, there is a caveat not mentioned but discernible by reading between the lines.

New Megalithic site on Dartmoor

Discovery News April 9th (http://news.discovery.com ) ... nine large stones found on a remote moorland exposure on Dartmoor, a two hour yomp from the nearest road, have been dated to the 4th millennium BC. The C14 dates came from plant material in peat above and below one of the stones. They were aligned in a row but at some stage fell over, were blown over, or were toppled by people - and eventually buried under peat on Cut Hill (during the cold spell and very wet spell of climate 3200-3000BC).

Supervolcanoes under the sea

At www.redorbit.com id1847871 April 8th ... scientists have been looking at a 145 million years old supervolcano on the ocean floor east of Japan. Known as Shatsky Rise it is composed of a huge outflowing of magma, some individual flows being as much as 75 feet thick. Geologists have argued about the formation and origin of large oceanic plateau - the mystery being in the origin of the magma. Was it deep mantle or from a shallower depth? They also seem to occur at the boundaries of tectonic plates.