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6 March 2014 1:04 pm ,
Vol. 343 ,
Magdalena Koziol, a former postdoc at Yale University, was the victim of scientific sabotage. Now, she is suing the...
Antiretroviral drugs can protect people from becoming infected by HIV. But so-called pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP...
Two studies show that eating a diet low in protein and high in carbohydrates is linked to a longer, healthier life, and...
Considered an icon of conservation science, researchers at World Wildlife Fund (WWF) headquarters in Washington, D.C.,...
The new atlas, which shows the distribution of important trace metals and other substances, is the first product of...
Early in April, the first of a fleet of environmental monitoring satellites will lift off from Europe's spaceport in...
Since 2000, U.S. government health research agencies have spent almost $1 billion on an effort to churn out thousands...
- 6 March 2014 1:04 pm , Vol. 343 , #6175
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ScienceShot: How Planes Make Rain
14 June 2010 3:44 pm
Fly the friendly skies—and make it rain. That's what researchers have found airplanes tend to do when they take off or descend through clouds of the altocumulus variety. The clouds, which range in altitude from about 1 to 6 kilometers, have been known to develop gaping holes or channels near airports, though no one knew why. Nor could anyone explain why their appearance immediately brought localized precipitation. But this month in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, researchers report that when a jet or turboprop flies through clouds containing droplets of supercooled water, which can remain liquid even as low as -15°C, the droplets condense after passing over the aircraft's wings (or the blades of its propellers). The now-frozen droplets immediately fall to earth as rain or snow, and their absence creates the characteristic circular hole or tunnel effect in the clouds.
See more ScienceShots.