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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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ScienceShot: Contrails Warm the Globe
27 June 2011 2:52 pm
The white, cloudy contrails airplanes often leave in the sky may be full of ice crystals, but they're warming the globe, according to a new study. By flying in the wake of various aircraft—ranging in size from the 47-metric-ton Airbus A319 to the 508-metric-ton Airbus A380 (contrails of two Airbus A340s shown)—and analyzing their less-than-10-minute-old contrails, researchers have found that fresh contrails tend to trap outbound infrared radiation, slightly heating Earth. Based on 2005 air traffic figures such contrails, if their effect were to be evenly spread out across the globe, would continuously trap 15.9 milliwatts of power per square meter, the researchers report this month in Geophysical Research Letters. That's about 1% of the amount trapped by the carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.
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