YOUR WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE:
Flying car completes test flight between airports.
A prototype flying car has completed a 35-minute flight from international airports in Nitra to Bratislava, Slovakia. The hybrid car-aircraft, , is fitted with a BMW engine and runs on regular petrol-pump fuel. Its inventor, Prof Stefan Klein, said it could fly about 1,000km (600 miles), at a height of 8,200ft (2,500m), and had flown up 40 hours in the air so far. It takes two minutes and 15 seconds to change from car into aircraft.
Rare black hole and neutron star collisions sighted twice in 10 days.
Both objects are cosmological monsters, but black holes are considerably larger than neutron stars. In the first collision, detected on 5 January 2020, a black hole six-and-a-half times the mass of our Sun crashed into a neutron star that was 1.5 times more massive than our parent star. In the second collision, occurred10 days later, a black hole of 10 solar masses merged with a neutron star of two solar masses. When objects as massive as these collide they create ripples in the fabric of space called gravitational waves. And it is these ripples that the researchers have detected.
Scientists reveal new ancient human discovery.
Chinese researchers have revealed an ancient skull that could belong to a totally different species of human. The group claimed it is the nearest evolutionary relative among known species of ancient human, such as Neanderthals and Homo erectus. Nicknamed “Dragon Man”, the specimen represents a human group that lived in East Asia about 146,000 years ago. It was found at Harbin, north-east China, in 1933, but it was only studied recently.
New patient zero for the plague.
Scientists working in Israel have identified a previously unknown type of ancient human that lived alongside our species more than 100,000 years ago. They believe that the remains uncovered near the city of Ramla are one of the “last survivors” of a very ancient human group. The finds consist of a partial skull and jaw from an individual who lived between 140,000 and 120,000 years ago. More information has been published in the journal Science.
Last hope for polar bears is vulnerable to climate change.
A new research shows that a region of the Arctic Ocean essential for the survival of polar bears is fast becoming vulnerable to climate change. The area, dubbed the “last ice area” had been expected to stay frozen far longer than other parts of the Arctic. But this new study says that this area suffered record melting last summer.
The researchers say that high winds allied to a changing climate were behind the rapid decline.
Pets can contract COVID from owners, findings suggests.
Researchers from Utrecht University sent a mobile veterinary clinic to households in the Netherlands that had tested positive for COVID. Swabs were taken from their cats and dogs to test for evidence of a current infection, and blood samples were also tested for antibodies suggesting a past exposure to COVID. The results were as follow:
1. 4.2% showed evidence of a current infection.
2. 17.4% tested positive for antibodies