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Second phases of the Allen Telescope Array.
Billionaire Paul Allen has committed $13.5 million to support the construction of the first and second phases of the Allen telescope Array. Construction of the array is now underway at the Hat Creek Observatory, 466 km northeast of San Francisco; the first phase will include the development of 32 6.1-metre radio telescopes. The second phase will see an additional 174 built. Eventually there will be a total of 350 identical dishes built. Once the first 32 dishes are completed, the array can begin scientific operations.
While watching the night sky with its panoramic camera, NASA's Spirit rover saw something surprising - a streak of light that was probably the brightest object in the sky. But what was it? It could have been a meteorite, or an old, dead spacecraft that orbited overhead. Based on the direction of the trail, the only spacecraft in that orbit, moving at that velocity would be Viking 2.
Scientists think they have an explanation for the "dust bowl" droughts of the 1930s, which helped to cause the Great Depression in the United States. Using a climate model called NASA's Seasonal-to-Interannual prediction Project (NSIPP), researchers were able to see how unusual temperatures in both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans could divert the path of the jet stream, which normally dumps rain in the US Great Plains. This lack of water created a feedback loop which reinforced the drought, which is why it lasted for nearly a decade.
NASA's Opportunity rover has determined that the small mineral spherules, which scientists have been calling "blueberries", contain hematite. This furthers the theory that the region was once drenched with liquid water. On Earth, hematite crystals with the same size as the spherules usually form in a wet environment. Doing a chemical analysis on the spherules was difficult because they're too small for any of Opportunity's instruments. The rover had to find a spot which was covered with spherules to analyze.
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