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Chicken Eggs as Drug Factories
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A Tongue and a Half
Polly Shouldn't Get a Cracker
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Seeing red means danger ahead
Lightening Your Mood
Slumber by the numbers
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Hitting the redo button on evolution
The solar system's biggest junkyard
The metal detector in your mouth
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New twists for phantom limbs
The hungry blob at the edge of the universe
Look into My Eyes
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Meet your mysterious relative
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Rocking the House
Sky Dust Keeps Falling on Your Head
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Missing Tigers in India
City Trees Beat Country Trees
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Ancient Art on the Rocks
A Long Haul
If Only Bones Could Speak
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Sting Ray
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Chew for Health
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Strong Bones for Life
GSAT English Rules
Order of Adjectives
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Gut Microbes and Weight
Invertebrates
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Expert report highlights the importance to parents of reading to children!
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
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Physics
Speedy stars
The Particle Zoo
Hold on to your stars, ladies and gentlemen
Plants
Pumping Up Poison Ivy
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Hungry bug seeks hot meal
Reptiles
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Asp
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Space and Astronomy
Melting Snow on Mars
A Family in Space
Baby Star
Technology and Engineering
Beyond Bar Codes
Space Umbrellas to Shield Earth
Musclebots Take Some Steps
The Parts of Speech
What is a Noun
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Problems with Prepositions
Transportation
Revving Up Green Machines
Morphing a Wing to Save Fuel
How to Fly Like a Bat
Weather
Antarctica warms, which threatens penguins
Recipe for a Hurricane
The solar system's biggest junkyard
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Unveiling Titan

There's no place like home. Except, maybe, for Saturn's largest moon, Titan. A recent mission to this moon has found that it looks a lot like our planet. The journey began 7 years ago, when the Cassini spacecraft was launched on a mission to explore Saturn. Cassini went into orbit around the planet on July 1, 2004. Then, on Dec. 25, 2004, the European Space Agency's Huygens probe separated from the craft and coasted toward Titan. On Jan. 14, it plunged into the moon's atmosphere. The probe spent 2.5 hours gliding through Titan's atmosphere, and it sent signals from the moon's surface to Cassini for 70 minutes before it lost radio contact with the spacecraft. Cassini, in turn, relayed the information and pictures to astronomers in Germany. The scientists were surprised at how Earth-like Titan appeared. Huygens landed on ground that was hard on top but soft underneath, somewhat like wet sand. The researchers were able to decipher the ground's texture by measuring the force of the probe's impact and comparing it to the effect of forces on various types of terrain on Earth. Huygens took spectacular pictures of drainage channels leading to a shoreline. Photos also showed ground fog and structures that look like sandbars. Astronomers are especially interested in Titan's chemistry, because the moon might provide insights into Earth's early history. Just as Huygens landed, it measured a sharp rise in methane gas. Now, scientists suggest that the moon's channels were carved by liquid methane and ethane, instead of by water, as they would be on Earth. Titan's rocks appear to be made mainly of water-ice. Some of them look like river rocks on our planet. They were probably made round by rolling around in liquid. Titan and Earth have something else in common, too: nonstop weather and geological activity. Huygens showed no major craters on the moon's surface. Icy eruptions and rain probably keep the landscape rugged and constantly changing. Another mission to Saturn's famous moon probably won't happen again for decades. But when spacecraft do eventually get there again, there will probably be plenty more surprises.E. Sohn

Unveiling Titan
Unveiling Titan








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