The relentless march of science

Professor Sergio-Canavero
Professor Sergio-Canavero is hoping to carry out the first head transplant. Is he a crackpot or a great innovator and visionary?

It has been a busy few weeks in the science arena. In the shadow of NASA’s announcement on the “Earth-like” planets around other stars, we heard that we no longer need to have our five portions of fruit and veg a day. We should now be aiming for 10 portions a day. The more, the merrier if you want to significantly reduce your chances of getting heart disease, stroke and cancer. In China significant inroads have been taken on the road to clean nuclear fusion, with a major breakthrough in burning hydrogen at a temperature hotter than our sun for well over a minute. This is one of the key requirements for a fusion reactor, which would offer unlimited clean energy and a move away from fossil fuels.

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Separating the wheat from the chaff

“Red wine in moderation is good for you”… “No it’s not, all alcohol is bad”… “More than two eggs a week are bad for you”… “No they’re not, eggs are good for you”…

Open a newspaper or fire up the internet and you are hit with an avalanche of information. Some of it news worthy, some not, but all of it fighting for your attention. It can be hard to sort out the wheat from the chaff. With the advent of digital and social media, and the proliferation of smartphones, access to information and news is at our fingertips 24/7. This can be a good thing, with citizen reporters bringing us news from the front lines and sharing unique perspectives on events. It can also be a bad thing, allowing every lunatic or corporation with an agenda and an internet connection to masquerade as a journalist.

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Supermoon Illusion

A true to life representation of the supermoon size vs the average full moon
A true to life representation of the supermoon size vs the average full moon

Step outside on On Monday the 14th November just after sunset and look to the north east and you will see a large moon rising (assuming it is clear). Looks huge, right? Much bigger than normal? Lots of reports in the media about this massive supermoon and how the full moon won’t appear this big again until 2034. But what exactly is a supermoon and is it rare?.

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