SpaceX’s Dragon blast off with Falcon rocket, reland attempt fails

After a setback earlier this week, SpaceX has successfully launched a Falcon9 rocket bound for the International Space Station (ISS) on a restocking mission. An attempt to land the potentially reusable rocket on a barge, however, failed.

The launch was conducted from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Space Launch Complex 40 in Florida at (9:50 GMT) early Saturday.

The rocket has a Dragon cargo ship on board, which is carrying some 5,000 pounds of science experiments, technology demonstrations and supplies to replace those lost following the explosion of an Antares rocket seconds after liftoff in October.

Bats are a possible source of Ebola epidemic in West Africa

The outbreak of the Ebola virus disease occurring in West Africa may have originated from contact between humans and virus-infected bats, suggests a study led by researchers from the Robert Koch-Institute in Berlin, Germany. The report, published in EMBO Molecular Medicine, identifies insectivorous free-tailed bats as plausible reservoirs and expands the range of possible Ebola virus sources to this type of bats. The results also reveal that larger wildlife are not the source of infection.

Smartphone use 'changing our brains'

Our brains are adapting to touchscreen smartphone technology say researchers who have carried out a study on human volunteers.

The scientists used something called electroencephalography (EEG) to measure brain activity.

They found distinct differences between smartphone users and people who used 'conventional' cellphones.

Light-emitting e-readers before bedtime can adversely impact sleep

Use of a light-emitting electronic device (LE-eBook) in the hours before bedtime can adversely impact overall health, alertness, and the circadian clock which synchronizes the daily rhythm of sleep to external environmental time cues, according to researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) who compared the biological effects of reading an LE-eBook compared to a printed book.

"We found the body's natural circadian rhythms were interrupted by the short-wavelength enriched light, otherwise known as blue light, from these electronic devices," said Anne-Marie Chang, PhD. "Participants reading an LE-eBook took longer to fall asleep and had reduced evening sleepiness, reduced melatonin secretion, later timing of their circadian clock and reduced next-morning alertness than when reading a printed book."

Oldest horned dinosaur species in North America found in Montana

The limited fossil record for neoceratopsian--or horned dinosaurs--from the Early Cretaceous in North America restricts scientists' ability to reconstruct the early evolution of this group. The authors of this study have discovered a dinosaur skull in Montana that represents the first horned dinosaur from the North American Early Cretaceous that they can identify to the species level. The authors named the dinosaur Aquilops americanus, which exhibits definitive neoceratopsian features and is closely related to similar species in Asia. The skull is comparatively small, measuring 84 mm long, and is distinguished by several features, including a strongly hooked rostral bone, or beak-like structure, and an elongated and sharply pointed cavity over the cheek region. When alive, the authors estimate it was about the size of a crow.

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