Potential life on ancient Mars likely lived below the surface, study says

If life ever existed on ancient Mars, it may not have found a way on the surface — but several miles below it. A new study suggests that the most habitable part of Mars in the past was likely its subsurface.

a body of water: This is a vertically exaggerated, false-color rendering of a large, water-carved channel on Mars called Dao Vallis.

© ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, 3D rendered and colored by Lujendra Ojha
This is a vertically exaggerated, false-color rendering of a large, water-carved channel on Mars called Dao Vallis.

The study published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances.

Life, as we understand it on Earth, requires some basic ingredients. Water is one of those. And for years, NASA’s succession of robotic missions has been “following the water” on Mars to learn more about the planet’s history, including if it ever supported life.

While many scientists believe that Mars was warm and wet billions of years ago before it became the frozen desert it is today, others point to the faint young

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In the Ancient American Southwest, Turkeys Were Friends, Not Food | Smart News

A blanket made by early 13th-century Indigenous peoples in what is now the southwestern United States featured more than 11,000 turkey feathers woven into almost 200 yards of yucca fiber, new research shows. The findings—published in the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports—shed light on farming practices among the ancestral Puebloans, forebears of modern Hopi, Zuni and Rio Grande Pueblo nations, reports Jennifer Ouellette for Ars Technica.

The researchers say the region’s people began to switch from blankets made of rabbit skin strips to turkey-feather designs during the first two centuries A.D.

“As ancestral Pueblo farming populations flourished, many thousands of feather blankets would likely have been in circulation at any one time,” says co-author Shannon Tushingham, an anthropologist at Washington State University (WSU), in a statement. “It is likely that every member of an ancestral Pueblo community, from infants to adults, possessed one.”

Though the region’s early inhabitants

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Cereal, olive and vine pollen reveal market integration in Ancient Greece — ScienceDaily

In the field of economics, the concept of a market economy is largely considered a modern phenomenon. Influential economists such as Karl Marx and Max Weber, for example, argued that although markets existed in antiquity, economies in which structures of production and distribution responded to the laws of supply and demand developed only as recently as the 19th century. A recent study by an international team of researchers, including Adam Izdebski of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, uses palynology — the study of pollen remains extracted from cored sediments — to challenge this belief and provide evidence for an integrated market economy existing in ancient Greece.

Market integration began earlier than assumed

Using publicly available data from the European Pollen Database, as well as data from other investigators, researchers analyzed pollen assemblages from 115 samples taken from six sites in southern Greece to measure landscape

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A possible way to measure ancient rate of cosmic ray strikes using ‘paleo-detectors’

A possible way to measure ancient rate of cosmic ray strikes using 'paleo-detectors'
Relentless barrage. Cosmic rays collide with molecules in Earth’s atmosphere, creating showers of particles that include neutrinos. The neutrinos can penetrate deep within Earth’s surface, where they may leave a cosmic-ray record in buried rocks. Credit: NSF/J.Yang/via Physics

An international team of researchers has proposed a way to indirectly measure the rate of cosmic rays striking the Earth over millions of years. In their paper published in the journal Physical Review Letters, they suggest using the imprints made by atmospheric neutrinos in so-called “paleo-detectors”—natural minerals expressing damage tracks resulting from nuclear recoils.

Every moment of every day, the Earth is bombarded by cosmic rays—most of them are light nuclei and protons. And as those cosmic rays pass through the atmosphere, some of them collide with atoms, smashing them apart and resulting in the production of neutrinos, which rain down on the planet. Astrophysicists have noted that a method to

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5G Propels the Future of An Ancient Chinese Town

In many ways, a walk around the Old Town of Lijiang, China, takes visitors back to the experience of what life was like here at its founding more than 1,000 years ago. Renowned as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Dayan Old Town’s orderly system of waterways and bridges established this trading town and still serves as an artery to keep progress flowing today.

But a powerful modern technology recently joined the ancient roots still growing in this city of more than 1 million people: 5G. These days you can spot cutting-edge operator-less sweepers and patrol vehicles in Lijiang. The technology powering these vehicles illustrates the partnership between Lenovo and Lijiang on 5G, part of the Lijiang Ancient Town 5G Application Demonstration Project.

As you can imagine, the intense flow of people puts a lot of pressure on managing this ancient town. Cleaning, patrolling, and providing dining services to the

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Melting Ice in Norway Reveals Ancient Arrows | Smart News

A melting ice patch in Norway has revealed the remnants of dozens of arrows and other artifacts, some dating to the Stone Age, Chris Baraniuk reports for New Scientist.

Researchers from the Universities of Cambridge, Oslo and Bergen have discovered 68 arrow shafts, some with arrowheads attached. The arrowheads are made of a range of materials, including bone, slate, iron and mussel shell. In some cases, the ice even preserved twine and tar used to hold the arrow together. They published their findings earlier this week in the journal The Holocene.

William Taylor, an anthropologist at the University of Colorado Boulder who was not involved in the study, tells New Scientist that the discoveries represent a “treasure trove” not usually found in a single patch of melting ice.

“You might expect a handful of items if you were lucky,” he says. “It’s extremely rare and extremely important.”


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Ancient blanket made with 11,500 turkey feathers — ScienceDaily

The ancient inhabitants of the American Southwest used around 11,500 feathers to make a turkey feather blanket, according to a new paper in the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports. The people who made such blankets were ancestors of present-day Pueblo Indians such as the Hopi, Zuni and Rio Grande Pueblos.

A team led by Washington State University archaeologists analyzed an approximately 800-year-old, 99 x 108 cm (about 39 x 42.5 inches) turkey feather blanket from southeastern Utah to get a better idea of how it was made. Their work revealed thousands of downy body feathers were wrapped around 180 meters (nearly 200 yards) of yucca fiber cord to make the blanket, which is currently on display at the Edge of the Cedars State Park Museum in Blanding, Utah.

The researchers also counted body feathers from the pelts of wild turkeys purchased from ethically and legally compliant dealers in Idaho

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Ancient people relied on coastal environments to survive the Last Glacial Maximum — ScienceDaily

Humans have a longstanding relationship with the sea that spans nearly 200,000 years. Researchers have long hypothesized that places like coastlines helped people mediate global shifts between glacial and interglacial conditions and the impact that these changes had on local environments and resources needed for their survival. Coastlines were so important to early humans that they may have even provided key routes for the dispersal of people out of Africa and across the world.

Two new multidisciplinary studies published in the journals Quaternary Science Reviews and Quaternary Research document persistent human occupation along the South African eastern seaboard from 35,000 years ago to 10,000 years ago. In this remote, and largely unstudied, location — known as the “Wild Coast” — researchers have used a suite of cutting-edge techniques to reconstruct what life was like during this inclement time and how people survived it.

The research is being conducted by an

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Scientific analysis of an ancient portrait pigment reveals long-lost artistic details — ScienceDaily

How much information can you get from a speck of purple pigment, no bigger than the diameter of a hair, plucked from an Egyptian portrait that’s nearly 2,000 years old? Plenty, according to a new study. Analysis of that speck can teach us about how the pigment was made, what it’s made of — and maybe even a little about the people who made it. The study is published in the International Journal of Ceramic Engineering and Science.

“We’re very interested in understanding the meaning and origin of the portraits, and finding ways to connect them and come up with a cultural understanding of why they were even painted in the first place,” says materials scientist Darryl Butt, co-author of the study and dean of the College of Mines and Earth Sciences.

Faiyum mummies

The portrait that contained the purple pigment came from an Egyptian mummy, but it doesn’t

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We’ve Found An Ancient ‘Fossil Galaxy’ Inside Our Milky Way, Say Scientists

Galaxies like ours are the result of many, many mergers. Exactly how galaxies form is a mystery, but we know these vast seas of stars often bump into each other and mix to form something new, and bigger.

Just last week scientists developed the first family tree of our home galaxy, but another paper published this week in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society claims to have discovered a hitherto unknown “fossil galaxy” hidden in the inner depths of our Milky Way.

It’s thought to have collided with the Milky Way about 10 billion years ago. The Milky Way is 13.5 billion years old, but this collision appears to have been responsible for adding

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