When Science Discovers Gravitational Waves & Satellites Track Fish, in Our Picks of the Week

[17 - 21 March 2014] The editors’ note about your science week

It's true! Other things happened this week, after the announcement of the first direct evidence for the Big Bang! Read on to learn what satellites have to do with a sustainable fishing economy, to get some fresh ideas for improving the image of sciene, and - ok - some more discussion around the discovery of gravitational waves.

It's true! Other things happened this week, after the announcement of the first direct evidence for the Big Bang! Read on to learn what satellites have to do with a sustainable fishing economy, to get some fresh ideas for improving the image of sciene, and - ok - some more discussion around the discovery of gravitational waves.


Illustration of gravitational waves produced by a binary star system. (Credit: NASA)

 

This week, on the MyScienceWork menu:

 

While satellites will not necessarily be able to spot missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, reports the Washington Post, something they can and do do is watch over the ocean. In Indonesia, land of more than 17,000 islands, satellites are helping to ensure the development of a sustainable economy based on fishing and the sea.

Fishing and Environment in Indonesia

This week, MyScienceWork participated in events surrounding the 16th annual L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science awards. A new report was released Wednesday detailing the situation of women in research today and, although the conclusions reveal not much has changed, ideas are proliferating.

Women still missing from science, report shows; meanwhile, ideas for improvement are not

 

Some favorites from around the web:

 

This week, you may have heard whispers – and by “whispers”, I mean many a voice ringing out across the internet: direct evidence of the Big Bang may have been found!

Gravitational Waves: The Big Bang's Smoking Gun
 

The gravitational wave finding has already been highly celebrated, even if it is very new, leading Megan Garber (@megangarber) of The Atlantic to ask:

'One of the Greatest Discoveries in the History of Science' Hasn't Been Peer-Reviewed—Does It Matter?

Astronomy graduate student and science communicator Elisabeth Newton (@Ellieinspace) comes to a different conclusion than Garber, saying the piece misunderstands how peer review works. She, in turn, responded with:

This blog post has not been peer reviewed

Rumors of this possible announcement of the first data to back up the prediction of Einstein’s theory of General Relativity were circulating on the web before the news came out Monday. Many Americans would have heard it online; what about the Brits? Turns out, we have different ways of consuming our science, on either side of the pond.

Americans learn about science from the internet; Brits watch TV

 

In more terrestrial news, leading to considerably less exalting, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels topped 400 parts per million. Last year was the first time this had happened in human history; this year, it happened two months earlier. Learn more about what that means in:

CO2 Levels Already Topped 400 PPM This Year, On Track To Cross Threshold For A Month

On the brighter side of carbon news, new calculations put the Amazon in the positive, in terms of its take-up of carbon:

Amazon inhales more carbon than it emits, NASA finds

On that note, we should take a moment to acknowledge International Forest Day (#IntlForestDay) – it’s today!

Forest fires are a complex phenomenon, dangerous and difficult to control, that bring both destruction and life to the forest. Did you know that researchers use computer modeling and a host of factors to predict the behavior of fires?

Fighting Fire with Mathematical Models