Cyber criminals could have a field day with insecure computers at NASA, possibly including those controlling the Hubble Space Telescope (pictured), the Space Shuttle, the International Space Station and the Cassini and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiters, according to an audit report from NASA’s inspector-general Paul Martin released today. Read more
Heartening news for endangered big cats: India’s tiger population has risen by around 16% in the past four years, according to a 2010 census whose results were reported at a conference in New Delhi on 28 March.
The Japanese TV channel NHK is reporting that radioactivity 10-million times higher than normal has been detected today in water flooding a basement of the turbine building of reactor number 2. The elements seems likely to have come from leaks from inside the reactor, or the water-filled supression chamber through which excess pressure from the reactor is vented and filtered. The reported dose level of 1,000 millisieverts/hr would appear to be lethal with just a few hours exposure. Workers have been evacuated from the site, which will hamper further attempts to bring the power plant under control. More later… … Read more
Leading chemists from around the world have warned that scarce natural resources, such as phosphate minerals mined for fertilisers, are “dwindling at an alarming rate” and shortages could hit within a generation. (See Nature’s coverage of the phosphate crisis here and here.) Five scientific societies, including the Chinese Chemical Society, the German Chemical Society, and the UK’s Royal Society of Chemistry, warn in a report today that falling supplies of these essential elements are “a potentially more pressing concern than the decreasing supply of oil.” “Little public awareness exists about the uncertain supplies of these key materials that we face … Read more