The Trump administration’s budget proposal aims to shut down the West Coast’s ShakeAlert system, which can provide a precious few seconds of warning that an earthquake is under way, but its backers in Congress won’t let it go without a fight. “We will not accept this attempt by the president to cut a vital funding stream for a program that will protect life, property and critical infrastructure,” Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said in a statement.
Researchers at the University of Washington’s Virtual Planetary Laboratoryhave devised a new habitability index for judging how suitable alien planets might be for life, and the top prospects on their list are an Earthlike world called Kepler-442b and a yet-to-be confirmed planet known as KOI 3456.02. Those worlds both score higher than our own planet on the index: 0.955 for KOI 3456.02 and 0.836 for Kepler-442b, compared with 0.829 for Earth and 0.422 for Mars.
This image shows Jupiter’s south pole, as seen by NASA’s Juno spacecraft from an altitude of 32,000 miles. The oval features are cyclones, up to 600 miles in diameter. (NASA / JPL-Caltech / SwRI / MSSS / Betsy Asher Hall / Gervasio Robles)NASA’s Juno orbiter has been sending back stunning pictures of Jupiter for months, but now the mission’s scientists are sharing their first peer-reviewed findings about the planet’s previously unseen polar storms and powerful magnetic field.