June 1, 2013 |
LOS ANGELES - Astronauts traveling to and from Mars would be bombarded with as much radiation as they would get from a full-body CT scan about once a week for a year, researchers reported Thursday. That dose would, in some cases, exceed NASA's standards and is enough to raise an astronaut's cancer risk by 3 percent. As plans for deep space exploration ramp up, radiation is a big concern - from high-energy galactic cosmic rays spewed by distant supernova explosions to sporadic bursts of charged particles hurled by the sun. Earth's magnetic field helps to deflect much of that harmful radiation.
May 4, 2013 |
There's no chance anyone in Tyler Coleman's family will forget his first collegiate baseball game. Coleman only had one at-bat for West Chester last season and struck out. The TV movie version probably would have him hitting a double or triple or something. This was real life. His mother, Diana, remembers going to the bathroom just before the game so she wouldn't miss any of it. Her cellphone rang while she was in the ladies' room. The tests done to figure out why there was swelling in her son's neck had come back with a definitive answer.
April 4, 2013 |
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on Wednesday released detailed plans for its comprehensive radiation study of oil and gas development and said it intends to begin sampling this month. The agency plans to analyze radioactivity levels of flowback waters, treatment solids, drill cuttings, and drilling equipment, along with the transportation, storage and disposal of drilling wastes. DEP says current data do not indicate any health risks, but activists have raised concerns about naturally occuring radioactivity in materials extracted from the mile-deep wells.
November 25, 2012 |
YOKOHAMA, Japan - Toshiba Corp. has developed a robot it says can withstand high radiation to work in nuclear disasters, but it's not clear what the robot would be able to do if and when it got the go-ahead to enter Japan's crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant. The four-legged robot can climb over debris and venture into radiated areas off-limits to humans. One significant innovation, Toshiba said, is that its wireless network can be controlled in high radiation, automatically seeking better transmission when reception becomes weak.
October 19, 2012 |
Tomatoes on windowsills and radiator covers dominate this week's discussion. A reader put tomatoes on the marble windowsill in her kitchen, and went away for a few days. When she returned, the tomatoes were overripe and mushy, and the acid from them etched marks in the marble. She requested a reasonably priced fix. Before I offer solutions from other readers, I should mention, as Deborah Kates, the vice president of the Coatesville Area Art Alliance, reminded me, that a "sunny sill is the worst place to let tomatoes ripen.
September 29, 2012 |
Question: I want to cover my hot-water radiators so they will look more decorative, but I've received three different contractor opinions on how to proceed. The first said a cover reduces the heat output by 30 percent and recommended painting instead of covering. The second recommended the usual metal enclosure and not a wooden one because the wood expands and over time will crack. The last contractor suggested wooden covers and said the wood will not crack. I want to make the correct choice, but need the pros and cons for each selection.
August 17, 2012 |
TOKYO - Radiation that leaked from the Fukushima nuclear plant following last year's tsunami caused mutations in some butterflies - including dented eyes and stunted wings - though humans seem relatively unaffected, researchers say. The mutations are the first evidence that the radiation has caused genetic changes in living organisms. They are likely to add to concerns about potential health risks among humans though there is no evidence of it yet. Scientists say more study is needed to link human health with the Fukushima disaster.
August 16, 2012 |
Japanese researchers have found very low amounts of radioactivity in the bodies of about 10,000 people who lived near the Fukushima Daiichi power plant when it melted down. The first published study that measured the radiation within a large number of residents reassured health experts because the numbers reported imply only negligible health risks. "Exposure levels were much lower than those reported in studies even several years after the Chernobyl incident," said Masaharu Tsubokura of the University of Toyko, lead author of a short paper published in the Thursday issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
June 14, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Isabel Doran is only 4 years old, but she's already had about 15 CT scans - and every one comes with a dose of radiation. "I think there's always that part of you that thinks it's too much," said her mother, Veronica Doran of Burke, Va. Doran is glad the scans have allowed doctors at Children's National Medical Center to monitor Isabel's progress while they treat her kidney cancer. But she's worried about the long-term effects of the scans, which could put Isabel at risk for another cancer later.
May 21, 2012 |
LOS ANGELES - Back when single-celled organisms ruled Earth, a gigantic black hole lurking quietly at the center of a distant galaxy dismantled and devoured a star. This month, astronomers reported that they watched the whole thing unfold over a period of 15 months starting in 2010, the first time such an event had been witnessed in great detail from start to finish. "The star got so close that it was ripped apart by the gravitational force of the black hole," said Johns Hopkins astronomer Suvi Gezari, lead author of a paper about the observations that was published online by the journal Nature.