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Hungry bug seeks hot meal
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Frogs and Toads
Salamanders and Newts
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Koalas, Up Close and Personal
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Assembling the Tree of Life
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Chimpanzee Hunting Tools
Mice sense each other's fear
Brainy bees know two from three
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Graphene's superstrength
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Butterfly Wings and Waterproof Coats
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It's a Small E-mail World After All
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Dinosaur Dig
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2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Earth
Deep Drilling at Sea
Life under Ice
Earth's Poles in Peril
Environment
Shrimpy Invaders
Out in the Cold
Plastic Meals for Seals
Finding the Past
Big Woman of the Distant Past
Meet your mysterious relative
A Long Haul
Fish
Sturgeons
Megamouth Sharks
White Tip Sharks
Food and Nutrition
The Color of Health
Chew for Health
Making good, brown fat
GSAT English Rules
Who vs. Whom
Capitalization Rules
Subject and Verb Agreement
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
42,000 students will sit for the GSAT Exam in two weeks
GSAT Exam Preparation
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
GSAT Exam Preparation
42,000 students will sit for the GSAT Exam in two weeks
GSAT Scholarship
GSAT Mathematics
Math of the World
Setting a Prime Number Record
How to Slice a Cake Fairly
Human Body
Football Scrapes and Nasty Infections
What the appendix is good for
Hey batter, wake up!
Invertebrates
Fleas
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Insects
Mammals
Weasels
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Bloodhounds
Parents
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
Expert report highlights the importance to parents of reading to children!
Physics
The Pressure of Scuba Diving
Hold on to your stars, ladies and gentlemen
Invisibility Ring
Plants
Surprise Visitor
Assembling the Tree of Life
A Giant Flower's New Family
Reptiles
Geckos
Sea Turtles
Black Mamba
Space and Astronomy
Planning for Mars
A Puffy Planetary Puzzle
Solving a Sedna Mystery
Technology and Engineering
Slip Sliming Away
Space Umbrellas to Shield Earth
A Satellite of Your Own
The Parts of Speech
Problems with Prepositions
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
What is a Noun
Transportation
Tinkering With the Basic Bike
Reach for the Sky
Ready, unplug, drive
Weather
Where rivers run uphill
Antarctica warms, which threatens penguins
Warmest Year on Record
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Ready, Set, Supernova

Stars explode all the time in outer space, but astronomers usually see the explosions only after they've happened. One type of stellar explosion, called a supernova, can glow for days or even months. Now, for the first time, scientists have actually caught a star in the act of going supernova. The research team was using NASA's Swift spacecraft to study a galaxy called NGC 2770. They had aimed the spacecraft's X-ray telescope at a recently discovered supernova. Supernovas are dramatic explosions that happen when a really big star (as least eight times as big as our sun) runs out of fuel. Exploding stars release a lot of energy, much of it in the form of X rays. Just as the telescope began observing the target supernova, the spacecraft recorded a fresh batch of X rays coming from another region in the same galaxy. The X-ray burst lasted for about 7 minutes. Although no supernova was visible, these scientists suspected they had just witnessed the beginning of a star undergoing such a catastrophic explosion. Using the Gemini North telescope on the Hawaiian mountain Mauna Kea, the researchers then took another look at the same spot in the sky as where the X-ray burst had been. The region is now called SN 2008d. There they saw a visible-light display, which confirmed that a supernova had indeed occurred. Astronomers usually can't spot supernovas until the stars send out large amounts of visible light. By then, however, key information about early stages of the explosive process has vanished. In the case of SN 2008d, the energy and length of the initial release of X rays suggest that the star was compact. Also, it hurled out lots of gas—called a stellar wind—from its surface before it went supernova. For decades, scientists predicted that supernovas would send off X rays right before exploding. Now they finally have evidence that they were right. The new discovery suggests that astronomers might be able to use wide-angle X-ray telescopes to catch the very beginnings of hundreds of supernova explosions each year.—Emily Sohn

Ready, Set, Supernova
Ready, Set, Supernova








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