Renowned explorer Robert Ballard has scoured the deep sea for decades in search of its mysteries. He and Alvin, a three-person submersible, returned to the site in 1986 to capture imagery revealing artifacts left behind by those who had perished. Ballard helped develop Alvin in the 1960s at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts. Together, he and Alvin have dived into the deep to observe underwater mountain ranges and uncover thermal vents. And now, 99% of the seafloor is within humanity’s reach, thanks to a familiar name: Alvin.
Exploring Ocean’s Secrets
The ocean’s deepest zones are a vastly unexplored area, but after a serious upgrade Alvin is ready to take people directly to this remote place of wonder. The submersible reached a record depth of 4 miles (6,453 meters) over the summer when crews visited the Puerto Rico Trench and Mid-Cayman Rise, where tectonic plates create mystifying underwater landscapes and strange marine animals float by. Researchers collected samples from the ocean floor, including unknown creatures and the chemical belches of hydrothermal vents.
Across The Universe
Astronomers have confirmed that the DART spacecraft successfully changed the motion of the asteroid Dimorphos when it intentionally slammed into the space rock last month, according to NASA. The deflection test shortened Dimorphos’ orbit around its larger companion asteroid Didymos by 32 minutes — the first time humanity has ever shifted the motion of a celestial object. Meanwhile, the James Webb Space Telescope spied what happens when two massive stars violently interact with each other. Every eight years, they release a dust plume, creating nested rings that resemble a giant spider web.
For many, William Shatner will always be Captain James T. Kirk of the starship Enterprise. But when the actor ventured into space in 2021 on a Blue Origin suborbital flight, he had a far different experience than in any scene from “Star Trek.” Shifting his gaze from Earth to the cosmos, he said, overturned all his preconceived notions of space. “All I saw was death,” he wrote in his new book, “Boldly Go: Reflections on a Life of Awe and Wonder.” Meanwhile, Artemis I is gearing up for a third launch attempt on a journey around the moon on November 14, with a 69-minute launch window that opens at 12:07 a.m. ET.
Images that capture buzzing bees, battling Alpine ibex and heavenly flamingos are some of the winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2022 competition.
The grand title award went to Karine Aigner for “The big buzz,” which shows a ball of male cactus bees fighting to mate with a sole female. The image, shot at “bee level,” depicts a disappearing species threatened by pesticides and habitat loss. The world’s wildlife populations plummeted by an average of 69% between 1970 and 2018 due to Earth’s changing climate and human activity, according to a new report by the World Wide Fund for Nature.
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