Ghost Moon Setting
Chief Mountain is a geological feature called a klippe. It was once part of a larger slab of tock thrust over this area of the Montana-Canada border by a fault. The rest of the slab gradually eroded away, leaving this 9,080-foot (2,768 m) tall holdout standing in isolation.
Cracks in the Ice
Spiking Out to Settle Down
Light in the Dark
Bad News for Bats
Fern Cave is the winter home for multiple bat species, including the largest documented colony of gray bats, which are federally endangered. So far, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had detected the syndrome in two groups of tri-colored bats in the cave.
What in the World?
Are all the guesses in? This is an ultra-close look at a moth antenna. Male moths use their antennae to detect pheromones from females, which travel through the air in plumes (look out, your porch light may be surrounded). A new study published April 15, 2013 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that male moths aren't perfect at sniffing out the chemicals in these plumes, so they sometimes mate with strains of moths they wouldn't otherwise approach. The finding explains the number of hybrid moths in nature.
The Hubble observatory, which launched on April 24, 1990, captured the Horsehead Nebula (also known as Barnard 33) rising like a giant seahorse from the turbulent waves of gas and dust in this stunning infrared light image. "The result is a rather ethereal and fragile-looking structure, made of delicate folds of gas — very different to the nebula’s appearance in visible light," mission officials wrote in an image description Friday (April 19).
Amazing Electromagnetic Winds
"Right now, estimation of the amount of energy entering the Earth's thermosphere is not very precise and can be underestimated by 100 percent. We know even less about how that energy is distributed," Deng said in a March 11, 2013 statement. "This information is critical because if you put the same amount of energy at 400 kilometers the impact can be 100 times larger than if you put it at 100 kilometers."
Dinosaur eggs are big news in Spain, where paleontologists have just announced the discovery of eggs from four species of dinosaur in Lleida. Previously, only one type of dinosaur egg had been documented — now there are five, researchers report in the March 2013 issue of the journal Cretaceous Research.
Arctic Through a Porthole
Down By the Bay
The refinery covers 5 square miles (13 square kilometers) near the mouth of the San Jacinto River (it stands out in beige here and continues on the south shore of the river).
The Baby Universe
Temperature fluctuations in this cosmic microwave background reveal density differences that would eventually coalesce into galaxies and stars. The new look at the old universe also provides a more refined age estimate for the universe: 13.82 billion years. [See More: Best Telescopes for Beginners]
Made your guesses? This is rutile, a mineral made of titanium dioxide. It's named after the Latin rutilus, which means red. Researchers at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden announced March 25, 2013 that they have a new method that can track the origin of rutile from even the tiniest grains. But most people will likely be more interested in where rutile ends up: It's the mineral responsible for turning regular sapphires, rubies and other precious stones into "star" gems. Rutile impurities in a stone create lined patterns that look like shining stars when cut. Star gems are rarer (and pricier) than their unstarry counterparts.