Nearly Two Thousand Year Old Scrolls May Become Readable Again

Precious scrolls blackened by the eruption of the Vesuvius volcano in AD 79 may become readable again, thanks to 21st century technology, scientists said on Tuesday


Hundreds of papyrus scrolls believed to have been authored by Greek philosophers were found in the Roman town of Herculaneum, which was hit in the same eruption that destroyed the town of Pompeii

I love the idea that we may soon have hundreds of new scrolls to read from 79 AD.

Now stored at the National Library of Naples, they are so fragile that the slightest touch can cause them to crumble.

It is amazing they have lasted as long as they have.

The scanner was able to pick out all 24 letters of the Greek alphabet in the rolled-up text and pinpoint a specific handwriting style, a potential clue to the identity of the author.
the experiment only intended to be a “proof of concept” — a demonstration that a new technique works but needs refinement.

I love stories like this. As our technology improves we can learn more and more about the past. I can only hope this gets the funding it needs. Do yourself a favor and read the whole article.

First 3D Printed Organ Might be Implanted in 2015

The researchers from “3D Bioprinting Solutions” laboratory at the Skolkovo innovation center outside Moscow have set an exact date for the first three-dimensional organ to be bioprinted, saying the result of the “revolutionary” technology will be unveiled on March 15 next year

We have a date, lets hope they can stick to it.

Planning to start with a thyroid, Russian professor already has aspirations to create a “functional” kidney in 2018.

While I'm skeptical of the timeframes I really hope this goes well. Being able to replace key organs in the human body will save millions of lives.

Underground Pyramidal Structure Beneath Orvieto, Italy

Archaeologists are scratching their heads about an underground pyramid-shaped structure they have been excavating beneath the historic medieval town of Orvieto in Italy
“We discovered it three summers ago and still have no idea what it is,” write Prof. David B. George of Anselm College and co-director Claudio Bizzarri of PAAO and colleagues about the site. “We do know what it is not. It is not a quarry; it’s walls are too well dressed. It is not a well or cistern; its walls have no evidence of hydraulic treatments.”

The site was sealed in the 5th century BCE. I love good mystery. 

European Space Agency (ESA) Lands Lander on a Comet

“Our ambitious Rosetta mission has secured a place in the history books: not only is it the first to rendezvous with and orbit a comet, but it is now also the first to deliver a lander to a comet’s surface,” noted Jean-Jacques Dordain, ESA’s Director General.

It's one milestone after another these days when it comes to space. The amount of engineering this took is astonishing. We are checking off space exploration check boxes faster and faster these days.

Oak Ridge National Lab Controls 3D Printed Metal at the Microscale

ORNL isn’t the first lab to work on 3D printing at the small scale to change mechanical and physical properties at the large scale, but they may be among the first to do so directly with metal. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is doing so with foam materials and scientists at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany have tested a similar approach with 3D printed ceramic, coated in aluminum. Soon, with these groups working on altering the characteristics of materials on a microscopic scale, we’ll be entering an era of smart materials and objects that we may not even be able to fathom existing.

3D printing is going to change a lot. Its only a matter of time. I can't wait to see all the wonders it will bring.

New Image of Planet Formation

“Most of what we know about planet formation today is based on theory. Images with this level of detail have up to now been relegated to computer simulations or artist’s impressions. This high resolution image of HL Tauri demonstrates what ALMA can achieve when it operates in its largest configuration and starts a new era in our exploration of the formation of stars and planets,” says Tim de Zeeuw, Director General of ESO.

This is amazing! We can now image planets forming. The things that are coming out of the worlds space agencies are amazing. Incase you see this image and not sure what it all means. The gaps in the disk of the solar system are planets forming. And as you can see we see multiple planets forming within this disk. They still have to model it to be sure but the estimate is currently at 3 planets.

Near Infrared Image of Saturn's Moon Titan shows Suns Reflection

The view contains real color information, although it is not the natural color the human eye would see. Here, red in the image corresponds to 5.0 microns, green to 2.0 microns, and blue to 1.3 microns. These wavelengths correspond to atmospheric windows through which Titan’s surface is visible. The unaided human eye would see nothing but haze, as in PIA12528.

I'm sucker for space images and this one is really cool. I wish every space probe we sent out there had amazing cameras to take these images.

King Thutmosis III's Temple Found by Accident

A group of men discovered a 3,400-year-old pharaonic temple from the reign of warrior king Thutmosis III under their house in a city south of Cairo, Egyptian officials said Wednesday.

It's amazing people all around the ancient parts of the world people could be living on temples and not even know it. There is still plenty left in his world to discover.

Illegal excavations and smuggling of ancient artefacts have been a major headache for Egyptian authorities, especially since the 2011 uprising that toppled president Hosni Mubarak.

I can only imagine the amount of artifacts that have been lost since the uprising. It reminds on a smaller scale of the description of the Buddhas of Bamiyan. While these artifacts from Egypt are not being destroyed they are being lost to us for a time. Hopefully the majority one day will be recovered.