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This Week in Science: Hot Dinosaurs, Tiny Robots, and “Sharkanos”

It’s time for “Nerd News,” covering the most important news for your brain you may have missed.  Here’s a quick rundown of this week in science . . .

1.  Most people think dinosaurs were cold-blooded like lizards.  But it’s been a hotly contested debate among experts, who now think they finally know.  Researchers used a new method to analyze fossils, and found dinosaurs were warm-blooded, just like birds.

2.  In space news:  The Mars InSight lander that touched down on the Red Planet in 2018 sent back what’s probably its final selfie.  And the photo shows why that’s the case.  Its solar panels are now covered in dust, so its batteries can’t charge anymore.

Also, there might be a crazy meteor shower next Monday, or it could be a total bust.  A shattered comet is passing by, and we could go right through the bulk of it.  If we do, they’re predicting 1,000 shooting stars an hour, but they don’t know if it’ll happen or not.

3.  In baby-makin’ news:  Even a slight increase in the temperature of a guy’s package can temporarily make him less fertile.  It’s normally around five degrees cooler than their core body temperature.  But when it’s higher than that, fertility plummets.

4.  In robot news:  Engineers at Northwestern built the tiniest remote-control robot ever made.  It looks like a crab, but it’s smaller than a flea . . . about a half-millimeter wide.

5.  And finally:  We learned a new term this week.  An underwater volcano in the Pacific Ocean erupted this month and superheated the water.  But it’s surrounded by sharks that have evolved to survive in it anyway.  So now it’s known as the Sharkcano.



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