Watch out for aliens!

Italy has some new inhabitants, but that is no cause for celebration: the list of alien species is long. Two important “aliens” are the harlequin ladybird and the blue crab. Let's get to know them better… Originating from central and…


The rhinoceros, an endangered animal

Rhinoceroses appeared on Earth around 40 million years ago spreading across Asia, Africa, Europe and North America, and shared the planet with humans for millennia, as can be seen from cave paintings portraying them, found in the Chauvet Cave in…


Galileo now has two more satellites

On 10 August, the European GNSS Agency (GSA) officially announced that two more satellites had gone into operation in the Galileo constellation, the European global navigation satellite system (GNSS) for civilian use, thus bringing the total number of satellites currently…


Soil erosion

Just like water, air and other natural elements, the soil may be considered a resource; it is, however, a non-renewable resource (FAO, 2015; APPA, 2012) – or a potentially renewable one if it is considered from a geological point of…


New photocatalytic compounds

The term "photocatalysis" refers to a phenomenon by which a substance alters the speed of a chemical reaction. This substance, called "photocatalyst", is activated on simple exposure to light, whether natural or artificial. The most common example of a photocatalytic…


20 July 2016: 40 years ago the Viking 1 lander touched down on Mars

On 20 July of 40 years ago, the Viking 1 lander touched down on Mars and made history as the first NASA space mission to perform a successful landing on the fourth planet of the solar system (all international missions…


Hi-tech energy-storing flowers

In the history of man, nature has always constituted an inexhaustible source of inspiration for the creation of technological systems. And it is precisely by imitating the perfection of a flower that researchers at the North Carolina State University have…


4 July 2016: the Juno spacecraft reached the orbit of Jupiter and brought a lot of Italy with it

Who better than a goddess like Juno could have given its name to this space mission to study the largest planet of the Solar System? In Roman mythology, the god Jupiter was transformed into a cloud to hide his actions,…


Why is there oil in Val d’Agri?

About 250 million years ago, Val d’Agri was characterised by a tropical climate and temperatures never fell below 15 degrees centigrade: the climate could therefore be compared to that of the current Bahamas. The Valley was replaced by a huge…

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