Science quiz

Vasudevan Mukunth
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Three questions (in BLUE) have been left unanswered. If you know the answers, tell us at (Subject: Science Quiz).

The first person to answer all three correctly will be the “Science Whiz of the Week!”

1 On September 5, scientists analysing images taken by the Spitzer space telescope found that a particular class of stars weren't really stars. Instead, they found that these objects had many features of a planet, too. For instance, they had a surface temperature of around 450 kelvin, which is cooler than Venus's (735 kelvin) and much cooler than the Sun's (5,778 kelvin). On the other hand, these objects' interiors behave like stars'. What are these objects called?

2 On Thursday evening (IST), Virgin Galactic, the American aerospace company owned by Richard Branson, announced that its rocket-powered jet, named ____________, would be ready to take tourists into space starting as early as next year. The announcement came after the second successful flight of this jet, which boasts of a technology that allows it to reenter Earth's atmosphere from orbit without a pilot controlling it. Fill in the blank.

3 What is Irukandji syndrome?

4 According to a few studies published in late August, the heaviest stars in the Milky Way galaxy aren't formed the way other, lighter, stars are formed: by dense clouds of hydrogen collapsing under their own weight and starting _______ ______. Instead, scientists from Japan suggested that heavier stars are formed when two clouds dense clouds of hydrogen collide at high speeds, collapsing in a much stronger way and starting off with more frequent _______ ______ reactions. Fill in the blank.

5 According to analysis conducted late last August, scientists think that the largest moon of Saturn, already known to have liquid methane on its surface like Earth has liquid water, may actually harbour a 40-km thick shell of ice underground. Below this thick shell, scientists also suspect that there is a large ocean of liquid water. Which moon?

6 The principal European centre for nuclear research is called CERN. Its current director-general is Dr. Rolf Dieter-Heuer. His predecessor was an Italian Nobel Laureate who, on September 6, was made a Senator for Life in the Italian senate by the country's president. Name the Laureate.

7 What is the 4th installment of the 4th version of Google's operating system for mobile devices being called?

8 On September 4, researchers from the University of Wisconsin announced that they had found a new reason for why animals have to _____: to boost a specific kind of brain cells that protected nerves, boosted them, and helped the nervous system to function smoothly. During _____, the researchers found that these cells, myelin, were being produced at twice the rate as when animals were awake. Fill in the blank.

9 For the first time ever, a species of freshwater _________ has been identified around Ireland, around where _________ have never been spotted. Marine biologists think these varieties, Craspedacusta sowerbii, could have come from the Yangtze River all the way in China, because of the warmer-than-usual climate in Ireland this year. Fill in the blank.

10 Name the French astronomer and cartographer whose 229th death anniversary was on September 4, 2013. He was responsible for drawing up the first maps of France, and he has a space-probe currently near Saturn named after him.

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