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Latest Wayne Nicholson Stories

2007-12-11 09:04:16

Catching a free ride to Mars takes more than sticking out a thumb, but some hardy Earth bacteria could survive as hitchhikers clinging to the outside of spacecraft, studies have shown. Now a set of experiments going up with space shuttle Atlantis to the International Space Station will test how exposure to the harshness of space might change bacteria during a simulated Mars mission. "We are interested in understanding what types of damage are induced in cells and their DNA by...


Word of the Day
attercop
  • A spider.
  • Figuratively, a peevish, testy, ill-natured person.
'Attercop' comes from the Old English 'atorcoppe,' where 'atter' means 'poison, venom' and‎ 'cop' means 'spider.' 'Coppa' is a derivative of 'cop,' top, summit, round head, or 'copp,' cup, vessel, which refers to 'the supposed venomous properties of spiders,' says the OED. 'Copp' is still found in the word 'cobweb.'
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