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Science News: New Leonardo da Vinci Film Reveals the Man Behind the Genius

New Leonardo da Vinci Film Reveals the Man Behind the GeniusYou might expect a movie about the great Renaissance painter and inventor, Leonardo da Vinci, to star an old man with a white beard, bedecked in scholarly-looking robes. The film, which opens in select theaters in the United States on Friday (Dec. 19), stars Peter Capaldi — the Scottish actor best known as the newest incarnation of the Doctor in the popular TV series "Dr. Who." Throughout the movie, Capaldi wears simple, modern clothes (with no trace of a long, white beard), yet he still manages to transform himself into the medieval genius. The film begins in Tuscany, da Vinci's birthplace and childhood home. It is here that the audience learns about da Vinci's humble early beginnings.


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Science News: Caramel Apples Linked with Listeria Outbreak in 10 States

Five people have now died from Listeria infections that have been traced to caramel apples, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced today. The CDC recommends that people do not eat any caramel apple products. Contaminated products may still be for sale at grocery stores or in consumers’ homes, the CDC warned. As of yesterday (Dec. 18), at least 28 people had been infected with the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes from prepackaged caramel apples, and 26 of those people were hospitalized.

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Science News: Keeping Up with the Greens: Neighbors Can Spur Conservation (Op-Ed)

Keeping Up with the Greens: Neighbors Can Spur Conservation (Op-Ed)Marlene Cimons writes for Climate Nexus, a nonprofit that aims to tell the climate story in innovative ways that raise awareness of, dispel misinformation about and showcase solutions to climate change and energy issues in the United States. She contributed this article to Live Science's Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights. Mindful of the growing dangers of climate change, I always strive to be an environmentally conscientious consumer. So, understandably, I was more than a little upset to learn that I was a flop at energy savings compared to my neighbors. This revelation came through a series of home energy reports from the utility company that services my weekend house 170 miles away in western Maryland.


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Science News: Most of Alaska's Permafrost Could Melt This Century

The permafrost in some of Alaska's most iconic national parks could all but disappear this century, new research suggests. Right now, half of the ground in Denali National Park's is frozen year-round, but if global warming continues at the current pace, just 1 percent of this land could remain permafrost by the year 2100, according to new research presented here at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union. "If the climate continues to warm as it has been for the last 30 or 40 years, permafrost will degrade, and only in a few pockets will you have permafrost," said study co-author Santosh Panda, a permafrost scientist at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Many of the current models predict that the climate in the Arctic will warm by 7 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit (4 to 5 degrees Celsius) by 2100, Panda told Live Science.

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Science News: '4D Printing' Makes Shape-Shifting Structures

Using a new technique known as 4D printing, researchers can print out dynamic 3D structures capable of changing their shapes over time. Today's 3D printing creates items from a wide variety of materials — plastic, ceramic, glass, metal, and even more unusual ingredients such as chocolate and living cells. "Today, this technology can be found not just in industry, but [also] in households for less than $1,000," said lead study author Dan Raviv, a mathematician at MIT.

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