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CREATION: A Cosmic Water Cloud Shadow Has Revealed The Temperature of The Early Universe #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Feb.05: Sometimes astronomers and astrophysicists are working at such gigantic, mind-bending scales – in terms of both distance and time – that you can’t help but be awestruck at the new discoveries they keep coming out with.

#AceNewsDesk says according to Science Alert the in point: a temperature check of the Universe in its youngest phase, just 880 million years after the Big Bang, made possible by observing the shadow cast by a cloud of cold water gas some 13.8 billion light-years away from Earth: The research has been published in Nature.

It’s our earliest look so far at the temperature of the Universe, which scientists think is cooling over time as it expands and spreads, and it’s another really useful data point in the hunt for that most mysterious of forces behind the expansion: dark energy.

“This important milestone not only confirms the expected cooling trend for a much earlier epoch than has previously been possible to measure, but could also have direct implications for the nature of the elusive dark energy,” says astronomer Axel Weiss, from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPIfR) in Germany.

The key to how this was done centers on a contrast of temperatures. Using the NOEMA (Northern Extended Millimeter Array) telescope in France, astronomers focused in on the HFLS3 galaxy – known as a starburst galaxy because of the unusually high number of new stars that it’s producing.

Light is taking so long to reach us from HFLS3 that we’re seeing it as it was less than a billion years after the Universe came into existence. What we’re also seeing is a large cloud of water vapor between us and the galaxy, a cloud that’s cooler than the cosmic microwave backgroundradiation (CMB) that indicates the Universe’s temperature.

The temperature difference between the cooler gas and the CMB creates what are called absorption lines, and by studying these lines it’s possible to determine the temperature of the CMB. It’s a fairly complicated bit of astrophysics made possible by the infrared light emitted by the newborn stars in HFLS3.

The researchers calculate a CMB of between 16.4 and 30.2 Kelvin (-256.8 to -243 °C) at the time period represented by HFLS3, which fits with previous cosmological model predictions of 20 Kelvin. That’s an important confirmation of our modeling.

“Besides proof of cooling, this discovery also shows us that the Universe in its infancy had some quite specific physical characteristics that no longer exist today,” says astrophysicist Dominik Riechers, from the University of Cologne in Germany.

“Quite early, about 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang, the cosmic microwave background was already too cold for this effect to be observable. We have therefore a unique observing window that opens up to a very young Universe only.”

The findings show that previous estimates of the rate of temperature decrease as it corresponds to expansion are in the right area. Trying to take this sort of reading now wouldn’t work – the CMB is too cool to produce the same temperature contrast.

When it comes to dark energy, this is thought to be driving the expansion of the Universe, but being able to directly observe it remains outside the scope of our current instruments. However, we can learn more about it by observing its effects – including the rate of Universe expansion and drop in CMB temperature.

As usual, one piece of research begets many others. The research team is now looking for other cold water clouds that the same technique can be applied to, with the aim to get another reading within the first 1.5 billion years after the Big Bang.

“Our team is already following this up with NOEMA by studying the surroundings of other galaxies,” says astronomer Roberto Neri, from the Institute Radio Astronomie Millimétrique (IRAM) in France.

“With the expected improvements in precision from studies of larger samples of water clouds, it remains to be seen if our current, basic understanding of the expansion of the Universe holds.”

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Feb.05: 2022:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(BALTIMORE) John Hopkins Research Report: Using Night Vision and A.I., Scientists Recorded Spiders’ Entire Choreography for Web Building #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Nov.30: Study coauthor Andrew Gordus, a behavioral biologist at Johns Hopkins University, was out birding with his son when they stumbled upon a beautiful spider web.

#AceDailyNews says a team of scientists at Johns Hopkins University used night vision and artificial intelligence (A.I.) tools to track spiders’ movements—down to the precise placement of their legs—as they wove their webs. The analysis revealed that spiders have their own “choreography,” reports Jennifer Ouellette for Ars Technica.

A close-up photo of a hackled orb weaver sitting in the middle of its web. Four long, hairy legs are stretched out in front of it, and the other two are pressed against its long, yellow abdomen.

Rasha AridiNovember 24, 2021An arena consisting of a plexiglass box, infrared lights and cameras captured the spiders’ delicate movements. Gordus Lab

Spider webs are one of nature’s most impressive marvels; even the tiniest of spiders—with equally tiny brains—can spin intricate, geometric webs. These arachnid architects have both astounded and puzzled scientists for ages, but a new study published last month in the journal Current Biology unravels the spiders’ secrets.

“I thought, ‘If you went to a zoo and saw a chimpanzee building this, you’d think that’s one amazing and impressive chimpanzee,'” he says in a press release. “Well, this is even more amazing because a spider’s brain is so tiny, and I was frustrated that we didn’t know more about how this remarkable behavior occurs.

To investigate, Gordus and his team studied six hackled orb weaver spiders, a species belonging to a group that creates spiral wheel–shaped webs. This species is nocturnal and was chosen because they’re active throughout the year and small in size, reports Ars Technica.

Each night, the spiders were placed in a plexiglass box to build their webs. Using an infrared light to see at night, a camera captured all their movements as they wisped around the enclosure constructing their webs. But manually combing through hours’ worth of camera frames looking at each spider’s legs wasn’t going to be an easy feat, Alice Lipscombe-Southwell reports for BBC’s Science Focus.

“It’s just too much to go through every frame and annotate the leg points by hand so we trained machine vision software to detect the posture of the spider, frame by frame, so we could document everything the legs do to build an entire web,” says lead author Abel Corver, a graduate student at Johns Hopkins.

The software’s analysis revealed that spiders build in well-organized stages. First, they explore the space and build a prototype. Then they build the frame and radii, or the strands that stretch from the center to the edge. After that, they’ll start weaving the spiral, which likely stabilizes the web. After hours of weaving, the spider hunkers down in the center of the web, waiting for an unassuming snack to get trapped, reports Ars Technica.

“We’ve defined the entire choreography for web building, which has never been done for any animal architecture at this fine of a resolution,” Gordus says in the press release.

The team also discovered that the spiders exhibited very similar movements to the point that the team could predict what part of the web a spider was building solely based off of its legs’ positions, reports Daniel Maslowski for WUTR in Utica, New York.

“Even if the final structure is a little different, the rules they use to build the web are the same,” Gordus says in the press release. “They’re all using the same rules, which confirms the rules are encoded in their brains. Now we want to know how those rules are encoded at the level of neurons.” 

This research has led the team to wonder what parts of the spiders’ brains are responsible for the different phases of web weaving, which they plan to test out using mind-altering drugs, according to the press release. Corver also hopes that this research could shed some light on how the circuits in our own brains work since animal brains are built out of the “same fundamental building blocks,” he says.

#AceNewsDesk report …………Published: Nov.30: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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SKY & TELESCOPE RESEARCH REPORT: After five years of observations, researchers now suspect that an elusive object orbiting Earth, known as 469219 Kamoʻoalewa, may be a fragment of the moon, flung out into space by one of these impacts #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Nov.28: The moon, Earth’s natural satellite, is riddled with craters from celestial objects crash landing on its surface …..

#AceDailyNews says a chip off the old block in this case the Moon maybe tailing the earth on its orbit around the Sun: When viewed in infrared, the asteroid had silicates and mineral characteristics like the moon, reports Jeff Hecht for Sky & Telescope. Researchers report the first detailed observations of a quasisatellite this month in Communications Earth & Environment.

An image of a full moon. The moon looks silver with grey sploches.
Elizabeth Gamillo November: 24, 2021: Not much is known about mysterious quasisatellites because of their small dimensions, distance, and ability to conceal themselves in the shadows. Kamoʻoalewa is the first quasisatellite to move within observing range of large telescopes. Gregory H. Revera via Wikimedia Commons under CC BY-SA 3.0

Researchers suspect the fragment may have been debris from a cratering event on the lunar surface

The 165-foot-long asteroid, also known as 2016 HO3, was discovered in 2016 when researchers spotted it with the Pan-STARRS PS1 telescope at the Haleakalā Observatory in Hawai’i, reports Robin George Andrews for the New York Times. The instrument specializes in detecting asteroids. However, scientists were still unsure about Kamoʻoalewa’s origin.

Kamoʻoalewa, which means wobbling object in Hawaiian, is one of Earth’s five known quasisatellites. As quasisatellites orbit the sun, they stick close to Earth but never circle our planet as they weave in and out of its own path around the sun, reports Passant Rabie for Inverse. Kamoʻoalewa swings between 9 million miles—about 38 times further than the moon—and at most, 25 million miles away from Earth, per the New York Times. Not much is known about mysterious quasisatellites because of their small dimensions, distance, and ability to conceal themselves in the shadows. Kamoʻoalewa is the first quasisatellite to move within observing range of large telescopes, Sky and Telescope reports.

“An object in a quasisatellite orbit is interesting because it’s very difficult to get into this kind of orbit — it’s not the kind of orbit that an object from the asteroid belt could easily find itself caught in,” says Richard Binzel, a planetary scientist at MIT who was not involved in the study, to Maria Temming for Science News. Because its orbit is nearly identical to Earth’s, researchers suspect Kamoʻoalewa may have come from within the Earth-moon system, Binzel adds.https://www.youtube.com/embed/SbbAnVU4rmY

Researchers began to unravel Kamoʻoalewa’s origin in 2017 after it was illuminated by the sun. Astronomers gazed at the asteroid with two telescopes in Arizona: the Large Binocular Telescope and the Lowell Discovery Telescope. They used the brief period when the sun shined its light on the space rock to identify what its is made of. The research team collected additional data in 2019 and in the spring of 2021, Inverse reports.

Light reflected off the asteroid revealed that the rock consists of silicates and minerals. There is also evidence of space weathering events, such as micrometeorite bombardment and solar wind particles, per Inverse. Kamo’oalewa reflects sunlight at long and red wavelengths, similar to grains of silicate rock brought back to Earth from the Apollo missions, Science News reports, which supports the hypothesis that the quasisatellite may actually be a chunk of the moon. The object’s slow orbit and size are also consistent with the moon origin hypothesis, Sky and Telescope reports.  

 “To me, the leading hypothesis is that it’s an ejected fragment from the moon, from a cratering event,” Binzel comments to Science News.

More evidence is needed to confirm if Kamo’oalewa is a chip off the ol’ moon—and we may find out soon. The Chinese National Space Administration is already planning to collect and return samples from Kamo’oalewa on a mission set to launch in 2024 and arrive in 2025, per Sky and Telescope.

“There’s so many different groups of asteroids in the solar system,” first author of the study Benjamin Sharkey, a graduate student at the University of Arizona, tells Inverse. “What’s really cool about this one is the fact that this is such a rarely studied type of asteroid — quasi satellites.”

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Nov.28: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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World History & Research Reports

(MONGOLIA) First Anti-Christ & Mongol Warrior Report: Archaeologists Map Ruins of Karakorum, Capital of the Mongol Empire, for the First Time #AceHistoryDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Nov.07: Archaeologists’ understanding of Karakorum, in other words, is overdue for an update. Now, for the first time ever, researchers have drawn on advanced geophysics methods to publish a detailed map of the capital. …

#AceHistoryDesk says according to a Report: Genghis Khan founded the city, located in what is now central Mongolia, around 1220 C.E.

A view of the Orkhon River valley under a blue sky
Nora McGreevy Nov.05: 2021: Karakorum served as the capital of the Mongol Empire during the 13th century. In the 16th century, the Buddhist Erdene Zuu monastery (pictured) was erected on the ruins of the city. Aloxe via Wikimedia Commons under CC BY-SA 3.0

The ruins of Karakorum, the 13th-century capital of the Mongol Empire, are still visible on the Earth’s surface today. But scholars have long ignored this physical evidence. Instead, descriptions of the city—located in what is now central Mongolia—have relied largely on written accountsby European travelers.

The findings, published this week in the journal Antiquity, greatly expand scholars’ knowledge of the abandoned Eurasian city, reports Garry Shaw for the Art Newspaper…..

Archaeologists Map Ruins of Karakorum, Capital of the Mongol Empire, for the First Time
Ögödei Khan, the son and successor of Genghis Khan, as depicted by a 14th-century artist Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

The settlement itself dates to around 1220 C.E., when Genghis Khanestablished a camp of yurts at a point where the Orkhon River valley transitions into leveler pastures. A skilled commander and the fabled uniter of the nomadic steppe tribes, he recognized the strategic potential of the camp’s location.

After Genghis Khan’s death in 1227, his son and successor Ögödei chose the same location to serve as the capital of the empire, per Encyclopedia Britannica. In Karakorum, as it came to be known, Ögödei and subsequent khans constructed a lavish palace and played host to diplomats, traders, Chinese artisans, Muslim merchants and other travelers along the Silk Road.

Lead author Jan Bemmann, an archaeologist at the University of Bonn, and his team spent 52 days surveying an area of 465 hectares with a SQUID, or superconducting quantum interference device. (The technology measures topography and underground magnetic fields to create a map of unexcavated remains below the surface, according to Heritage Daily.) The team then combined this data with aerial photographs, historical records and previous surveys, generating a detailed view of Karakorum’s density and structure.A new topographic map as (a) absolute and (b) relative altitude representation, with (c) section through the most elevated areas S. Linzen / Antiquity

Archaeologists Map Ruins of Karakorum, Capital of the Mongol Empire, for the First Time
A new topographic map as (a) absolute and (b) relative altitude representation, with (c) section through the most elevated areas S. Linzen / Antiquity

Speaking with the Art Newspaper, Bemmann notes that the new map allows researchers to identify where large brick buildings once stood and where roads once cut through the terrain. The team was also able to locate elite neighborhoods within the city walls.

“The great gain from our project is that we can now view the plan of the abandoned city in enormous detail, both above and below ground,” the archaeologist says.

Previous studies of Karakorum had mostly confined themselves to inside the city walls. But Bemmann’s team found that the Mongol capital extended much further into the Orkhon River valley than previously thought. Supply settlements, production sites, residences and other networks spread out along the region.

“Therefore, we are not only talking about an imperial city, but about an imperial valley,” Bemmann tells the Art Newspaper……

Archaeologists Map Ruins of Karakorum, Capital of the Mongol Empire, for the First Time
In the 18th century, a Dutch artist created this rendering of what the “silver tree” in Karakorum’s central palace, as described by Flemish monk Willam of Rubruck, may have looked like. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

William of Rubruck, a Flemish Franciscan monk, toured Karakorum in 1254 and penned an account of his travels. According to the University of Washington, his writings constitute one of the earliest and most detailed descriptions of the Mongol Empire from a Westerner’s perspective.

As Abigail Tucker wrote for Smithsonian magazine in 2009, the monk was captivated by the grandeur of Karakorum’s great palace. He was especially impressed by a great silver fountain in the shape of a tree that stood in the palace entryway. When called upon, servants would use the fountain to dispense drinks such as wine, clarified mare’s milk, a honey drink and rice mead.

Karakoram’s riches owed much to the Mongol Empire’s military might. “Everything the warriors could extract from [captured] territories they did, from talent to goods,” explains Ruth Schuster for Haaretz. Bemmann adds that the Mongols “collected the best people from central Asia and moved them to the core Mongol area,” where they were forced to help construct and support the growing city…..

Archaeologists Map Ruins of Karakorum, Capital of the Mongol Empire, for the First Time
A preliminary reconstruction of the road system within and leading to Karakorum J. Bemmann and S. Reichert / Antiquity

“The Mongols really were nomadic and stayed nomadic,” Bemmann tells Haaretz. “They were not city developers,” so they relied on their captives to advise them. Interestingly, a full 40 percent of the land within Karakorum’s city walls was left empty.

By the 15th century, Karakorum had been all but abandoned. Experts discovered the city’s precise location in 1889, but little archaeological work has taken place at the site in the decades since.

“It was astonishing to witness the growing extent of the map day by day, and with that the digital reconstruction of Karakorum,” says Bemmann, as quoted by Medievalists.net. “With every day, with every new piece of the city added to the map, our understanding of the city grew.”

#AceNewsDesk report ……………Published: Nov.07: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(CRETE) New Research Report: Suggests Human-Like Footprints Date to 6.05 Million Years Ago And Could Alter Understanding Of Human Evolution #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Oct.25: Originally dated to 5.7 million years ago, the 50 footprints might predate this estimate—proposed by scholars in 2017—by more than 300,000 years, according to a paper published in the journal Scientific Reports.

#AceDailyNews says that the findings could upend scientists’ understanding of human evolution—but the paper has proven controversial: The oldest known human-like footprints may be even older than previously believed, reports Jacinta Bowler for Science Alert. New research suggests the controversial fossilized imprints, found on the Greek island of Crete in 2002, are around 6.05 million years old.

Oldest Footprints
David KindyOctober 18, 2021 3:23 p.m.New research suggests these human-like footprints found in Crete may by 6.05 million years old. Per Ahlberg / Uppsala University

Believed to be left by hominins, the footprints could upend scientists’ understanding of how early humans evolved, moving the group’s starting point from Africa to the Mediterranean Sea, reports Ruth Schuster for Haaretz. Researchers say it’s possible the bipedal creature who made the marks was a member of Graecopithecus freyberg, an early human ancestor discovered in 1944 and nicknamed “El Graeco.”

“The tracks are almost 2.5 million years older than the tracks attributed to Australopithecus afarensis (Lucy) from Laetoli in Tanzania,” says study co-author Uwe Kirscher, an expert on paleogeography at the University of Tübingen, in a statement.Laser scan of one of the best preserved footprints (left) and transverse sections showing concave and convex structures in the impression (right)Gierliński et al. / Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association, 2017

New Research Suggests Human-Like Footprints in Crete Date to 6.05 Million Years Ago
Laser scan of one of the best preserved footprints (left) and transverse sections showing concave and convex structures in the impression (right)Gierliński et al. / Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association, 2017

Writing for the Conversation in 2017, Matthew Robert Bennett, an environmental scientist and geographer at Bournemouth University, and Per Ahlberg, an evolutionary biologist at Uppsala University, said, “The footprints are small tracks made by someone walking upright on two legs.”

The pair, who co-authored both the 2017 study and the new paper, added that the impressions “have a shape and form very similar to human tracks,” including five toes without claws, a parallel big toe and a ball of the foot.

“Non-human ape footprints look very different,” the authors wrote. “[T]he foot is shaped more like a human hand, with the big toe attached low on the side of the sole and sticking out sideways.”

Some scientists are skeptical of the study’s claims, doubting that the Graecopithecus freyberg species even existed. Israel Hershkovitz, a biological anthropologist at Tel Aviv University who was not involved in the research, speculates that the footprints were actually left by a late European ape.

“All we have from Europe is a group of pre-human apes,” he tells Haaretz. “They are interesting and attest to much more favorable climatic conditions [during the late Miocene], but I don’t think they are directly or indirectly associated with human evolution.”

Speaking with Amalyah Hart of Cosmos magazineJulien Louys, a paleontologist at Griffith University who wasn’t involved in the study,adds, “Some of the footprints look like a bipedal animal, but a lot of the other footprints are very ambiguous and variable in size. Some of them don’t look like footprints at all. So, the issue here is making a very large claim on the basis of information that’s quite open to interpretation.”

The new study acknowledges this dissent. As the authors write, “[Our] interpretation has been controversial, and several counter-interpretations have been made.”View of footprints discovered on Crete in 2002 Andrzej Boczarowski

New Research Suggests Human-Like Footprints in Crete Date to 6.05 Million Years Ago
View of footprints discovered on Crete in 2002 Andrzej Boczarowski

Paleontologist Gerard Gierliński discovered the tracks on a beach near the village of Trachilos while on vacation in western Crete in 2002. The prints’ owners left the impressions in sediment deposits linked to the end of the Miocene epoch, when the Mediterranean Sea temporarily dried out, wrote Emily Chung for CBC News in 2018.

Researchers used improved dating techniques to push back the timeline of the footprints’ creation, notes Cosmos. They settled on 6.05 million years ago by testing foraminifera—fossilized marine microorganisms found in sedimentary rocks.

If correct, the team’s discovery could complicate the commonly held belief that humans originated in Africa. Discovered in Tanzania in 1974, the famous “Lucy” fossils—identified as Australopithecus afarensis and dated to about 3.2 million years ago—are the oldest widely accepted pre-human footprints. But older body fossils attributed to early hominins have been found in Africa, suggesting the human lineage stretches back far beyond Lucy’s species.

Comparatively, scientists suggest that modern humans—also known as Homo sapiens—evolved around 300,000 years ago. The species includes genes from a now-extinct line of hominins known as Homo neanderthalensis, which first appeared about 430,000 years ago.

Even if the footprints do belong to hominins, their presence doesn’t necessarily discount the idea that Africa is the cradle of humankind.

“The interesting thing claimed in the new paper is that it demonstrates migration from Europe to Africa of these bipedal hominins,” Louys tells Cosmos. (This finding aligns with “Desert Swing,” a hypothesis that posits dry conditions in Mesopotamia and the Sahara led to a mass migration of mammals from Eurasia to Africa around 6.25 million years ago.) “All our studies of intercontinental migrations indicate that it’s not just a one-way street.”

Louys adds, “So even if we take at face value that these are hominin footprints, there’s no indication that they have to have originated in Europe and then moved to Africa, there’s equal possibility that they could have originated in Africa and moved to Europe.”

#AceNewsDesk report ………….Published: Oct.25: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(AUSTRALIA) NATURE JOURNAL REPORT: DNA from 7,300-year-old skeleton Bessé’ found in Sulawesi cave uncovers mysterious human lineage#AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Aug.27: Members of her hunter-gatherer culture, the Toaleans, filled in the grave, and there she remained undisturbed for more than 7,000 years — until she was unearthed by Indonesian archaeologists in 2015…..

#AceDailyNews says that curled up in the bottom of a shallow, oval-shaped pit, legs hugged to her chest, a young woman was laid to rest on the island of Sulawesi: Nicknamed Bessé’ after a south Sulawesi royal naming custom, she was found in a high-ceilinged limestone cavern named Leang Panninge, or “Bat Cave”, and unveiled today in the journal Nature.

Large water-worn rocks, taken from a nearby river, were placed either side of her head and on top of her body.

Her skeleton provided the first ancient human DNA from what is considered the early migration gateway to Australia — and harboured tantalising signs of a Asian population we didn’t know existed until now.

It appears this mysterious group made their way into southern Sulawesi after the first people arrived in Papua New Guinea and Australia, says archaeologist and study co-author Adam Brumm from Griffith University.

“It seems as though there was this other wave of modern human colonisation of the region, which we’re only now seeing evidence for because we have an ancient genome from this Toalean woman.”

The importance of Indonesia

The earliest evidence for human occupation in what is now Australia is 65,000 years old, yet the picture of exactly when and how humans migrated over the millennia is still a bit hazy.

Most archaeologists are confident that the first inhabitants made their way through a bunch of South-East Asian islands collectively known as Wallacea. 

Thousands of years ago, sea levels were far lower than they are today.

This meant islands like Borneo, Sumatra and Java were connected by land, and Australia and Papua New Guinea were a single landmass called Sahul.

Map of Southeast Asia and South Sulawesi-01 CREDIT Kim Newman (1) (1)
Leang Panninge is on the southern part of Sulawesi. Thousands of years ago, many of today’s islands were connected by land.(Supplied: Kim Newman)

It’s thought humans could have reached Sahul in a few ways, says University of Adelaide evolutionary biologist Bastien Llamas, who was not involved with the study.

For instance, one route extended from Java to Timor, then across the ocean to reach Sahul, while another winded its way from Sumatra to what is now the southern ends of Borneo and Sulawesi, then involved island-hopping to Sahul.

And archaeologists have found some signs of human inhabitants throughout the region from around the time they think humans migrated through South-East Asia.Scientists say this warty pig is the oldest-known animal painting on the planetMore than 45,500 years ago, perched on a ledge at the back of a cave on the island of Sulawesi, an artist painted three warty pigs in dark red pigment.

Professor Brumm and colleagues previously found paintings of pigs, in a cave not far from Leang Panninge, were at least 45,500 years old.

Other signs of human occupation in Wallacea, such as stone tools, have been found dating back to around that time too.

The Toaleans were a more recent population. They lived a fairly secluded existence as hunter-gatherers in the southern Sulawesi forests from around 8,000 to 1,500 years ago, Professor Brumm said.

Carbon-dated pollen grains from the sediment surrounding Bessé”s remains place her living between 7,200 and 7,300 years ago, and her bones signal she was around 17 or 18 years old when she died.

There were no clues as to how she died, with no obvious signs of injuries or infections that leave their mark in bone.

A jumble of bones and teeth
The skull was found crushed, but the archaeologists suspect this happened after Bessé’ died.(Supplied: University of Hasanuddin)

The archaeologists did find serrated, comb-like arrowheads typical of Toaleans in the grave with her, which may have been a ritual offering but could also have unintentionally fallen in, Professor Brumm said.

However, the stones placed around and on her body might have meaning.

“These burials are oftentimes associated with rocks, which maybe symbolically were involved with keeping the person’s spirit from leaving their bodies, possibly — but that’s pure speculation.”

And while burial sites, art and artefacts give insights into the cultural practices of people who lived in Wallacea over the millennia, DNA provides a snapshot of their ancestry.

A white-gloved hand holding a serrated arrow head made of stone
Maros points are thought to be arrow heads and are typical of the Toalean culture.(Supplied: Shahna Britton and Andrew Thomson)

Story told by ancient DNA

Unfortunately, fossilised remains in Wallacea are rare, and DNA from them even rarer. That’s because DNA breaks down in the heat and humidity of the tropics, and microbes don’t mind munching on it either. 

Teasing apart fragments of human DNA from that of microbes, too, can be an incredibly tricky task.

Before Bessé’, genetic information had only been successfully extracted from two skeletons from the surrounding region — one in Laos and the other in Peninsular Malaysia — which dated back around 8,000 and 4,400 years respectively.

So when the teenage hunter-gatherer was unearthed from the relatively cool and stable environment of a cave floor, she had the potential to provide usable DNA.

Bones and rocks at the bottom of a pit
The position of Bessé”s bones, such as her pelvis and a foot (to the right of the photo), suggest she was buried in a foetal position.(Supplied: University of Hasanuddin)

The DNA was extracted from a pyramid-shaped, dense bone attached to the inside of her skull called the petrous bone. Its name comes from the Latin petrosus, meaning “rocky”.

The petrous bone’s hardness means if DNA could be preserved, that’s where it was most likely found, says Morten Allentoft, an evolutionary biologist at Curtin University who was not involved in the study.

“It’s so dense that bacteria and fungi cannot enter,” he said.

“Water doesn’t get in, and air doesn’t get in. It is the best-preserved bone in the mammalian body.”

Samples of the bone were sent for DNA analysis at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany.

Despite being encased in a buried petrous bone, Bessé”s DNA was incredibly degraded and much of it was irretrievable, said Selina Carlhoff, a PhD student at the institute and lead author of the paper.

“Percentage-wise, we recovered around 2 per cent of the complete genome from the Leang Panninge individual.”

Despite this seemingly low amount of DNA, it was enough to delve into Bessé”s genetic ancestry.

“There may be methods in the future that are able to recover even further degraded DNA, which would of course be interesting to try for this individual,” Ms Carlhoff said.

People in hardhats sitting at the bottom of a square pit
Properly excavating nearly a full skeleton from cave sediment takes months.(Supplied: Leang Panninge research team)

It turned out Bessé’ shared around half her genetic makeup with present-day Indigenous Australian and Papuan people.

Professor Brumm suspected a wave of migration went through Sulawesi, and some people stayed on while others kept going to eventually reach Sahul.

“Essentially, she’s a distant relative of modern-day Melanesians and Aboriginal Australians.”

But her genome revealed she also descended from an as yet unknown population that originated in Asia — a population that may still have descendants today, but could also have died out.

People who live in Sulawesi today mostly descend from Neolithic farmers who moved into the region from Taiwan about 3,500 years ago. None had ancestry resembling Bessé”s.

A square pit in a cave
The skeleton was found nearly 2 metres below the cave floor.(Supplied: Leang Panninge research team)

“It was thought the earliest influx of Asian DNA occurred during the Neolithic farming transition, when Austronesian-speaking populations swept down from modern-day Taiwan and into Indonesia,” Professor Brumm said.

“They brought with them the first understanding of how to cultivate plants, how to domesticate animals, pottery and other classic Neolithic technologies.”

The new results, he added, “suggests that there was an earlier influx of Asian genes that long predates the Austronesian expansion”.

The hunt continues

Despite the low odds of DNA preservation in places like Sulawesi, there could be more skeletons like Bessé”s, perhaps older, waiting to be found.

In June this year, another team reported 11,000-year-old human DNA from hot, humid southern China.

“Suddenly, you find these ancient samples and you start filling in all these gaps,” Professor Allentoft said.

“And this is where you can see the merging of archaeology and genetics becomes so important.”

Leang Panninge, the cave in which Bessé’ was found, is up in the highlands where it’s cooler, and away from rivers that might wind their way through and wash away the precious sediments.

People crouched in front of a big cave entrance
The entrance of Leang Panninge, or “Bat Cave”.(Supplied: Leang Panninge research team)

If you’re going to find preserved DNA in Indonesia, it’s probably going to be in a similar environment, Dr Llamas said.

“Despite the fact that [Indonesia] is in this subtropical area, there’s a lot of high mountains and caves, so that could be the saving grace.

“We could get enough genetic information to give us even a slightly blurry picture of what happened.”

Excavations at Leang Panninge will continue, but they were almost over before they started, Professor Brumm said.

It was earmarked as the site of water park, with plans to build a water slide outside the entrance and install a roadway through the cave to let people travel through it.

“It would have involved bulldozing the extremely rich Toalean archaeological deposit that had built up at the front, where we excavated and found the body of this woman,” Professor Brumm said.

He hopes this latest discovery will put an end to the water park plans.

“It’s pretty alarming, but I think we’ve managed to block it now.”

And Bessé”s bones, at least, are safe from the bulldozers.

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Global Warming & Climate Change

(U.K) Press Release GWPF Research Report: Shows that just six offshore windfarms are now sharing £1.6 billion pounds in subsidies between them every year that are truly obscene #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Apr.18: The level of subsidy is sufficient to cover the construction cost of these windfarms in just six or seven years, meaning that future payments will represent almost pure profit for the operators:

GWPF REPORT: The Global Warming Policy Forum has condemned what it called the “obscenity” of windfarm subsidies and has called for a complete rethink of energy policy: ‘Three receive annual subsidies of over a quarter of a billion pounds each year. On a single day in April last year, Hornsea 1 received a subsidy payment of nearly £1.5 million pounds’

UK offshore windfarm subsidies 2020

The cost of the Contracts for Difference regime is accelerating, and rose by £0.7 billion last year alone, reaching £2.3 billion in 2020. Consumers are already paying out £6 billion under the Renewables Obligation and another £1 billion under the Capacity Market. 

Direct subsidies therefore amount to an annual payment from each household of £350, a sum that is rising by at least £25 per year.  

Wind payments CFDs

There are further bills to pay too, because windfarms are causing destabilisation of the electricity grid. The cost of the Balancing Mechanism, which deals with grid imbalances, is rising rapidly, costing each household £65 per year, a figure that is rising at a rate of £20 per year.

And the consumer is having to pay for upgrades to the electricity grid too.

Lord Lawson, GWPF director, said:

We are in the middle of an economic crisis and consumers are hit with astronomical costs for unreliable wind energy. These multi-billion subsidies are not only a massive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich, but are damaging the UK economy as a whole. This madness has to stop.”

Dr Benny Peiser said:

The level of handouts is an obscenity. Every time a new windfarm comes on stream, the consumer is hit with a double whammy – a relentless increase in annual subsidy payments to windfarm operators and an annual bill for fixing the damage that is done to grid stability. This can’t be kept hidden for much longer. The chickens are coming home to roost very soon, and there will be a big political price to pay”.

#AceNewsDesk report ………….Published: Apr.18: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com