Gizmos & Gadgets


Your weekly dose of science and technology

Regan Meloche

Victory lap: The space shuttle Endeavour makes a final tour of California before going on display at the California Science Centre in LA. The space shuttle Canadarm, however, will be removed and brought back to Canada. Endeavour was built in 1992 to replace the Challenger shuttle. It completed 25 missions before it retired.  

Takin’ one for the team: Amateur astronomers catch sight of a flash on Jupiter that is likely an asteroid impact. Jupiter’s gravity acts as a sort of protector for Earth, since it pulls in some of the potentially dangerous asteroids that might be coming our way.

Threatened species: A list of the 100 most threatened species was released by the Zoological Society of London. The list includes everything from flagship species like rhinos, sloths, and gibbons, to the less popular Seychelle’s earwig and the dusky gopher frog.

Ig Nobel Prizes: The 22 annual Ig Nobel prize ceremony is held at Harvard University. The prize honours achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think. Some examples from this year’s awards include the study of ponytail physics, and the SpeechJammer, a device that allows you to disrupt the speech of anyone nearby.

Autumnal equinox: The sun crossed the celestial equator on Sept. 22, marking the beginning of Autumn. The word equinox comes from ‘equi’ and ‘nox’, meaning ‘equal nights’. Day and night are the same length at the equinox, and no, it’s not one of the only days of the year that you can balance an egg on its end. You can do that anytime.

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