Science

7:53am

Fri July 19, 2013
Science

Earth #Photobombed Saturn Last Time. Today, it's a #Selfie.

Earth-moon system as photographed by NASA spacecraft Cassini. "The Day Earth Smiled" was taken from approximately 900 million miles away on July 19, 2013.
Cassini space-probe / NASA

A billion miles from the Roaring Fork Valley, there’s a satellite orbiting Saturn. This afternoon, from that planet’s shadow, the NASA space probe will take a historic photograph of Earth.  It’s the first time people down here will know exactly when the earth is going to get its picture taken... and they can look up at the cosmos and smile. Ellis Robinson has the story.

  UPDATE (July 22, 9:01 AM): The Friday July 19, 2013 photograph of the earth and our moon, taken by Cassini, was released this past weekend.

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8:56am

Thu July 18, 2013
Science

What Can Marmots Teach Us About Plastics?

A yellow-bellied marmot.
Credit John Breitsch / flickr user - breitschbirding

At the Rocky Mountain Biological Lab in Gothic, just over the Maroon Bells from Aspen, a number of long-term field studies are pumping out reams of scientific data. In part two of our report on the laboratory, science reporter Ellis Robinson looked at a study on marmots that raises questions about the abundance of plastics in human society.

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8:25am

Thu July 18, 2013
Science

The Marmots of RMBL

Marmot scientist and UCLA Ph.D. student Adrianna Maldonado Chaparro sets up marmot traps in "marmot meadow."
Credit Ellis Robinson, Aspen Public Radio

A colony of small mammals lives high above Crested Butte, just on the other side of West Maroon Pass from Aspen.  And, for more than fifty years, the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory there has been watching the daily lives of these yellow-bellied marmots.  It’s one of the longest running animal studies in the world.  Our science reporter Ellis Robinson spent several days hanging out with the marmots and the “marmot-teers” who study them.  In the first of two reports, Ellis explores what data the researchers are collecting.

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1:14pm

Mon July 15, 2013
Science

Wildfires Contribute More to Atmospheric Warming, New Study Shows

Scanning electron microscope images revealing soot (bottom left) and tarball particles (top left, bottom right) collected from 2011 Las Conchas fire.
Credit LANL (China, S, Mazzoleni, C, Gorkowski, K, Aiken, AC, Dubey, MK; Nature Communications, 2013)

As the country recovers from the worst wildland firefighting accident in years, there’s more attention on fire crews and the homes they’re trying to protect. But an often invisible result of wildfire can have a big effect on human health and climate... even after the flames die down. Science correspondent Ellis Robinson takes a look at the effects of wildfire smoke on air quality. And that means understanding something called a “tarball.”

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3:53pm

Thu July 4, 2013
Mountain Edition

Mountain Edition - July 4th, 2013

Aspen has a full city council again. Former council member Dwayne Romero has been selected to fill a vacancy created by the election of Mayor Steve Skadron.

Also returning this week are the mammoth and mastodon bones recovered in Old Snowmass. The fossils are on public display not far from where the animals died tens of thousands of years ago.

We talk with a biologist about tree killing insects and how they actually affect human health.

Our science reporter does what everyone’s mother says not to…look straight at the sun.

And we’ll hear about a work of art about the Colorado River that’s on display in downtown Chicago.

 

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