Snazzy Science Photos of the Week (Aug. 9)
The Shanghai Tower (R) stands next to Shanghai Global Financial Hub (C) and Jin Mao Tower in the Lujiazui area of Pudong district in Shanghai. Work was completed on the main structure of this heaven-piercing creation -- the world's second-tallest skyscraper -- on Aug. 3.
An enormous inscribed frieze, richly decorated with images of gods and rulers, was found by archaeologists in Guatemala. The find was unearthed while a crew was working in a buried Mayan pyramid. The carvings date to the 6th century and was called by local authorities "the most spectacular frieze seen to date."
ESA/Hubble & NASA
The Hubble telescope captured the light from a star being born inside the dark cloud LDN 43 -- a massive blob of gas, dust, and ices, gathered 520 light-years from Earth in the constellation of Ophiuchus (The Serpent Bearer).
The world received a super gross-out this week when a 15-ton block of congealed fat that has been dubbed "Fatberg" was pulled out of a sewer beneath London. The unsightly blob of lard exists thanks to Londoners dumping fat from food down their drains.
This strange pentagram, etched into the Earth's surface in a remote corner of Kazakhstan, can be seen on Google Maps. The Internet was abuzz with conspiracies about its origins -- devil worship and the like -- but it's just the outlines of a park made in the form of a star during the Soviet era, according to an archaeologist with years of experience working in the area.
Two rare Sumatran tiger cubs were born at Washington D.C.'s National Zoo. Here, proud momma Damai watches over her new offspring, while the zoo's webcam captures it all.
No one knows yet why there was a dead shark on the New York City subway, but its species was not long in doubt. Discovery columnist and shark attack survivor Debbie Salamone identified the creature as a smooth dogfish shark.
In keeping with the garbage theme, but much less unsightly, archaeologists working north of Tel Aviv have found, in a myserious garbage pit, a collection of ancient coins and jewelry. It's not yet clear why such items of value were dumped.
April Isch, University of Chicago
An extremely well-preserved, rodentlike fossil -- Megaconus mammaliaformis -- recently discovered in China provides some of the best evidence yet for how our earliest ancestors lived. The find provides some of the earliest evidence of pre-mammalian hair, and the skeleton indicates to scientists that these animals were more complex than previously thought.
According to a paper in the "Journal of Systematic Paleontology," waters off the coast of France and the U.K. were once teeming with sharks. Samples of Late Cretaceous rock from the region revealed the remains of 96 different types of prehistoric shark, 18 of which represented new species. Shown is a recreation of Squalicorax, one of the 18 new species identified from the 100- to 72-million-year-old rocks.