By Will Dunham WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The bacterium Yersinia pestis has inflicted almost unimaginable misery upon humankind over the centuries, killing an estimated 200 million or more people and triggering horrific plagues in the 6th and 14th centuries. Yersinia pestis caused two of the deadliest pandemics in human history: the 6th century Justinian Plague, named for the Byzantine emperor who was sickened but survived, and the 14th century Black Death. The addition of the gene long ago transformed Yersinia pestis from a pathogen that caused a mild gastrointestinal infection to one that caused the fatal respiratory disease called pneumonic plague.
Dubai said it would construct a small office building using a 3D printer for the first time, in a drive to develop technology that would cut costs and save time as the city grows. 3D printing, which uses a printer to make three-dimensional objects from a digital design, is taking off in manufacturing industries around the world but has so far been used little in construction. Dubai's one-storey prototype building, with about 2,000 square feet (185 square meters) of floor space, will be printed layer-by-layer using a 20-foot tall printer, Mohamed Al Gergawi, the United Arab Emirates Minister of Cabinet Affairs, said on Tuesday.
Scientists on Monday announced the discovery in Yunnan Province of beautifully preserved fossils of one of the stranger animals ever to call Earth home. The creature, Collinsium ciliosum, lived during the Cambrian Period, a time of remarkable evolutionary experimentation when many unusual animals appeared and vanished. "Collinsium is definitely an odd-looking animal, and if one were to bump into one of these during a snorkeling or diving trip nowadays it would be quite shocking," said University of Cambridge paleobiologist Javier Ortega-Hernández, whose research appears in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
By Irene Klotz CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla (Reuters) - SpaceX on Monday was searching for what destroyed its Falcon 9 rocket after liftoff over the weekend, leaving customers still loyal but unsure when their satellites might fly. The privately-held company, owned and operated by technology entrepreneur Elon Musk, has flown 18 successful missions with the Falcon 9 before Sunday’s failure. Preliminary analysis pointed to a problem with the rocket’s second-stage motor liquid oxygen tank, SpaceX said.
By Richard Cowan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The failure of a SpaceX rocket over Florida on Sunday should not lead U.S. officials back to Russia to look for a rocket engine that can get military equipment into space, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain said on Monday. "This mishap in no way diminishes the urgency of ridding ourselves of the Russian RD-180 rocket engine," McCain said in a statement. The United States has placed tough constraints on new deliveries of the Russian-made engines for U.S. military projects, such as launching satellites into space.