6/6/2005:

Intermediate Word:  dragoon (a) half-pint wine pouch  (b) captain of the guard  (c) brass ha' pounder  (d) violently coerce
Difficult Word:
  sacristy - (a) vestry  (b) the sacrament of communion  (c) apron worn by the clergy for baptism  (d) front of church containing altar and choir

A Voyage To The Edge Of Sol - SpaceDaily  As the 28-year-old Voyagers 1 and 2 spacecraft approach the edge of interstellar space, they have found that the heliosphere, the "bubble" within which the sun dominates, bulges outward in the northern hemisphere and is pressed inward in the south. Voyager 1, flying about 34 degrees north of the equator, crossed the termination shock and entered the outermost layer of the heliosphere about 9 billion miles from the sun. Meanwhile Voyager 2, about 26 degrees south of the equator, finds that the shock may be nearly a billion miles closer to the sun. Scientists believe that the observed discrepancies may be attributed to an interstellar magnetic field.    
Opportunity Gets Dug Into Loose Soil Again - SpaceDaily  Opportunity's wheels dug into loose soil during a drive on sol 833 (May 29, 2006). The drive was planned for about 24 meters (79 feet) but resulted in only 1.5 meters (5 feet) of forward progress. The flight team directed Opportunity on sol 834 to take images for studying the situation and planning a way to drive out of the loose material. Preliminary assessment indicates the wheels are not buried as deeply as when Opportunity's wheels become embedded in "Purgatory Dune" on sol 446. An escape drive may be attempted within a few days. The sol 833 drive was planned to stay in a trough between crests of ripples. Neither the trough nor the ripples were considered wheel-embedding hazards.     

Arctic's tropical past uncovered  - BBC  Fifty-five million years ago the North Pole was an ice-free zone with tropical temperatures, according to research. A sediment core excavated from 400m (1,300ft) below the seabed of the Arctic Ocean has enabled scientists to delve far back into the region's past. "Basically, it looks like the Earth released a gigantic fart of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere - and globally the Earth warmed by about 5C (9F). The core revealed that before 55 million years ago, the surface waters of the Arctic Ocean were ice-free and as warm as 18C (64F). But the sudden increase in greenhouse gases boosted them to a balmy 24C (75F).  




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