9/29/2004:

Intermediate Word:  archon  study of  (a) ruler of a Seleucid province or region  (b) brace for an arch  (c) one of the nine principal magistrates in ancient Athens  (d) arachnoid family that includes trapdoor spiders
Difficult Word: - limnology  study of (a) glacier creation, transport, and ablation  (b) molluscs  (c) sedimentary rocks  (d) lakes, ponds, and streams

 Cold Sugar In Space Provides Clue To Molecular Origin Of Life - Space.com  Left: Section of graphic illustrating processes that may produce complex molecules in cold interstellar space. Credit: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF  Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's giant Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) have discovered a frigid reservoir of simple sugar molecules in a cloud of gas and dust some 26,000 light-years away, near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. The discovery suggests how the molecular building blocks necessary for the creation of life could first form in interstellar space. The astronomers detected the 8-atom sugar molecule glycolaldehyde in a gas-and-dust cloud called Sagittarius B2. Such clouds, often many light-years across, are the raw material from which new stars and planets are formed. The cold glycolaldehyde detections were surprisingly strong.   
Fossil Genes Reveal How Life Sheds Form And Function - Space.com  Scouring the genome of a Japanese yeast, scientists have found a trackway of fossil genes in the making, providing a rare look at how an organism, in response to the demands of its environment, has changed its inner chemistry and lost the ability to metabolize a key sugar. "Many people think evolution is always happening in a forward direction," that new features are just tacked on, says Sean B. Carroll, a professor of molecular biology at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. "The other side of the coin is that we lose things. Losses as well as gains make up the story of evolution."

Water And Methane Maps Overlap On Mars: A New Clue? - Space.com  Left: This map shows the concentration of water vapour close to the soil around the equatorial region of Mars. The areas of least concentration are in purple, the highest in green.Credits: ESA/ASI/PFS team  Recent analyses of ESA's Mars Express data reveal that concentrations of water vapour and methane in the atmosphere of Mars significantly overlap. The PFS team observed that the areas of highest concentration of methane overlap with the areas where water vapour and underground water ice are also concentrated. This spatial correlation between water vapour and methane seems to point to a common underground source.




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