Science 2016: Facts Discovered Just This Year - Part 4


There have been a lot of scientific breakthroughs this year. These findings will definitely lead to more discoveries in the next year.

BuzzFeed collated a list of over 30 science facts that have just been discovered this year. We have started with the first three parts of the series. Read it here, here and here.

Planet with three suns

A planet with three suns was recently discovered earlier this year. NASA reported that the discovery was led by the University of Arizona. The planet is named HD 131399Ab and is located approximately 340 light years from Earth. It is also believed to be about 16 million years old.

It was revealed that, by about half of the planet's orbit, three stars are visible in the sky. Its orbit lasts 550 Earth years. Apparently, the stars appear close together and result to a unique triple-sunset and sunrise every day.

Soot may have killed the dinosaurs

While it has been established that an asteroid that hit Earth was the major cause of the extinction of dinosaurs 66 million years ago, it is still unknown what exactly killed these creatures since the blast did not affect the ancestors of birds and crocodiles. There are several hypotheses on what actually caused their deaths including one speculating that the impact caused sulphuric acid vapors to go to the atmosphere and caused acid rain and global darkness.

According to Science Daily, a new hypothesis believes that the extinction of dinosaurs may have been caused by soot from the explosion. Apparently, large amounts of soot would have been ejected from rocks after the asteroid impact. This would have caused global cooling, drought as well as limited cessation of photosynthesis in oceans.

Antarctic ozone layer healing

Science Mag noted that the ozone hole in the Antarctic has finally shown signs of healing. This comes 30 years after the Montreal Protocol was implemented. It is an international treaty that phased out the production of several human-made compounds that causes stratospheric ozone destruction.

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