This week in science

Ingenuity flight 9 soars and more: Understand the world in 9 images

ESA

Freelanceimages/Collection Mix: Subjects/Getty Images

NASA’s Ingenuity completed its most challenging flight yet on Mars, an amateur astronomer made a major discovery, and paleontologists blew up a dinosaur myth during the week of July 1–7.

Here are the week’s biggest science stories, told in 9 stunning images.

Alice Turner/Stocktrek Images/Stocktrek Images/Getty Images

July 7

Researchers identified a new iguanodon-like dinosaur from a jawbone fossil found in Spain. Relatives of the new species have been found in China and Niger.

A. Santos-Cubedo et al. PLOS ONE (2021)

8. Faces in the clouds

University of Sydney

July 6

Researchers discovered that the brain processes illusory faces in inanimate objects the same way it recognizes real faces, including interpreting their facial expressions.

University of Sydney

7. The power of plants

NTU Singapore

July 6

Researchers in Singapore found vertical plants in urban settings — on balconies and walls, for example — reduce stress in passersby. Using VR cityscapes, the researchers found that urban greenery has a stress-relief effect, but the color green alone doesn’t.

NTU Singapore

6. Deep breathing

Viktor Radermacher

July 6

Scientists used fossil x-rays to reveal that not all dinosaurs breathed the same way. Paleontologists assumed dinosaurs breathed using air sacs like birds — but the Heterodontosaurus breathed by expanding its chest and belly.

Viktor Radermacher

5. Spacewalker

ESA

July 6

The European Robotic Arm prepared to travel to the International Space Station. The ERA will be capable of “walking” along the outside of the ISS to help astronauts during spacewalks.

ESA

4. Nine and counting

NASA/JPL

July 5

Traveling at 5 m/s for 166.4 seconds, Ingenuity completed its longest, fastest flight yet. It was the ninth flight so far for the Mars helicopter.

NASA/JPL

3. Solar storm

NASA/SDO

July 3

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured an X-class solar flare, among the most powerful flares the Sun produces.

NASA/SDO

July 2

University of California engineers added electrostatic footpads based on insect feet to their insect-sized robot developed in 2019. The addition makes the already agile robot capable of navigating difficult, dangerous terrain.

Jiaming Liang & Liwei Lin

1. New moon

Scott Sheppard

July 1

An amateur astronomer discovered a new moon of Jupiter, designated S/2003 J 24, using archival images from 2003–2018. It’s Jupiter’s 80th moon and the first to be discovered by an amateur astronomer.

Kai Ly

Read more science stories here.

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