Incoming! Webb Space Telescope first science images release date revealed
Plus: Can ginger really cure nausea? We investigate the belief.
Mark your calendars, folks: The James Webb Space Telescope’s first scientific image drop date is July 12, 2022. That’s 36 days away. A Tuesday, don’t you know. Cancel your plans. I’ll be here, waiting, holding my breath, ready to gasp in awe at what astronomers assure us all will be a sight of the cosmos unlike any we have seen before. But what will that sight actually be? We tried to find out.
This is an adapted version of the Inverse Daily newsletter for Monday, June 6, 2022. Subscribe for free and learn something new every day.
That’s the top story in today’s Inverse Daily! Keep scrolling to read more on how ginger may cure nausea, dogs, and Covid-19. Happy new week.
We finally know when the Webb Telescope's first color images will arrive
The James Webb Space Telescope will make its first scientific observations of the universe in the coming weeks. The first full-color images will drop on July 12, 2022, along with spectroscopic data.
What the images will show is somewhat a mystery —so Inverse spoke to Klaus Pontoppidan, Project Scientist with the Webb Mission Office at the Space Telescope Science Institute and Technical PI for Webb’s Early Release Observations, to try and glean some clues to what they will reveal.
“The purpose of the first images, what’s called the early release observations, is really to demonstrate to the world that we are ready to do science,” Pontoppidan tells Inverse.
“It’s also really a celebration of getting to this point.”
On Tuesday, July 12, the Webb team will release an unconfirmed number of full-color images based on observations by two of Webb’s four science instruments: the Near-Infrared Camera (NIRCam) and the Mid-Infrared Instrument (MIRI).
The Webb’s two other instruments, the Near-Infrared Spectrograph (NIRSpec) and the Fine Guidance Sensor/Near-Infrared Imager and Slitless Spectrograph (FGS/NIRISS) don’t capture photo-like images of the universe. Instead, they sort incoming light from distant objects into distinct wavelengths. Scientists can then use these data to measure the temperature and chemical makeup of those objects.
Four science-backed strategies to stop a vicious cycle of self-defeating thoughts
Rumination typically refers to excessive, repetitive thinking about personal problems. It often results in emotional distress. While researchers are still working out exactly what rumination involves, it is generally used to mean excessive, repetitive thinking about personal problems. It often results in emotional distress and it is associated with many mental health issues — especially depression.
Positive rumination, meanwhile, involves focusing on positive states and thoughts. This can improve your health and wellbeing, explains Dane McCarrick, a postgraduate researcher at the University of Leeds who studies rumination.
“In general, we need to learn more about different types of rumination and how they respond to different treatment types,” McCarrick says. “There is no one size fits all approach.”
This article will focus on negative rumination — which can also hinder problem-solving and drive away needed social support — along with the tools researchers have identified as useful in mitigating it. Rumination can get us stuck in a rut. With help, you can get out.
Can dogs detect Covid-19 better than rapid tests? Here's what the science says
Rapid antigen tests, if taken too soon after the onset of symptoms, can sometimes present false readings. PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests can detect the virus with greater accuracy than antigen tests, but it can often take days to get results, especially during peak waves.
Enter one possible solution: the canine Covid-19 test. We’ve known for a while now that dogs can sniff out SARS-CoV-2, the virus that leads to Covid-19. In fact, basketball teams have even used trained coronavirus-sniffing dogs to screen for infected attendees. Yet research on the precise accuracy of these canine assessments has been slower-going.
Now, one study out of France suggests we may be able to accurately use non-invasive canine Covid-19 detection tests as an alternative to PCR or antigen tests, helping to minimize the spread of Covid-19. The findings were published Wednesday in the journal PLOS ONE.
“[The] dog test is non-invasive, immediate, [and] cheap, and this study demonstrates it is reliable,” Dominique Grandjean, a co-author of the study and a professor at the National Veterinary School of Alfort in France, tells Inverse.
Can ginger cure nausea? A gastroenterologist reveals the spicy truth
Ginger and wasabi are sushi’s best friends. Each one offers a little something flavor-wise, but gastroenterologist Ali Rezaie at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has a soft spot for the pale yellow side. “I'm that guy that when he goes and eats sushi asks for four extra plates of ginger,” Rezaie tells Inverse. He loves it most for its taste, but as a doctor specializing in the gut, he thinks the root could have even more benefits than we realize.
For 5,000 years, Chinese and Indian cultures have treated people with ginger. However, it’s still gaining medical recognition in the Western world. A 2020 review of 109 trials looking at ginger found that fewer than half the studies (43) produced convincing evidence of ginger’s health benefits. Doctors like Rezaie might recommend ginger to their patients with certain conditions, but overall, it still doesn’t have the same standing as traditional Western medications.
For example: Candied ginger chews and lozenges are popular carry-ons in cases of motion and sea sickness. But does it actually work?
Gastroenterologist Ali Rezaie says there’s some evidence that ginger mitigates nausea, especially in morning sickness. The caveat, he says, is that we still don’t really understand why nausea happens in the first place. It's likely that various mechanisms within the human body contribute to nausea, according to Rezaie, many of which we don’t quite understand yet. This makes it hard to pinpoint if and how ginger might help combat it.
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- On this day in history: On June 6, 1892, the Chicago Loop train, the “L,” started operating in the city.
- Song of the day: “My Kind of Town,” by Frank Sinatra.