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SCIENCE IN THE NEWS WEEKLY

A 'Methuselah Tree' and a Provocative Australian Fossil

A 2,000-year-old date palm seed found in the arid Dead Sea palace of King Herod perched atop Masada has sprouted and grown into a tree, researchers reported last week. It has become the oldest seed ever grown.

Elsewhere, researchers said that a 200-million-year-old Australian fossil suggests that dinosaurs roamed farther than previously believed across the prehistoric supercontinent of Gondwana. The fossil belonged to a two-legged meat-eater related to a giant, big-clawed carnivore from Argentina.

And before it was swallowed by the sea, the English town of Dunwich was an important medieval city. Last week a research team set sail to discover the secrets of this British Atlantis. They will use the latest acoustic imaging technology to reveal Dunwich in its prime.


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PODCAST & VIDEO: Engineering Around Extreme Events

Extreme events, such as super floods and hurricanes, are becoming more common, so civil engineers are trying to adapt civil infrastructure such as bridges to these unpredictable and sometimes devastating meteorological events. Engineer Ana Barros discusses how engineering can prepare us for extreme weather events, but also how changing climate and population conditions can affect the ability of infrastructure to hold up over time.

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