SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY
Noise Pollution Hard On Heart as Well as Ears
According to a recent study, noise pollution could be costing lives. A World Health Organization report finds Western Europeans lose years to death or disability from excessive sound. Though European countries have taken steps to turn the volume down, the U.S. backed off the effort decades ago.
Across an estimated population of 340 million people, at least 1 million years of healthy living are lost each year due to noise pollution in Western Europe, WHO researcher Rokho Kim says.
A few too many sleepless nights can add up to heart disease, higher blood pressure and a host of stress-related health issues. But, Kim says, it's not the lost sleep so much as the human body's reaction to noise that's dangerous.
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PODCASTS: From Balloons to Space Stations: Studying Cosmic Rays
Cosmic rays have mysterious qualities about them that scientists continue to research in order to better understand their origins and composition. Dr. Eun-Suk Seo, a professor of physics at the University of Maryland, and her colleagues, fly enormous balloons as large as a football stadium and a volume of 40-million-cubic feet for extended periods over Antarctica to study particles coming from cosmic rays before they break up in the atmosphere.
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