On this week’s update: plastic-eating caterpillars, drones used to study volcanoes, and how to make a sandwich in space!
On this week’s news update…
Plastic-eating caterpillars are discovered.
Scientists use drones to study volcanic eruptions.
And how to make a sandwich… in space!
First up, plastic waste is a big problem.
It pollutes the environment and can take hundreds of years to break down naturally.
Now, a surprising discovery has been made that could help us tackle the world’s plastic problem, and it’s all to do with these little caterpillars, called waxworms!
Waxworms get their name because they nest in beehives and eat beeswax.
But research has found that waxworms can also eat and break down a type of plastic, called polyethylene.
Polyethylene is used for packaging and shopping bags.
In fact, waxworms can munch holes all over a plastic bag in less than an hour!
The research is at a very early stage, but it’s hoped that this breakthrough could help us find a way to combat plastic pollution.
This volcano towers over the city of Antigua, in Guatemala.
It’s called Volcán de Fuego, and it erupts every few weeks.
These eruptions send huge clouds of ash and gas into the air, which can be dangerous for the thousands of people who live nearby.
A team of scientists from the UK has found a unique way of collecting information about this active volcano.
On a recent expedition, they sent unmanned aircraft, called drones, directly into volcanic clouds.
The drones were fitted with special equipment, which allowed the scientists to gather temperature measurements, find out more about what happens beneath the volcano, and film this incredible footage!
And finally – it’s Space Track.
Making a sandwich is pretty easy.
But what about making a sandwich in space?!
When you’re on the International Space Station, you don’t feel the effects of gravity the same way you do on Earth.
Instead, everything just floats around!
This weightless environment makes everyday tasks, like making a sandwich, pretty tricky, as astronaut Shane Kimbrough explains:
“I’m going to stick that down with some tape here so it doesn’t go floating away while I’m getting everything else ready. So I’ll get my peanut butter out… and even the lids on the peanut butter have a piece of Velcro on it so they don’t go floating away. If I let it go it’ll kind of just float there for a little while and then eventually the air conditioning system in here will take it away somewhere else, so I don’t want to lose it…so I’m going to stick it on the table.”
And there it is – a space sandwich!
“And enjoy. See if you guys can enjoy it as it’s coming to you!”
That’s all for this week, we’ll see you next time!